COLUMN: Sexy kitty costumes won't ruin feminism

Wednesday, October 6, 2010 | 1:49 p.m. CDT; updated 2:04 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I dress up in the same Halloween costume, static cling, every year for two reasons. First, static cling is a pretty easy costume to create on a tight budget. All you need to do is find a sweatshirt and safety pin some underwear, socks, gloves and washcloths to it. Voilà. You look like the inside of a clothes dryer.

It’s also a great costume for Halloween in Missouri, which can often be chilly. As a child, nothing was worse than wearing a coat over my Ariel or Jasmine costumes. Did Ariel ever wear a coat while playing in her grotto with Sebastian and Flounder? No, she didn’t. But no matter how many times I explained that to my mom, I still had to put my coat on if I wanted to go trick-or-treating.

My Disney Princess days were probably the ones where I showed the most skin because every year on Halloween, I show up to a party and realize static cling isn’t so sexy. I’m always the lone covered-up woman in a sea of frisky kitties and barely there nurses. The naughtiest thing about my costume is that my underwear is pinned to my shirt. And usually everyone is too drunk on Halloween to understand the outfit.

As Halloween grows nearer, you will inevitably read opinion pieces about how the holiday is just another excuse for women to dress in inappropriate clothing and get away with it. The columnists will draw the conclusion that this act is somehow setting feminism back.

But that’s not really the case. Feminism is about choice. If you choose to dress up as a sexy animal because you feel comfortable enough with your body to do so, pull out your bunny ears and bustier and let your freak flag fly. It’s not going to ruin anything for those of us dressed up like static cling. Men might ogle you, but my guess is that if you’re dressing up as a sexy nun, you’re probably OK with that kind of attention.

Halloween should be an escape. In our everyday lives, we face a bum economy, a high unemployment rate and a war we’ve been involved in for seven years. We watch the ones we love get cancer and heart disease and a myriad of other illnesses, and then we get them ourselves. We lose our homes because we can’t pay the mortgage. And for those of us still in college, we know in the back of our minds that a degree isn’t going to guarantee us a job. If we can use Halloween as a reprieve, dress up and mask the worries that plague us, why not?

What I encourage wearers of sexy Halloween costumes to do is be creative. What offends me most about these types of costumes is not that they show too much skin but rather that they often times make absolutely no sense. And so, as you look toward planning your outfits, here are 10 sexy Halloween costumes you should try to avoid this year.

1. Sexy kitten: Kittens aren't sexy. They're adorable and tiny, and should be fed from baby bottles and not groped.

2. Naughty Marie Antoinette: The French queen was beheaded. Guillotines? Not so sexy.

3. Sexy viking: Vikings pillaged towns and raped women. Beware of anyone in this costume. They might or might not have a bloodlust.

4. Hot Girl Scout: Were you a real Girl Scout, this would be illegal.

5. Naughty nurse: In my experience, however sexy a nurse might be, they still handle your urine samples.

6. Sexy gladiator: You’ll soon be eaten by lions. Turn-off.

7. Naughty Native American: Because nothing oozes sex quite like yellow fever.

8. Provocative librarian: There's nothing suggestive about library fines.

9. Naughty hobo: This one is too close for comfort with the current unemployment rate. 

10. Foxy rabbit: As a rabbit owner, I can testify that rabbits are in fact very cranky, or at least mine is. Also, they smell.

I almost said adult Snow White, but I guess this one makes sense. She did live with seven men, after all.

Though I have no real suggestions for sexy creative outfits (Maybe I’ll wear more risqué underwear as static cling this year), I can encourage you to have a safe Halloween. Know your limits, stay with a group you trust, and have a fun holiday.

Amanda Woytus is the deputy and calendar editor for Vox Magazine.


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