You don’t have to be Kermit the Frog to have a Green Halloween. Here’s 7 ideas for a less plastic and more eco friendly holiday!
Get creative with costumes
Skip the Halloween mega store. Instead start a green Halloween tradition. Maybe make your own costume out of clothes they are about to outgrow or cardboard boxes. Pinterest is full of ideas. Or if crafting isn’t for you, create a social solution. Bring out the bins full of old costumes and get the neighborhood together. It’s no fun for you to wear the same thing twice, but most costumes would love a second life with a new owner.
Make your own Green Halloween decorations
Did you know Halloween is the second biggest decorating holiday of the year? Sadly many of the decorations are made of non-recyclable plastics and are tossed out on November 1st. If you loved decorating with store bought items, try and pick out durable ones that will last for many Halloweens. If you are feeling crafty, here’s a few green Halloween decorating ideas:
- – Ghosts: Stuff old bed sheets with leaves or newspaper, tie with a string to form a head and hang from trees.
- – Spiderwebs: Make with shredded black pantyhose or cotton balls, instead of the synthetic messy ones from the store. If you’re extra crafty, and want a dramatic look, weave a web of yarn near your entryway. Just select organic cotton or other eco-friendly yarns: Yarn web instructions.
- – Plastic pumpkin makeovers: If you’ve already got plastic Halloween trick-or-treat pumpkins that the kids have outgrown, but are too faded or cracked to donate, don’t throw them away. The kids can decorate them with eco friendly paint and put them out with the real pumpkins.
Know what’s in your Halloween face paint and fake blood
A whole different kind of scary: many of the face paints sold are contaminated by heavy metals including lead and cadmium. Check out this report from the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. Lead causes altered brain development and learning difficulties while cadmium disrupts the body’s hormones. These metals are not listed on product labels. Make sure you splurge on organic, non-toxic face paints or try making them at home.
Similar to face paint, fake blood can contain stuff that’s not so nice. With a little help from the internet you can make fake blood from natural products like cream cheese and cherry juice or cornstarch and natural food coloring.
Use what you already have
While it’s easy to buy that plastic pumpkin basket at the grocery store, there’s probably something at home that can double as a trick-or-treat bag. Reusable grocery bags, pillow cases, that wicker magazine basket in the bathroom, even that over-sized purse you never use are all great options. Believe it or not this costume came from used material: paper mache head, and old dress up clothes!
Roast pumpkin seeds
What Halloween would be complete without carving a pumpkin? This year, instead of throwing away the “guts” of the pumpkin you scooped out, toast the seeds for a snack. It’s easier than it sounds, here’s a how to guide. You can do traditional oil and salt, or we like cinnamon and sugar!
Get out and Enjoy the Walk
The best part about trick-or-treating is seeing everyone’s costumes. So, leave the car in the garage, get out a flashlight and walk your kids around the neighborhood. You can also walk off some of the candy you sneak from your kid’s bag!
Donate your costume
If your community hasn’t started a costume swap there’s probably a school, local theater troupe, shelter or center that just might love those butterfly wings and or a knight’s costume.