DIY Invisible Ink with Tonic Water – Does This Work? [VIDEO]


Ever wanted to make your own invisible ink?  Tonic water might be for you! Maybe! Depending on your needs.

Title of the Video: DIY Invisible Ink with Tonic Water – Does This Work? [REVIEW]


Someone, somewhere on the internet claimed that you can use tonic water as invisible UV ink.  I’m putting that to the test.


Painting the tonic water on paper under a UV blacklight and testing with a UV flashlight occasionally.

Testing under ultraviolet light when ‘dry’.

Testing with a black light in the bottle.

Testing if tonic water glows in my bowl.

Does it glow???


Tonic Water

Watercolor paper

Paint brush (cheap – this stuff is sticky)

UV blacklight

Ultraviolet black light flashlight


Invisible ink


Diy invisible ink

Tonic water



Black light

Ultra violet


Glow art



I love making blacklight and glow in the dark art.

I love experimenting with different art supplies.

Someone suggested tonic water fluoresces under a blacklight, so here I am.

This is not my chosen glowy art supply.

I am not super impressed with the outcome.

I thought sharing my failures was better than pretending they didn’t happen.

Normally I mix up art supplies and make a glowy mess but this tonic water is just too darn sticky.  

This is not my finest art moment.  Eww.

What should I do next?  Lemon juice I think…


Tonic water why…

Are you so darn sticky ick?!

You don’t dry at all!


Can you make invisible ink with tonic water?

I read this somewhere on the internet.  

I don’t know where, if it was a pinterest post…somewhere

I read that you could make invisible ink out of tonic water.

Anndd… you kind of can…

It does actually kind of work.

For a buck you can get two liters of glowy art supply type fluid.

However, I don’t suggest this for any sort of legitimate artwork.

There’s a few reasons why.

It’s not very glowy when wet.  

As you can see as I make this video I have to make this paper so wet

with tonic water and it barely glows…

Annoying…very annoying.

It’s also full of sugar.

People don’t realize that tonic water has a bunch of sugar in it.

It does.  It’s really sticky.

And that means that it doesn’t really dry it just kind of turns into a sticky mess.

There are  some good uses for this stuff though.

I could see kids having fun with this and making some sort of blacklight art.

It could be kind of cool.

You could add some food coloring to it.

And in a glass it glows a lot better because there is a lot more water,

or you know…tonic water…in the cup.

It will glow a lot better in a clear glass under a black light than it will on this piece of paper.

So as an art supply not so cool…

As a glowing  beverage maybe a little cooler?

I don’t know who wants to drink a cup of tonic water though.

You could however make glowing jars.

That’s kind of what I was thinking would be coolest,

is to make a glowing jar of this stuff,

with some (you know) glow in the dark things also in the jar.

So it would glow really nicely under a black light at a blacklight party.

I don’t think I would ever use this…ever again..for making art on paper though.

It does work.

It does  glow.

Whoever said it glows was totally accurate.

However, I don’t think I’m ever going to put this on a legitimate piece of art.

I will not use this with watercolors to make glowing watercolors.

I will not make, I will not mix this with anything.

Kids could have  fun though.

I could see kids doing a lot of fun things.

You could make hand prints.

Finger paint with some food coloring or something.

Or maybe some watercolor, I guess you could use some Crayola or something and mix that.

Some sticky sticky UV paint for kids.

That would be kind of fun.

So you can see here how much better that glows in a bottle.

That looks kind of cool right?

Like you could actually make some cool party decorations using a bottle and some UV lights.  

That’s a little  UV flashlight and that’s how cool it looks in the bowl, it actually does glow fairly well in the bowl.

So this is after it dries, it actually glows better after it is dry than it does when it is wet.

Only like I said it’s not actually dry.

This is several days later.  You can see the sheen, it is sticky.

It’s not dry.

It’s sticky and gross.

I bet you could still smudge it.

I don’t know if there is any solution to that.

Hey thanks for watching.

Click subscribe if you want to watch me check out some weird glowing art techniques as I find them on the internet.

My name is Bekkerz.

Have a great day.

Length of the video: 4 minutes 13 seconds

Date and Time the Video was Posted: June 4th, 2019 at 7:00 PM

Location the Video was Recorded: Burlington, Vermont USA.  Bekkerz Apartment.

Video Recorded by: Bekkerz –

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Title of the video: DIY Invisible Ink with Tonic Water – Does This Work? [REVIEW]

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Bekkerz (or Becca Hammond) grew up on a small dairy farm in Vermont.  She loves technology, animals, artwork, and paddle boarding. She attended college for electrical engineering and works as a software engineer.  Bekkerz enjoys writing and creating in many different mediums. She plays many instruments including bass, guitar, ukulele and also enjoys singing.  She has had stints playing drums, flute, bari horn and piano as well. Bekkerz has written songs but has never shared them with the public. She creates physical artwork as well and particularly enjoys pyrography (wood burning) and creating blacklight or glow in the dark artwork.  Contact her at [email protected]. Follow her on instagram at  She is also active on