A History of Halloween, Scary Costumes and Traditions
Dressing up in scary costumes and trick-or-treating on Halloween is an old tradition originated from Ireland. Halloween itself is actually a medley of old traditions of the Celts and Roman Catholics. On the Celtic side, it was tradition to celebrate the end of the summer days, which is why Halloween is now celebrated at the start of the fall. Autumn brings upon the death of the colorful summer—plants shed their blooms, animals go into hiding, days get shorter, nights longer and the temperatures drop—as nature transitions into the harsh winter. Coinciding with this tradition was the Roman Catholic "All Hallows" day (translated to 'All Saints" day) in which people of faith paid tribute to those who passed the way. This focus on the symbolism of both traditions (death) eventually converged both into one super holiday: Halloween. This was not something that happened in unison between the Roman Catholics and Celts, it took many generations of both traditions beings passed down before they were simultaneously celebrated. Then, additional customs were added to the Holiday as it kept being passed down like a message in a game of telephone.
Eventually, the tradition of dressing up in scary costumes that—contrary to the Roman Catholics—actually ridicule the dead, became the focal point of Halloween. Today, the commercialization of this Holiday has turned October 31st into a day for children to hit the streets in their frightening costumes and go door to door asking for candy. Regardless of how commercialized and nontraditional Halloween has become, it is still one of the most thrilling days of the year for modern people infatuated with the horror genre and costumes. Kids and grown-ups dress up as surreal characters and demonic creatures. When trick-or-treating first because a thing, it was all about vampires, ghosts, devils and witches. But with the course time and the development of modern culture, a plethora of supernatural beings have come to take part in the celebration of death. Scary films like Frankenstein's Monster, Night of the Living Dead (Zombies), and sci-fi thrillers like Aliens have expanded the catalog of horror outfits used on Halloween night.
Regardless of how many people opt to dress up in funny, sexy or even cutesy outfits, scary costumes are still the main attraction on Halloween. They go hand in hand with the celebration of death and they make for much more exciting adventures; whether you are trick-or-treating around the block or attending a haunted house party, everyone looks to Halloween for the thrill of hair raising scary costumes. No matter how Halloween evolves, the consistent theme that keeps the tradition 'dark' is the celebration of death. Even today, Halloween is blending with other traditions that keep in tune with the theme. So what is the next scary costume trend that will transform Halloween? The answer may be found in this blog entry about Mexico's 'Day of the Dead."
Check out this graphic depicting the evolution of Halloween costumes, from the more innocent times, to the current glorified gory-fied trends: