We are in the tail end of October, which means Halloween will be here before you know it. So, it is the perfect time to start planning for the annual spooky holiday. Halloween has become a major commercial day, with the National Retail Federation reporting that adults will spend over $8.05 billion on Halloween-related items this year.
Due to COVID19, we can anticipate the holiday will look a lot different this year for many Americans. The National Retail Federation predicts that, although the overall amount of spending this year will be slightly down from last year, consumers will spend more money on creating a memorable holiday without parties, trick-or-treating, handing out candy, and visiting haunted attractions. Instead, the prediction is consumers will spend money on home decor, candy, greeting cards, and costumes for their families and furry friends.
With all the money spent on this holiday, it can accumulate excess waste, including cheap single-use costumes and decorations. In addition, the amount of single-use plastic that is used to wrap candy is detrimental to the environment. Luckily, here at Planet Aid, we have compiled a few simple tips on how to make this Halloween as eco-friendly as possible.
Design or Swap a Costume
Most Halloween parties are filled with store-bought vampire and Harley Quinn costumes. However, they can be detrimental to the environment, with Halloween costumes potentially adding an equivalent of 83 million plastic bottles worth of waste this year.
If you want to prevent contributing to the excessive amount of plastic waste, then think about creating your own costume. You can go to your nearest secondhand thrift store and sift through interesting finds to put together a one-of-a-kind look. If you have the skills to do so, you can even design your own spooky outfit!
Another environmentally friendly idea is to host a costume swap with friends and family. You might have liked what your best friend or cousin wore a few years ago, so organize a swap where everyone can give their old costumes a second life. If you’re considering this idea, we suggest following proper sanitation practices, like washing previously worn clothing, due to the ongoing pandemic.
It is tradition for children, even some adults, to go around from home to home and receive candy on Halloween. Most of the time plastic pumpkins are used to collect treats, however, they will never break down in a landfill. So, as an alternative, look into using a pillowcase or a reusable shopping back to go trick-or-treating this year. While some cities are banning trick-or-treating this year due to COVID, there are others who are not. If you choose to participate remember to wear your mask, sanitize often, and practice social distancing!
Get Crafty with Décor
As with costumes, store-bought Halloween decorations tend to contain an excessive amount of plastic. So, this year get crafty when decorating your home and use items you already have laying around. You can make your own scarecrow out of old clothes and fake blood using corn syrup and food coloring. Take a pair of ripped up black fishnets to make a creepy spider web. Get your family involved and make spooky decorations together.
Donate on November 1st
If you do not plan to reuse your costume next year, then donate it! Just drop your costume in one of our many large yellow bins. We accept shoes and textiles in any condition.