Sweet 16 Glow-in-the-Dark Party Ideas

Written by kathryn stanley
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Sweet 16 Glow-in-the-Dark Party Ideas
Celebrate a 16th birthday with a glow-in-the-dark party. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

To celebrate your teenager's sweet 16, consider hosting a glow-in-the-dark party. Decorations and supplies for a glow-in-the-dark party are often inexpensive, and ensure that the room will be transformed. To keep the party in theme with a 16th birthday, create handmade decorations, such as signs that read "Happy 16th birthday!" Hand out glow sticks to the guests, turn on the birthday girl's favourite music playlist and you're ready to go.

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Black Lights

Black lights work well for glow-in-the-dark themed parties because they emit soft ultraviolet light which, in the dark, makes everything that is white look blue or purple. Under black lights, darker colours will not light up, but lighter colours and neon colours will. They range in price from approximately £6 to £32, depending on the size of the black light that you wish to purchase. The more you have, however, the better the effect will be.

Glow Sticks

As your guests arrive, hand them glow sticks. Glow sticks are plastic tubes filled with a substance that glows for six to eight hours once you activate it. Glow sticks are available in many different colours and forms; for example, you can purchase glow stick necklaces, bracelets, straws and earrings. The bracelets and necklaces are exceptionally useful for a birthday party as they are the least expensive, the easiest to find at party stores, and the most universal; they can be worn by both boys and girls.


In your invitations, ask your guests to wear white clothes to the party, preferably ones that they do not mind having messed up. Alternatively, hand out white T-shirts for guests to change into as they arrive. Set out packages of highlighters and encourage the guests to write messages and create drawings on each other's shirts. This is a perfect activity for a glow in the dark party because your highlighter decorations will light up under the black light.


Decorate the room with signs that say "Sweet 16!" Make these signs out of glow sticks, or simply use white paper or poster board if you will be using black lights. Otherwise, decorate with anything that is neon pink, yellow, orange, or green; neon colours are appropriate for glow-in-the-dark parties because neon colours are highlighted under a black light. Purchase glow-in-the-dark stickers from your local party store and arrange them all over the walls. While it is best to have a glow-in-the-dark party at night, if you want to have it during the day, use black sheets to cover the windows and walls. When used with a black light, fog machines can also contribute to the glowing effect of a glow-in-the-dark party, but they are entirely optional.

Party Favors

As guests depart, pass out party favours. These can include glow-in-the-dark sunglasses and glow-in-the-dark nail polish, as well as any item that is neon-coloured. Some stores sell glow-in-the-dark cups, so you can even give your guests their own individual glowing cups if you would like.

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