Maybe you’re planning a DIY with fluorescent colors? When I started my first little project with bright colors at night, I did not know much about afterglow colors, daytime color and had never worked with such colors before. I chose the wrong color several times and sold several times. The color just did not shine. I paid a good amount of tuition. In order to give you a little insight into the jungle of the Nachleuchtfarben, or daylight colors, you will find here summarized all my findings as compact as possible. 🙂 Although – compact is very, very difficult with the wealth of information.

The Difference Between Persistence Color and Daytime Fluorescent

First and foremost, you need to be aware of what kind of glow you want to buy. Because there are colors that shine by themselves at night and colors that shine only under black light.

What is afterglow color?

Afterglow color is a color that stores incident light and releases it with a time delay. This is called phosphorescence and means the property of a substance to emit after lighting in the dark. Incidentally, due to this property, it is correct not to say “nocturnal” but “afterglow”.
The downside of phosphorescent paint is that it has to be heavily charged with light and then luminesces differently and long depending on the quality. This reduces the luminosity continuously. A good quality of the colors is crucial for afterglow colors!

Quality and luminosity – the ingredients are crucial

Afterglow colors, like all colors, consist of pigments in combination with a binder. As the pigment alkaline earth aluminate or zinc sulfite may be added to the paint. It is at this point that we speak of the quality of the colors. Alkaline earth aluminates light up considerably longer than zinc sulfite! They are also much more expensive and valuable.
Unfortunately, the ingredients are not listed in online shops. Even with the products I got, no ingredients were noted on the product!

For products that lose their luminosity within a few minutes, the cheaper variant, zinc sulfite, was certainly used. In my first purchases, I received just such colors and was very disappointed with the luminosity.

Buy afterglow paint – Help, the afterglow color does not shine!

The quality of afterglow color decides if your end up being happy with the luminosity. As I discovered, there is no quality at the lowest price. As the saying goes, “who chews cheaply always buys twice.”

After the first failures with afterglow I finally got a tip and ordered the afterglow color from NightTec. I have had very good experiences with the afterglow color of NightTec. But later in a comparative test with the very popular afterglow of Neon Nights more.

Is afterglow color radioactive?

This question is not that farfetched. In the past, luminescent substances based on radium or later on tritium were actually produced and used, for example, as light source for timepieces. The military used radium-containing luminous colors on a grand scale. This time is not that long ago, as you might think. Only at the beginning of the 2000s was the problem recognized and banned. In the meantime radioactive substances for luminous colors are prohibited.

What is Fluorescent Day Fluorescent?

Color glowing in the dark under black light is called Fluorescent Daylight Fluorescent. Fluorescent color reacts to UV light. Through a photophysical process (the fluorescence), it converts the UV light into a strong glow. The effect ends when no UV light is available. There is no afterglow. These colors need to glow in the dark UV light. In simple terms, black light is a UV light that emits no visible, or at least no bright light. Therefore, it is very suitable for the excitation of daylight color. The use of daylight fluorescent paint therefore always requires an investment in black light bulbs.

The advantage of Fluorescent Day Luminescent is that it shines with the same intensity when UV light is present. The color does not fade during the night, the luminosity does not diminish. The colors are strong neon colors. When lighting with black light, there is also the effect that white objects light up. Daylight color in combination with black light therefore particularly suitable for parties.

I will not test daylight colors in the following, why? Quite simply, because all the fluorescent colors that unfold under black light so far have delivered 1A results. All colors were great. That’s just not worth an article in my opinion. 🙂

Test Conditions – Buy Fluorescent Paint – Neon Nights, NighTec, UV Elements, Kreul

The test conditions are very simple: All colors were applied to a wooden board. All colors (except for Kreul Windowcolor – a contour color) were applied in at least three layers. The colors were simultaneously charged for 3 minutes under a 100 watt photo light and then tested for luminosity in the dark.

Then I switched off the light and took pictures at the following intervals: right after switching off the light, after 2 minutes, after 3 minutes. So far so good. What about the luminosity? I have summarized the results for you here once and the information on the individual colors, you can then yes still pull. 🙂

Fluorescent colors directly after switching off the photo light

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Illuminated colors 2 minutes after switching off the photo light

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Illuminated colors 3 minutes after switching off the photo light

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I think it’s pretty clear that the quality of afterglow color can be VERY different. 🙂

                                                                     Luminous paint NighTec craft paint, 100ml

  Luminous paint NighTec craft paint, 100ml
                                 19,90 €



 NighTec Eco-Green Wall Paint - 100 cc of our strongest glow in the dark paint


NighTec Eco-Green Wall Paint – 100 cc of our strongest glow in the dark paint

                                                                     Photoluminescent Pigment 25g - UV-C - Black Light, Color Pigment, UV, Neon


 Photoluminescent Pigment 25g – UV-C – black light, color pigment, UV, neon

                     8.50 €

. 1 Afterglow Neon Nights

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Anyone looking for luminous colors on Amazon will inevitably come across the Neon Nights brand. Neon Nights has more than 200 reviews on – most of them positive.
Neon Nights’ neon lights are ranked # 250 on the hit list in the DIY category. I too have been tempted by the many positive reviews. My second purchase of afterglow colors was the afterglow neon nights in yellow-green. Time for a test of this luminous color.

Company and origin of the afterglow color

Neon Nights offers a variety of UV products and fluorescent colors. On the website there is an online shop with the products of Neon Nights. In addition, Neon Nights operates an Amazon shop with some fluorescent colors.

In the product description Neon Nights advertises the production of the colors in Germany. The color is advertised with “Made in Germany”. A look at the imprint of the online shop of Neon Nights as the owner of Electronic Commerce Global Ltd. out. The seat of this company is in Hong Kong. To what extent the colors are “made in Germany”, for example, where they are made, I can not understand and can not be seen from the product received (for example, by imprinting the origin).

Processing properties of the neon glow neon nights

The color is a paint to apply with sponge, brush or paint roller. The afterglow color of Neon Nights brings the typical properties of a luminous color. It is milky and slightly liquid. The paint is easy to apply and does not run. On rough surfaces it sticks well, smooth surfaces must be roughened.

After drying, the color on the object should be almost transparent. However, the color is clearly visible after application. The color is whitish. In addition, the color can hardly be applied evenly. The brushstrokes are very visible.

Luminosity of the neon glow neon nights

The luminosity of neon nights is very bad. As can be seen in the pictures, the luminosity in darkness decreases considerably within a very short time. This fact is often attributed by manufacturers to the fact that the color was not applied thick enough. This is not the case here, I applied the paint four times and very thick.

. 2 Afterglow NighTec craft paint

I came across the fluorescent colors of NighTec and bought the afterglow paint for a DIY.

The company NighTec is a German company based in Bonn and what is rather rare: it produces your products in Germany and has the entire chain of production in hand. Production takes place according to German industry standards and quality standards. The colors comply with the so-called toy standard EN 71-3. This is far more than can be expected from China’s imports.

The company does not only produce colors for the bastelwütigen end customer. The main focus is on products for the industry. The emphasis is on building materials, paints and varnishes, granules and foils. NighTec designs and manufactures custom products for industrial and large customers.

What is good enough for industrial products should be more than enough for the little DIY lover. 🙂

Processing properties of the afterglow color of NighTec

The paint is a water-based paint for sponge, brush or paint roller application. The afterglow color has the typical properties of a luminous color. It is milky and slightly liquid. The paint is easy to apply and does not run. It should adhere well to rough surfaces, smooth surfaces must be roughened.

After drying, the color on the object is almost transparent. When applied several times, the color is visible in thicker places. This is completely normal for afterglow colors

The paint is specially designed for craft projects and not suitable for outdoor use. The paint is water-based and not waterproof.

Luminosity of the NighTec Afterglow

The luminosity of NighTec craft paint is outstanding! Despite the brief irradiation with UV light, the color shines formally and shines long-lasting. As you can see, the afterglow lights in a blue or turquoise tone. Other colors are not available.

What can not be seen in pictures here: when the color is charged with light for a longer time, it shines well visible throughout the night. Contrary to the manufacturer’s instructions for other afterglow colors, this color must NOT be applied several times to develop your luminosity. This coincides with my experience: the color shines from the first coat of high luminosity.

. 3 Luminescent color pigments for mixing UV elements

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UV-Elements describes itself as a specialist for luminous colors and sells not only colors for application but also all sorts of luminous objects. The company also offers services in the form of light installations and lighting concepts for their own home or business customers.

The headquarters of UV-Elements is in Nordhausen. It is a German company. Under you will find the online shop of UV-Elements. My first afterglow colors came from this shop. Later, I also bought the luminescent pigments through the Amazon Shop of UV Elements, which I will test for you today.

Luminescent pigments in different colors

The luminescent pigments of UV elements are available in different shades: green, turquoise and blue. The pack contains 25 grams.

The product image on Amazon is misleading. It is not a color in a vial but powdered pigments that are delivered in a small bag.

Luminescent color pigments in powder form – what do I do with it?

Of course, the luminescent pigments have to be processed somehow. There are various possibilities for this. Colors consist of pigments, binders and solvents. The easiest way is to mix the luminescent pigments in finished colors. It should be noted that the luminescent pigments do not come out so well with dark colors as with bright ones. In addition, not all afterglow pigments are suitable for water-based paints.

Strength of luminosity and miscibility of afterglow pigments

If you look at the name of the luminescent pigments on Amazon, you will notice that it contains a combination of letters and numbers. In the case of the afterglow pigments tested here, the color designation is added to a UV-9.

