Stay safe while having fun this Halloween by following these tips from the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC):
- When shopping for costumes and props for Halloween, make sure you check that they have the CE mark before you buy. Certain products- this includes toys- sold in the EU, must comply with specific safety regulations. Toys must also carry the CE mark which shows that they meet the required safety standards. The CE mark should appear on the product, in the instruction manual or on the packaging.
- Children’s costumes are classified as toys so you should watch out for the CE mark when you are buying them. All masks and other similar Halloween props should have a visible CE mark.
- If you are buying face paints which are marketed at children (for example have a picture of the child on the packaging) then they should have a CE mark. Always check the packaging displays clear ingredients and instructions for use in English and has the manufacturer’s and importer’s contact details.
- If you are buying props for your child’s costume, these may not be classified as toys and therefore may not be safe for your child.
- Novelty Halloween lighting, similar to Christmas lights, are now popular to buy. All electrical products sold in the EU must comply with safety standards, have a visible CE mark and have full contact details of the manufacturer and importer.
- Be careful with candles at Halloween around your home as they can pose the risk of your child’s costume catching fire.
- Before you spend money on a costume, see if you can save money by buying one second-hand. There are a number of sites selling second-hand costumes and decorations, for example your local area may have a buy-and-sell forum on Facebook but make sure they are CE marked.
- Or better still, make your own. Planning ahead gives you a chance to be creative. You can use everyday items in your own home to create an unforgettable costume for your child. Bed sheets can be used for everything from a cape to a spooky little ghost or cutting holes into a cardboard box for arms and legs can be the beginning of a very interesting robot.
- Organising a Halloween party? Instead of setting a menu, let the foods that are on sale dictate what will be served. To add to the fun give the food you make scary sounding names, for example ,pasta could be "human brains".
- Check your local County Council’s website to see if there are any free events on that you could go to.
- Keep empty jars. They can be transformed into a great Halloween decoration. You and the kids can paint them yellow, orange, white or red and add some ghoulish images for greater effect. Throw in an LED tea light and you have a very scary lantern. Keep candles out of reach from the smaller witches, and goblins. And remember, never leave lit candles unattended.
- For more Halloween safety tips and info on how to enjoy Halloween on a budget, check out the CCPC’s consumer site.
Have a safe and scary Halloween!
The CCPC is responsible for enforcing competition and consumer protection laws across the economy. For more info visit ccpc.ie.