Candy, Costumes, Trick-or-Treating: What’s Normal for Halloween in ’19
When it comes to feelings about Halloween, it's a split decision. According to the latest Monmouth University poll, 45% of Americans say it's one of their favorite holidays while 53% say they could take it or leave it.
Poll director Patrick Murray said there is a clear age difference when it comes to how people feel about Halloween. Nearly 6 in10 of adults under the age of 35 say they look forward to Halloween every year. Only one third of folks age 55 and older say the same thing.
The poll also found some racial differences. The majority of Hispanics and just under half of whites say they like Halloween. But only 1 in 4 black Americans say it's one of their favorite holidays, said Murray.
Halloween would not be complete without the candy. The poll found that Reese's Peanut Butter Cups are the top selling candy across the country, with 36% of Americans picking it as their favorite. In second place is Snickers at 18%, followed by M&Ms at 11%. Hershey bars, Skittles, Starburst and Tootsie Rolls only garnered single-digit percentage points.
What Murray found interesting is that candy corn is one of the top-selling Halloween candies in the country, yet only 6% of Americans say they actually like them.
"Candy corn make great fake teeth to creep put your parents with," said Murray.
About 70% of parents say their kids are going trick-or-treating this year including 82% who have at least one child under the age of 12 and 37% of those with only teens in the household. The poll found that very few parents will be allowing their children to go out on their own for Halloween. About 95% of those with younger children who are trick-or-treating will have an adult chaperone.
But Murray said even most parents of teenagers who will be begging for candy (76%) said that these older children will also be accompanied by an adult. He said he thinks this is a symbol of where we are in society today, with concerns about safety and helicopter parenting.
The poll also found that 29% of adults will dress up in costumes themselves for Halloween, including 50% of those under the age of 35. Women are slightly more likely than men to don a costume.
One practice that most Americans frown upon is when white people use face darkening makeup to dress up as a different race as part of their costume. Murray said only 31% found this practice acceptable and it only jumped up to 38% when the intention to darken one's skin was to look like a famous person or a celebrity.
"But it was a no-no for the majority," Murray added.