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Where Did All the Easy Halloween Costumes Go?

Each year, tons of college students frantically make their way to their local fashion retailers in search of easy and inexpensive Halloween accessories and costumes for upcoming parties and events. This year, many left Boston stores empty handed, as there were noticeably fewer options available.

Forever 21

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Photo courtesy of Nia Beckett

With Newbury Street’s Forever 21 among almost 180 locations potentially closing due to the company going bankrupt, the store made no attempt to create a display for the holiday. Instead of the array of Halloween-themed headbands, jewelry, and bodysuits that Forever 21 generally sells through October, this handful of headbands is the closest thing party goers could find to Halloween attire this weekend.


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Photo courtesy of Nia Beckett

H&M offered a few more options — including ringleader and ballerina costumes — in the weeks leading up to Halloween. By this past weekend, which was the first Halloweekend and prime time for finding last-minute costumes, all that remained was a sparse collection of jewelry including these spider web and skull earrings.

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Photo courtesy of Nia Beckett

The men's section had a few more options including a slice of pizza and a superhero outfit, while the children’s department featured a full collection of spooky accessories and apparel.


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Photo courtesy of Nia Beckett

Perhaps most surprising of all was that Primark had hardly any makeup to offer for the holiday, let alone costumes. Interestingly enough, they do have a collection of Christmas tree and elf costumes, among other winter holiday accessories, so maybe they’ve just skipped Halloween altogether.

Luckily, Northeastern's campus is blocks away from Dorothy's Costume Boutique on Mass. Ave., which has a full variety of costumes, although they are more expensive. Still, the lack of Halloween attire available at fashion retail stores this year certainly surprised Halloween enthusiasts and last-minute costume shoppers.

Nia Beckett

Northeastern '22

Nia is a second-year journalism major with a global fashion studies minor at Northeastern University. She loves Carrie Bradshaw, YouTube, and chai tea lattes. Follow her on Instagram @niashalise_.
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