Want to dress up a little more spooky than usual this year? Well, I have you covered with this DIY severed head Halloween costume. This costume is a little more intricate than what you’re probably used to. But not to worry — I have you covered with this step-by-step tutorial.

Now, if you’re not interested in this severed head Halloween costume, check out my zombie costume and makeup tutorial that was super easy to create — as well as other spooky inspirational makeup ideas to get your costume creativity flowing.

Let’s jump right into it, because this is a long and detailed tutorial.

What You’ll Need For This Severed Head Halloween Costume:

You’ll need a small or medium box. I purchased mine from Home Depot. Keep in mind, the box needs to be as tall as your torso from waist to neck. Don’t worry if it’s a little too big, as you’re going to trim the size a bit to make it fit perfectly.

All the items you’ll need:

2 pool noodles
5 white foam poster boards
Skin tone opaque tights
Paper towels
Old pillow / poly-fil
Tape (duck and double-sided)
Zip ties
Hanger (plastic with metal hook works best)
Surgical gloves (Synthetic Vinyl Blend Disposable Plastic Gloves Non-Sterile, Powder & Latex Free) 
Hot glue gun and hot glue sticks
Scrub bottoms
Surgical hat (WonderWink Men’s Wonderwork Unisex Scrub Cap) 
Doctor’s white coat (VOGRYE Professional Lab Coat for Women Men Long Sleeve, White, Unisex) 
Fake ice gems
Fake blood
Wooded dowel ½ thick 
Utility knife
Old tee-shirt
A printout of medical and Human Organ For Transplant sign

The costume theme is an over-committed surgeon. We all keep saying the world needs more sense, but this surgeon is so senseless she gives her own head (a little witty humor!)

Setting Up The Box – Part 1:

Size the box to fit your body. I cut the sides to make it smaller, but still large enough to fit my torso inside. Cut out the bottom to make space to fit your torso. Don’t remove the whole bottom — cut out a semi-circle from the bottom back part of the box.

Print your Human Organ For Transport sign and generic first aid signs. The details really bring this together. Cut the white foam board to fit your box. Make the front and back of the foam board cover the side foam boards. Then remove the protective covering in the back of the foam board and stick it to the box. Add small strips of foam in the corners of the front of the box and small pieces to the top to make it look like a cooler as opposed to just a box. Finally, attach all signs and wording.

Severed Head Halloween Costume

Now For The Ice Top – Part 2:

Take a piece of foam board and cut it to the size of the top of the box which will go on after you put your body into the box. Cut out a small piece in a u-shape. The cut-out needs to be large enough that your neck can fit comfortably. Now take ripped and balled-up paper towels and with a hot glue gun attach those pieces around the U-shaped cut-out. This will make it soft and give the illusion of human tissue once soaked with fake blood.

Next, take the fake ice gems and hot glue them all over the top of the foam board, layering more around the U-shaped cut-out. You will need support in the box (as you won’t be able to hold it), so we are going to add two pieces of pool noodles cut about 1” or 2” below the height of the box. Place those cut pool noodles in the two front corners inside of the box. 

Making The Fake Torso: Part 3

Grab your hanger and remove the hook from it. Make sure you use a hanger that is as broad as your shoulders. Measure from your hips to your shoulders. That is how long you need to cut your ½ dowel. Attach the cut dowels to the outside of the hanger. Next, measure the space between the two dowels and cut the dowel to fit in between. This will establish the foundation. With the extra foam board, cut a circle that is the circumference of your neck. Now, hot glue gun that circle on top of the hanger — the part where you removed the metal hook.

Take your pool noodle (you might need to make yours longer depending on your height) and put each part of the pool noodle into the skin-tone opaque tights. This will be your faux arms. Each leg of the tights should have a pool noodle inside of them. Leave the right opening centered.

Severed Head Halloween Costume

With duck tape, tape the covered pool noodle to the front of the hanger. Make a small cut into the top of the tights so that you can hot glue the tights around the foam circle that is your new faux neck. Hot glue the ripped and bunched-up paper towels to the top of the circle. When we add fake blood later it will look like human tissue.

Next, we have to fill out the torso. You can use an old pillow by simply putting small holes through the pillow and zip-tie it to the hanger apparatus. For the chest area add an old bra filled with old socks.

To dress the torso I used an old tee shirt, similar in color to the scrub pants. You can use whatever you have on hand. Then I added the doctor’s white coat. After the coat was on. I added the surgical gloves. I filled them with poly-fil, but you can use whatever stuffing you have laying around. I zip-tied the gloves to the pool noodle arms, allowing the extra glove material to fall over the zip ties.

Now the fun part — adding the faux blood! Be sure to let it absorb and drip, and have fun with this step. Don’t forget to add the fake blood to the ice top. Let it dry as much as possible. This can be messy, so make sure you have your work area protected. You don’t want your work area to look like a murder scene.

Putting It All Together & Putting It On:

The illusion is that you’re headless and carrying your own head. So your body will lean forward in the box and your fake torso will be straight up and down. To make this happen more naturally you will want to build spacing between the fake torso and the box. I cut (2) 5 pieces of foam board and taped them to the back of the box. I then zip-tied the torso to the box by the dowels. I cut small holes through the tee shirt (not the white coat). The white coat is the draping that makes it all work, so it must remain flowy. I zip-tied the arms to the side of the box and double-sided taped the gloves around the box to make them look like real hands.

With my scrub bottoms and surgical cap on, and everything connected with both arms up and box in one hand, I slide into the bottom of the box. I wear a bulky belt to give the box somewhere to rest so I won’t have to hold it all night. Once in the box I grab the ice top and put it on. The side closest to my body is supported by my shoulders and the pool noodles support the other side.

And there you have it! What do you think?

Severed Head Halloween Costume

Severed Head Halloween Costume

Visit me on Instagram @themariaantoinette and let me know what you think of this severed head Halloween costume. I’d also love to see what costume you come up with for Halloween, so don’t forget to tag me in your IG posts. Talk soon!

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Maria Antionette is a professional hairstylist, DIY creator and fashion lover with a belief that beauty can be fun, easy and simple.
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