With Halloween around the corner, there are a million and one advertisements for costumes, candy, and decorations. If you’re making a conscious effort to go green, all the consumerism might be a bit discouraging. But it turns out you can enjoy the holiday without ignoring your eco-instincts. In this guest post, Chris Keenan offers some handy green tips for Halloween.
- Instead of investing a lot of money in a throwaway costume, why not make your own costume? If you don’t have the sewing prowess for the task, thrift stores are your friend. And places such as Goodwill and the Salvation Army often offer used quality costumes at very affordable prices. Another option is participating in a costume swap, where you can meet similar-minded people and maybe snag a unique outfit.
- When it comes to candy, the aisles of Snickers and Reese’s might seem alluring, but have you considered giving out healthier treats? If you shop at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods, you’ll be sure to find organic treats that kids can still enjoy (granola bars always work!). If you’d prefer not to hand out candy altogether, organic markets usually offer small trinkets that are made by environmentally conscious organizations.
- Looking for earth-friendly ways to adorn your home? Sustainable decorating isn’t as tricky as you might think. While stores offer plastic skeletons and fake cobwebs galore, you can find plenty of inspiration for green decorating at your local farmer’s market. Keep things spooky by carving pumpkins (and making pumpkin snacks), or give your home a friendly festive touch with the help of cornhusks, bales of hay, and gourds. For more Halloween accessories, try stopping at the thrift stores. You could even decorate your garage door with Halloween fabrics that you have lying around your house. Also, be sure to store your decorations safely so they can be re-used next year.
- Want to enjoy an autumn feast complete with candlelight? Remember that traditional wax candles can emit toxic chemicals like benzene–soy candles are healthier and longer-lasting.
- When your kids go trick-or-treating, don’t forget to arm them with reusable canvas bags like the ones you might take to the grocery store. Plastic pumpkins are unnecessary and are a waste of space since they’re often only used once a year.
- Finally, consider reverse trick-or-treating, a new project being promoted by Global Exchange. The idea is for children to hand out fair trade chocolates and cards to adults to raise awareness about the environment–visit the site for more information.
I hope these tips will help you stay green this Halloween! Do you have any more tips on staying eco-friendly this year? Let us know in the comments below!