household items can be used to create secret messages.
squeezed lemon juice (must be fresh)
Toothpicks or Q-tips
Heat source (light bulb or flashlight)
Lemon juice or vinegar will act as ink and a toothpick or Q-tip
will work as a pencil. If you choose to use a toothpick remember
to use the flat end so that you don't rip holes in the paper.
2. Dip the toothpick or Q-tip into the lemon juice or vinegar.
Chose only one for the first message. You can use the other
one to write a second message on a new piece of paper. After
you have dipped the toothpick or Q-tip in the juice or vinegar,
write a message on a blank sheet of paper.
3. Keep dipping the toothpick or Q-tip into the juice or vinegar
until you have finished writing the whole message.
4. Set the piece of paper aside and wait for it to dry. This
might be a good time to try writing another message with the
5. Once the paper is completely dry, hold it over a light bulb
or flashlight. Remember not to hold it too close or it may burn.
Slowly move the paper around over the light so that the whole
message is warmed by the heat of the light. The message should
slowly reveal itself to you.
6. Once you have seen your secret message, can you make the
writing disappear again?
Did lemon juice or vinegar work better as an invisible ink?
A source book of fascinating facts, projects
and activities. Second edition. Susan V. Bosak with Douglas
A. Bosak and Brian A. Puppa. Scholastic Canada Ltd. 1992.
Messages for Kids Only