Summer is here and this time, it’s for the spooky girls. Sorry, I don’t make the rules. Ever since Kesha announced her new paranormal show Conjuring Kesha coming to Discovery Plus on July 8 with special guest appearances by Whitney Cummings, Big Freedia, and beyond, it officially became the time of year to celebrate the goth, punk, and grunge ladies.
And that’s not all. Kristen Stewart is also working alongside Queer Eye producers to craft a reality ghost hunting show with a focus on LGBTQIA+ paranormal experts and announced a casting call in early June. So, it also seems to be the summer of not leaving ghosts TF alone.
Obviously, it can be a challenge to be a lover of head-to-toe black during the hottest days of the year, and to just wish for fall to come tomorrow when summer isn’t even halfway over. However, as a certified spooky girl myself, I am here to offer the definitive guide to summer for the girls who can’t wait for Halloween to arrive and who thrive on creepy aesthetics, horror movies, and emo music. Check out the full list of the best things to watch, listen to, accessorize with and do this Spooky Girl Summer below.
The Black Phone: Talk about creepy. This June horror flick boasts a 90% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, which is a challenging feat for many films in the genre. Ethan Hawke gives a blood-curdling performance as a serial kidnapper and masked murderer. The 13-year-old film protagonist Finney ends up in the serial killer’s basement but begins to hear the voices and spirits of past victims through a disconnected black phone, who are making sure the teen does not meet their same fate. For those who are looking for a refreshing, chilling way to enjoy horror that departs from the typical slasher or monster-driven trope, this is the movie for you.
Nope: Jordan Peele is back with his alien-themed movie Nope, starring Daniel Kaluuya as OJ Haywood and Keke Palmer as Emerald Haywood. The horse ranch-owning siblings start encountering “a mysterious force” and are determined to capture evidence of it. Though little is known about the July 22 release, fans of Get Out and Us trust the actor, writer, and director to deliver another flawless and out-of-the-box horror film.
Bodies Bodies Bodies: The A24 original film is promised to be a twisted and darkly funny take on a typical slasher film. Starring Pete Davidson, Amandla Stenberg, and Rachel Sennott, Bodies Bodies Bodies is set to be the Gen Z-centric film that follows young adults as they party in a remote mansion (never a great idea) and navigate fake friends and group games that have gone horribly awry. Catch this film in theaters August 5.
Stranger Things: The Netflix original series is wrapping up its fourth season this summer and it’s fair to say that it’s rocked our socks off, in an almost literal sense. (Thank you, Kate Bush!) Luckily, we don’t have to say goodbye to the show as a whole just yet. We still have the chance to see our favorite characters in a fifth and final season.
What We Do In The Shadows: Looking for a light and funny show that encapsulates the spirit of Halloween? What We Do In The Shadows is the perfect binge-able vampire FX show on Hulu. Adapted from the mockumentary by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi, this show is laugh-out-loud hilarious. Naturally, vampire humor also lends itself to making fun of werewolves, ghosts, witches — all mythical creatures and their interactions with humans. The fourth season will feature Nadja, Laszlo, and Nandor’s shenanigans when it comes back on July 12.
American Horror Stories: American Horror Story is launching the second installment of their one-off episode series American Horror Stories on July 21. Little is known about what fans can expect, but the social media teasers include photos of lifelike dolls accompanied by phrases including “Play with us,” “Somebody’s watching you,” and “You are not alone.” Surely anything associated with Ryan Murphy will be one heck of a horror trip.
The Staircase: The Netflix true-crime documentary originally shared in 2018 is getting a whole new life, since HBO Max dropped a mini-series surrounding the same case this past May. Deep-dive into the true-crime phenomenon that has the public questioning “the owl theory.” Trust me — you just have to watch both accounts to learn more about this extremely unique and suspicious murder case, involving, well… stairs, of course.
Pale Waves: The English quartet are set to release their third studio album Unwanted August 12 via Dirty Hit. Check out their indie pop track “Jealousy” ahead of the release and take a look at their spectacular aesthetic for some grunge outfit inspiration.
MUNA: This band is here to offer you some sad girl indie for your summer on their brand-new self-titled album. Signed to Phoebe Bridgers’ Saddest Factory Records, this trio is sure to dominate your playlists with “Silk Chifon” and “Anything But Me.”
Beabadoobee: This solo artist is blessing us with her sophomore album Beatopia on July 15 via Dirty Hit. Her guitar-laden, punk-rock underscored melodies on singles “Talk” and “10:36” are a thrilling tease of what’s to come for the viral hitmaker.
Nova Twins: Meet the most dynamic duo you’ll find in the heavy music scene. The two stunned in their debut Who Are The Girls? with “Taxi” and “Play Fair,” and they did it again with their June 17 release Supernova. Consult their new bass-heavy, metal-infused tracks “Puzzles” and “Choose Your Fighter” for a boost of empowerment.
Haunted Places: Hosted by Greg Polcyn, this Spotify Original podcast deep-dives into the pasts of now-defunct asylums, old hotels, abandoned hospitals, urban legends, and much more. If you’re interested in a spooky history lesson, this is the podcast for you. There’s no shortage of spooky podcasts to listen to, so have fun exploring a few more.
Find concerts: Whether it’s a basement show or a huge festival drawing bands in from across the globe, get your tickets and make sure to experience live music in full. After all, it’s been a long time since we’ve had a summer full of shows.
Stargazing: Further your knowledge of astrology and spend an evening stargazing by yourself or with friends. Find constellations, get lost in the thought about the vastness of the world, and read your horoscope, too.
Tattoos: With free time, set up a tattoo appointment. Whether you’re looking for a quick mini tattoo, or a major piece, summer is the time to make a plan. Plus, it’s a great time to coordinate matching tats with siblings or friends. If you’re up for it, you can even have a friend, favorite artist, or yourself design a special idea to give it that personal touch.
Thrifting and Oddities shopping: Head over to your local thrift shop to find great selections of oversized plaid shirts, vintage jewelry selections, old mirrors, unique planters and more. Plus, if you have an oddities shop near you, you can visit in person to find sage packs, Tarot cards, crystals, and more. If you’re not near any physical storefronts, online shopping is always a go-to. West Of Venus Vintage has an ever-changing selection of items on Etsy and House of Intution has wonderful and witchy products that will ship to your door.
Clothing and swimsuits: While many may opt for light colors and florals, black can still be your favorite summer color through shops such as Sourpuss Clothing, Ragged Priest, and Killstar. From alternative mesh crop tops and black lace mini dresses to bat-laden swimwear and high platform summer sandals, these online stores are the best places to find goth, grunge, and punk-inspired clothing.
Makeup: While many opt for light or no makeup in the hot months, the goth girls can still wear their heavy eyeliner and dramatic lip. The key is to get an excellent primer and setting mist that’ll endure on bar patios and even beaches (I am personally partial to Urban Decay). Add pops of color with Halsey’s about-face colorful and long-lasting eyeliners and shadows. Plus, head over to Black Moon Cosmetics for a stunning lineup of dramatic lip colors and dark glitter eyeshadows.
Jewelry: Get into the punk and grunge spirit this summer by wearing layered choker necklaces, tasteful belt chains, chunky rings, gothic sunglasses, and whatever else feels right for your fit. You can opt for fish nets as well. Just be wary of weird tan lines if you choose to do so!