As a mother to an autistic toddler, I have had to rethink the Halloween costume for the last two years. Even when my son was a newborn, and I felt he had sensory processing issues, I dressed him in clothing that I hoped was comfortable. His first costume was a knitted rocket (his brother was the NASA astronaut). It was snuggly and wrapped him tight like a swaddle, no complaints. Afterward, it was pretty much costume fails until we started to get it right. In the past, my husband and I have created elaborate costumes for our oldest. And like many parents with special needs, we learned that when it comes to celebrating the holidays, it is about being creative in a new way on how we enjoy these occasions. We gain an understanding of how to help our children to be comfortable and still able to enjoy the day.
For sensory sensitive Halloween costumes, it is best to avoid face masks and makeup. Costumes should be paired with a simple clothing piece like jeans, leggings, or a tee. The same rules that apply to your kid’s everyday wardrobe work for Halloween. No labels, soft materials, and easy on and off. These costumes are also great if you want to dress up your child for school and are looking for a costume that their teacher can easily take off during the day.
Fun Haunted Walk and Fair coming up check out, What to Expect at Prospect Park’s Halloween Haunted Walk and Fair!
Super Simple Slip-on Costume
A simple slip-on costume, especially one with large armholes and a full bottom will be comfy to wear all day and can be worn with a tee and leggings and sneakers.
The Pajama Costumes
Pajamas are the ultimate label-free, total comfort costume for your sensitive sensory child. Look for 100% cotton pjs for breathability. For us, New Yorkers who are out trick-or-treating after school have a fleece set on hand for extra warmth.
Halloween Hoodie and Tee
If your child needs structure and any form of a costume may throw them off or if they are just a sweatshirt/tee kind of a kid, then stick to this style for Halloween. There are some great sweatshirts and tees out there for this day. Throw in a prop such as a pumpkin pail for trick-or-treating and you’re set!
Pair a Festive Legging with Everyday Clothing
Give a pop of color to your child’s favorite clothing pieces. Pairing a style of clothing your child wears every day is a great way to play dress up for Halloween.
If you know your child will be most comfortable wearing their clothes, try a cape as a costume. This will allow easy removal of the cape during the day or to throw it on for just a few hours while trick-or-treating.
Easy One and Off Robes
When it comes to sensory-friendly costumes, it’s all about ease, and a robe — be it a bathrobe with a fun Halloween motif or a robe that is from a popular movie. This one-piece smoothly goes with jeans and a tee and can be worn all day long.