How to make a glow-in-the-dark stick man costume

Written by kittie mccoy | 13/05/2017
How to make a glow-in-the-dark stick man costume
Use glow sticks to light up your stick man costume. (neon glow image by Laura Lupton from

A glow-in-the-dark stick man costume looks silly during the day or in a well-lit room, but it has a striking appearance when worn in the dark. The costume relies on black clothing to disguise your body and to help you blend into the night, while the glow sticks provide a bright, contrasting outline of the body and head of the stick man. Sketch several different stick men on a piece of paper before you get started to choose your favourite design.

Lay a black sweatshirt and a pair of black sweatpants on a flat work surface. Smooth down the clothing with your hands to remove creases in the fabric.

Arrange the glow stick necklaces on the clothing to create your stick man. Place a straight line of the necklaces down the centre of each sleeve and each pant leg to form the arms and legs. You can place a single line down the centre of the body or arrange the necklaces to form a triangle-shaped body on the shirt. Do not worry about the stick man's head at this time.

Center a length of clear packing tape over one of the glow stick necklaces, and press the tape onto the clothing so that the glow stick necklace is completely encased in tape. Continue to secure all of the necklaces with tape. This will allow you to quickly remove the glow sticks without damaging the clothing when you are finished wearing the costume.

Flip over the sweatshirt and sweatpants and repeat Steps 1 through 3. This will make your glow-in-the-dark stick man costume visible from both the front and back.

Place a black ski mask on your work surface with the eye holes facing up. Bend one of the necklaces into a circle and tape it to the outer perimeter of the front of the mask making sure not to cover the eye holes. Flip the ski mask over, and repeat this process on the back of the ski mask.

Crack each glow stick necklace gently to activate the glow immediately before wearing the costume.


The amount of glow stick necklaces needed varies depending on the size of the finished costume. A toddler's stick man costume requires at least 12 glow stick necklaces while a large adult costume could require up to 40 necklaces. Peel the tape away from the clothing to remove the glow sticks when you are finished wearing the costume. Another option is to use glow-in-the-dark fabric paint instead of glow sticks. Apply the paint directly to the clothing following the product's directions. This method will permanently mark the clothing and will not glow as bright as the glow stick necklaces.


Do not activate the glow stick necklaces until you are ready to wear the costume because they will fade and stop glowing after several hours.

Things you need

  • Black sweatsuit
  • Glow stick necklaces
  • 2-inch wide clear packing tape
  • Black ski mask

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