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A black-light is the type of light that emits long-wave ultraviolet light which is usually very invisible to the eye. It is also known as “ultraviolent lamps”, “UV-A light” or “Wood’s lamp”.
Why is it called a “Blacklight”?
Whenever you turn on the blacklight bulb in a dark room, you will see a purplish glow from the blub. Aside from the purplish glow, the bulb also emits an ultraviolent light but you cannot see it.
Our eyes can only see the visible light ranging from red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violent. After the violent color, comes ultraviolent which we cannot see.
Now, because the ultraviolet light is not visible to human eyes, the light is “black” as far as our eyes are concerned. Another reason why it is called a “black light” is that any light that only emits ultraviolet light will always leave a room in plain darkness.
It is worthy to note that some black lights also emit violet light which allows you to see that the light is one. In addition to that, it helps in avoiding over-exposure to the ultraviolet light which is very dangerous and harsh to your eyes and skin.
Despite all these, there are a lot of cool and fun things you can do with black lights. Let us look at some of them;
Cool Things To Do With Black Lights; Uses for Fun and General Uses.
1. Black lights can be used to create a Halloween Haunt.
You will need creepy lighting if you want to create an exciting Halloween haunt or party. It does not matter if your party is indoors or outdoors. All that matters is that you have installed the right light will help enhance the atmosphere and ambiance.
There are a lot of lights you can use in creating this creepy ambiance but the best is “Black lights” especially when it comes to the ability to transform a dark and dull environment.
For outdoor arrangements, you will have the best result if you replace the garden lights, porch, and lamp post lights with black lights. You can also prepare a graveyard scene and coat a layer of glow paint over the tombstones.
The tombstone will glow as a result of the black lights added. Another thing you should have in mind is this – endeavor to hang skeletons made up of Styrofoam or Plastic in the garden because when the black light falls on them, they glow.
As for indoor Halloween parties, black lights are still as much important as they are used outdoor.
Here, you will decorate the party area with fluorescent and glow-in-the-dark kinds of stuff. You also have the option of painting the normal stuff in the party area like the scary face masks with glow paints and replace the indoor lights with black lights.
When the black lights are turned on and it falls on all the creepy kinds of stuff painted with glow paints, you will see everyone present in the room will scream.
2. Black lights can be used when hosting a black light party.
Gone are the days of plain and boring parties. When it comes to house parties, New Year or birthday parties, the black light party is one of the popular trends. It can be a great idea for a teenager’s birthday party!
There is no much difference between blacklight parties and ordinary parties. The only difference is just the lighting. For blacklight parties, the only light source is the black light.
It is used to light the entire venue of the party. When the light is now switched on, the room remains dark but the ultraviolent light rays emitted will reflect on anything white or fluorescent which makes everywhere colorful.
For a blacklight party, guests usually put on clothes that are white or fluorescent and also glow-in-the-dark accessories like light-up bracelets, rings, shoes, necklaces, or belts that will shine under the glow of black lights.
To add to the colorful ambiance in a blacklight party, it is important to enhance your party drink and one way to do this is to include a black light responsive drink.
These drinks are usually white milk or tonic water. When under a black light, good quality white milk will reflect many colors while tonic water will glow aqua blue.
Aside from the drinks, you can also use edible neon-colored icings for cake, cookies, and candies. When you have your snacks and refreshments glow under the black lights, it gives the room a fun and exciting look.
3. Black lights can be used to haunt scorpions in the dark.
People who live around deadly species of scorpions can use black lights to haunt these scorpions in the dark. This is because scorpions radiate under ultraviolet light.
The blue-green glow that is seen whenever a black light hits a scorpion is a result of a substance found in the hyaline layer which is a very thin but super tough coating in a part of the scorpion’s exoskeleton called “Cuticle”. Experiences like this are useful for students or researchers.
4. Black lights can be used to add more fun when roller skating.
Roller skating has always been a thrilling activity that brings family and friends united. In as much as a traditional pair of roller skates will do the trick when it comes to enjoying time to the fullest, there is another quick and easy way to upgrade the skates to increase the level of fun. This is where blacklight roller skating comes in.
In black light roller skating, a UV light paint also known as black light paint is applied to the roller skates to give them an attractive glow when the bulbs turn black and the UV lights come on.
When you skate with the black lights on, all eyes will be on those fancy foot moves on the floor.
5. Black lights can be used to check how to clean kitchens and bathrooms are.
Black lights can also be used to check how clean a motel, hotel room, public bathrooms, and the likes are. This is because, when invisible stains in the kitchen sink, tabletops, bathroom, and floors are under black light, they can fluoresce at most times, they fluoresce yellow.
