Voting Ink


AUST GUARD is the exclusive worldwide distributor of manufactured Voting Ink.  Our manufactured voting ink has been used since 2006 in National, Presidential, Local, Parliamentary, Assembly, and Council Elections and referendums in many countries throughout the world. Our ink is indelible and skin friendly.


We supply INDELIBLE and INVISIBLE voting ink.

General Information


Also known as Election Ink or Electoral Stain, this is a semi-permanent ink or dye that is usually applied to the forefinger of voters during elections. It is ideal for marking the cuticles of people who have cast their vote.

Voting ink is used as a good security feature to prevent fraudulent or multiple voting in elections.

It is an effective method for countries where identification documents for citizens are not always standardised or institutionalised.

Voting Ink is available in 2 variants

•  Indelible blue
•  Invisible yellow (which fluoresces under UV light, producing a light yellow tinge).  The invisible ink will spread if an attempt is made to remove it with any solvents.

Electoral stain typically contains a pigment for instant recognition, and chemicals which stain the skin on exposure to ultraviolet light, leaving a mark that is impossible to wash off and is only removed as external skin cells are replaced.  Electoral stain is traditionally violet in colour, before the photosensitive element takes effect to leave a black or brown mark.


How long does it last?


Election stain typically stays on skin for 72–96 hours, lasting 2 to 4 weeks on the fingernail and cuticle area, disappearing only with the growth of new nail. It can take up to 4 months for the stain to be replaced completely by new nail growth.  It cannot be removed by any chemical, detergent or oil.  The mark lasts depending on the solution strength.

What is it made of?


The indelible ink is a heady mix of chemicals, dyes, and aromatic materials.  It also contains a biocide to ensure bacteria aren't transferred from voter to voter.

How is it applied?


Ink is normally applied to the left hand index finger, especially to the cuticle where it is almost impossible to remove quickly. Ink may be applied in a variety of ways, depending on circumstance and preference. The most common methods are via dipping bottles with sponge inserts, bottles with brush applicators, spray bottles, and marker pens.

With all methods the finger should be left to dry for 15–30 seconds and exposed to light before being cleaned to ensure the mark remains visible for the desired length of time. Dipping bottles can leave a more comprehensive stain of slightly longer longevity (depending on essential ingredient content) than markers can. Marker pens also leave a much smaller mark when properly applied, which is more agreeable to many voters. The ink is applied differently across the world — in India, it’s dabbed with a stick, while in Cambodia and Maldives, voters dip a finger into the ink, in Burkina Faso and Burundi, the ink is applied with a brush. In Turkey it is applied with nozzles and in South Africa and Afghanistan with marking pens.


Additional uses of Voting Ink:


For monitoring those who have received food parcels, handouts, etc. Children’s vaccination programmes.

How is it Supplied?


Voting inks is always manufactured to order. This is because voting ink normally carries an expiry period of 3 months from manufacture, as it loses its efficacy over time.

Container sizes are usually 60 / 80 / 100 / 200ml medical bottles, although the product can be supplied in any container size.

A voting ink pen can also be used. This has a bullet styled nib.

As the product is manufactured to order, there is generally a minimum order quantity.



The voting ink is accompanied with a Certificate of conformity, confirming the product specifications and strength as requested.
Containers are suitably labelled providing a product title and description, client batch details, Interventions, and Health & Safety considerations.




Countries which have used Electoral stain in general elections include:

•  Afghanistan •  Algeria •  Bangladesh •  Benin •  Burkina Faso •  Canada •  Chad •  Democratic Republic of Congo •  Egypt •  Gambia •  India •  Indonesia •  Iraq •  Pakistan •  Japan •  Jordan •  Kenya •  Lebanon •  Libya •  Malaysia •  Maldives •  Mauritius •  Mexico •  Mozambique •  Nepal •  Nicaragua •  Peru •  Philippines •  Serbia •  South Africa •  Sri Lanka •  Suriname •  Trinidad & Tobago •  Tunisia •  Turkey •  Uganda •  U.S.A. •  Venezuela •  Zambia •  Zimbabwe •  Honduras