A basic glow stick or necklace is a transparent plastic tube containing isolated chemicals that when combined produce a chemical reaction that causes the materials to glow. The sticks are activated by bending the tube to break an inner thin glass capsule and then shaken to combine the chemicals. The chemical reaction is called chemiluminescence.
Most glow sticks contain hydrogen peroxide, phenyl oxalate ester and a fluorescent dye. The chemicals can cause problems when spilled on fabrics. Hydrogen peroxide is a mild form of bleach and the fluorescent dyes (usually green, red or blue) can stain.
When a spill occurs flush the stain with cold water as soon as possible. Be careful to check for small shards of glass from the inner capsule. The stain should be allowed to soak overnight in a solution of cool water and oxygen-based bleach. If the dye stain is removed, wash as normal in warm water.
If the garment is dry clean only, point out and identify the stain to your professional cleaner. If you are using a home dry cleaning kit, be sure to treat the stain with the provided stain remover before putting the garment in the dryer bag.
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