Eco-Friendly Tips On How To Have A Sustainable Halloween

Halloween is one of the most exciting holidays of the year. Between the treats, the costumes, and the fun decor, few holidays rival the thrill of Halloween. However, the holiday can cause a little bit of havoc on our environment.

According to Daily Mail, a group in the United Kingdom found that an estimated 2,000 tons of plastic waste will be created during the Halloween season. That is equivalent to 83 million plastic bottles. That is a lot of waste!

When you think about it, candy wrappers, costumes, pumpkins, and decorations will be thrown away in droves and added to our overflowing landfill problem. 40% of all costumes will only be worn once and once their time has come to a close on Halloween, they are landfill-bound (via Eco-Age).

The good news is there are ways to be eco-friendly this Halloween season. "The scariest thing about Halloween now is plastic. More costumes are being bought each year as the number of people participating in Halloween increases. Consumers can take action to avoid buying new plastic and still dress up for Halloween by buying from charity shops or reusing costumes, or making their own from non-plastic materials," shares Chris Rose of the Fairyland Trust.

If you're inclined to make your Halloween season a bit more green this year, you can do so by making a few simple changes.

Find a more eco-friendly costume

Halloween costumes are so much fun. Every year, you get to transform into someone you're not for the evening. Want to be a cat? Go for it. Are you Madonna tonight? Yes, yes you are. There is a feeling of nostalgia and fun that only Halloween can bring.

However, Halloween costumes create a ton of waste. Most costumes on the market contain 69% polyester, a plastic polymer that when ditched in the landfill creates even more plastic waste (via One Green Planet). With how much plastic waste is created from Halloween growing each year, there are some more eco-conscious ways to get dressed up this year.

Upcycling is the best option for finding the best Halloween costume this year. Going to a thrift store and putting together a totally unique costume is not just eco-friendly, it is a lot of fun! Or, you can create a costume swap with your friends. If they have an old costume sitting around, swap out one of your old looks with theirs (via Budget Dumpster). The United States is expected to spend $3.2 billion on Halloween costumes, so you're not just helping the environment by upcycling, you're saving your wallet from some serious Halloween-induced pain (per Going Bank Rates).

Try ditching candy wrapped in plastic

If you want to help ditch plastic in more ways than one, add cutting out trick or treat waste to your list. Plastic packaging waste is a huge risk to our planet. According to the EPA, containers, and packaging make up the majority of solid waste in our landfills. 82.2 million tons of packing waste were generated in 2018.

Halloween candy wrappers add to that intense number of plastic waste accumulated each year. However, environmental experts are not calling out for kids to go without treats to save our planet. There are several more environmentally friendly treat options you can grab in place of traditionally wrapped candy.

Budget Dumpster recommends buying bulk candy from bins at the store and putting them in cloth bags to hand out. This gives kids traditional candy options without plastic waste. We do know that parents can be skeptical of this kind of thing, but it's important to note that this is mostly a myth centered around a few cases from the '70s and '80s. There is little proof to show people are tampering with candy to hurt kids (via CNN).

If you don't want to deal with the threat of parents losing their minds this Halloween by handing out unpackaged candy, try Hershey's Kisses, whose packaging is upcycled, or a can of soda, where the aluminum can be recycled.