Sharpie Shock

Here's a fun little experiment to do with your kids this weekend. It's called the Sharpie Shock Experiment!

Draw a circle on your hand using a black Sharpie like this:

Now, line up your phone flash so it covers the black dot like this:

Now, taking a photo using the flash with the phone resting against your skin like this:

You will feel a tiny SHOCK when the phone flashes!

What's the science behind the Sharpie Shock? Black is the color that absorbs the most light and a camera flash is an intense burst of light. The ink absorbs much more energy that normal skin. That energy dissipates on the skin giving a temporary "hot" feeling or "shock"!
Give it a try!


  1. Um, are you kidding me--'a fun little experiment to do with your kids' is to burn their hands? As you'll see in the comments from people who have done it 'this sh#t hurts!'

    1. It doesn't really hurt, its more of a little sting and a feeling of surprise when they flash the light on their bare skin then do it again on the dot.
      It's a pretty cool way to explain the science behind light absorption!


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