When Halloween rolls around, it’s all too tempting to go overboard and cover your house from ceiling to floor in disposable decorations. Between the last-minute costumes and buckets of candy, the holiday can end up being overly wasteful. However, there are many ways to enjoy the spirit of the season while still being mindful of the environment. Keep these tips in mind whether you’re just helping out at the school disco or throwing a spooky bash of your own.
Reuse last year’s decorations
The first order of business is to check your attic, basement or closets to see if there are any costumes and decorations from last year kicking about. Pull these out of storage to see if you can’t give them new life this year. You may not fancy wearing the same costume two years in a row, so organise a costume swap with your friends to pass them on to new owners. Halloween decorations can often be reused as well.
Rather than hitting the pound shop and filling your basket with all the plastic decorations on offer, think natural this year. Part of Halloween’s charm is its celebration of all things autumnal, like pumpkins. Paint your pumpkins with non-toxic colours. They’ll last longer than if they’re carved. Artfully arranged gourds and pumpkins look great throughout the season, as there’s no real need to throw them away after Halloween has come and gone. For spookier party decorations, use natural materials like cotton to fashion your cobwebs or craft tombstones out of recyclable cardboard. This will create all the ambience for your Halloween spread, minus the plastic.
Buy safer costumes and makeup
We’ve all panic-bought costumes for the kids the day before a Halloween party, but cheap disposable outfits are often created from nasty synthetic fibres that just end up in the landfill. Try to plan ahead and look for costumes made from natural materials, or ones that you’ll be keen to use again. The good news is that there are plenty of options, running from baby costumes all the way to plus size fancy dress. The same concerns go for face paint and Halloween makeup, which often contain dangerous chemicals. Check the label and only buy makeup clearly labelled “non-toxic” before applying it to your child.
Serve healthy Halloween treats
We don’t want to take all the fun out of Halloween, so, by all means, dish up your favourite seasonal treats this year. However, look for organic ingredients or healthy twists on the usual family favourites. If you’re throwing a Halloween party, you can serve seasonal snacks like roasted pumpkin seeds, pumpkin fairy cakes, or fresh-pressed apple juice. Organic goodies like fruit-based gummy bears and fair trade chocolate will be appreciated by all your guests.
By being mindful of where you pick up your Halloween costumes, décor and treats, you’ll enjoy a more sustainable holiday this year!