New Year's Eve Costumes

Updated October 10, 2019
Friends celebrating the new year together

The final and most exciting party of the year requires festive New Year's Eve costumes. When making your entrance into the party, all eyes will be on you if you dress up in a sizzling costume that is appropriate for the occasion.

New Year's Eve Parties

New Year's Eve is celebrated in many countries around the world with parties and parades. New Year's Eve costumes are usually glamorous, glitzy and more formal than other costumes. If you have been invited to a formal party, you may need to wear a black tie or a long gown. If the party is informal and festive, your attire could be similar to a Mardi Gras or masquerade costume. If you are unclear about what type of party your host is planning, call her to clarify. You would not want to come to the party under or over dressed!

Formal New Year's Eve Style

It is common for New Year's Eve parties to be a formal black tie events. In some cases this requires men to wear a tuxedo and women to wear an evening gown. If the party is semi-formal men can wear a shirt and tie of any color and women can wear a short mini-skirt with a stylish blouse or sequined top.

Elegant couple laughing

Simple Costume Ideas

Dressing up for New Year's Eve in a casual outfit can be as simple as wearing a sexy little dress with a few strands of beads and a hat. You can add accessories to create an easy last minute costume. Choose any outfit that is appropriate for an evening of dance and celebration and customize it with the following accessories to add pizzazz:

  • Feather boa
  • Elbow length gloves
  • Party hat
  • Santa hat
  • Men's top hat
  • Strands of beads
  • Sparkly nylons
  • Bedazzled shoes and purse
  • Temporary tattoo
  • Sexy shoes

Fancy Dress Ideas for New Year's Eve

No matter what your plans are for ringing in the New Year, what you wear is all about something festive and unique for the incredible holiday. Some fancy costume ideas include:

Celebrity Outfit Inspiration

Turn to celebrity-inspired costumes and outfits to get ideas. It could be an sophisitcated evening dress, a flashy metallic jumpsuit, or a sexy dress with a plunging neckline. Look for outrageous outfit ideas from their videos and performances, too. Find inspired-by versions of the outfits and style your hair and makeup like your favorite star to pull off a fabulous costume look.

Beautiful woman in black dress

Sparkle and Shine

Pair eye-catching pieces together for a costume look that isn't tied to a specific character or personality. Items like metallic shirts or jackets, sequinned dresses or tops, leather skirts, glitter jumpsuits, dangling earrings, chunky necklaces, embellished belts, and shimmering hair pieces will keep you sparkling all night long. Along with metallics, lush fabrics like velvet, lace, and silk are perfect, as are animal prints.

Sequins Fashion

Cute and Quirky

You can also choose looks that have a cute and fun look for new years. For example, wear a confetti-print jumpsuit, polka-dot dress, or a metallic body suit worn under a suit with a suit for ladies. Patent leather pants or a vinyl skirt with a sequin or starry print top. Guys might consider items like a flashy metallic jacket, or bold peacock-print pants worn with a crisp white shirt.

Woman sitting in living room at party

White Out

For another easy and eye-catching outfit, go all white on New Year's Eve. Some countries, such as Brazil, wear white on New Year's eve because it is said to pring prosperity in the New Year. Whether it's a full-length white dress with silver or gold accessories or sporty separates done in all white, it can be a refreshing look.

woman wearing trendy white suit

Masquerade New Year's Eve Costumes

Masquerade parties date back to the 15th century when people wore formal ball gowns and suits with a small mask to cover their eyes. New Year's Eve is a perfect night for a masquerade party or ball. Today, New Year's costumes for a masquerade ball could be anything formal or semi-formal, so long as you wear a masquerade mask. Women often choose to wear a sparkly top paired with a skirt or pants and a mask that matches the outfit. Many masks are decorated with sequins and feathers. For a formal style, men should wear a silk shirt and tie with black slacks and a matching mask. You can make your own DIY masquerade masks, or find masquerade masks for New Year's at stores like A Masquerade and Beyond Masquerade.

woman with long blonde hair

Themed Costumes

Dressing up for New Year's Eve allows you to be creative. The costumes to ring in the New Year are fun, but also tasteful like a fancy dress costume. You may want to go with a theme, or if you are having a party, have guests stick to a theme such as:

  • Color combo, such as black and white or black and gold
  • Favorite movie characters
  • Famous musicians
  • Retro costumes (allow guests to choose their own or specify the decade, like the roaring 20s)
  • Fun themes, like the circus, around-the-world, jungle, or fantasy

The following are more ideas are appropriate for New Year's Eve attire:

Flapper Girl

Wear a flapper dress with black fringe, white fringe, or gold fringe to ring in the new year. If you have a stretchy mini dress, you can get fringe from a craft store and affix it to the dress with fabric or craft glue. Pair it with a feather boa, long beaded necklace, and headband with a feather or pearl beads worn as a headband for a fun look.

