Halloween!!! My favorite vintage-inspired costume this year is Atomicpunk!

There are so many cool vintage-inspired Halloween costumes out there. This year I have a new inspiration for what I am going to be…Atomicpunk (aka atompunk).

Above image from Planet of the Female Invaders, 1967 / [image link]

You are all familiar with steampunk I am sure, which is the modern stylistic interpretation of speculative science fiction of the 1800s using steam powered technology, the technology of the time. Atomicpunk is a derivative of this same idea, but instead it draws its inspiration from the Atomic Age of 1945-1965.

atompunk halloween costume

Wikipedia defines it as: Atompunk (sometimes called “atomicpunk”) relates to the pre-digital period of 1945–1965, including mid-century Modernism, the Atomic AgeJet Age and Space Age, Communism and concern about it exaggerated as paranoia in the USA along with Neo-Soviet styling, underground cinemaGoogie architecture, the Sputnik programme, superhero fiction, the rise of the US military/industrial powers and the fall-out of Chernobyl. Its aesthetic tends toward Populuxe and Raygun Gothic, which describe a retro-futuristic vision of the world.

The science fiction genre of the Atomic Age centered a lot around a curiosity with outer space and the look was everywhere at the time. Science fiction movies and television shows gave the public a glimpse into the worlds beyond Earth and the fascinating creatures that might reside on other planets. The costuming and makeup of this genre, especially for female characters, was ornate, feminine, and creative. It makes a perfect inspiration for a Halloween costume.

Mary Elizabeth Rice as vulcan woman T'Pring in Star Trek Atompunk atomicpunk

Mary Elizabeth Rice as T’Pring in Star Trek


lost in space female aliens atompunk atomicpunk

Lost in Space alien females

Devil Girl from Mars atompunk atomicpunk

Patricia Laffan as Nyah in Devil Girl from Mars

My favorite place to find inspirations for things like helmets, hair accessories, and costume details like edging and shape are pulp science fiction covers.

atompunk atomicpunk halloween costume pulp science fiction 1950s


And don’t forget the final touch! Makeup!

The look of these fascinating female alien characters can be done so many different ways. Some characters looked human with just a change in eyebrow shape and exaggerated eyeshadow which is the easiest and least messy.

Kabuki for MAC Cosmetics atompunk atomicpunk makeup

Makeup artist Kabuki for MAC Cosmetics 2014. [Image via Fashion and Geekery]

Or you can go all out and cover any bare skin with green, blue, red, silver…whatever goes with your costume. Movie makeup artists in the 1960s especially used many different colors to convey someone was not of this Earth.

Star Trek green alien Marta makeup atompunk atomicpunk

Yvonne Craig as Marta in Star Trek. [Image via Cynical-C]

Or if you fancy yourself a challenge, I am madly in love with this makeup from Anastasija Potjomkina using Sugarpill cosmetics.


Some more of my past vintage Halloween inspirations:


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