How to Avoid Overspending this Halloween

Halloween seems to be gaining popularity year on year. Extravagant costume ideas, detailed make-up looks and over the top decorations are popping up everywhere across all of my social media platforms. On the face of it, there really is a lot of time and effort that goes into preparation for just one night of the year. And of course, this effort comes at a price. So, how much are we really spending at the spookiest time of the year?

It appears that the increase in Halloween interest visible on social media is backed up by our spending. The figures have been increasing each year, with the total for the UK in 2018 reaching a frightening £419 million (Statista 2019). Why might this be? Here are a few ideas that could explain why Halloween is sucking the life out of our bank accounts. 

Internet culture is likely to have some sort of impact on the way we celebrate Halloween. The build-up normally starts after summer ends and autumn comes creeping in. Halloween themed memes begin to surface, and people start to throw out costume suggestions to test the water. The attention Halloween gets on social media could create a sense of pressure to get involved; a sense that you are missing out if you don’t join in. In addition, the presence of celebrities on these platforms encourages involvement that is more than just your basic black top and witch hat. We are inundated with celebrities showing off their ridiculously priced, top designer Halloween creations. Perhaps this is pushing us to go a little fancier with our own ensembles. Regardless of the reason why the figures are on the rise, maybe it’s time to consider how we can stop them from soaring any higher.

Halloween decorations seem like the perfect idea to breathe life into a bland student house. However, is it worth buying plastic decorations, putting them up for a week or so and then simply tearing them down never to be used again? Do we even need them to get into the spirit of it all? If your love for Halloween answers yes to this question, maybe think about creating your own decorations. Putting up some simple orange and black paper chains will provide a similar effect to supermarket bought decorations and could serve as a great stress buster (not to mention they're better for the environment too!). 

Food is probably the least student relevant area of spending. Unless you are a particularly generous person, you probably haven’t bought sweets to give out to trick or treaters. But again, if you are someone who wants to fully embrace all elements of Halloween, putting on your baking hat would be a great way to do Halloween inspired treats at a low cost. How about iced ghost gingerbread or mini pumpkin cupcakes?

Costumes are where things can get really expensive. Anyone who has ever walked into a fancy-dress store will know that looking scary (whilst still feeling good about yourself) will cost a pretty penny, especially if you want to do it well. Searching through costumes on amazon might throw up some cheaper alternatives than buying in-store. You are likely to find all the same kinds of outfits there but at more affordable prices. Another great way to be economical when dressing up for Halloween is to recycle your old clothes. You could cut them up to create zombie vibes or go with a more generic look by staining a top with fake blood (available at all Poundland stores). 

Another way of cutting down your spending on an outfit is to go all out with makeup. It’s possible to get away with a basic outfit if you’ve gone to a lot of effort to create a spooky makeup design.  There are hundreds of tutorials on Youtube which can teach you how to use your ordinary makeup to create some killer looks. 

These are just some simple suggestions to help cut down your spending this Halloween. However, this should not interfere with how much you enjoy your celebrations. If anything, you’ll enjoy them even more knowing you’ve got that extra little bit of money sitting in your bank account. 

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