by Ranim Elborai
Halloween is less than a week away!
Have you carved out your pumpkin yet?
Have you stocked up on good candy for all the little trick-or-treaters?
Have you given any thought at all as to what costume you’ll be wearing this year?
Do you even have a party to go to?
Because I don’t.
As a pretty cool chick in her early twenties, living it up in New York City, I was never at a loss when it came to what to do for Halloween. There was always a house party to go to. If there wasn’t one organised by the second week of October, my sister would step up and host one herself, Halloween being her favourite holiday.a She would spend the weeks leading up to the 31st brainstorming the perfect costume and piecing together all its elements. And the must-have accessory for any costume she put together? Why, a wig, of course! Last I counted, we have five wigs stockpiled in a trunk in our living room.
Here, in London, although this American tradition seems to be catching on (because let’s admit it, it’s good fun isn’t it?), no one I know is having people over to theirs for “a do.”b I think it’s down to the fact that 1) I don’t know that many people here; and 2) maybe people stop having parties once they reach a certain age. After cleaning up too many spills on their hardwood floors, dried up puke splatter on the sides of their toilet bowls, and crisp (potato chip!) fragments trampled into the fibres of their carpets, they know better than to play host.
To be honest, I’m not too fussed about it. Halloween may be Sister’s favourite holiday, but I’m not the biggest fan.
My bone to pick with the occasion?
Girls in slutty costumes.
Women everywhere see Halloween as a golden opportunity to tart up for a night. You’d be surprised, but even your most demure, most ladylike, most prudish gal-pal may consider donning a positively whore-ish getup when she goes hunting for a costume.
And the shops gleefully enable this gravitation towards revealing costumes. I’ve done some thorough research and I’m afraid to say that the bulk of the outfits they provide for female customers are prefaced by the word “sexy.”
Sexy zombie nurse
Pretty much whatever costume idea you can think of, the words “sexy” or “hottie” or “slutty” can be appended to it. Ok fine, there are a few products you come across that don’t involve that word, but that’s because those are outfits that are sexy to begin with. They didn’t have to be sexified.
Dressed up like Cat Woman? Oh, all right, feel free to be sexy then.
You can bet that the majority of these outfits involve incredibly short skirts and cleavage bearing tops. And they look nothing like the real life version of what you’re claiming to be dressed as.
That’s a little more like it.
Top off one of these cheap-o outfits with some stripper heels, fishnet stockings, and some false eyelashes, and you’re guaranteed to get some attention at the next Halloween party you head to.
It’s hard to resist, especially because the less overtly sexy costumes they stock are not just a little less sexy. They’re a lot less sexy. And/or probably unbearably hot. There seems to be no middle ground between baring everything you’ve got or being swaddled in cheap, non-breathable material.
If a woman goes to a party, 9 times out of 10, she wants to look good. Can you really blame her? People will be taking photos and posting them on Facebook and Instagram — you can’t show up dressed like a cartoon frog!
So what does a respectable girl like me — completely lacking in the creativity and wherewithal to come up with my own elaborate and hilarious costume (because that’s really the best option if you ask me) — do if she wants to dress up for a Halloween party while trying to straddle the line between looking good and maintaining her dignity?
Don’t come looking here for answers, because Halloween is the one time I could care less about looking good. For the last Halloween party I attended, I cut holes out of the sides of a large cardboard box and wore it over my normal clothes.
I was, by no stretch of the imagination, the unsexiest girl in the room.
And I was okay with it.
- Is Halloween technically a holiday? It’s an occasion, but you don’t get any time off for it. I think it’s because, like Valentine’s Day, it doesn’t mark some solemn occurrence. Also, a big part of the fun is interacting with your colleagues and classmates in your silly costumes. No, it wouldn’t do to stay home during Halloween. (back)
- This is what British people call parties and other social events. (back)