Halloween is a special time of year. Almost every child looks forward to it. And why shouldn’t they? There’s pumpkin carving, festive parties, spooky decorations, CANDY GALORE, and of course, the COSTUMES! Before deciding upon the perfect costume for your little one, please follow these tips to avoid dangerous kids costumes and make sure your choice is comfortable and safe.
Here are 5 types of costumes to say “boo-bye!” to this Halloween.
Lots of costumes come with face masks. These days, most are created properly and safely, but there are some lower-quality or older options out there, which may contain masks that obstruct sight, breathing, or speech. Before you purchase, be sure the eye holes are well aligned and larger than your child’s eyes, so he is able to see both in front of him and peripherally. Same goes for the nostril or nose holes. Be sure they align so that your child’s nasal pathway is completely open. Never purchase a mask with a small slit for the mouth or one that covers the mouth at all. Your child needs to be able to speak clearly, breathe, and enjoy those Halloween treats! Make sure the mask is made of a soft, breathable material as well so your child stays cool and comfortable. There is also the option to ditch the mask altogether and replace with a matching hat or headpiece instead.
When selecting your little one’s costume, along with theme and character, consider the color(s). Although trick-or-treating is recommended before sunset, you may find yourself headed home as it gets darker, and you want to be certain your child is fully visible. Bright, vibrant colors, shiny appliques, neon, and even reflectors glued or pinned onto the costume are smart choices for a child’s costume. Not only will this help keep your child safe, but his costume will stand out in a large crowd.
There will be a good deal of walking around while trick-or-treating or during a Halloween party. The last thing your child needs is to trip over unhemmed pants or a too-long dress. You also want to avoid accidental rips from someone stepping on the costume. This would be upsetting to your child, not to mention, potentially dangerous. Costumes may not fit your child perfectly, so take the time to pin up or (if you sew) hem the bottom so your child can move with ease. Buying a costume a little too long is okay if you want to be able to reuse it in the future, simply adjust the length to suit your child’s current height.
Plastic or rubber material or anything that doesn’t “breathe” is a poor choice for a costume. Go with cotton or another soft, airy fabric instead. While the costume may look adorable, an unbreathable material can be uncomfortable for long wear. Keep in mind, your child will be in his costume for several hours walking—more likely running— around, particularly after all that candy. It’s easy to overheat in the wrong fabric. There is also a chance for allergic reactions or rashes from the sweat and friction. Belts and other accessories are fine in plastic, but be sure the majority of the costume is created with material you would normally dress your child in.
In contrast to the above, you want to be sure your child is adequately covered by his costume. As the day turns to evening, the temperature will drop, and your child may become cold. Make sure the material is warm enough for your climate and is not see-through. If need be, layer with an undershirt or tank top. Additionally, footwear should be sturdy and comfortable for safe traveling from house to house. Be sure the costume fits well enough that it stays in place too. No child wants to fidget all day with his costume, or worse, have it fall down.