How to Dress up as Santa
Playing Santa Claus for Christmas can be all kinds of fun when you see the children's faces and hear their squeals of delight. But besides suiting up, there are many things to consider. Like how to be a good and convincing Santa, inside and out. Ask anyone who's done it. For some it comes easy. For others, it's a challenge.
Dressing up for Halloween is a bit easier because you won't have to be anything other than someone dressed up in a Santa costume. Whatever your choice, here's some ideas to help you put forth your best effort for a smile-worthy performance.
A big part of the challenge is finding a Santa costume that's somewhat comfortable and fits your budget. Professional suits can be quite costly but if you look around, you'll find that they're available at a variety of prices.
Pay attention to color. The reds vary from suit to suit and you may not be happy with an orangey-red that looks cheap. You shouldn't have to sacrifice good color for quality. If your Santa role is a one-time gig, you're better off borrowing or finding a costume rental shop that has them available. Call around to save time and gas money.
Traditional suits may come with accessories such as a belt, hat, and boot covers but you'll probably have to find additional items to complete your costume:
Wig and Beard
They're often sold together for a perfect match. Wig caps are separate but you may need one to hold longer hair in place... Look for a 6 to 10" beard that's as white as snow and has secure, elastic bands.
Sometimes fake eyebrows come with the wig and beard but if not, use a white eyebrow stick (makeup) that glides on and stays put. Alternatively, try lowering your wig far enough to cover your brows (but not your eyes).
Already wear prescription or reading glasses? Your own pair may suffice. If not, there are inexpensive costume glasses with wire frames, round or rectangular. Whatever your preference.
You can buy padding specifically for a Santa suit (usually a vest style) or use a pillow to plump your belly.
White gloves are not mandatory but will add an authentic touch to your costume.
Blend a little rouge on your nose and cheeks for a weathered, jolly appearance.
Before you grab that bag of toys, perfect your acting skills. Being Santa is much more than just dressing up in a Santa suit and bellowing, "Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas!" If you want to be convincing, you'll need to take on the demeanor of jolly, old, Saint Nick
Santa Claus can be intimidating to kids. If you're not careful, you'll see tears instead of smiles. Don't be overbearing. Let the little ones stand first if they're reluctant to approach you. Speak softly and they may get comfortable enough sit on your lap for a picture.
What should you say? Besides asking the children if they've been good and what they want for Christmas, you can talk about the North Pole, Mrs. Claus, your elves, Rudolph, or the rest of the reindeer herd. Don't make any promises but suggest that they share their wish list with their parents.
Santa Claus Tips
- Practice your laugh at home, not when you're in front of a crowd.
- Don't be late. Children do not have patience. The last thing you want is for them to lose confidence in you before you've arrived at the party.
- Santa suits can be very warm and uncomfortable. You may be nervous. Stay hydrated and you're less likely to feel any ill affects.
- Be a generous Santa and hand out candy canes.
- Don't miss a good photo op. Take pictures to capture the moment.