New York

A Report From Halloween Stores on Halloween Weekend


If you’re getting dressed up for All Hallows Eve this year, hopefully you’ve already bought or sensibly made your costume, because the Halloween stores are zoos. They’re insanely crowded! Lines running through entire giant warehouse shops! As we were leaving Halloween Adventure, we overheard a girl frantically shouting, “Oh my God, there’s even a line to get out of the door. Oh my God, I’m having a panic attack. Oh my God, I need air!” So just what are these massive, panic-attack inducing hoards purchasing?

American Apparel, which boasts specialized Halloween hours (they’re open until midnight through Saturday) says they’re mostly selling tights and leggings, or basic foundations for costumes. You can check out their website for Halloween DIYs, which include fun, overpriced costumes like “’90s Girl Power Group.” They also have less fun, overpriced costumes like “Anime Girls.”

American Apparel was slightly less crowded than the packed Ricky’s NYC. We spoke to a director at the company, Jason Sandloafer, about which costumes were selling the best. Apparently, Ricky’s special “Svedka Girl” lack-of-costume has been flying off the shelves due to its popularization by JWOWW. As usual, princesses are big for little girls, and monsters and vampires for little boys. Start forming those hetero-normative roles early, people. Sandloafer also told us that Walking Dead zombie costumes are selling a lot, as are Marvel superheroes, like Green Lantern and Captain America.

This is in direct contrast to what a Ricky’s employee told us. According to those that work the shelves, “the superhero stuff is supposed to be selling, and it’s not.” Scandal!

Halloween Adventure was by far the most crowded of all the stores. It felt like a new Harry Potter movie was coming out. Oddly, costumes like Sesame Street characters and crayons are in for adults. The classic princesses, vampires, zombies, and werewolves are still selling, as are “superheroes like Tron” (who is not actually a superhero), according to store employees.

Halloween Adventure also has the largest collection of highly disturbing “sexy” costumes. Most of them come in plus sizes, so hey, at least Halloween Adventure isn’t sizeist! But this costume was our personal favorite:

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