Halloween

The Thrilling, Chilling, SEXIST Economics of "Sexy" Halloween Costumes

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Former Reason intern Jeff Winkler has an interesting piece over at Maxim that drills down into the economics of "sexy" Halloween costumes:

The costume industry is a serious business that the International Council of Shopping Centers expects to bring in $11.3 billion this year. That number drops to $7 billion if you believe the National Federation of Retailers' figures. Either way, it's a lot of money and the $1.2 billion spent on adult costumes (roughly $77 per paying customer) is nothing to sneeze at.

And Yandy can't reliably make more by selling less fabric. According to company execs, "cute and cuddly" costumes have been gaining traction. A spokeswoman for Spirit Halloween, confirmed the trend, saying the market "saw sexy costumes reach their peak about 4 to 5 years ago." That has to do with both sexual politics and popular culture. Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead are massively popular and neither lends itself particularly to adult role play.

Mainstream fashion also affects the market. "We've seen a trend of people moving away from short skirts and more towards rompers and shorts," said Horstman, adding reassuringly that "They're still sexy but just a different kind."

Read the whole thing here.

And here's a Buzzfeed list of "25 Sexy Halloween Costumes for Men that Shouldn't Exist." Buzzfeed may be the least reliable news source on the planet but as this image makes clear, it got this story dead-to-rights.

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  1. Finally an article that nobody could possibly have a problem with.

    1. The Thrilling, Chilling, SEXIST Economics of “Sexy” Halloween Costumes

      Nick misspelled SEXIEST.

  2. “They’re still sexy but just a different kind.”

    I’m calling BS on that. Daisy Dukes and miniskirts are objectively sexier than the shorts and pants that come up to the belly button.

    1. Yeah, I am not a fan of the diaper look.

      1. That’s a great desription of it.

        On a related note, I was trying to think of one truly innovative and new popular fashion trend in the last 15-20 years or so. Nothing came to mind, but I’m not a fashion buff. Anyone? Everything seems like a rehash of what was popular 60s-80s.

        1. Hmm, I like the skinny jeans/leggings and boots look. I don’t know if it is new or innovative, but it is to me since I am 28.

          1. I like the skinny jeans/leggings and boots look

            I second this as long as they aren’t Ugg boots. And I greatly prefer the jeans to leggings.

        2. truly innovative or truly innovative?

          Does a Tesla count as a fashion accessory?

          1. Is it anything but a fashion accessory?

          1. They aren’t new and I hate ’em.

            I guarantee you that when you take her helmet off, she’s a 50 yr. old piece of leather with a tooth coming out of her nose.

            You could put a walrus in yoga pants and they create the same form.

            1. You’re wrong, and besides, ugly people can wear all types of clothing.

            2. Not always true! I see gals at the gym in yoga pants that think that, too, but it doesn’t make it so.

            3. And you linked the counterexample that disproves your assertion. You are worse than Stalin. You would artificially create a boner famine, you monster.

            4. “I guarantee you that when you take her helmet off, she’s a 50 yr. old piece of leather with a tooth coming out of her nose.”

              Thats why you leave it on.

        3. It’s because black culture has stagnated. There was a time when black culture drove the culture at large. Music, clothing, humor, language. But that all stopped in the late 80’s with sagging and hip-hop as the final expressions of black cultural innovation.

    2. I’m calling BS on that. Daisy Dukes and miniskirts are objectively sexier than the shorts and pants that come up to the belly button.

      I’m not exactly arguing with you, but some would sacrifice pants that come up to the belly button for a neck that comes down to the belly button.

      I took it to mean a “different kind of sexy” like some people find a police uniform or a nun’s habit sexy.

      1. sacrifice pants that come up to the belly button for a neck that comes down to the belly button

        If only that were the trade off. Unfortunately cleavage also seems to be losing to higher neck lines, even to the point of closed-collar, button-up tops. Which is just silly if not adorned with a tie, scarf, etc.

        1. If only that were the trade off. Unfortunately cleavage also seems to be losing to higher neck lines, even to the point of closed-collar, button-up tops. Which is just silly if not adorned with a tie, scarf, etc.

          IDK about where you are, but I’ve noticed more bras this past summer than I can remember in the last 30+ years. It’s like whale tails went away and see-through camisoles took their place.

          I’ve noticed spandex and crop tops coming back. And, personally, I’ve come to loathe the yoga pants phenomenon.

          1. I’ve come to loathe the yoga pants phenomenon.

            *picks up pitchfork and torch*

            1. You can take my yoga pants when you pry them from my cold, dead quads.

              … Wait, that came out wrong.

              1. Women find them to be super comfortable. Men find them to be super arousing.

                What’s not to like?

                1. Women find them to be super comfortable. Men find them to be super arousing.

                  Just my experience, but the majority of women who find them to be super comfortable mean;

                  a) Seeming too old/too young/too fat/too thin is uncomfortable and the pants hide it.

                  or

                  b) normal street clothes don’t keep enough eyeballs on them to make them uncomfortable and the pants solve that.

                  I don’t have a problem with the yoga pants per se. It’s more when I see them at campouts, raking leaves, at little league games, church, PTA meetings, the library, on 12-yr-olds (so their ass looks like a 17-yr-olds’), and on 60-yr-olds (so their ass looks like a 17-yr-olds’), that I start to feel like I’m Roddy Piper from ‘They Live!’.

          2. The see-through top phenomenon is definitely a plus.

      2. Who are those monsters?

  3. I know you’re a cosmotarian and all, Nick, but economics is all about human action.

  4. All I’ll say is that as a young male, I look forward to the university’s Halloween festivities.

  5. I like a combination of sexy and scary… Like Mileena from MK.

  6. Hmmph, nobody buys my socially-aware feminist costumes…sexy Emma Goldman, sexy Bella Abzug, sexy Andrea Dworkin, sexy Lorena Bobbitt, Sexy Elizabeth Warren…

    1. sexy Andrea Dworkin

      FIRE!! USE FIRE!!

  7. “Sexist”?

    Nonsense! I see the enabling magic of capitalism at work here, empowering America’s females to go FULL-SLUT-TARDED at least once a year…. as is their god-given right.

    “If an object, character, or abstract idea can be made into a Halloween costume, Yandy has probably tried. Sexy Hamburgler? Check. Sexy Lobster? Check. Sexy Jolly Rancher? Of course. The company is as proud of its diverse selection (35,000 costumes and counting)….””

    ‘Sexist’ is telling people that they can’t be slutty-whomever they want to be! LET FREEDOM REIGN!!

  8. Women are wearing more clothes around Halloween than 5 years ago. Proof global warming is not happening.

  9. Rompers are not sexy, Horstman.

  10. Reason — those infernal auto-play ads are back on your site.

    You think the government is intrusive…..

    1. Sorry! I had the local City Pages site up at the same time. You’re fine.

  11. Garter belts and stockings.

  12. What’s wrong with being sexy ?

    -Nigel Tufnel

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