The scariest part about Halloween
isn't the ghouls, ghosts, or witches that roam the streets - it's the mountains of single-use waste that result from this spooky holiday!
With the plethora of cheap decorations at the dollar store, it's so easy to overload on needless stuff without caring if the quality is good enough to survive more than one evening. It's also really easy to overlook the environmental impact of all the plastic-wrapped candies and store-bought costumes that may only see the light of day once.
But fear not! There are tons of ways you can keep the festive fun without the haunting side effects. Here are 10 Eco Friendly ways to have an eco friendly Halloween!
1. Eco-Friendly Costumes:
Reuse: Rather than buying new costumes each year, repurpose costumes from previous years, trading with friends, or buy one second-hand.
DIY: Making your own costumes builds memories with kids and engages their creativity. So get crafty and use items you already have!
2. Sustainable Decorations:
DIY Decor: Use natural elements like fallen leaves, pumpkins, gourds, and corn stalks to decorate. Or warm up that glue gun and spend a fun afternoon making your own decorations using recycled materials. Pinterest is a wealth of information on all things crafty.
3. Eco-Friendly Treats:
Bulk Candy: When possible, buy candy in bulk rather than individually wrapped pieces to reduce packaging waste. This isn't always possible for safety reasons, but if you're having a party, go with bulk options!
Homemade Treats: Another great option for parties or festive snacks and desserts, check out all the spook and silly ideas on Pinterest for halloween treats. This is also a great option to avoid excessive sugar!
4. Reusable Bags for Trick-or-Treating:
There's no need to have a new bucket every year - encourage kids to reuse bags, old pillowcases, or decorated buckets to collect their candy.
5. Reduce Energy Use:
Solar Powered Lights: If decorating with lights, opt for solar-powered versions or LED lights which consume less energy.
Soy Candles, or Candle Alternatives: Did you know that parafin candles are made from left over residue from oil refining? They're really not good for your health or the environmentt isn't good for your health or the environment. Try soy candles instead, or find some reusable LED candles or solar lanterns.
6. Limit Plastic Props:
Avoid cheap plastic props and decorations that might only last one season. If you must buy, look first for second hand, or make sure you invest in quality items that can be reused for many years.
Once the festivities are over, compost your pumpkins, cornstalks, and other natural decorations. Knowing that your pumpkin will go back into the earth, avoid decorating it with toxic glues, paints, and sparkly things.
8. Sustainable Parties:
If you're hosting a party, make sure to use reusable plates, cups, and cutlery instead of disposable items. And as always, do what you can to encourage carpooling or walking to the party - maybe plotting out a trick-or-treating path along the way?
9. Green Face Paint:
Cheap face paints can contain harmful chemicals. Look for non-toxic or natural face paints, or try making your own using safe ingredients.
10. Eco-Friendly Craft Activities:
For Halloween-themed crafts, use recyclable materials or items from nature. For example, pinecone bats, leaf ghosts, or paper mâché masks using recycled newspaper.
Being eco-friendly is about killing the fun - it's about protecting our planet to extend the fun for future generations.
In many cases, it can mean being more creative and thoughtful about your choices, leading to unique and memorable Halloween celebrations.