How to Make DIY Glow in the Dark Paint

An interior painting project of almost any kind is a perfect opportunity to get the kids involved. It’s just the kind of thing most kids love having a go at, given how it’s an inevitably messy and chaotic process from start to finish.

Nevertheless, there are certain types of interior painting projects that can be even more exciting for kids. Recently, we went through the process of creating a chalkboard wall at home, which can also be used to create a magnetic surface. A great way of encouraging your kids to be creative and expressive, without having to yell at them for drawing on the walls!

In this instance, we’re looking at a seriously enjoyable idea for smaller features and accents around their rooms. While there are various commercial variants of the stuff available, there’s really nothing quite like cooking up your own glow-in-the-dark paint from scratch.

How to Make DIY Glow in the Dark Paint

The good news being that it’s nowhere near as difficult or complicated as it sounds. It can also save you a small fortune on the costs of buying readymade glow-in-the-dark paint from the store.

The Basics of DIY Glow-In-The-Dark Paint

In terms of equipment and supplies, there’s really not a great deal to it. First of all, you’ll need to invest in some paint – more or less any color will work, but whites tend to have the most impressive effect when the lights go out. Stick with a latex-based or oil-based paint of the highest possible quality, in order to ensure a longer lasting result.

The actual glow-in-the-dark effect comes courtesy of phosphorescent powder, which is available in the vast majority of arts and crafts stores. Alternatively, you can order a batch online – probably for an even lower price. Be sure to take note of the coarseness of the grains in the powder, which should be indicated by the manufacturer. Smaller grains produce a smoother finish though don’t glow as brightly – courser grains make for a slightly rougher finish but are much brighter in their effect.

If preferred, you can skip the paint entirely and mix the phosphorescent powder with some clear acrylic gel. This way, you end up with a glow-in-the-dark substance that is completely invisible during the day, only bursting into life when the lights are turned off.

As a general rule of thumb, it’s simply a case of mixing five parts paint with one part powder, ensuring it is distributed as evenly as possible throughout the liquid. The phosphorescent powder may settle in the container or clump slightly as you go along, so be sure to steer it repeatedly along the way.

What to Do with Glow-In-The-Dark Paint

For obvious reasons, it’s unlikely you’ll be going to extremes and painting entire walls with your DIY glow-in-the-dark paint. Or for that matter, any particularly large surfaces that you don’t really want to illuminate brightly each time the lights go out.

Instead, it’s a case of using glow-in-the-dark paint for smaller accents and highlights around the room.

For example:

  • You can let the kids paint their own creative designs (either directly on their walls or on pieces of wood), for them to enjoy it when the lights go out.
  • Most everyday objects can be given a new lease of life by simply painting them with glow-in-the-dark and seeing how they look in the dark. Even something as simple as a rock or pebble can make for a remarkably eye-catching ornament for a kid’s room, with a coating of glow-in-the-dark paint.
  • Jars, bottles, picture frames and so on – anything that’s compatible with the paint you choose is fair game.

If you decide to go for a clear acrylic gel, you can use it almost anywhere without having to worry about how it looks during the day. The only slight issue being that as it is practically invisible in the daytime, you won’t really know how good (or otherwise) it looks until the sun goes down!

Call for a Quotation…

At Homm CPS, we take pride in offering a wide variety of interior painting and decorating services at competitive prices. From creative kids’ bedroom makeovers to more elegant and sophisticated interior improvements, we know how to transform inspired visions into remarkable results.

Whatever your expectations and budget, we’d be delighted to provide you with an obligation-free consultation and an initial quotation. Contact a member of the team at Homm CPS anytime, or send us an e-mail with details of your requirements and we will get back to you as soon as possible.