Ashley Benson’s Sexy Cecil The Lion Costume: The ‘Pretty Little Liars’ Star’s Apology

Ashley Benson wanted to know what her fans thought of her Halloween costume. Unfortunately, for her, some of them weren’t too happy with her controversial choice.

The Pretty Little Liars star showed off her Halloween costume early. She took to Instagram on Tuesday, October 6, to show off her sexy Cecil the Lion costume, which some have found inappropriate. It looks like Benson, 25, needed a little help with deciding which Halloween costume to choose, although she already hinted in the hashtags that she received the costume from the sexy lingerie and costume shop

(Credit: Ashley Benson/Instagram)

Ashley Benson included the caption: “Help! Can’t decide on my Halloween costume this year! What do you guys think of this cecil the lion costume? @yandy #thanksyandy #halloweencostume”

But some of Ashley’s fans weren’t too happy with her costume choice. They thought it was making light of the controversy surrounding the now deceased Cecil the Lion, the beloved lion that was killed by an American dentist earlier this year. He was reportedly paid $500,000 to hunt down and kill the famous endangered animal.

After receiving some heat for her Halloween costume, Benson changed the caption to: “What do you guys think of this lion costume?”

However, that didn’t stop fans from calling out the actress for choosing such an inappropriate costume. On Wednesday, October 7, Ashley took to Instagram to apologize for posting the photo.

“Yesterday’s post was in poor taste and I absolutely regret all of the hurt that photo caused. The caption that was posted was incorrect and my costume was not Cecil the Lion, when I saw that, I contacted my management who handled the post and had it immediately changed. I recognize that I am responsible for everything posted on my social accounts and this was an unfortunate oversight. I am a support of Animal conservation and I will be donating all the proceeds of this deal to the World Wildlife Fund. I love you all and I apologize if I let you down.”

According to a previous report via Gawker, Yandy does sell a Cecil the Lion costume for $118.95. It’s also similar in style to the costume that Benson shared on Instagram. But Benson was wearing the Deluxe Lion Costume, which sells for $149.95 on the website. In case you’re interested, it’s available in sizes small/medium, medium/large, and large/extra-large. The description for both the Cecil the Lion costume and the Deluxe Lion Costume says that 20 percent of all sales will go to a global conservation organization, but the company fails to specify which one.

The sexy Cecil the Lion costume first made a stir in late August, when it was picked up by the media. It was also reported that Yandy sells a Deluxe Lion Tamer Costume, which retails for a hefty $239. It includes a red velvet jacket with tails, black high waisted shorts, a white tube top with gold trim, a bow tie, black sequined top hat, and a black whip.

Other offensive Cecil the Lion costumes have been making headlines. took it one step further with the Lion Killer Dentist Halloween Costume, which mocks American dentist and trophy hunter Walter Palmer. But some would say that this costume is taking it too far, since it includes a fake blood-spattered smock and gloves, and a fake severed lion’s head.

Of course there’s always been sexy lioness costumes. A quick Google search shows that there are plenty offered on Amazon, eBay, and Party City. But in light of the issues surrounding trophy hunting and Cecil the Lion, Ashley’s costume choice came off as insensitive.

What are your thoughts? Do you think Ashley Benson’s lion costume was insensitive to the story surrounding Cecil the Lion? If so, are you satisfied with her apology? Share your thoughts below in the comments section.

[Image: David Becker / Getty Images for iHeartMedia]