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Buzz Lightyear, Alice in Wonderland Among Top Costumes for 2010, According to NRF

For Immediate Release
Kathy Grannis (202)783-7971 or grannisk@nrf.com

Click here to view sample charts of NRF’s 2010 Halloween spending survey
Download complete costume lists

Buzz Lightyear, Alice in Wonderland Among Top Costumes for 2010, According to NRF

Washington, September 30, 2010 – Don’t be surprised if Buzz Lightyear or an Alice in Wonderland character crashes your Halloween party this year. The National Retail Federation’s 2010 Top Costumes survey, conducted by BIGresearch, found that nearly 120 million children, adults and their pets are likely to sport traditional as well as trendy costumes this year. 

Proving old habits are hard to break, 4.3 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%). 

“Aiming to attract shoppers of all ages, retailers have already begun stocking their shelves with a wide variety of costumes, from classic favorites to pop-culture icons,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “With more people than ever planning to dress up this Halloween, partygoers should not wait until the last minute to buy their costumes.”

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). 

“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.” 

Consumers’ four-legged friends will stick to the more traditional options, including devil (9.7%), witch (5.1%), hot dog (3.9%) and bee (3.6%).


Top Adult Costumes

Top Children’s CostumesTop Pet Costumes

1. Witch

1. Princess

1. Pumpkin

2. Vampire

2. Spider-Man

2. Devil

3. Pirate

3. Witch

3. Witch

4. Nurse

4. Pirate

4. Hot Dog

5. Wench/Tart/Vixen

5. Disney Princess

5. Bee/Cat (Tie)

6. Cat

6. Action/Super Hero

6. Dog

7. Zombie

7. Ghost

7. Superdog/Supercat

8. Fairy

8. Pumpkin/Vampire (Tie)

8. Ghost

9. Athlete/Batman (Tie)

9. Batman

9. Pirate

10. Dracula

10. Star Wars Character

10. Bowties/Fancy Collar/Bandana

About the Survey 

NRF’s 2010 Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the Halloween season. The poll of 9,291 consumers was conducted from August 31 – September 8, 2010. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent. 

BIGresearch® consumer intelligence provides analysis of behavior in areas of products and services, retail, financial services, automotive and media. The BIGresearch Consumer Intentions and Actions® Survey (CIATM) of 8,000+ respondents is conducted monthly and the Simultaneous Media Usage® Survey (SIMM®) of 15,000+ respondents is conducted semi-annually. 

As the world's largest retail trade association and the voice of retail worldwide, the National Retail Federation's global membership includes retailers of all sizes, formats and channels of distribution as well as chain restaurants and industry partners from the U.S. and more than 45 countries abroad. In the U.S., NRF represents the breadth and diversity of an industry with more than 1.6 million American companies that employ nearly 25 million workers and generated 2009 sales of $2.3 trillion. www.nrf.com