15 Easy Pranks To Play This Halloween

Screams guaranteed.

Easy Halloween prank ideas

Many might save their hijinks for April Fool’s Day, but Halloween is the perfect time to truly catch someone off guard with a prank. With ghost stories and superstitions in the chilly air, even the slightest crunch of a leaf can send a shiver up someone’s spine which makes autumn the perfect season to pull a Halloween prank.

For some, Halloween is naturally a time for pranks — as many areas celebrate “Mischief Night” on October 30. Think TPing your neighbor’s house or placing a freaky Halloween decoration on their front doorstep. But even if you’re in a region that doesn’t celebrate Mischief Night, you can still keep the “trick” in “trick-or-treat” this holiday.

Whether you’re hoping to give your friend a good fright, or just want a wholesome laugh to celebrate the holiday now that you’re too old to go trick-or-treating, here are some easy Halloween pranks to pull this spooky season.

This Halloween, scare your friends with the best Halloween pranks.

1. Mirror Writing

We’ve all drawn a smiley face on a fogged-up mirror, right? For Halloween, you’ll need to be a bit trickier to really scare someone. Before your significant other/roommate/sibling pops in the shower, use a bar of soap to write a creepy message on the mirror — such as “I’m watching you” or “I know what you did.” Use a bit of tissue to retrace the words, so that your message isn’t totally visible yet. Once the mirror is fogged, the words should become clear. Just listen for the yelp of panic.

2. Please Take One!

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Here’s a classic prank that you’ve probably fallen for before. If you’re having trick-or-treaters over — or hosting a Halloween party — set up a human-sized decorative character on your porch. The character can be everything from scarecrow on a rocking chair to a mummy holding a candy bowl. Next, dress yourself up in the same costume and periodically switch the character out at random points in the night. Once someone gets close to choosing a candy from the bowl, start to move and they’re sure to jump right off your doorstep. See @haleyblazek’s take on the prank for inspiration.

3. Someone Up There?

If you’re at the office on Halloween or living somewhere with movable ceiling tiles, this prank is for you. Get a long hair extension or wig to tuck inside a ceiling tile so that it hangs down ominously. For added effect, make the hair look a little worse for wear (maybe even put some fake blood on it), and hang it in a room where people will have to flip the lights on.

4. Head in a Jar

This one takes a bit of work , but it’s so, so worth it. Take a photo of yourself looking a bit squished. You can easily do this with a funny facial expression, or even by changing the dimensions of the photo on your computer. Have it printed and laminated, and then stick it in a large jar filled with sickly-looking food coloring. Place it in your fridge, and wait for hungry guests to get a scare.

5. Don’t Let the Bed Bugs Bite

After a long night of Halloween celebrations, what most of us want to do is fall into bed and snuggle up. So imagine the terror your loved ones would feel when they pull back the covers and see a bunch of bugs have taken up residence? Fake bugs , of course. But they’ll be freaked out either way.

6. Surprise Snake

If you’re hosting a Halloween party , this is a good one for you. Use a rubber snake and some string to rig the snake to pop up whenever a cooler is opened for added realism, or simply place it in there for people to see when they grab a drink.

7. Apple Anyone?

This one is a bit mean — unless you know someone who really enjoys onions. The trick is to make a bunch of onions look like caramel apples so unsuspecting partygoers get a mouthful of yuck instead of a delicious Halloween treat. You make the onions as you would make caramel apples, and you should actually include a few real apples so the people with onions don’t catch on right away.

Onions disguised as caramel apples make an easy Halloween prank.

8. Only Take One

If you’re strapped for time, you can get a product that does the prank for you. You’ve likely seen the candy bowls with animated hands , which are a perfect pranky purchase because it never gets old watching little kids or unsuspecting adults jump when they reach in for a candy.

9. Fake Spider Anything

Not only are spiders very on-theme for Halloween, but any prank involving spiders — big ones , small ones , whatever — will scare most people. You can put a fake spider in someone’s car just above the door so they’re bound to notice it. You could rig a giant spider to swing down from the ceiling when kids come to your door for candy. You could even go the extra mile to get a remote-controlled spider to follow your party guests around.

