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With October ending soon, it brings that one night of the year where children and adults get dressed up in costumes and go out for the night. It’s a night that I always dreaded when I was a child. Going to the costume store to get a costume was frustrating. Trying to squeeze my body into costumes decreased my happiness with my body- especially when nothing would fit right. Years later, the horror of costume shopping still plagues my mind when Halloween approaches.

The other day when I was looking at my costume in frustration and how it fit my body, I felt my confidence shrinking. After years of this repetitive situation, I finally decided I won’t allow my confidence to shrink. Therefore, I began writing a list of how I can stay body positive for Halloween.

DIY

The first thing I recommend is ditching the costume store. It is evident that those stores don’t offer size-inclusive costumes and instead only offer sizes from small to extra large. We all know that two people can be the same size with two completely different body shapes; therefore, costumes are only built for one kind of body. By creating your costume, you can choose parts of clothes to fit your body the way you want it to fit you. And honestly, if you create an awesome DIY, you will rock Halloween in a costume that no one else has!

work with your closet

This is similar to DIY-ing, but instead of going out and buying or making your costume from scratch, empty that closet. Sometimes we push certain clothing items to the very back of our closet. Pull it out and start looking. The bright side of this is you’re saving money, you know how it fits, and you won’t be buying a costume that you’ll never wear again.

dress like someone you identify with

My next piece of advice is to dress up or like someone that you identify with. If there is a character or celebrity that you feel you look up to or thoroughly enjoy, dress like them! It doesn’t matter if your body doesn’t look the same. By dressing up as someone you admire, you will be more likely to feel confident in your body if you are dressed up as your role model or favourite character.

wear something that makes you happy

When deciding on what to wear for Halloween, we sometimes get caught up in what our friends or partners want us to wear. Group costumes can be an example of this, especially if it is the same outfit for every person; this can get overwhelming. You must choose what you want to wear and choose something that you are going to be extremely happy to wear! You want to feel free and be able to express your creativity with your costume.

have confidence

Your confidence is what is going to make you glow on Halloween- not your costume. Sure, it will be awesome to wear and dress up as someone else for the night, but that smile and confidence that you radiate is what is going to make you feel good. We all know that when in doubt, fake it- that applies here as well. Because halfway through the night, where you may be faking some confidence, you are going to believe that you look and feel great.

For all of us who have those feelings of self-doubts about our mental and physical bodies, we are going to stay body positive this Halloween and the years to follow. We want to have an enjoyable time, and by doing that, we need to feel good in our bodies! I hope that some of these methods will make you have a body-positive Halloween where your confidence is going to make your costume glow!

Ashley Ethier

Wilfrid Laurier '23

Ashley is a third year double major in Sociology and English at Wilfrid Laurier University. In her spare time she enjoys reading, walking her dogs and enjoying the simpler things in life.
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