What to Know to Choose a Safe Halloween Costume for Children

Make sure you know what to look for when shopping for Halloween costumes

Children's Halloween Costumes: What to Consider Before Purchasing
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October 5, 2018

Halloween is the time of year when kids get to become spooky ghouls and feast on candy. But many parents have questions about costumes when buying one for their children. Do you know what to look for when choosing a safe Halloween costume?

Halloween Masks

Children love masks, but they can obstruct their visibility and make it difficult for them to breath. Instead, opt for makeup. If your child does wear a mask, make sure vision isn't obstructed and have them remove it while crossing the street. You don't want your child to fall on this fun night.

Choosing Safe Makeup

Makeup is a great alternative to obstructive masks, but makeup may present its own hazards. Make sure your makeup is coming from a reputable source. Some makeups sold online can come untrusted sources and may contain hazardous materials, such as lead. Always make sure your child isn't allergic or sensitive to anything in the makeup and check the expiration date.

Choosing for flame resistance

All costumes and accessories, such as wigs, beards and wings, must meet federal flammability requirements. But that doesn't mean they won't burn. All textiles can burn and should be kept away from flames. Parents should look for costumes made from synthetic fibers like nylon and polyester because these materials are less likely to ignite, will resist burning, and will extinguish more quickly if they do ignite.

Some costume labels say "flame resistant." Some say "keep away from flames." Some say nothing at all. The warning label is advice provided by the manufacturer.

Costumes should fit

It may seem obvious, but some parents allow children to wear costumes that are either too big or too small. Costumes should fit properly and be comfortable. Otherwise, your child might fall. Oversized shoes, such as those often used for clown costumes, can present tripping hazards. Capes should not drag on the ground.

Think Visibility

Brighter costumes are safer than dark or even black costumes, which can be difficult to see by drivers. Consider adding reflective tape to your child's costume and accessories. Children love glow sticks, which can increase visibility and can even be integrated into the costume.

Use Sense about accessories

Some accessories, such as swords, wands and broomsticks, can present unanticipated hazards depending upon the age of the child. Some accessories can be sharp or may present a hazard if the child were to fall on the object, which can result in impalement. Choose accessories that are soft and flexible.