UV-9 indicates the strength of the luminosity. If you order luminescent pigments, pay attention to the name. UV-C illuminates the weakest – UV-9 strongest. In addition, these terms say something about how you can handle the colors. UV-CW can be stirred into water-based colors. UV-9 is only intended for solvent-containing products. When these persistence pigments are mixed into water-based colors, they lose a large part of their luminosity.

Test of Luminescent Color Pigments

For the test I made different mixtures with luminous pigments. The pigments shine best by a long shot after being stirred into transparent nail polish. This is understandable, because transparent varnish least disturbs the luminosity. The luminescent pigments tested here are also intended for carriers containing solvents.

The luminescent pigments of UV elements had to pass the same test as all other afterglow colors. Immediately after switching off the light source, the UV elements color pigments (right in the picture) light up beautifully. The blue hue is fantastic.

You see three glass stones that I painted with differently mixed colors. The topmost glass was coated with a light pigment & nail polish mixture. The middle stone is painted with a mixture of white acrylic paint and luminescent pigments. The lower stone with a mix of pink acrylic paint and the pigments of UV elements.

Last update on 21.03.2019 / These are promotional links.

That the afterglow pigments in the acrylic color mixtures do not shine so strongly is due to the consistency of the acrylic paint.

The luminescent pigments develop the optimum luminosity only in solvent-containing carriers – which the acrylic paint used by me does not belong to.

After 3 minutes in perfect darkness, the stone, which was coated with the nail polish mixture, still shines heavily. The mixing ratio has an influence on luminosity.

A higher concentration of afterglow pigments increases luminosity. I think it is very good to see in the picture, because in some places there is no glow. Here, however, only too few pigments are applied.

Luminescent Color of UV Elements

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Contrary to the luminescent pigments of UV elements, however, I have had very bad experiences with the already mixed afterglow color of UV elements. This color simply did not shine (see test pictures). Apparently these pigments contain too little luminescent pigments. Too bad.

UV element sells high quality luminescent pigments

The afterglow pigments of UV elements (UV-9) have a really high luminosity. The color is very nice and I can recommend the pigments for craft projects.

Why would I still prefer to use the afterglow color of NighTec? The processing of pigments is very expensive. A consistent mixture is too difficult due to the small amounts that a normal household scale does not measure me.

If you are looking specifically for brightly luminescent color pigments in very good quality, you are in the right place with phosphorescent pigments from UV-Elements.

. 4 Persistence Color Window Color Contour of Kreul

You want a bright glass paint? Then you might also have come across the Window Color Contour of Kreul.

Kreul is a well-known manufacturer in the field of craft and artistic utensils. According to own data Kreul is the “first German artists’ paint factory”. The company can now look back on more than 170 years of tradition. Kreul advertises with the quality seal “Made in Germany”. The company is located in the Bavarian Hallerndorf.

Kreul – HobbyLine

When I got the order for the window paint, I was astonished at first. I had not ordered the incoming “Kreul Window Color Kontur” but the “Hobby Line Nachtleucht – Conturenfarbe”. After some research, I learned that the HobbyLine brand is a Kreul product line. Maybe the provider forgot to customize product image and description? I did not live longer with this mystery. The Kreul Window Color should also be an afterglowing contours color for window painting.

Applying Color Window Color Contour of Kreul

Strictly speaking, this color is not a window color but a contours color. Usually, the outline color is used to draw a pattern or motif, and window-colors are used to fill in the resulting surfaces.

The color comes in a small bottle with lace. The end of the point is cut off with a sharp object.

Perfect for drawing and writing

This lace is wonderfully easy to apply. It is perfect for tracing contours or writing with color. The paint can be evenly applied – at least when the bottle is still full.

The consistency is thicker than with afterglow for crafting. Therefore, it does not run and can also be applied very well to vertical surfaces, such as windows.

Unfortunately, the tip is not resealable. After use, these glued again and again and must be freed of paint residues. Apart from that, the bottle is always open and at risk of tipping over and running out.

Window Color Contour of Kreul is removable after drying

The paint can be removed from smooth surfaces after a day’s dry season. This worked very well for me. I was able to replace letters and motifs without damaging them. For example, painted motifs are later reusable.

Since the paint is applied very thick, it is always visible in the light. It has the typically slightly transparent milky white of afterglow colors.

Window Color Contour by Kreul in Test

The color glows beautifully after exposure to UV light in a yellow-greenish light.

After 2 minutes in perfect darkness, the luminosity of the afterglow has already dropped significantly.

After 3 minutes, the color for the camera is not bright enough anymore. Compared to the competitors of UV-Elements and NighTec the color of Kreul is very poor. Even a higher saturation by a longer irradiation does not increase the luminosity of the color. The afterglow color has failed for me on the whole line – unfortunately.

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