Don't Waste Your Money is supported by our readers. When you purchase an item through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

The Best Glow Sticks - 2020

Last updated on October 28, 2020
Best Glow Sticks

Why Trust The DWYM Score?

DWYM is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to.Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Glow Sticks

Show Contents
Our Take
  Great for Camping

Glow Mind Emergency Glow Sticks, 30-Piece

Glow Mind

Emergency Glow Sticks, 30-Piece

Overall Take

All-Purpose SetThis set of 30 glow sticks is perfect for using at a campsite or other nighttime outdoor activity.

  Best for Wearing

CoBeeGlow Neon Glow Stick Bracelets, 8-Inch

CoBeeGlow

Neon Glow Stick Bracelets, 8-Inch

Overall Take

Long-Lasting LightEach stick provides 8 to 12 hours of light once activated.

  Best for Parties

Glow Mind Bracelet & Necklace Glow Sticks, 8-Inch

Glow Mind

Bracelet & Necklace Glow Sticks, 8-Inch

Overall Take

Extra-Secure ClaspThese glow sticks feature a clasp that holds them firmly in place if you're wearing them as bracelets.

  Long-Lasting Pick

Glow With Us Industrial Glow Sticks, 6-Inch

Glow With Us

Industrial Glow Sticks, 6-Inch

Overall Take

Lanyard IncludedThese 6-inch glow sticks come with lanyards for hanging the sticks around your neck.

Avatar
Guide written by Stephanie Faris
Last updated on October 28, 2020

Light sources typically require a battery or power outlet of some sort. But there is one light source that can be activated by merely bending the tube that encases it. Glow sticks use a chemical solution partitioned off from another chemical solution. When you bend the stick, that glass partition breaks, allowing the two solutions to mix together and emit a glowing light.

The invention of glow sticks began in the 1960s, when scientists sought to create a chemical version of a firefly. It took a while for the creation to make its way to children’s parties and dance clubs, though. Initially, they were designed to be used as emergency roadside flares, and traffic glow sticks are still used by consumers and emergency personnel.

But over the years, glow sticks have evolved significantly. In addition to children playing with them, adults also wear them to liven up events. You’ll see them at amusement parks, parties, festivals and wherever else people are partying and having fun.

Glow sticks can also be functional beyond roadside emergencies. Some use them as light sources while camping or participating in other outdoor activities after sunset. Glow sticks typically retain their glow for at least eight hours, which makes them perfect for lighting an area overnight. They need no power source and can be tossed out after being used, which comes in handy when you’re packing up to go on an outdoor excursion.

The Best Glow Sticks

1
  Great for Camping

Glow Mind Emergency Glow Sticks, 30-Piece

You'll get 30 glow sticks in this set, each with a hook that makes it easy to hang. The 6-inch sticks are designed to last as long as four years, with 12 hours of illumination once activated. They don't leak and aren't toxic, so you can use them around kids and pets without worry.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Glow Mind
Model
2
  Best for Wearing

CoBeeGlow Neon Glow Stick Bracelets, 8-Inch

You'll get 200 8-inch bracelets in this set, which is perfect for children. You can use them as party favors or pass them out to wear while they're playing. Once activated, each glow stick remains lighted for 8-12 hours, sometimes retaining a little light even after that.

Features


Specifications

Brand
CoBeeGlow
Model
3
  Best for Parties

Glow Mind Bracelet & Necklace Glow Sticks, 8-Inch

In this assortment, you get 300 glow sticks that you can easily connect to make into bracelets. Each stick features a bright color, with seven colors in all. You'll get six hours of light with these glow sticks, as well as a clasp that ensures the bracelet stays closed after you snap it into place.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Glow Mind
Model
4
  Long-Lasting Pick

Glow With Us Industrial Glow Sticks, 6-Inch

You'll get 25 industrial-grade glow sticks and lanyards in this set, each designed to glow for 12 to 14 hours. You can choose from eight different solid colors or a multicolor option. These glow sticks have an estimated lifespan of three years.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Glow With Us
Model
6
  Great for Pool Parties

Lumistick Assorted Color Glow Sticks & Connectors, 8-Inch

You'll get 100 8-inch glow sticks in this set, packed and shipped together in a cardboard tube. Each stick is designed to keep its glow for up to 12 hours, although they'll be at their brightest at the 8- to 10-hour mark. The glow sticks are waterproof and nontoxic, making them great for children.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Lumistick
Model

Our Glow Stick Buying Guide

Light sources typically require a battery or power outlet of some sort. But there is one light source that can be activated by merely bending the tube that encases it. Glow sticks use a chemical solution partitioned off from another chemical solution. When you bend the stick, that glass partition breaks, allowing the two solutions to mix together and emit a glowing light.

The invention of glow sticks began in the 1960s, when scientists sought to create a chemical version of a firefly. It took a while for the creation to make its way to children’s parties and dance clubs, though. Initially, they were designed to be used as emergency roadside flares, and traffic glow sticks are still used by consumers and emergency personnel.

But over the years, glow sticks have evolved significantly. In addition to children playing with them, adults also wear them to liven up events. You’ll see them at amusement parks, parties, festivals and wherever else people are partying and having fun.

Glow sticks can also be functional beyond roadside emergencies. Some use them as light sources while camping or participating in other outdoor activities after sunset. Glow sticks typically retain their glow for at least eight hours, which makes them perfect for lighting an area overnight. They need no power source and can be tossed out after being used, which comes in handy when you’re packing up to go on an outdoor excursion.

DWYM Fun Fact

In 2018, the chemistry department at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater broke the world record for the longest glow stick. Students and faculty built a 492-foot glow stick (150 meters) over the course of a full year, breaking the previous world record of 13 feet (4 meters). The chemicals were made at the school and the students worked together to assemble the stick. Student Alyssa Fernandez, who has since graduated, suggested trying for a world record after noting the previous record was only 13 feet. She initiated the paperwork with Guinness, and the participants cautiously followed the rules to make sure the project qualified.

The Glow Stick Tips and Advice

  • Before buying glow sticks, consider how you’ll be using them. If you want to wear them as a bracelet, you’ll need to make sure there’s a clasp and that the clasp is high-quality enough to hold for hours. For necklaces, look for a design that lets you hook multiple glow sticks together. If you’re buying one for a campsite, make sure it has a hook that lets you hang it on your tent or another nearby surface.
  • Some glow sticks come with a lanyard, allowing you to hang your glow stick from it like a pendant.
  • Although you can use a glow stick only once, there are a few ways to extend its lifespan. One is to crack it in various other places throughout its length. This will sometimes give you a little more glow after the original light has dissipated. Other methods include putting it in the freezer for a time, shaking it and pouring some hot water over it.
  • Be careful not to be too rough with your glow stick. You can break the glow stick’s outer casing, making the chemical inside leak out.
  • Look for a glow stick that promises to be safe and nontoxic, especially if you’ll be distributing it to children.

About The Author

Avatar
Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a novelist and business writer whose work has appeared on numerous blogs. She worked for the State of Tennessee for 19 years, the latter six of which were spent as a supervisor. She has written content for entrepreneurs and marketing firms since 2011. In addition to her online content, she is also the author of eight novels for Simon & Schuster, including the Piper Morgan chapter book series.