According to The National Retail Federation’s 2010 Top Costumes survey, nearly 120 million children, adults and their pets are likely to sport traditional as well as trendy costumes this year.  Approximately 43 million children will celebrate Halloween dressed as a princess. Princess costumes have topped NRF’s children’s top costume list for six consecutive years. Witches are the preferred adult costume this year (11.4%) and pets across the country will most likely dress as pumpkins (10.3%).   

Pop culture and Hollywood still play a large role in costume choices for all ages. Thousands of children will hit the streets dressed as Buzz Lightyear (648,000) and Harry Potter characters (459,000) this year; both are new to the list. Nearly 1.8 million children will crawl through town as Spider-Man (#2) and 1.7 million will be a witch (#3).

Vampires (2.6 million) remain popular among adults, maintaining the number two spot two years in a row, and nearly two million adults will dress as pirates (1.9 million), coming in at third on the list. After falling off the radar last year, nurse costumes jumped all the way back up to the fourth spot. Alice in Wonderland characters made the adult costume list for the first time this year, tying with Star Wars characters (#16).

Spirit Halloween, a leading seasonal Halloween retailer, has predicted the best sellers of the 2010 season. With a combination of the latest movies and TV characters in addition to retro comebacks, this year’s picks include:  The cast of the Jersey Shore, vampires, Lady Gaga, Gumby and Pokey throwback styles, Iron Man 2, Toy Story 3, Nintendo characters Super Mario and Luigi (25th anniversary), flappers and gangsters, Star Wars, and pirates.

“Americans young and old love celebrating Halloween, especially given the variety of costumes and decorations that are available,” said Phil Rist, Executive Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, BIGresearch. “Creativity will reign this year as parents look for ways to save money while making sure their families’ costumes are the talk of the town.”

[Source:  “The National Retail Federation’s 2010 Top Costumes Survey.”  The National Retail Federation (NRF)/BIGresearch.  30 Sept. 2010.  Web.  4 Oct. 2010.]