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Most Popular Halloween Outfits of 2012

The Dark Knight rises, but classic costumes remain the most popular.

Most Popular Halloween Outfits of 2012

Americans will spend nearly $3 billion on Halloween costumes this year, and the majority of them will dress as witches, vampires, princesses and other traditional outfits.

The National Retail Federation’s 2012 Top Costumes survey reports that 10 percent of kids plan to dress as a princess, while six million adults plan to go as a witch.

Batman is the second most popular costume for kids, while the character – along with other characters from The Dark Knight Rises – is fourth for adults.

Some people plan take their outfit cues from current events, whether it’s an athlete, political figure or something else entirely.

“With nearly one in ten celebrants taking their costume cues from current events, we’ll see plenty of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney look-alikes out-and-about for Halloween,” said Pam Goodfellow, a director at the survey firm BIGinsight. “However, we expect these ‘rivals’ will be able to find some common ground over the punch bowl or a bag of candy.”

One outfit that’s been anecdotally popular has been that of South Korean rapper PSY, the musician behind the viral hit song “Gangnam Style.”

DNAInfo.com reports that shoppers have been coming to Halloween stores in New York City to find the signature look of the entertainer.

“Now I’m thinking maybe I should get a blue tux, black sunglasses and a bow tie for those looking for it,” said one owner.

Pets will also play a big part in the holiday, as owners are expected to spend $370 million on outfits for the pets. The most popular costumes in that category are pumpkins, devils and hot dogs.

Last year Patch websites throughout the country sought the most original costume for a Halloween contest, and a headless boy from New Jersey took the top prize. 

The full list from the National Retail Federation

Top Adult Costumes

Top Children’s Costumes

Top Pet Costumes

1. Witch

1. Princess

1. Pumpkin

2. Vampire

2. Batman

2. Devil

3. Pirate

3. Spiderman

3. Hot dog

4. Batman character

4. Witch

4. Cat

5. Zombie

5. Disney princess

5. Bee

6. Vixen

6. Action/super Hero

6(tie). Dog

7. Princess

7. Pirate

6(tie). Ghost

8(tie). Ghost

8. Vampire

7. Action/Super Hero

8(tie). Nurse

9. Zombie

8. Witch

9. Cat

10. Ghost

9. Bowties/Fancy Collars/Bandanas

10. Superman


10. Superman

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