Costume Swap: Save Money, Reduce Waste This Halloween

How to Host a Halloween Costume Swap

Host a costume swap this Halloween to save some cash and reduce your impact. Here’s how to put one together.

At some point, Halloween changed from a primarily kid-focused holiday to one in which adults get wildly hammered and challenge each other to out-sex-ify each other in creative costumery. Last year, I even saw a sexy Jesus costume. I mean…nothing is sacred anymore. But preserving life on this planet and saving money is on everyone’s lists these days, so here’s Green Living Ideas’ best idea for fixing up your Halloween costume routine.

If you’re a guy (or gal) who enjoys partying like a rock star in a costume (like some of us, ahem), you probably have a box full of costume accessories: everything from wigs to outfits to fake weapons. But you wore those last year or the year before, so you’re not likely to wear them again this year. At the same time, you don’t want to give them up. After all, they’re awesome! So what to do? Host a costume swap!

Costume swaps

The idea of a costume swap is not new. In fact, clothing swaps – aka naked lady parties – are pretty common, especially among 20 and 30-something women who face the incredible price of clothes shopping. At a naked lady party, you bring clothes that either you don’t want or don’t fit you anymore. You try to give them to someone who’d look great in them and hope for the same in return.

The costume swap is a bit different, though. Instead of just giving your old costumes away, think about it as a free rental for a friend for Halloween this year. You bring out your box of goodies, and someone finds accessories that will match whatever theme they’re thinking this year. No more paying $30 for a wig! No more wasteful plastic packaging! Why go through all of the waste and expense when a friend probably has what you need lying around somewhere? You borrow the wig (for the short term) for free! After Halloween is over, just return the items to their rightful owners, and wham—you’ve got a very low budget but super awesome Halloween costume. And a fun way to spend some time with friends.

Find out more about Halloween costume swaps here. You can either do it privately with your friends, of publicly organize your own costume swap here.

…also find more green Halloween tips here.

Witch Costumes via Shutterstock


About the Author

Scott Cooney (twitter: scottcooney) is an adjunct professor of Sustainability in the MBA program at the University of Hawai'i, green business startup coach, author of Build a Green Small Business: Profitable Ways to Become an Ecopreneur (McGraw-Hill), and developer of the sustainability board game GBO Hawai'i. Scott has started, grown and sold two mission-driven businesses, failed miserably at a third, and is currently in his fourth. Scott's current company has three divisions: a sustainability blog network that includes the world's biggest clean energy website and reached over 5 million readers in December 2013 alone; Pono Home, a turnkey and franchiseable green home consulting service that won entrance into the clean tech incubator known as Energy Excelerator; and Cost of Solar, a solar lead generation service to connect interested homeowners and solar contractors. In his spare time, Scott surfs, plays ultimate frisbee and enjoys a good, long bike ride. Find Scott on

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