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Five Topical (Yet Appropriate) Halloween Work Party Costume Ideas

Posted On10/25/2017

ContributorTracy Fischer

A Tricky (or Treaty?) Situation

If you’ve ever wondered what costume to wear to a workplace Halloween celebration, you’re not alone. Many workplaces hold Halloween-themed parties or events and encourage employees to dress up. And every year, there’s usually that one person (or more) who dresses as something a bit too risqué or edgy for the work environment.

When it comes to Halloween costumes at work, it’s best to err on the side of caution. What would fly with your friends or be funny to your neighbors might seem offensive to a coworker or give people the wrong impression of your professional persona. In most work environments, it’s better to avoid anything too gory, political, or revealing, or any costumes that poke fun of one person in particular.

But what do you do if you love sarcastic or pop-culture Halloween costumes yet don’t want to sacrifice your sense of humor for office appropriate-ness this Halloween?

We’ve rounded up some 2017 Halloween costume ideas that can still be humorous and topical for work parties – without crossing any workplace lines or making anyone uncomfortable. Here are our top five.

Five Topical 2017 Halloween Work Party Costume Ideas

Awkward School Photo
Don your dorkiest look from your formative years – or one you would’ve never been caught dead wearing. Then, spray paint an 80s or 90s-looking design on a 3’ x 5’ piece of cardboard (the more “Saved by the Bell,” the better) and mount string so you can wear it like a backpack. Voila – you are now an awkward school photo. You can even mount the cardboard to your side to encourage others to join you and take selfies!

Avocado Toast
Grab an avocado costume – or wear a totally green outfit and affix a brown paper cutout to your stomach for the pit. Then, throughout your party, raise your glass and say “cheers!”. Get it? Avocado toast? If you’re a millennial, drive your point home by telling people how dropping so much cash on your Halloween costume means you can’t afford your rent.

Salt Bae
White t-shirt, black pants, and round black glasses with metal frames. Slick your hair back or pull it into a low ponytail. Then carry around some salt and sprinkle some when you want to make your point. Bonus points if you can get a coworker to dress as Emeril Lagasse (a chef hat and coat should suffice) and shout “Bam!” anytime you sprinkle your salt.

Solar Eclipse
Cut a circular shape out of a cardboard box, paint it black, and either tie a string to hang it around your neck or affix it to the front of your costume. Then, casually glide in front of people at the event so you’re blocking them. If you can find someone dressed as a heart, even better. Just focus on blocking them so you have a “total eclipse of the heart!”

Condescending Willy Wonka Meme
Find a purple jacket, sweater vest, tan or yellow bow tie, and camel top hat. Bonus points for a purple ruffled shirt. Then, grab a cane, print out a question to affix to the top and an “Oh, you’re so clever”-type sarcastic line for the bottom (these can be snarky, but be sure to keep them work-appropriate!). Pose like the meme with your head leaning on your right hand and a sarcastic smile for full effect. This one can be fun to customize to your environment, just make sure you’re using humor that is respectful and not derogatory.

A Spooktacular Workplace Halloween Costume

If you go the classic Halloween costume route with a scary costume like a vampire, bat, or witch, remember to forego the blood and guts. Also, it’s best to avoid telling coworkers, supervisors, or reports, “I vant to suck your blood,” because that might result in some awkward situations.

No matter what costume you choose, be sure to have a good time and enjoy the fun with your coworkers. Remember, work-appropriate doesn’t have to mean stuffy. Just balance humor with good common sense, and you’ll figure out a humorous costume that will be both memorable and appropriate.


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