The Worst Halloween Costumes of 2018
It's not looking good, guys.
It is time. Time for endless Instagrams of crunchy leaves and pseudo-ironic pumpkin spice lattes. Time for wearing a puffer jacket to bed. For bandying about words like “cosy!” and “crisp” and “never too early for mulled wine amirite!” to mask the deep, aching melancholy brought on by summer’s demise. But mainly it’s the time when everyone starts tweeting about bad Halloween costumes.
Bad Halloween costumes are a plague. They latch on late September, multiply around mid-October, and when the 31st rolls around you’re festering in a cesspit of seedy stick on moustaches and culturally appropriated sexy Geishas.
Why are so many costumes bad? Mainly because it is extremely hard to find a costume that is good. Good costumes = funny, smart, that fine line between making an effort and trying to hard, still kinda hot? Bad costumes = everything else.
But there’s a spectrum. It ranges from innocent bad (impractical) to neutral bad (lazy) to evil bad (offensive). Unsure what goes where? How *not* to dress up if you want to be comfortably terrifying? How to sexify your wardrobe without offending a large chunk of the population? Here’s an easy to follow list of things to avoid, starting at the worst and counting down to The Worst. Please do not dress as any of the below. Please.
This Sparkly Pumpkin Arse trend
As the Metro astutely pointed out in a recent trend piece, “People are turning their butts into sparkling pumpkins for Halloween.” It’s hardly surprising: this ‘costume’, if you will, sits bang in the centre of the ‘Instagram friendly content’ venn diagram: trendy foodstuffs, glitter-orientated beauty tutorials, and butts.
Which is cool. I’m just as here for raunchy Halloween looks as the next sexy chipmunk. But this is just impractical. It’s Halloween, so you will be at a party, you will need to sit down and it will be on a table sloshed with mystery punch. And it’s October, and October is cold. Cold, wet butts aren’t fun. You will probably get chafing.
Anything Meghan Markle
For some inexplicable reason there are lots of articles suggesting you dress up as Meghan Markle for Halloween. Guess it makes sense: She can close car doors on her own! Her hair is straight instead of wavy-straight so she’s probably pregnant! She gets a lot of clicks!
But these aren’t costumes. She mainly wears plain white shirts paired with ballet flats and blue jeans. Sometimes she wears a stripy top. She has lots of nice dresses and fun hats.
And yeah, ok, you’ll stand out. But only because you look like the lazy sod who made negative effort, while everyone else is enduring a mild body rash after lathering themselves in red and blue paint to resemble a human Tide Pod.
A Sports Bra and Some Leggings
Urban Outfitters are selling some leggings and a sports bra as part of an ‘Influencer’ Halloween costume. Trucks of free beauty products not included; Yeezy Boosts, platinum wig and hoards of fake followers sold separately.
There is, perhaps, an argument for the unsettling notion that a large swathe of people deemed to have a significant “influence” on our lives can be visually surmised by a very grey, very plain outfit. But there’s also an argument that charging £45 for a pair of leggings and a sports bra is daylight robbery. When really, you could just rifle round your undie drawer for the leftovers from that New Year’s you tried to get bang into running.
That said, it’s cheaper than the £228.55 sock knit bra Kanye’s currently selling, so maybe this is an incredibly good deal. Get in!
Speaking of overpriced Kanye-related paraphernalia:
This ~Official~ Kanye West and Lil Pump box from Kanye’s Online Store
Firstly, if you really want to dress up as this please save some money and paint a cardboard box. Secondly, it’s all just a bit jarring. On one hand, Kanye’s out here trying to be funny and tongue in cheek and spurn a few memes. On the other, he’s supporting Trump and then complaining about being bullied for supporting Trump.
If you really want to dress like as something scary and Kanye-related for Halloween, just pop on a MAGA hat and call it a Ye.
A Sexy "Brave" Handmaid's Tale Costume
To quote the filmic masterpiece that is Mean Girls, “In girl world, Halloween is the one night a year when a girl can dress like a total slut, and no other girls can say anything about it.” And while we’d go a step further and say that you shouldn’t slut shame anyone ever, there’s truth in the notion that Halloween sees more tits and sparkly pumpkin arses than usual. Which, bar the chafing, is no bad thing.
But there’s a line. Enter The Sexy Handmaid’s Tale costume, which ignited so much Twitter rage that the site selling it took it down. After all -- sexualising the costume of a character forced into sexual servitude in a novel and TV show about a dystopian world in which women are stripped of rights and humanity feels a bit… a bit on the nose. Bit close for comfort.
Dystopian patriarchal oppression, but make it fashion.
Cult! Ur! Al! App! Rop! Ria! Tion!
It’s 2018 and you’d think we’d have figured this one out by now, but apparently not as there are still piles of capitalist overlords monetising elements of marginalised communities. A quick list of costumes that are unequivocally not ok this Halloween, or ever*:
- Native American headdresses
- Burkas, niqabs, hijabs or any other kind of headwear worn by Muslims
- This list could get quite long so let’s just say: any culture that isn’t yours
If in doubt Google “[potentially problematic costume]” and “offensive”, and learn from the very public, very viral cancellations of the numerous ignorant souls who’ve come before you.
*Unless of course you are actually part of that culture.
This 'Blade Runner Gunner' costume
Faux disability: check! Glamourising guns: check! Making light of Oscar Pistorious being convicted of murdering his girlfriend: yeah. That this costume's sold on a website called joke.co.uk only rubs salt in the gaping wound. Making light of domestic violence isn’t funny. This is not funny. This will never be funny.
- Words by Georgie Wright.