How to Make a Handkerchief Disappear


Making a handkerchief disappear is a trademark magician trick that is both easy to learn and impressive. All you need is a very simple device, called a magician's thumb tip, and some practice to create this illusion and win the applause of your audience.

Things You'll Need

  • Magician's thumb tip
  • Sports coat with side pocket
  • Place the thumb tip over the thumb on your right hand before you step in front of your audience.

  • Whip out your handkerchief and flutter it back and forth from hand to hand as you tell the audience you are going to make the handkerchief disappear.

  • Form a loose fist with your left hand, and as you transfer the handkerchief from your left to your right hand, grasp the thumb of your right hand and pull off the thumb tip in a quick movement. It is now hidden in your left hand. Stuff the handkerchief into the hidden thumb tip. The audience will think you are putting it directly into your hand.

  • Use your right thumb as if you are pushing the handkerchief even farther into your left hand as you secretly slip the thumb tip back on. Pull your hand away, hiding your thumb behind your other fingers. Now point to your left hand as you open it to reveal that the handkerchief has disappeared.

  • With a similar motion as in Step 3, return the thumb tip into the loose fist of your left hand. Make the handkerchief reappear by slowly pulling it out of the hidden thumb tip.

  • While fluttering the handkerchief with a flourish and taking a bow, secretly pocket the thumb tip.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use a handkerchief made out of very thin material so it compacts easily,
  • Use a thumb tip that closely matches your skin color so it is not obvious.
  • Do not stand too close to your audience.
  • Pointing is a good way of directing the audience's attention when you need to secretly slip off or hide the thumb tip.
  • Practice the move in front of a mirror in slow motion at first and then faster and faster until you can do it flawlessly.
  • When dropping the thumb tip into your pocket, transition to a new trick, taking something out of your pocket so that the movement does not arouse suspicion.
  • Study other great magicians and their hand movements for ideas.


  • Photo Credit Burke/Triolo Productions/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images
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