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The Margin: The most popular Halloween costumes for kids, pets — and adults


Halloween sales are expected to return to pre-pandemic levels this year, according to the National Retail Federation. And what will be behind the sales boom?

None other than the characters in the hit animated series “Paw Patrol,” according to, a leading online retailer of costumes.

“Paw Patrol” costumes top the company’s list of most popular Halloween kids costumes this year. Other hot-selling ones in the youth category include characters from the “Justice League” movie, Dorothy from the classic “The Wizard of Oz” and the ever-menacing Darth Vader from “Star Wars” franchise.

With adults, the biggest seller looks to be an inflatable T-Rex costume, which has become increasingly beloved because of its appearance in TikTok videos, according to merchandising director Rebecca Maas.

“Social media helps sell a lot of costumes,” she said.

Also popular in the adult category this year: Wonder Woman, Buddy the Elf from the “Elf”movie and Dorothy from “The Wizard of Oz.”

Maas noted that normally costumes of characters in recent hit movies play heavily into sales trends. But with a limited number of must-see pictures in 2022, that has allowed costumes of long-established characters to sell well, along with costumes that just have their own comical or other appeal (as in the inflatable T-Rex).

“There wasn’t a ton of newness” in this year’s list, said Maas.

Increasingly, costumes for pets have become popular during Halloween — and tracks sales trends in that category as well. This year’s top seller for pets is the Bob character from the “Minions” franchise. Also trending in the pet category: Winifred from the “Hocus Pocus” movies and the Beetlejuice character of cinematic fame. based this year’s top 10 lists using current and historical sales figures, plus search trends, according to Maas.

The National Retail Federation says that Halloween spending is expected to reach a record $10.6 billion this year. Also of note: 47% of consumers plan to dress up in a costume, according to the federation.

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