Collecting Halloween: The Ben Cooper Costumes

by Lauren Sisselman

102422E-1024x536 Collecting Halloween: The Ben Cooper CostumesIf you grew up between the 1950s and the 1980s, chances are you wore a Ben Cooper brand costume for Halloween.  Ben Cooper is a Halloween icon, and their simple yet effective costumes — a plastic mask and a plastic smock — defined Halloween for generations of kids. Ben Cooper himself was born in 1906, and founded his company in 1937. The company did go defunct in 1992 but has since made a comeback in recent years. The impact Ben Cooper has on pop culture is thankfully still celebrated today. Spirit Halloween currently has brand-new Ben Cooper costumes in stores, and many clothing companies use mask designs in their clothing.

Ben Cooper costumes are highly collectible and extremely sought after.

I myself own a few of his Archie ones, but Ben Cooper did more than just myrth of a nation costumes. You could be anything, from a number of superheroes, including The Flash or Batgirl, you could be Frankenstein’s monster, the Phantom of the Opera, Ringo Starr, or your favorite Disney character. These costumes are absolutely nightmare fuel, especially when you see vintage photos of them. But they’re still fun, and most Halloween enthusiasts love them.

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Many of the costumes also came in various box designs. Spider-Man, for example, was available with over 5 different box variants. Some features classic Halloween icons and some feature superheroes. If you’re looking to start your own Ben Cooper collection, you’ll have your work cut out for you.

Here are a few of my personal favorites, which can be found on websites such as eBay and Etsy. I’ll only be focusing on the classic mask and smock costumes.

Spider-Man

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His take on the popular wall-crawler, Spider-Man, features a red face mask, red/yellow smock top, and blue pants — but some costumes had blue and red pants. Spider-Man also came in a number of boxes as mentioned before, but all of them seem to fall around the same price points.

In October 2022 alone, Spider-Man costumes ended at $17, $24.95, 14.99, and $79.99 — the last costume came with a Marvel heroes-specific Ben Cooper box, but again, all of the costumes are the same. If you’re only looking for the masks you will fare better. In October of 2022, a mask sold for $.99, while a mask back in July of 2022 sold for $16.

Dracula

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Ben Cooper had a few different Dracula designs — there is a very pale Dracula, a Dracula with rooted hair, a Dracula with green skin, and a Dracula where the hair is a part of the overall mask. There are likely more examples of Dracula out there. and they’re all as frightful as you can imagine and usually go for a significant chunk of change.

In October of 2022, a complete in-box Dracula without the rooted hair sold for $240.50, while another sold in August of 2022 for 162.50. A Dracula mask by itself sold for $29.95 in October of 2022. The Dracula costume with rooted hair seems to be easier to find and is more affordable.

In August of 2022, two different complete in-boxes, rooted hair Dracula sold for $60 each.

Batgirl

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My favorite DC hero, Batgirl, was truly inspirational to me as a kid. The Ben Cooper Batgirl costume is truly great. It features a black smock outfit with yellow accents and a Batsymbol that says Batgirl in the middle, along with a blue cape. The mask features a smiling Batgirl with red hair peeking out under her cowl, which also says Batgirl at the top.

In August of 2022, a complete in-box Batgirl set sold for $30, and in October of 2022, a Batgirl smock sold for $25. On Etsy you can find complete sets of this costume — one is without the box for $85, while another is with the box and is listed at $335.

The Phantom of the Opera

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This costume will truly send shivers down your spine! Ben Cooper’s take on the Phantom of the Opera features a mask that looks like it was inspired by Lon Chaney’s version from the 1925 silent film Phantom. The mask is a ghoulish green, and the smock features the Phantom in all of his creepy delight, while the overall print mimics a tuxedo.

In October of 2022, two sold on eBay for $349.99 and $565.55 — and both came with their boxes. These are harder to come by, so when you do find one, grab it!

Did you wear Ben Cooper costumes as a kid? Show us in the comments below!

footer-twitter Collecting Halloween: The Ben Cooper Costumes*Any perceived investment advice is that of the freelance blogger and does not represent advice on behalf of GoCollect.

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1 comment

Matt Kennedy October 30, 2022 - 1:00 pm

That was a great trip down memory lane! I definitely had a later version of that Phantom of the Opera masquerade set, and of course a Ben Cooper Star Wars mask and costume of C3-PO. I remember being impressed by the metallic paint, which sparkeld a bit on the inside. My mom bought the wrong size to fit over clothing, so it was a single use costume, completely torn at the seams and held together with box tape.

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