Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

Frugal Friday: Be Gaga. Be Pauly D. But it won't be cheap

halloween.top.jpg By Jessica Dickler, CNNMoney.com staff writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Halloween might as well be sponsored by MTV this year.

The most popular costumes for 2010 come straight from the youth-dominated music network -- and they don't come cheap.

The cast of the Jersey Shore and Lady Gaga top the list of most desirable costumes this year, according to Spirit Halloween, the country's largest seasonal Halloween retailer.

"The abs on the Situation, the hair on Pauly D -- these characters lend themselves to being costumes," said Spirit President and CEO Steven Silverstein.

But knocking off a Jersey Shore look will cost considerably more than some time in the gym and a can of hair spray.

"You can't look cheap and nasty," according to Michael Schweiger, who is the agent for Jersey Shore castmember Paul "Pauly D" DelVecchio. "It's all designer brands, $200 jeans and the sneakers have to be brand new."

Pauly D prefers pricey Republica sunglasses and Lucky jeans, and he only wears designers T-shirts. Although, he makes an exception for a white ribbed undershirt from Hanes -- otherwise known as "the shirt-before-the-shirt" -- that is just $12.

Of course, for those wanting more of a mockumentary than the real thing, a costume of The Situation's abs -- or Pauly D's style -- comes for just $24.99. And Snooki's "poof" is just $16.99. Fist pumping is free.

"The most important thing is the hair, you have to get the hair right, it's got to be done correctly, it's got to be gelled correctly. And then the attitude, you got to be cool," notes Schweiger.

Channeling Lady Gaga is also all about attitude -- and her attire is even harder to pull off. The singer may be best known for the provocative meat dress she wore to this year's MTV video music awards, which is essentially off limits.

"Unfortunately I wouldn't be able to attach a price to this piece," the dress' designer, Franc Fernandez, said in an email. "The handwork itself was something of a masterpiece made by me and my team. There will be no recreations of it for any other clients."

While a few fabric reinterpretations have popped up on eBay for $60-$100, meat dress costumes will be hard to find. Halloween stores offer some less tasty alternatives: A Lady Gaga-esque silver sequined mini-dress from Spirit Halloween is $49.99; the blue swimsuit inspired by her Poker Face video retails for $39.99 (platinum blond wigs sold separately). .

Halloween enthusiasts are planning to spend considerably more than they did last year, according to the National Retail Federation's 2010 Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey.

Americans will spend $66.28 on costumes, candy and decorations, up 18% from last year. Total spending for the holiday is expected to reach $5.8 billion.

This year, 40.1% of respondents are planning to wear a costume, the highest percentage in the NRF survey's history, and up from 33.4% last year (11.5% will put costumes on their pets as well).

"Halloween has become our national party and even through the economy has been challenged it's an easy escape," Spirit Halloween's Silverstein said. To top of page

Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed4.02%3.99%
15 yr fixed3.16%3.18%
5/1 ARM3.31%3.40%
30 yr refi4.06%4.01%
15 yr refi3.18%3.20%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 19,756.85 142.04 0.72%
Nasdaq 5,444.50 27.14 0.50%
S&P 500 2,259.53 13.34 0.59%
Treasuries 2.46 0.08 3.23%
Data as of 12:20pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 23.09 0.14 0.61%
Ford Motor Co 13.17 0.14 1.07%
Chesapeake Energy Co... 7.72 0.12 1.58%
Twenty-First Century... 28.21 -0.43 -1.50%
Apple Inc 113.95 1.83 1.63%
Data as of Dec 9

Sections

Even Carl Icahn, one of President-elect Donald Trump's biggest cheerleaders on Wall Street, thinks the post-election exuberance in the stock market has gotten a bit out of hand. More

Republican leaders keep saying Obamacare is hurting the economy and killing jobs, but there's scant evidence for it. In fact, a number of studies show that the economy has been growing. More

"Wow." That's former CIA director General Michael Hayden's reaction to President-elect Trump's refusal to believe that Russia hacked the American election. More

The Los Angeles city attorney is suing four major retailers over claims that they deliberately inflated the original price on some items that misled customers into thinking they were getting a better deal. More