Halloween costumes you already have at home

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For the last month, unmissable arrays of poorly produced but expensive Halloween costumes have been filling the shops. Not only are the plastic-heavy fabrics used to make these outfits terrible for the environment, but the costumes are often discarded after just one wear. No one likes to outfit-repeat after it’s been posted once to the ‘gram. Of course, you still want to look your best, so I have ten ideas for more sustainable Halloween outfits this year, cleverly using stuff you already have. Start rummaging in the back of your wardrobe and let’s get creative.  

Here are ten costumes that you already have, without buying new: 

  1. Get creative with makeup you already have. After a few YouTube videos you can paint your face into a skeleton or a clown and wear your own clothes.  
  2. ‘Halloweenify’ your existing fancy dress. Search deep in to the bottom of your dressing up bag, retrieve that Disney outfit you wore once, throw some blood on it and violà – you’re a dead Disney character.
  3. Use some household items – if you can spare the toilet roll (we are preparing for a second lockdown after all), mummify yourself or grab tinfoil from the back of the cupboard and get crafting yourself into an alien. 
  4. If you have a pair of dungarees in your wardrobe, these can be used to create a lot of easy Halloween outfits. Pair them with a stripy t-shirt and become Chucky or wear with some Converse and a grey top to be Eleven from Stranger Things.  
  5. If you have a black dress, the options are endless; pair with plaits for Wednesday Adams or add a fur coat and dry shampoo half your hair white for Cruella De Vil. A black suit is equally adaptable for dressing up as Gomez Adams (an easy couples costume with Mortia) or the Men in Black.
  6. Costume swap with people you know. Remember your mate, who wore angel wings for their saints and sinners Otley run last year? Hit them up for a sustainable free outfit (obviously do this in a covid-friendly way!). 
  7. Grab an oversized t-shirt, cut some holes and be a zombie. It is basic, but also a classic panicked Halloween outfit for a reason. 
  8. A really, easy fancy dress is to print out a picture of yourself and stick it in a glass/plastic jar. Carry it round with a jacket zipped up around your head as your own science experiment gone wrong.
  9. Cardboard is another free material you have in the house. Yes, all those cardboard beer packs can finally come in handy, whether you make a Frankenstein head, cut out some bat wings or challenge yourself to become a Transformer.  
  10. You could always use your bed sheet and be a ghost. Although, you just might have to cope with having two eye holes in your bedding for the rest of the year.  

Header image: Elizabeth Fernandez/Moment/Getty Images