Black Light Nail Polish




About: Aspiring product/package designer trying to improve her band. She loves to play the drums but wishes she had better recording equipment... oh, and more cowbell.

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This is my photo Instructable on my experiences making black light nail polish, paint, or anything for that matter!
I will also explain how to make it, seeing as it is quite simple.

-Find some detergent (maybe look near your laundry machine :D).

-Find a black light (they come with those "invisible diaries" for cheap if you don't already have one).

-Test your detergent in a dark room to see if it glows (it is easier to put some on your fingers and shine the light on it instead of straight into the bottle). If your detergent does not glow, try a different brand.

-Mix your detergent with; A) Clear nail polish (or coloured), B) Water based paint, C) Whatever else you want to GLOW!!! (you can also just paint it right onto a surface for a party or something of that sort (plus: automatic party cleanup once wiped up with a wet rag!)). If mixing with something (such as paint) stir it in until the mixture is consistent. If using nail polish, you can shake it directly in the original bottle.

-You're finished!!!

Why does it glow? Some detergents contain bluing agents used to make clothes brighter, and they react to a black light. 


Paint; 1 cup of paint to 1 tbsp. laundry detergent. 

Nail Polish; 1/2 tsp. to 3/4 of a bottle of nail polish. 

Note: If the glow is too faint, add more detergent until it glows to your satisfaction.

It is also a good idea to keep track of how much detergent you add so that you can mix a larger batch, if you need to, using the same ratio.

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    12 Discussions


    4 years ago

    that sounds cool. What if you do not have a black light


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    I have only tried the Purex, but I believe most kinds of detergents work.

    I would go for liquid detergent, because it would be hard to figure out how much water to mix into the powder to make it strong/not watery enough.

    Will a counterfeit bill-checker UV light work for the black light? Not that I know where mine is... presumeably somewhere in the nature hike stuff. [scorpions glow in the dark under black light]

    1 reply

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    I believe it will... unless, of course, the bill checker itself is counterfeit :P
    Just wondering when you're checking bills on your nature hikes..? though you probably use it for something very useful.. such as making scorpions glow :) of course.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    I believe it does work with darker nail polish/paint...
    Why don't you test it out and post pics?