A continuing trend with women seems to be sexy costumes. "We have a lot of sexy costumes for the ladies," says Elowitz.
The NRF survey says that a lot of women plan to dress as vixens, wenches, nurses and French maids, among other things. "Alice in Wonderland" characters are also popular for women. HalloweenMart.com sells Alice, Queen of Hearts, Cheshire Cat and Mad Hatter costumes.
The popularity of pirates with men, women and kids shows that it's not just about those "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies. "They're not just a theme around a movie. They're a staple in the Halloween world," says Sheerin.
"You'd think it would die down," says Cadet. "But pirates are still huge."
Flappers (women from the 1920s) also are popular at Spirit Halloween and Abracadabra.
And if you're going for an MTV-inspired look, the "Jersey Shore" costume for women is Snooki, and for Lady Gaga expect blond wigs, big glasses and sequins.