16 offensive Halloween costumes that you shouldn't wear this year

YandyTry to avoid costumes that could be perceived as cultural appropriation.

One of the best parts of Halloween is dressing up in a creative costume. But, as some celebrities have already shown us, certain seemingly clever costumes can actually be problematic.

Some common Halloween costumes simply take it too far and can become racist, misogynistic, or downright insensitive.

From a convict to a geisha, keep scrolling to see 16 offensive costumes you should stay away from.

This “Dream Catcher” costume could be considered cultural appropriation.

Yandy‘Dream Catcher.’

Stay away from costumes that rely on tropes and gimmicks that generalize entire cultures, like this one from Yandy.

Avoid any costume that makes a caricature out of another culture, like this “Sexy Shooter Happy Hour” costume.

Yandy‘Sexy Shooter Happy Hour.’

This Yandy offering comes complete with a “poncho-style” minidress and a sombrero, both of which draw on exaggerated stereotypes of Mexican culture and could be considered offensive.

This “Men’s Arab Sheik Costume” draws on false stereotypes of Middle Eastern culture.

Kmart‘Men’s Arab Sheik Costume.’

It’s harmful to reinforce negative and misconceived notions about a region, religion, or group of people, like this Kmart costume does.

Avoid costumes that rely on mimicking another culture, such as this “Golden Geisha” ensemble.

Yandy‘Golden Geisha.’

Wearing a geisha costume, like this one from Yandy, could be seen as cultural appropriation.

Think twice about anything that could have questionable implications. This “Rasta Costume Kit” might be cause for concern.

Walmart‘Rasta Costume Kit.’

This Walmart costume includes a dreadlock wig that could be deemed offensive.

This costume, which depicts Anne Frank, is insensitive and offensive.

Walmart‘World War II Girl Costume.’

The site that was selling it under the name “Anne Frank costume” removed it, but you can still buy it (under the name of “World War II Evacuee”) from Walmart.

This “Dia De Los Beauty” costume is patronizing and problematic.

Yandy‘Dia De Los Beauty.’

If you’re not Mexican, it would be offensive for you to dress in Day of the Dead-inspired garb, like this costume from Yandy.

This “Inflatable Ballerina” costume requires wearing a fat suit of sorts.

Target‘Inflatable Ballerina.’

Try to avoid costumes that could be interpreted as body-shaming, like this one from Target.

Costumes with misogynistic implications, like this “Droopers” ensemble, should be avoided at all costs.

Spirit Halloween‘Droopers.’

This mock uniform from Spirit Halloween manages to be both ageist and body-shaming to women at the same time.

This “Reality Star in the Making” costume is insensitive.

Yandy‘Reality Star in the Making.’

Although it might seem topical, this Yandy costume, which is intended to look like a reportedly pregnant Kylie Jenner, also has body-shaming implications.

This “Stranger Things” Halloween costume caused a controversy, as people claimed that it sexualized a 12-year-old character from the show.

Yandy‘Upside Down Honey.’

Yandy makes the controversial “Upside Down Honey” costume, which some argue unnecessarily sexualizes Eleven’s iconic outfit by lowering the dress’ neckline while shortening its hemline, swapping sneakers for platform heels, and replacing ankle socks with thigh-high socks

There’s a lot to unpack with this “Snake Charmer” costume.

Yandy‘Snake Charmer.’

This Yandy costume not only appropriates Middle Eastern culture but also has disturbing sexual undertones.

This “Sexy Convict” costume could be interpreted as trivializing the US prison system.

Yandy‘Sexy Convict.’

Incarceration is not funny, though this Yandy costume tries to suggest otherwise.

Dressing as a “Restrained Convict” reinforces harmful misconceptions about mental illness in prison.

Yandy‘Restrained Convict.’

By presenting a straightjacket as a joke, this Yandy costume downplays a serious issue.

You wouldn’t make fun of a homeless person on the street, so you probably shouldn’t dress like a “Hobo Nightmare” on Halloween.

Wonder Costumes‘Hobo Nightmare.’

Homelessness is a serious issue, although this Wonder Costumes getup does not present it as such.

Dressing up in this “Gorilla” costume would be innocuous, but calling this a Harambe costume would be insulting.


On its own this Yandy costume is fine, but implying that it is the animal that was controversially killed in 2016 would be problematic.

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