Regulations in many cities prevent the use of masks today, but in 1970, nearly every costume had a mask. People make their costumes at home, or purchased a mask or inexpensive costume at a store. This led to some unusual costume types for some children, but most people dressed as popular characters of the day, just like people do today. 

Scary Costumes


In the 1970s, it was fashionable to have a scary costume for the holiday. People embraced the darker side of the holiday. In the modern world, many cities have regulations against wearing masks on Halloween. There were much fewer restrictions on costumes in the 70s, and scary masks were very popular. Common Halloween costumes included devils, witches, skeletons, ghosts and monsters. Nearly everyone wore a mask with their costumes, even if the costumes were very basic. Some people only wore scary masks. 

Vintage Clothing


Some children wore vintage clothing from their parent’s closets. Clothing from the 1940s and 50s, and even some from the 1960s were worn. Children would wear these costumes when funds were low. The idea of purchasing a costume each year from the store was less popular in the 1970s as it was in the 1980s and beyond. Girls would dress in fancy party dresses, or even wear their mom’s wedding dress. Boys would wear old suits and ties, old leather vests or jackets or other clothing from their father’s closets. 

Famous Characters


In the 1970s it was popular to dress as a famous character just like in the modern world. Parents would make costumes for their children, or a few stores had costumes and masks of popular characters for sale. Popular choices included Disney characters, such as Minnie or Mickey Mouse, Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Donald Duck and other popular characters. Pop Eye the sailor and Olive Oil were popular characters in the 1970s. Uncle Sam was also a popular costume. Superheroes were popular with young boys and a few girls. Many costumes with Superman, Batman, The Green Lantern, Spiderman, Wonder Woman and other superheroes were popular in the 1970s.

Fun Costumes


Children in the 1970s often had to think outside of the box if they had to make their own costumes. The children often used materials and art supplies from their house to make the costume on Halloween. Some popular and unusual choices included a cigar, pumpkins, spacemen, cowboys, clowns, army men, nurses, hippies, food, birds, presidents and anything else that children could create from their home craft supplies. Costumes with masks and wigs were the most popular.