Black lights are also used in professional cleaning to help detect germs present on surfaces. The black light will cause these germs or bacteria to fluoresce so that an ordinary eye can see them.
This is probably the reason why the light is used to test surfaces when there is a disease outbreak or a sudden increase in the occurrence of a specific disease at a particular time or area. But before using black lights to check the cleanliness of a place, below are some things you should have in mind;
i. First of all, you need to have a professional-grade UV light system that emits UV rays in extended frequencies like 100 to 400 nanometers.
ii. Clean the test area. This does not involve sanitizing or disinfecting the area.
iii. Put on your UV protecting glasses.
iv. Turn off the light so that the room is as dark as possible. This is the only way to detect the bacteria when the black light comes on.
v. Turn on the black or UV light and start testing.
6. Black lights can be used in cosmic bowling.
If you want to take the fun that comes from bowling to the next level, then try cosmic bowling. This kind of sport or activity combines the classical bowling alley with a collection of black lights.
This, in turn, creates a disco setting with flashing lights, glowing body party, and music to vibe along with it.
One thing the black light does is that it causes anything that is white or fluoresces to appear neon. This includes shoelaces, bowling balls, and balls. Bowling becomes more exciting and even though you are a bad bowler, it will not be so obvious.
7. Black lights can be used to detect counterfeit currencies.
Law enforcement officers use black lights to identify counterfeit currencies and fraudulent credit cards. This is because currencies have security features in the form of icons and designs which can only be detected using a black light and these security features are very difficult to counterfeit.
So when a law enforcement officer shines a black light on a bill or currency, if the security feature does not show up, it means the currency is fake. This makes detecting counterfeit currencies very easy.
8. Black lights are used to identify invisible fluorescent hand stamps.
In some establishments like night clubs, amusement parks, and the likes, whenever someone enters and pays an entry fee, he or she usually gets their hand stamped with an invisible and blacklight activated ink. The purpose is to prevent unauthorized entry. So, throughout your stay there, the stamp on your hand will shine brightly under the glow of a black light. This way, the security team or bouncers will be quick to identify or detect those who have not paid for entry to the venue.
9. Black lights can be used in investigating crime scenes.
Black lights are used by forensic scientists to analyze crime scenes like picking out fingerprints, body fluids such as saliva, semen, blood, urine, vaginal fluids, etc.
When investigating a crime scene and a forensic scientist wants to pick out fingerprints, the first thing he or she does is to dust the fluorescent dye under a black light. This will make the fingerprints on the surface easier to pick.
Also, because body fluids like saliva, semen, urine, blood and the like usually fluorescence when illuminated by a black light.
This makes it a very efficient way of detecting such stains or fluids in a crime scene as well as objects picked from a crime scene such as bed sheets, clothing, towels, or decorative items. Even though the stains are dry, they still fluorescence under a black light.
Aside from detecting fingerprints and body fluids, forensic scientists also used a black light to detect the presence of an illegal or controlled substance. They equally use it to determine the number or types of ink used in a forged document.
10. Blacklight can be used to read secret messages written with an invisible ink pen.
Invisible ink pen is usually used to secretly mark objects like vases, paintings, prints, and documents for later identification. For example, a family might mark a valuable heirloom with the invisible ink pen in case it is stolen or dispute arises.
Also, someone might decide to write their name at the back of a painting. This will help to reveal it was theirs in case of loss. If the marking was written such that it is visible, the thief will simply clean it off. But with an invisible ink pen, the thief will not know that the painting is even marked.
The markings made by invisible ink are invisible in daylight but fluoresces brightly in the dark when under a black light.
You can also use the invisible ink pen to write secret notes to friends and when it is under a black light, the message glows in the dark sketches and art.
11. Black lights can be used by medical practitioners to identify medical conditions.
Medical practitioners also use black lights to identify some medical conditions such as Vitiligo and Psoriasis. Vitiligo is a skin condition characterized by patches of the skin losing their pigment. These patches are not visible to the human eye without a black light. Thus, it takes only a black light to be able to confirm the condition.
Psoriasis, on the other hand, is a skin disease marked by red, itch, and scaly patches. The condition can only be treated with the UV rays emitted by black lights. This is because the rays help the body naturally to create Vitamin D which in turn helps to heal psoriasis.
There are so many cool things you can do with black lights because the ultraviolent rays they emit are one of the most useful types of lights, and their applications span many industries.
Though years back, black lights were known as novelty items as a means of unusual lighting. Now, other uses beyond just novelty usage of black lights have been discovered.