Eco-Halloween: Don’t scare the planet this Halloween

Tis the season where everything horrible and spooky rules our lives for 24-hours! Yes, Halloween is fast approaching and although we want to have a fun time, scaring the environment probably isn’t on the agenda. So I have some suggestions that everyone could implement into their Halloween celebrations to make it into an Eco-Halloween (even if you pick just one, that’s great!).

Costumes

My first tip for having an ‘Eco-Halloween: Don’t be pressured into buying a £20 costume online. Rather than buying a brand-new costume (which will most likely be polyester [plastic]), why not get creative and hit those charity shops? This can be a great few hours out with friends, made even better if you make each other’s costumes – this has led to some great surprises in the past for me! Or, a slightly more niche alternative would be to swap costumes with friends so you’re not wearing the same one every year. Both of these alternatives are also very friendly on the bank account!

Face paint

If you’re anything like me then face paint is the cherry on top of your costume. I don’t wear proper makeup on Halloween, I go all out! However, in typical face paint, there is a lot of chemicals that are not marine friendly. The face paints provided by this site are ocean-friendly and even contain shea butter, so your skin won’t be dried out either (what a bonus!).

If you want a more sparkly look, then biodegradable glitter is your best friend! Available both online and in stores like Primark (for about £1.50), this is a great alternative, as you’ll look sparkling and be keeping our oceans sparkling clean too!

Face wipes

This is another easy one, and could be implemented into your daily life, not just Halloween! Face wipes contain plastic, so alternatives are always welcome. Coconut oil and a cloth are a really good combination, but if coconut oil is not to hand then micellar water would also be good. However, my personal favourite, which I’m 99.9% sure you will all have, is hot water, soap and a cloth. Easy peasy the planet gets clean-sy!

Room Decorations

It can be easy to tell people to stop all the Halloween party decorations, but that’s no fun! Thankfully the humble pumpkin is a great eco-friendly decoration and they’re made even better if you save the pumpkin that you’ve scraped out to make into meals. You can even toast the seeds!

If you do end up purchasing decorations (especially if they are plastic) why not create a storage bag where you keep your decorations in so you can enjoy them year after year? I’m a third-year student, and my house has a bag dedicated to all of our year-round decorations. This is also a really great way of recalling (hopefully) fond memories!

Food

Festive snacks complete my Halloween. I. Love. Food. What’s even better is that you can have Eco-Halloween food with no plastic! Have a Bake Off-style competition with your housemates, and you will have lots of food to go around, as well as spending a few fun hours making them. Perfect for a Halloween movie night. Also, check out old fashioned sweet shops in your area – most will allow you to bring your own container to fill, so you will purchase sweets with zero waste! And finally, if you really find yourself wanting to buy something that’s in a plastic package, try and focus on the sweets that are in family packs, and not individually wrapped. Yes, there will be plastic, but it will be less than the individually wrapped alternative!

Ultimately, you might not take all of these ideas on board, or even need to! But if just one of these points leads to a change, that will be a great step in a positive direction. Days such as Halloween have the potential to really have a negative impact in just 24-hours, but small steps in the right direction can change that. You don’t have to be into eco-friendly alternatives to embrace an Eco-Halloween; suggestions such as the cake baking can be chosen just because it sounds fun!

Michaela Clancy

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