San Diego

Do Halloween Costumes Shed Light Into Human Psychology?

Halloween is a time to dress up in costumes, but could it lend insight into human psychology and choices? 

Dr. Akin Merino of Agrosy University in San Diego thinks so. She and other psychologists say your choice of costume tells a lot about who you are as a person. 

"People go through a lot of things in their lives like trauma," said Dr. Merino. "Halloween is a time for people to take on that character they're dressing up as. They become that so sometimes it's about empowering yourself." 

This can include dressing up as animals like cats or mystical creatures like mermaids and vampires. 

Dr. Merino adds people will often dress up like super heroes or people they admire. A popular costume for women around San Diego this year was Wonder Woman, after the immensely successful movie came out this summer. 

"Halloween is a time when we own that person we admire. Or any person that is important to us." 

But Dr. Merino adds the holiday is also about community. Dressing up with friends and co-workers in a collective costume scheme gives us a sense of belonging to a like-minded group. 

"The clothes transform us," said Dr. Merino. "That's some of the things going on during Halloween. That sense of being someone else for a day."

What was your costume for Halloween this year? 

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