Given that literally all costumes remotely associated with women or girls are run through the Naughty McSexy meter at this time of year, you may be astonished to learn that regular old moms, those tireless handmaidens of domesticity, have not been adequately sexed up for the season — UNTIL NOW.
So far, moms have not fared so hot in the Halloween costume aisle. A few years ago while out looking for costumes with my daughter, for instance, I came across this mom wig at a Santa Monica Halloween store. Retailing at a mom-friendly $6.99, it's a steal, not just for your family's budget (which you are undoubtedly in charge of), but for its nearly free lesson in how we think of most mothers: as pleasantly unfuckable grandmas.
But excuse me, you interrupt to say, what about the MILF? That's a sexy mom! Not exactly. While DILFs tend to be sexy because they are nurturers, MILFs are sexy in spite of it. That's because a MILF is a woman who doesn't look "like a mother," but who happens to have kids. In other words, she manages to look more like someone who takes care of herself than someone who takes care of others. So the sexiness comes entirely from the lack of frumpy, trad-mom tells, so to speak—and yes, I'm generalizing.
Proof: There's no MILF Halloween costume, at least not that I can find in search results or on any costume websites. (OK, this woman came up with her own DIY version, which involves a regular outfit and a nametag that say MILF. Big whoop.)
Suzanne Fleet over at parenting blog Toulouse and Tonic decided to "remedy" this problem by staging sexy Halloween costumes for moms that take little effort and materials and lean way the fuck into looking like an actual mom doing real mom shit. And they are a riot.
Drive You Crazy Carpool Mom
Its racy features include whatever funky pajamas you slept in last night, rat's nest hair and a cup of tepid coffee. Rock it with a pair of therapeutic slippers and for our sexiest version yet, skip the bra! Lunch boxes your own.
Blazing Hot Bakesale Babe
Be sure to have your fire extinguisher on hand when you're dressed as our Blazing Hot Bakesale Coordinator. You'll make their mouths water in our broiling hot brown and white polka dot apron complete with sugar-sweet bows on the pockets, a lickable batter-covered t-shirt – and yoga pants that hide all your naughty indiscretions! Add your own purple Uggs and muffin tin, then bend over that oven and make them drool for your goodies!
And there's more, like:
With a mixture of cheesy costume ad lingo, sexy-pouty poses and near-porny puns, these costumes highlight the absurd level of objectification that surrounds nearly every act a woman can participate in, while also demonstrating how ridiculous it is to expect women (or anyone, really) to be sexy while flecked with spit-up.
Fleet told Today that she was inspired to make this list (and aided by friend bloggers to create the costumes and photos) by "the absurdity of sexy costume options for grown-up women." (Not least of which has to include Sexy Olaf.) Fleet said:
"It used to be there were sexy nurses and sexy cops and sexy Dorothy from the 'Wizard of Oz,' but now there is sexy anything-you-can-imagine and a bunch of stuff you shouldn't see and can never unsee once you have seen it," says Fleet. "I was thinking about the ridiculousness of a woman pouting for the camera in a 'Sexy Furry Bear' costume, and it just came to me. If you can make anything into a sexy Halloween costume, how about 'sexy' Halloween costumes for real moms?"
Amy Flory, the mom featured in the Dirty Dishwashing Damsel costume above told Today:
"It's ridiculous to imagine someone being sexy while knee deep in potty training, or while wearing baby vomit and breast milk, but in reality, our husbands see us as sexy (when mothering), even when we're in our fluffiest pajamas," said Flory.
At least someone can. But in earnest, Flory's comment actually nails something interesting about this project. Culture sticks it to women both ways by ranking everything they do on some kind of inescapable spectrum of sexiness: It paints a mother as invisible and irrelevant via a Mom Wig, or, it applauds her ability to comply with her expectation to breed while still overriding the common signifiers, via MILFs. What about the more realistic, and far more common, in between purgatory I would venture that most women inhabit in one way or another? Can a woman who looks tired as shit and exists only to nurture be sexy? Of course. Hey, plenty of tired, rat's nest-haired parent couples still manage to get it on in less than romantic settings while not even remotely conforming to ad-copy ideals of grooming or appearance or acceptable body smells. How else would all those additional children get made?
Which means in some weird, depressing way, these sexy mom costumes might actually allow the average mom to have it both ways — to be a vessel of giving and still be sexy. Still, I can't imagine these showing up at my local costume store. Anything that close to reality is much too scary for that.
Illustration by Tara Jacoby.