Inflatable Costume Sales Soar as Some Use Them as Makeshift Safety Suits Amid COVID-19

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Trick-or-treating is still five months away, but it turns out that inflatable Halloween costumes are helping people stay close to their loved ones amid the coronavirus pandemic, and they're flying off the shelves.

Maureen Sweeney of New Jersey bought an inflatable unicorn costume so she could hug her grandchildren. "I was trying to think of some way we could have full body contact because that's what we've been missing so much," Sweeney told Inside Edition. 

She's not alone — home video of one woman visiting her mom in a nursing home has helped sales for inflatable hippo costumes soar 500% since the pandemic started. The costumes have doubled in price and can cost as much as $120.

Sweeney said it was worth every penny.

"They're the best option to be able to actually wrap your arms around your grandkids and hug them," she said. 

Although they may help in the hugs department, the Centers for Disease Control is warning that costumes are not a substitute for wearing proper personal protective equipment. "An inflatable dinosaur suit will not provide more protection than a cloth face covering," a spokesperson said.

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