Like A Virgin? Dressed as Madonna at Screaming Mimi's. Photo: Jolie Novak, AOL

A bad Halloween costume is a total waste. When else can one get away with dressing up like your favorite pop star, power ranger, or the like? Put some effort into a good ensemble and you'll earn kudos from your festive-minded friends.

That said, all Hallow's Eve is just a mere three days away so if you're still fretting over what to wear, then have no fear. Instead of hitting one of those Halloween megastores or your local Kmart where the racks have been scoured (and all that's left is a lone Snooki pouf and some devil horns), we advise you to head to your favorite vintage shop.

In New York City, Screaming Mimi's is one of the best vintage emporiums in town and fortunately for us it is only a few blocks away! So off I went to enlist the help of owner Laura Wills and buyer Nicollette Santos to work some Halloween costume magic.

I came armed with one theme in mind, which focused on two very different looks. Since I'm all of 23-years-old, pop stars permeate the brain, and as a junior fashion editor, I wanted to hone in on stylish personalities. Enter Madonna and Ke$ha! Both women carry off sartorially savvy looks that have plenty of room for creativity for storied costumes.

We started with the Madonna costume and channeled Madge via the "Like a Virgin" era. Starting with a white bustier and pouffy skirt, Nicollette scoured the store for the ultimate add-ons: studded bracelets, dangly cross earrings, lace gloves, long strands of pearls, white fishnet stockings, and the pièces de réistance: a blond wig and veil. It was pure '80s glam on a shoestring budget. (The only thing missing was the video's deflowering lion!)

K$sha's eclectic California cool allowed us to switch gears to more magpie attire. Nicollette pulled a fringe halter top and shiny zebra-striped leggings as the foundational pieces and worked from there. A fur vest, motorcycle boots, and awesome Indian headdress completed the look to a tee.

Tik Tok. K$sha to the max Photo: Jolie Novak, AOL


Whether you want to dress like a pumpkin or Pocahontas or a revered celebrity, keep these tips in mind when shopping for a Halloween costume.

1.
Find one piece that you absolutely love. This will be your base and you can build the rest of the outfit around that item.

2. If your look is fashion-related, try and pick pieces that can be incorporated into your wardrobe at a later date. That way you're not spending the cash on a one-night-only ensemble. Accessorize away to make more costume-y.

3.
If you are on a budget, don't stress about finding authentic clothes from a certain period. For example, you can approximate a '20s look by mixing styles from other decades with the help of a knowledgeable sales staff.

4. Consider being a personality from another decade. Most vintage stores can dress you as Elvis, Marilyn, Madonna and other icons from the past.

5
. Bring in a photo of a look or personality that you want to embody but be open minded about interpreting it.

Meanwhile, check out Heidi Klum's out of this world costumes over the years from her annual Halloween party.

Also, check out these celebs who dress up like it's Halloween pretty much on a daily basis.