Halloween is one of those holidays that suddenly creeps up on you (pun intended). Before you know it, you’re at your local department store or Target and see the shelves lined with pumpkin decorations, candy corn, and supersized bags of assorted chocolates. In just one month, costume shelves are disarrayed, and everyone’s scrambling to sort through the mess to find the perfect costume.
Rather than navigate the treacherous world of costume retail, you can find your kid’s costume online and save yourself the headache. But before you start picking the costume, it’s important to think over your overall Halloween plans and talk to your children about what they’re going to wear.
Talk To Your Kid About Their Halloween Costume
Every year, your child will inevitably have a set idea on what they want their costume to be. In many cases, they’ll have given you signs or flat-out showed you magazine cut-outs of costumes they love. While it’s important to let your children have enough independence to make their own decisions, it’s also important to monitor those choices and come to a mutual understanding. That is, of course, unless your child is an infant — in this case, it’s fair to have fun and let your creative side shine with unique baby costumes.
Stay Away From Inappropriate Costumes
Believe it or not, there are bad Halloween costumes for children. And usually, these are the costumes that parents find amusing, but have little relevancy to their children. Dressing up your kids as characters from films and series you love, for example, isn’t exactly fair if it’s not appropriate. A quick scour on the web will show you exactly what we mean. There are tons of costumes that are inappropriate for kids — like dressing your kids as the rapper Lil Wayne, the main characters from Breaking Bad, and a baby pimp and stripper. Costumes that make jokes of serious events, politically and culturally, are also pretty much off limits. Sure, your child’s costume might go viral — but for the wrong reasons.
Sometimes, it will be the children who ask for inappropriate costumes, and this can be a tricky situation. In this case, you can lean them in the right direction by reminding them of characters you know they enjoy and love. Do some online costume research, and compile a list of viable options. You can even check out Pinterest for some unique ideas on different platforms.
Costume Ideas For Your Children
If you’re still up in the air about which costume to buy, here are a few ideas to help inspire you:
Infants: There are so many cute baby costumes, the real issue will be picking one. Fortunately, there’s enough inspiration online to give you all the ideas you need. Some of our favorites include a baby pumpkin, a baby bat, a baby dinosaur, or even a carrot top! You can take inspiration from movies (like Baby Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy) or be creative with DIY costumes.
Toddler Costumes: Cute toddler costumes include any of the Disney variety (Disney Princesses for girls or Peter Pan and Prince Charming for boys), superheroes (Wonder Woman, Batman), or animals.
School-Aged: This is the age where kids start knowing what they want and have an idea of what they expect from their Halloween costume. Parents are encouraged to loosen the reins and let me make their own decisions — monitored of course. Ideas for these costumes can be occupation-based (nurse, firefighter), based on Disney or Marvel characters, generation-based (groovy 60s costumes, or inspired by sports.
It’s best to start talking to your children about holiday costumes as early as possible. This is because sometimes, they’ll want costumes that either need to be custom-made, which takes a decent amount of time, or ordered in advance if it’s a popular costume. Here are a few tips for choosing the right costume:
1) Make sure the costume and mask fit snugly.
A mask that doesn’t fit well will sit loosely on the face, blocking peripheral vision. This is usually the case with cheap, plastic masks. Consider whether makeup would be a better alternative to masks. However, if you do go the mask route, make sure there’s enough space for the eyes to fully and see and for it to stay on the face. The same applies to your kid’s costume. They need to be comfortable enough to move around freely, and any uncomfortable areas that could results in scratching, scraping, and rashes should be rectified immediately. You should also avoid any costumes that could be a tripping hazard, like those that include a sash or billowing scarf.
2) Get your kids comfortable shoes.
Your kids will be doing a lot of walking, and they need to be dressed head to toe in comfortable clothing and shoes. If your daughter is dressed as Cinderella for Halloween, it might seem fitting to give her child-sized glass heels, but it could easily result in sore feet and blisters. There are plenty of ways to be creative with your child’s shoes without compromising the costume’s style.
3) Talk to them about staying safe.
Every Halloween, you need to have a discussion with your kids about safe trick or treating practices. This includes staying within safe trick or treating hours as organized by your city, staying on sidewalks, only crossing at corners and during red lights. You also need to teach them to be respectful of other people’s properties — decorations shouldn’t be tampered with, no matter how fun they appear. And lastly, be sure you kids know to never enter someone’s home or take treats from vehicles. Practicing safe habits every year helps ensure those principles are instilled in them each Halloween.