It’s Halloween. While many celebs don haunted apparel in this spooky month alone, some keep it creepy all year round. In fact, goth style has become somewhat subsumed into both mass and avant-garde culture: Think of Alexander McQueen’s runways or SoundCloud rappers’ purposefully gloomy attitude.
Not everyone can pull off goth fashion with ease, but we’ve narrowed down a list of the ten greatest goth superstars of this year. These boys and ghouls are paragons of style—whether you’re into the trend or not.
Although he’s usually spotted in a simple suit, this master of cinematic nightmares has come to define goth aesthetics. With a splash of blue hair dye and a mouthful of teeth blackened by cigarettes, Lynch doesn’t need gaudy skulls or bat wings to assert his dominance as an icon of devilish style.
Pro wrestling has goth gimmicks, but it’s Brody King’s clever subversions of black metal and hardcore punk aesthetics that place him a cut above the rest. No outdated trench coats, corny props or gaudy accessories needed—King intimidates his opponents with a balaclava and a custom baseball jacket, declaring “Violence is the answer!”
In the history of televised drag, few contestants were as plainly robbed as Yovska. The avant-gardist’s cartoonish DIY nightmares simply flew over the heads of the simple-minded Boulet Brothers, but they’ve garnered a devout cult following since. “Spooky Stories to Tell in the Dark,” eat your heart out…
Mother twigs is back from a yearslong hiatus, and her looks remain a refreshing take on the dark visuals of moody late ‘90s R&B. In the music video for her single “Cellophane,” twigs reinvents herself as a cyberpunk goddess fighting off demons from another reality while wielding a stripper pole as a weapon. She consistently embodies dark glamour without relying on the tropes of yesteryear.
Rihanna isn’t always goth, but when she wants to be, she outdoes Dracula himself—and her music has become somewhat ubiquitous at secret vampire parties around the world. Rihanna has invested a lot of energy into her Savage X Fenty line, and her brand’s fascination with slime-green leopard prints and BDSM-inflected lingerie firmly places her as an unlikely paradigm for a reimagining of goth in the new millennium.
Glam rock hasn’t precisely been stylish since the late ‘80s. Still, Papa Emeritus of the controversial costumed metal band Ghost has given a fresh, ornate twist on over-the-top, nefarious fashions. Positioning himself as a dark priest with apocalyptic visions, his opulent papal robes and embroidered Satanic couture look great, even if more “serious” metal fans aren’t on board.
Easily one of the most fashionable contestants to ever grace RuPaul’s runway, this Drag Race champion’s pin-up girl aesthetic has been taken to sexy extremes since her budget has expanded. An internationally booked model, Chachki’s penchant for burlesque-influenced glamour has kept her It Girl status firmly intact.
Although “goth” probably isn’t how the singer-songwriter would describe himself, Peck’s forlorn songs of unrequited love at the late-night rodeo legitimize him as a leader of contemporary Southern Gothic aesthetics. Epitomizing the inherent camp of country and combining it with the sex appeal of a masked luchador, Peck’s twisted version of the yee-haw trend places him in a new goth cannon.
Mall goth—but make it fashion. Lil Uzi might be seen strutting around in the Tripp bondage pants plenty of rebellious tweens wore in the early ‘00s, but pairing the baggy trousers with streetwear and opulent chains is a fascinating twist on the low-brow nu-metal once excoriated by critics. All his friends are dead, but his stylist is doing just fine.
There’s something inherently spooky about identical twins. The Murray brothers of Salem, Massachusetts, is an understated duo of tattoo artists who specialize, perhaps unsurprisingly, in grotesque ink. Sometimes you don’t need more than black jeans and a black button-down to make a statement.