In the fight against Halloween waste, we want you to show us your best homemade Halloween costume made with upcycled materials and you could win a €100 All 4 One gift card!

Article by Lyndsey O'Connell

Ireland, the proud birthplace of Halloween, or as we know it, Samhain, has always celebrated the transition from harvest abundance to the onset of winter.

This natural, seasonal celebration pays homage to the Earth and all it provides—food and warmth in particular. However, in recent times, Halloween has become synonymous with waste and consumerism, threatening the very essence of this ancient tradition.

'Roughly one million Halloween costumes are bought every year'

It's astounding that today, roughly one million Halloween costumes are bought every year. Anyone with a discerning eye can see the low-quality, cheap synthetic fibers used in these costumes. They are designed for single use, prioritizing convenience over durability and sustainability. It's as if consumerism has infiltrated every aspect of our festivities, transforming this once-natural celebration into a wasteful endeavor.

But it doesn't have to be this way. There's a growing movement of individuals who choose to create their own costumes, firmly rejecting the flimsy, plastic (oil-based) store-bought versions that can take up to 200 years to decompose. These eco-conscious souls are the torchbearers of a more sustainable Halloween tradition, and they're an inspiration to us all.

Let's not forget that one of the brighter aspects of Halloween's heavy focus on costumes is the Irish people's extraordinary talent for humor and wit. Their costume choices often take on a satirical and insightful tone, addressing current events and social issues. Whether it's a sharp political satire or a humorous take on a trending topic, the Irish have a remarkable knack for infusing creativity and commentary into their Halloween attire.

We invite you to share your efforts in curbing Halloween waste. Tell us how you are taking a stand against the rampant consumerism that threatens to overshadow the true spirit of Samhain. By doing so, you'll have a chance to win a €100 All 4 One gift card, because sustainability deserves to be celebrated.

It's disheartening to see Halloween's transformation into a wasteful celebration. However, we must remember that the true spirit of Samhain resides in its connection to nature and reverence for the Earth. Halloween doesn't have to cost the Earth; it can, once again, embody the values of sustainability and respect for our planet.

Terms and Conditions

  1. One winner, who complies with the competition rules, will be chosen at random by a staff member.
  2. Competition closes on the 6th Nov at 8pm.
  3. Costumes must be homemade, using upcycled/reused materials. Costumes cannot be brand new and shop-bought. If you purchased your costume in a charity shop/second hand shop, please tag the charity shop in your post, or name it and its location.
  4. The competition is open to anyone in the 32 counties of Ireland.
  5. To enter you must:

a) Follow us @voiceireland on Insta or TikTok (if you have the app)

b) Post a photo or video of your spooky handmade costume with the hashtag #VOICEWasteFreeHalloween23

c) Tag us in the costume!