1920's style portrait of young woman

Lady Gaga

Channel your inner Lady Gaga and make a splash on New Year in a blonde wig, red body suit with belt, red cowl hood, and lace tights (or leggings worn under the body suit). Add sublasses and a black jacket if desired. You could also go all out with one of her signature outfits, like her red lace dress or a faux meat dress.

Singer Lady Gaga

Baby New Year

Start with a neutral colored top and leggings (or stretchy pants for guys) that is close to flesh color. You can either wear these alone or use padding underneath for 'baby fat.' You'll also need a large rectangle of lightweight white cloth to wrap around and secure with diaper pins to create the diaper. Alternately, you can buy or make adult onesie pajamas. Optional accessories like bibs, bonnets, pacifiers, baby bottles, or stuffed animals can complete the costume.


A long black wig, black motorcycle or structured jacket, black body suit, fishnet tights, and boots will turn you into an instant look-alike for Cher in her If I Could Turn Back Time video. Wear it with a dark-colored fisherman's cap to finish it off.

Chinese New Year's Dragon

Making a DIY Chinese dragon costume for New Year's is a little more time consuming, but not impossible. You'll need to create a wire frame in the shape of the dragons head, and cover it in paper mache to create the head. You can decorate in bright colors use paint once it's dry. You could also use a dragon mask for a simpler version. For the body, you can simply wear a monochrome outfit in one of the colors used on the dragons head, or add fabric pieces in the shape of scales to the outfit.

Spanish Dancer

For a simple homemade Spanish dancer costume, pair a fitted red or black top with a knee or ankle length full black or red skirt. You can wear this alone for a simple looks or add ruffles. Use red or black fabric to create ruffles along the edge of the skirt. To add ruffles to the edge of the skirt, use fabric that is two to three inches in length and twice the width or wher eyou are placing it on the skirt. Use a sewing machine to create loose zig-zag stiches or use simple hand stitches to gather the ruffle. Sew or use craft or hot glue to affix the two layers of ruffles to the skirt. Add a faux flower to your hair and pair with matching tights. Fans, gloves, and choker necklaces are optional extras.

Spanish girl dancing


Use temporary hair color or don a black wig, and pair it with 60s-style black or white pants and matching long-sleeved collared shirt for an Elvis costume. If you want to go all out, jazz up the shirt with stick-on rhinestones or sequins. Optional items like an Elvis cape and microphone will add an extra touch. Elvis's outfit from Jailhouse rock would also be easy to create with black pants, a black jacket and a striped t-shirt.

King or Queen

Amp up your New Year's look when you dress up like royalty. A crown and cape are essential to a queen or king costume. To create a majestic cape, use a length of velvet fabric that will fit loosely around your shoulders. You can choose a very long length or just have it fall to waist or hip length. Turn the top edge or the fabric over and sew or use craft glue to create a slight pocket. String a length of gold cord or black ribbon through the pocket and use that to tie the cape at the top and adjust the drape. You can decorate the edge of the cape with rick rack, gold ribbon, or any other royal decorations. Guys may want to wear an old-fashioned suit; ladies might want to wear a long dress or full skirt with a dressy blouse underneath.


Pair a simple knight's helmet (found at most party and costume stores) with an easy DIY tunic for a knight costume. Choose gray or neutral-neutral colored felt that is wide enough for the body and is long enough when folded in half that it falls to the knees or thighs on both sides of the body. With the fabric folded, cut a half-circle at the top; this will be the neck opening. Cut out an emblem or cross from a contrasting piece of felt (draw freehand or use a template) and affix to the front of the tunic or hot glue. If you don't want to buy a helmet, cut off the hood from an old gray hoodie (including part of the shoulders) and secure in front using black cord or elastic. For a couples costume pair the night with a Maid Marion outfit.

couple in medieval-style clothes

Lady Godiva

Noblewoman Lady Godiva lived during the 11th century and was popularized in songs and poems. According to myth, she once rode horseback naked to persuade her husband, a wealthy Earl, to reduce taxes. Historians have disputed the myth, but it's still a fun costume idea! Wear an extra-long blonde wig with a flesh-colored, solid body suit and matching leggings for this costume. If you can't find flesh color, you can also pair a plain white body suit and leggings or simple white dress for a similar look.

