Making your DIY glow-in-the-dark paint is a fun and easy project that kids will love. Not only does it produce an excellent effect, but it’s also a great way to learn about science!
This article will show you how to make DIY paint that glows under black light. It only takes a few ingredients! The best part? Let’s get started.
DIY Glow in the Dark Paint – Materials Required
- 1/4 cup of white corn starch
- One package “PHOSPHORESCENT MONOCHLORO VINYL ALCOHOL” dye (bought from a local craft store)
- One tablespoon of SUPER GLUE GEL or a tube of transparent mucilage
How to Make DIY Glow in the Dark Paint
Make a well with the corn starch, and pour in just enough water to sticky it. Use your hands to mix the dye until it is dissolved, then add in the glue/mucilage and mix thoroughly. You can store this mixture in an airtight container for up to a week.
Paint your mixture onto a surface that has been cleaned with rubbing alcohol, and let it dry overnight. To use under a black light, cover the paint with a thin coat of clear acrylic sealer (like Mod Podge) and let it dry completely before using.
Your homemade glow-in-the-dark paint is ready to use!
DIY Glow in the Dark Paint Tips & Ideas
- Include small objects such as toy craft eyes, tiny sequins, or beads into your paint mixture before painting it on a surface if you want to add some sparkle.
- The “Phosphorescent Monochloro Vinyl Alcohol” dye is a mix of several dyes. Why not mix your own? You can buy small pigment bottles from Humbrol, Revell, Hataka Hobbycraft, AK Interactive, Mig Productions, and Tamiya.
- If you’re using a darker color such as black, you’ll need to shine a flashlight on the paint first to “charge” it with light. To do this, turn out all the lights (even nightlights) and place your hand against the surface for 30 seconds or more, then turn your backlight on and watch it glow! This is because darker colors absorb more light than lighter colors like white.
- If your homemade paint is too thick, add a drop of water at a time until you get the consistency you want.
- If you’re going to test how well it glows, try shining a black light on the surface to see if it glows appropriately! Remember that adding more dye will make the Glow brighter and cause it to fade faster.
- If you want to use Acrylic Paints instead of poster paint or Fabric Paints, mix the acrylic paints with white glue until you get the consistency you’re looking for, then brush it on your surface and let it dry overnight before sealing with Mod Podge.
- If you’re painting a large exterior, try thinning out your mixture with a little bit of water and save the rest for later use.
- You can also add glow-in-the-dark powder from an old broken toy or fluorescent glitter for extra effects!
How to Add Bright Glowing Effect in Glow in The Dark Paint
If you feel adventurous, you can also try adding white phosphorescent pigment to the paint mixture. The result is a glowing effect that’s even brighter than using just the dye! Here’s what you do:
- Pour 1/2 cup of water into a glass bowl and combine it with three tablespoons of white corn starch and one tablespoon of SUPER GLUE GEL or transparent mucilage.
- Add one tablespoon of the white pigment powder, which can be purchased from any local craft store for around $5. It looks like tiny flakes of glitter inside a clear bottle.
- Stir until it starts to form into a thick paste. You may want to wear gloves at this point to protect your hands from getting stained.
- Add this mixture to the paint and stir well, but be careful when applying it with a brush as it will leave finger marks on the surface if you add too much.
- This step is optional: If you want even brighter light, add in one teaspoon of Glow in the dark acrylic paint and mix well. You can find this type of paint at most craft stores.
- Once your mixture is ready, seal it with three coats of clear acrylic sealer (Mod Podge) to make it waterproof and cleanable.
How do you make glow-in-the-dark acrylic paint?
All you need to make the Glow in the dark acrylic paint is white acrylic paint, which can be purchased at any craft or art store, and a tiny bit of glow-in-the-dark pigment powder.
First, add a small drop of water at a time to your container of white acrylic paint until it turns into a smooth paste. If your mixture is too thick, add a little more water to it.
Next, mix the glow-in-the-dark pigment powder with a small amount of white acrylic paint until you get a smooth consistency. The result should be a thin paste that can easily be applied to your surface. You may want to wear gloves for this.
The mixture will not glow in the dark when it’s wet, but when you apply a clear acrylic sealer to it (a few coats should do), your mixture will be completely sealed and waterproof. It will also begin to glow under black light!
How to Make White Glow in the Dark Paint?
You can make any white paint glow in the dark by adding a tiny fluorescent dye to it. You can find both Brilliant Mineral Paints and poster paints that already have the fluorescent pigment added at most local craft stores.
To make your mixture, you can add a bit of water to any white acrylic paint until it becomes a smooth paste.
Next, mix fluorescent paint with a small amount of your existing white acrylic paint until you get a smooth consistency. Apply this mixture to your surface using a brush and let dry for 10-15 minutes before sealing it with Mod Podge (or another sealer).
Ideas to Use your freshly-made DIY Glow in the Dark Paint
- Make glow-in-the-dark murals with your friends!
- Have fun making crafts with this Glow paint. Use it to finger paint on a white sheet during regular hours, and watch it glow under a black light!
- You can also use small pieces of this gloss paint inside clear acrylic ornaments to make them light up during the day.
This article has shown you how to make your easy-to-use Glow in the dark paint that works like any other acrylic or fabric paint, is non-toxic and safe for kids, and most importantly–how to make it at a fraction of the cost!