News Column

Top 5 Ways to Green Your Halloween Costume

Oct. 8, 2012

Terri Bennett

Halloween Costume

1) Take Part in A Costume Swap

Costume swaps are taking place all over the country this year. You can host your own swap party with family and friends or visit to find out how you can participate in National Costume Swap Day. You'll not only give once-used costumes a longer life, you'll also be saving a whole lot of money by not buying a new one.

2) Go to Goodwill

Goodwill is a Halloween enthusiast's playground. Whether you're looking for an outrageous outfit, costume jewelry, or fancy dress shoes to complete your Halloween vision, you're sure to find it here and all for a steal!

3) Seek Out Non-Toxic Make-Up 

Ban toxic Halloween make-up from your costume. Color additives used in make-up are to be approved by the FDA, so look for that on the label. You can see the entire list of approved color additives at You will also find a link to The Environmental Working Group's website where you can find a variety of safe, homemade make-up recipes. And one last note, at the end of the night make sure to wash your face several times to remove all that ghoulish make-up.

4) Watch the Teeth!

We've all heard plenty about the potential dangers of certain kinds of flexible plastic that can contain hormone-disrupting phthalates. Some of the plastic considered dangerous is actually used to make Halloween masks and those fake teeth you see so many people putting in their mouths. Best to avoid these when planning costumes for children. 

5) Don't Buy Another Plastic Pumpkin

We see them on the arm of so many cute kids - that plastic pumpkin to collect trick or treat goodies. Instead of buying yet another plastic pumpkin, have your child bring along something reusable instead. It could be a pillowcase or a reusable shopping bag. They can even make a 'custom' bag out of one of their favorite t-shirts. It's quick and easy and available at

No matter what the kids, young or old, decide to be this year, you can still Do Your Part to go green when creating the perfect costume. Happy Halloween!

Source: (C) 2012 Mclatchy-Tribune News Service.. All Rights Reserved

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