How to Make Fluorescent Dye

by Ernest V

This guide will show you how to make fluorescent dye by disassembling a highlighter.


  • 1 Highlighter
  • 15 Milliliters Water
  • 1 Plastic Cup or other collection container
  • 1 Scissors (Optional)
  • 1 Tweezers (Optional)
  • 1 Pair of Gloves (Optional)
  • Instructions

    Step 1

    Fluorescent dye glows a bright neon yellow when exposed to an ultra violet light source. This is ideal for dying T-Shirts and coloring paper, however, some fabrics may not "stain" very well.

    Step 2

    Open the highlighter and carefully slide the stick of colored ink out.

    Step 3

    Hold firmly and squeeze over a container.

    Step 4

    A small highlighter will yeld about 50ml of glowing diluted fluorescein.

    Step 5

    After squeezing a lot, the stick should look like this, completely white.

    Step 6

    Now turn on the UV light, the liquid should emit an eerie green glow.

    Step 7

    The liquid will keep its glow as long as you want, regardless of how much liquid you used.

    Step 8

    If you want to learn more visit or for related information.

    Step 9

    It works with big amounts too, just add a lot of water.

    Step 10

    This can be frozen, and it won't lose it's glowing properties.

    Step 11

    I only used gloves to prevent the ink from staining my hands. If the label on the highlighter says "Non-Toxic" then you should be fine with out them, however don't drink the ink or put it in your eyes