Ditch The Disposable: Sustainable Halloween Costume Ideas

Halloween is a scary time for clothes! The costumes we wear don’t just look freaky, but often have a pretty terrifying back story! With such an abundance of ultra-cheap, low-quality outfits, it’s no surprise that manufacturers cut corners to produce them. On top of that, costumes often get worn only once and add to the already massive problem of clothing waste we have in the UK. Don’t let the scariest part of your Halloween be where your costume came from! Use our simple tips to make a sustainable Halloween costume this year:

Raid your Wardrobe

Give yourself an early fright by digging into the depths of your wardrobe and finding those cringe-worthy clothes that make you think ‘did I really wear that?’. Those disco jumpsuits, hippy trousers, punk outfits, MC Hammer pants, or outfit from whatever decade your fashion disasters took place in don't look so ridiculous at Halloween. Plus, who doesn’t love a bit of nostalgia?

Sustainable Halloween Costumes

Hit the Charity Shops

If you’ve always had impeccable fashion sense, then you might not have any embarrassing clothing calamities lying around (although we don't believe that).  Even better, if you've built yourself a sustainable capsule wardrobe, there is no deep dark place in your closet. In that case, you could find what you’re looking for at a charity shop. They are a (spooky) goldmine for old clothes that you can easily create a sustainable Halloween costume out of.

Add together a white shirt, tatty shorts, large belt, bandanna and a homemade eye patch for a simple pirate outfit.

Take a plain black long sleeve t-shirt, a pair of black trousers, and a balaclava. Paint over them to make a skeleton.

Find a bright red or green t-shirt, add some dungarees and draw on a moustache. You have yourself Mario And Luigi outfits!

Swap with your Friends:

You might not have any costumes lying around, but that doesn’t mean your friends don’t. Even if they don’t have a full outfit, maybe you can pair items they have with something in your own wardrobe to make a sustainable Halloween costume. Ask around and you may be surprised what you end up with!

If your friends prove no help you can always turn to either Gumtree or Freecycle to find some ghoulish freebies.

Make your own from scratch

There’s nothing more impressive than someone who has gone to the trouble of making their own costume. It also happens to be an extremely sustainable option if you’re repurposing something that would otherwise be thrown away!

Cardboard boxes are the perfect start to producing a DIY Halloween costume. If you don’t have some laying around in your garage, then head down to local high street retailers. They will probably be more than happy for you to use some of their old packaging. Plus, you can make sure it gets to the recycling centre!

If you’re wondering where to get some eco-friendly paints to decorate your sustainable Halloween costume with, then conscious craft offers some great options.

Rent your Costume

There are plenty of costume shops out there with a ton of high-quality costumes. Best of all they will be used year in year out. If you can afford the extra cost, then this is an excellent way of making your costume super sustainable!

Bonus: Don’t buy Plastic Pumpkins! Sustainable Halloween Ideas

As if there weren’t enough wasted REAL pumpkins each Halloween (18,000 tons a year according to Hubbub) you can now buy plastic versions of the real thing. You’ve already spoken out in force and thankfully the polystyrene Poundland monstrosity has been removed from sale (unfortunately too late to stop them having been produced in the first place). However, there are still a lot on the market.

If you’re going to buy a pumpkin, make sure it’s real! Not only is it better for the environment, but you can carve out the inside and eat it with these tasty recipes. Compost the leftovers once you’re done eating!

If you’re having a party make your own decorations. When it comes to plates, cups and napkins, either use your own or buy compostable versions to reduce your waste!

Happy Halloween!