10. Creepy Doll

Like spiders, creepy dolls will frighten most people. You can buy an already scary-looking baby doll — this one is sound and sensor operated — or you could make your own out of a thrift-store find. When no one is around, write something creepy on a notepad and place the marker in the doll’s hand. When people come back around, they’ll probably stay clear of the doll for the rest of the party.

11. Fake Ghost

This is the prank to end all pranks because it’s pretty elaborate. Have a friend dress up in some spooky attire — you know, tattered clothes, matted hair, ghostly makeup — and have them hang out in a few spots along your street so that people coming to your house will see them. Spark up a conversation if no one brings it up, and then act like your friends are joking with you. Ask them to describe what they saw and then tell them a fake g host story involving a character that looks exactly like your friend in costume. Finally, complete the prank by having your ghost friend show up later to scare them!

12. Spooky Computer Glitch

As millennials, few things are scarier than when your electronics show signs of spam, so why not double down on the scaries and freak out your virtual partygoers with a fake computer glitch? If you’re hosting a Zoom party, share your screen as if you’re going to show a cool video, then play a computer glitch on YouTube. It doesn’t take much to send your guests into a tailspin, thinking their electronics have crumbled.

13. Creepy Sound Prank

The music always sets the scene! Play with the minds of your virtual partygoers by having spooky music playing in the background. Mix it up by starting and stopping the music at random times so no one is quite sure where it's coming from!

14. Take A Second Glance

It’s no secret that everyone is looking at your background during a Zoom call. Pictures of your friends and family? So last year. Give your friends a reason to double-take with scary changing portraits and spice it up with some acting skills. Is the portrait really changing or are your virtual guests seeing things?

15. Haunted Drone

If you have a drone, Buzzfeed recommends attaching some sort of ghost or witch figure to the drone and flying it around your neighborhood. Wait for someone to catch it, then see your entire neighborhood look up with horror at the sky.

16. Ice Cube Surprise

If you’re serving cocktails (or any drink) at your party, prep some freaky ice cubes with gummy eyeballs or bugs planted in them. Wait for your guests' drink to melt a bit, and you might have a few complaints about the cleanliness of your soiree. Just be sure to only include edible items in the ice to avoid a choking hazard.

This article was originally published on Oct. 18, 2015

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The Top 10 Sites With Scary Stuff to Make You Jump

These websites will scare, horrify, and intrigue. They are the perfect Halloween accompaniment.

Halloween is fast approaching, so what better time to collate a list of sites that can scare you and make you jump?

Whether you want to prank a colleague, psychologically scar the neighborhood kids, or just give yourself an old-fashioned fright, these sites are sure to do the business. Keep reading to learn more.

1. Scary and Fun

Scary and Fun makes use of pop-up videos, scary short films, frightening images, and creepy sound effects to provide you with a full armory of scare-inducing content. There are even a few scary games and jokes to dig into if that is your thing.

To start finding scary content, use the navigation bar on the left-hand side of the screen. It is divided into 23 standalone sections. They include the headline features that we listed above, but also has sections such as Weird People, Undead Monsters, Demons, Clowns, and more. There is also a section entirely dedicated to animated GIFs.

All the content on Scary and Fun is free to download and use. It might not be up to the standard of the best Halloween movies , but it's worth digging into.

2. Scary for Kids

Although the name of the site suggests it is aimed at children (and in theory, it is), there is still plenty of content here that will make adults jump and wince, too.

Content is divided into six sections: Scary Stories, Scary Games, Scary Pictures, Scary Movies, Scary Videos, and Scary Things.

The stories are a mix of user-generated content, urban legends, and online horror tales. The movies section is just a rundown of some of the scariest theater releases, while the games section lists dozens of flash games that you can play in your browser.

