To celebrate Halloween, hospitals and other healthcare facilities have been encouraging their staff to dress up in costume for the day. Whether your floor is hosting a contest, you want to put smiles on the faces of your patients, you’re hosting a party at home, or attending one, don’t miss out on this fun opportunity to get creative.
Why go with the same old costumes that have been worn year after year, like witches and black cats, when there are many other ideas that allow you to bring out your creativity and stand out from the rest?
Bottle of Pepto Bismol
This one is easier to pull off then you might think – wear a pair of bright pink scrubs and then replicate the bottle label using posterboard that can be hung around your neck, or taped together like a tube using ribbon as the straps. Write “Pepto Bismol” in large letters at the top followed by “Symptom Relief: Nausea, Diarrhea, Heartburn, Stomach Upset,” etc. For the “lid” you could make a tube out of white posterboard, find a small white lampshade at a thrift store or use a white beanie.
Mildred Ratched from ‘Ratched’
Dressing up as the terrifying nurse of Lucia State Hospital, Mildred Ratched from ‘Ratched,’ the Netflix series is easy to do and a guaranteed hit. To channel this look, you just need a blue-green belted shirt dress (‘50s-style) and a matching nurse hat.
This costume is easy to put together as you probably have scrubs in a variety of colors. Simply wear a pair in the color of the fruit you want to be – say yellow for a pineapple, adding black lines and making a stem from felt paper. Another slightly more time-consuming option is purple scrubs with purple balloons attached using tiny safety pins.
Most nurses are so busy they run around during their shift like the Energizer Bunny, making this another ideal, creative and easy costume to put together. Simply pair pink scrubs with a pair of bunny ears. Top it off by printing out and attaching the Energizer logo. If you want to go all out, add a drum that can be hung around your neck and put the logo on that instead.
We all know nurses are like angels, nursing their sick patients back to health. Take advantage of the day to show off who you really are by wearing an angel costume and spreading hope. There are plenty of ready-made options, ideal for those who are limited on time.
One of the most famous nurses in history, Florence Nightingale was known for her kindness and compassion, known as the “Lady with the Lamp” as she treated her patients well into the night. She helped start the first official nursing program as well as being an activist of women’s rights. Coincidentally, the World Health Organization (WHO) has designated 2020 as the “International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife” to honor the 200th anniversary of Nightingale’s birth, making this especially appropriate.
It’s easy to recreate this costume by shopping local thrift or vintage stores. You might be able to find something online or at a costume store too. You’ll need a long-sleeved, long colonial-style blue dress. Ideally, it should have a white band under the collar and white cuffs on the sleeves. Add a long white pinafore over it and then attach a red cross to the pinafore. You can easily do that by using red electrical tape, intersecting the two pieces to create a cross. Pair it with black dress shoes and white stockings.
Finish the look by securing your hair in a loose bun and wearing a nurse’s bonnet or cap.
The Exhausted Nurse
By the end of a long shift, many nurses are exhausted – you can create this look by making it more extreme. Add dark circles beneath your eyes, spill a little coffee on your scrubs and make your hair look as if you just got out of bed after tossing and turning all night.
Every nurse is a Superhero, and it doesn’t get much easier than donning a t-shirt with the appropriate emblem and a basic red cape.
While there are hand sanitizer costumes online, particularly appropriate for 2020, if you want to save money and don’t have time to wait for it to arrive, simply print your own Purell (or other brand label), and pin it onto white scrubs or a white shirt.
Want to show off your 2020 costume in our Travel Nurse THS Costume Contest?