Blonde woman with curls Angel

Go Go Girl

You'll need a body-con mini dress to wear it with knee-length platform boots and a floral or bright colored headband to become a go-go girl for the night. You can wear a bright colored or patterned dress as is, or decorate it with 60s style patterns using fabric paint or fabric markers. Alternatively, look for a 60s style mini dress at a vintage store.

woman in nostalgic dress holding vinyl records

Flower Child

To ring in the New Year as a flower child, start with a boho-style white dress. You can leave it simple and the dress with a floral or leather headband headband. Or, to add to it, top dress with a brown fabric or leather vest and add fringed boots. If you have an old pair of old brown boots, use brown felt to create rows of faux fringe and tape or glue them onto the boots. A peace sign necklace makes a fun finishing touch.

hippie woman on cereal field

Hippy Costume

Guys and girls alike can dress as hippies. The basics are tie-dyed t-shirts and bell-bottom jeans (if you can't find bell-bottoms, a pair of bootcut jeans will work). You can also use fabric markers to draw peace signs in various colors on a white t-shirt. Accessories include hippy hats or headbands, sunglasses, and peace sign necklaces or belts.

Hippie giving peace sign

Hooters Girl

Dress up like a Hooters girl with a pair of bright orange spandex shorts and a stretchy white tank top. Use fabric markers or paints to draw the Hooters name and owl logo on the shirt. White socks and tennis shoes complete the costume.

woman enjoying a bright red fruity beverage

Handsome Prince or Beautiful Princess

A ladies' princess costume can start with a full-length dress with an empire waist or sweetheart neckline. Choose a dressy hairstyle like an updo or long braid, and add accents like a necklace or a crown. A simple cape or shawl can finish off the look. Women can also get more creative by making a tulle princess skirt or a character costume, like Snow White. For a basic guys' prince costume, dress up a plain white collared dress shirt and pair it with dress pants. Choose felt or fabric in a color that matches the paints, or in a contrasting shade such as gold, and cut lengths to affix over the cuffs and collars using craft glue. Also cut two large ovals to place on the shoulders and make the appellates. Add rows of gold cord or ribbon in rows across the fronts of the shirt, and attach gold fringe to the ovals for the shoulders. A crown and sash are optional.

Chauffeur Costume

The chauffeur costume is easy to pull off for men or women. Costume stores carry chauffeur hats. All you'll need after that is basic black or dark suit, white button-down shirt, dark tie (regular or bow-tie), and a pair of cloth or leather gloves.

Handsome limo driver

Hugh Hefner

Guys who want to dress up like Hugh Hefner on New Years can easily do so. A black and red silk smoking lacket is the trademark look, paired with black dress pants and black dress shoes. An easy alternate for the jacket is a short red robe. A pipe finishes the costume off.

Bubbly Champagne Glass

Look like the bubbly you're celebrating with in a few simple hacks for a DIY Champagne bottle costume. Start with a basic dark green or black sheath or body-con dress with matching tights. Use gold fabric glitter to draw the shape of the top of the bottle on the dress, and then fill in. Use a rectangle of white fabric and fabric marker or paint to create the label, then when dry sew or use craft clue to place it on the center of the dress. Finish with a pillbox-style hat to mimic the top of the bottle (cover with the gold fabric glitter or lame fabric for shine).

Geisha Girl

For a Geisha girl look, beging with a silky robe in a bright color, such as red or blue. You'll also need a length of contrasting silky fabric several inches in width and large enough to wear around your mid section and ribbon to tie around the waist. Affix the contrasting fabric in place with safety pins, then tiw the ribbon around the waist and finish with a bow. Add faux flowers to your hair (wear it a top knot) and do your Geisha girl makeup.

Maiko Girls

Queen Elizabeth

To dress as Queen Elizabeth, you'll need a long medieval or renaissance style gown that has a high neck, fitted bodice, and long sleeves. You can make a simple ruff to go around the neck, and cuffs of the sleeves if desired, with wide ribbon and a needle and thread.

Queen Elizabeth

New Year's Costume Ideas for Couples

Following are some great ideas of famous couple costumes and other for costume ideas for couples to wear together:

  • Sonny and Cher
  • Sir Lancelot and Lady Guinevere
  • Bonny and Clyde
  • Romeo and Juliet
  • Scarlett O'Hara and Rhett Butler
  • Elvis and Priscilla Presley
  • Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers
  • Cleopatra and Anthony
  • Princess Leia and Luke Skywalker
  • Danny and Sandy (from Grease)
  • Groovy Disco Guy and Dancing Queen

Time to Celebrate

When choosing your costume, remember that New Year's Eve is the night to say goodbye to the old while welcoming the new. It's a time to celebrate and make vows and resolutions for a new year. Dress up and have fun with it. Choose a costume that will help you stand out in the crowd. When you are brainstorming and planning your costume, you can't go wrong if you choose costumes that are sleek, sparkly, sexy, dazzling, or sophisticated.

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New Year's Eve Costumes