The best part of the site is the videos section. It links to YouTube videos that will scare you senseless, with many cult classics as well as less well-known titles listed.

3. Plane Crash Info

Although it's not a traditional Halloween-themed scary site, Plane Crash Info has enough content to give you sleepless nights.

It offers a collection of voice recordings, cockpit transcripts, and air traffic control tapes from the final moments of air disasters around the world. There are more than 50 incidents for you to explore. They include incidents such as the Concord crash in Paris in 2000 and the famous Hudson River landing by Captain Sully in 2009.

Fair warning, some of the content on this site is genuinely upsetting. User discretion is advised.

4. CreepyPasta

Anyone who has ever spent time on Reddit around the Halloween period will know of the phrase "creepypasta." It refers to stories that have been copied and pasted around countless websites over the years, many of which have now gone down in internet folklore.

CreepyPasta is a site dedicated to collating all the stories into one single archive. Each story has a rating score provided by users, and you can filter by the top-ranked stories and the most famous stories, allowing you to find something that is sure to give you a jump.

The site also accepts user submissions, so if you want to try your hand at freaking out a few people, it's time to get writing!

5. Castle of Spirits

Castle of Spirits is one of the oldest scary websites on the internet; it has been online since 1997.

Over the years, it has built up an impressively large collection of ghost stories and other scary tales, and now claims to have the largest archive of scary content anywhere on the web. At the time of writing, there are more than 4,500 available.

Additionally, the site has a ghost photos section. They are all images taken by readers that purport to prove the existence of paranormal life. If you browse the images with the lights off in the dead of night, they are sure to make you jump a few times.

Given the site's popularity, it has also expanded into a podcast. It's probably best to listen when you aren't driving, chopping veg, or performing any other potentially dangerous activity.

6. Staggering Beauty

It's just a black worm on a screen; what's freaky about that? Well, just don't move your mouse too fast. Doing so will release a video and audio assault on your senses and is sure to make you jump.

WARNING: Do not visit this site if you have epilepsy, suffer from seizures, or have any other similar conditions.

This is a Japanese jump site (if you can't read Japanese, click on the big Translate to English link at the top of the page).

But wait, the site is pink and cute and full of pretty anime girls. Not scary at all, right? Wrong. Start digging into the content, and you'll find a treasure trove full of jump scares, twisted themes, scary easter eggs, and more. The pink design only adds to the horror when you do eventually discover something.

In fact, there is enough content on Lomando to keep you exploring for weeks, trying to find new scares to enjoy.

8. Joy of Satan

Joy of Satan is a scary site in a different kind of way. It is a site for all the people who worship Satan in all his forms. Needless to say, there is a fair amount of disturbing content.

Though, to the credit of the site's creators, they try to steer people towards the spirituality of Satan worship rather than the slightly more gruesome sacrifice-your-granny-at-the-alter vibe that a lot of people seem to associate with the practice.

With sections about the origins of Satanism, how to dedicate your soul to Satan, and Satanic symbols, and more, this site will both shock and educate in equal measure. If you want to fit in with the crowd, use some Halloween makeup tips , and you will blend right in.

9. r/JumpScares

Unsurprisingly, Reddit has an entire Subreddit dedicated to the phenomenon of jump scares. It contains links to YouTube videos, movie clips, and user-generated content, all of which seems innocent enough until you end up hitting your head off the ceiling with horror.

10. Housecreep

Finally, Housecreep is a site that bridges the divide between online scares and real-life in-your-neighborhood horror. It catalogs a list of homes and other properties in which something gruesome has either happened or has been alleged.

You can find lists of houses where people died in mysterious ways, where murders occurred, which are haunted by ghosts, and more. Just enter your location into the search bar and start exploring (or don't; it is probably safer to stay at home).

Use Your Discretion

None of these sites are harmful to readers in any way, but you do need to have a strong stomach to get through some of them.

If you're a parent who's looking to make a fun Halloween event for your kid, make sure you visit them ahead of time, so you can exercise some basic parental guidance processes.

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