People slam 'Karen' Halloween costume

Now you can dress as a Karen for Halloween! Costume featuring a bouffant blonde wig and sunglasses causes a stir – as woke critics claim anyone who wears it is ‘profiting from racism’

  • Twitter user Helen Shivers, from US, shared a snap of Halloween ‘Karen’ costume
  • People expressed outrage at dressing up as nondescript suburban white woman
  • Since 2020, ‘Karen’ been linked with opposition to Black Lives Matter protests

Forget ghosts and zombies, apparently the new way to cause a fright for Halloween 2021 is to dress up as a nondescript suburban white woman.  

Twitter user Helen Shivers, from the US, shared a snap of an outfit labeled ‘Karen’ which she spotted in a local shop store captioned the post: ‘and the scariest costume goes to…’ 

‘Karen’ has recently become used as a slang term for a white woman who is perceived to be entitled, demanding or racist, with dozens of videos showing ‘Karens’ calling cops on black people and screaming at supermarket clerks over face masks have gone viral on the internet.

But it wasn’t long before others took to the comments section to express outrage a the idea of poking fun at Karens.  

‘I don’t like how they’re profiting from the very real issue of racism,’ wrote one.

Twitter user Helen Shivers, from the US, has expressed her outrage after spotting an outfit labelled ‘Karen’ on the shelves of a local shop (pictured)

Taking to the comments section, one person penned: ‘I don’t like how they’re profiting from the very real issue of racism’ (pictured)

A second agreed: ‘Absolutely nothing funny about a whole species of people that put Black people in danger of losing their lives with a simple phone call.’

Elsewhere, a third added: ‘I feel the same way about the whole “Karen” thing in general.’

‘It originally was made to point out when white people/women are racist/prejudice to black people and call the police on them for no reason.’ 

Taking to the comments section, one person penned: ‘They turned a diss into more money’ (pictured)


The disparaging term ‘Karen’ became mainstream last summer – principally in the US – in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement, to describe self-entitled white women.

They are said to behave in a privileged manner – for example, demanding to speak to the manager when thwarted in a shop and thus seen as those who enjoy belittling service staff.

Such women are also said to weaponise their relative privilege against people of colour – for instance, when making a complaint to the police about black people for minor or even fictitious infringements.

Karens are said to tend to be Tories, pro-life, judgmental and ‘annoying church-lady types’. They also allegedly love to run parent-teacher associations so they can impose their views on both their children and school staff.

During the pandemic, the term was extended to ‘Coronavirus Karen’ – the kind of woman who refuses to wear a mask in shops.

Last year, the pizza delivery company Domino’s offered Karens in New Zealand the chance to win a free pizza ‘as a break from negativity’. However, the deal was scrapped after a backlash.

Incidentally, the word ‘Karen’ also refers to a group of Sino-Tibetan-speaking people in Burma.

Another continued: ‘The way people have managed to turn this into a joke is honestly so unsurprising. 

‘A whole costume for a label that’s supposed to identify women who weaponize their whiteness to brutalize black people.’ 

Just like the wig that comes with the costume, a defining visual feature of a ‘Karen’ is supposedly her hairstyle.

It is seen as an outdated, inverted bob or an asymmetric fringe – typical of the 1990s or early 2000s – with lots of volume, plenty of hair spray and ill-placed layers. 

Critics – and many women called Karen – have condemned the outfit for attacking those who simply have a strong sense of right and wrong.

Since 2020, the term ‘Karen’ has also been linked with opposition to Black Lives Matter protests.  

It comes after three women called Karen were mocked by This Morning viewers for suggesting they are victims of discrimination as a result of their name. 

Karen Masters, from Oxfordshire, Karen Serfass, from Pennsylvania and Karen Triggs, from Gloucestershire appeared on the show to speak about the term – and agreed when host Eamon Holmes said it was ‘almost racist’ to use the term.

Karen Masters said that ‘as Karens’ they were unable to speak about how the meme has affected their lives, because they fear being labelled ‘entitled’ and insisted that Karens ‘just aren’t that sort of person’.

One of the Karens even admitted she’s changing her name, because she wants to prevent the negative connotations from ‘affecting her on a deeper level’ – revealing she’s even sometimes forced to hide her name tag at work.

‘It all started off a couple of months ago’, said Masters. ‘I noticed some memes on TikTok and it was quite funny to begin with. But when the Black Lives Matter protests started and there was a lot of media saying Karens were racist, it took on a life of it’s own.

‘I feel we can’t, as Karens, can’t talk about how this is affecting us, because then we are entitled if we do this. So I set up a to say this is not fair, us having to put up with this.

‘We are labelled as racist and entitled and we are just not that sort of person, and we want the media to stop using our name to describe racist people.’

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