Learn Fun Magic Tricks to Try on Your Friends

Close-up magic is an amazing way to meet people, impress friends and be the life and soul of any party. We’re super excited to reveal the secrets behind some of the best magic tricks for beginners from card tricks to coin tricks, mind reading, bar bets and more.

You don’t need to be a professional magician like David Blane. You don't have to learn how to do magic tricks like Dynamo, Copperfield or Penn & Teller. All these easy magic tricks all use items that you probably already have in your home. Get ready to learn fun magic tricks you can try on your friends immediately!

Magician Ben Hart performs a linking ring magic trick at the 2020 Magifest Magic Convention Photo Credit: Ari Isenberg

The Carnival Card Trick

Despite guessing wrong at first, you eventually prove you knew which playing card your spectator chose all along. This card trick started during the old carnival days when carnies would use it as a way of tricking “suckers” into making losing bets.

Ace of Hearts sits on top of fanned out playing cards during a beginner card trick. Photo Credit: Erik Lucatero (Unsplash)

What You’ll Need:

  • Deck of cards

Secret:

  1. Before the trick begins, secretly place the Ace of Spades on the bottom of a deck of cards. This easy-to-remember card will serve as your “Key Card”.

  2. Have someone select a card, memorize it and show it to everyone while you turn your back.

  3. Turn back around, cut the deck of cards in half and ask the volunteer to return their card to the top of deck in your left hand (which is the one WITHOUT the Ace of Spades on the bottom).

  4. Once they do, take the other half of the deck (WITH the Ace of Spades on the bottom) and place it right on top of the other half. Their selected card is now directly after the Ace of Spades (your Key Card).

  5. Hold the deck of cards in your hand, and tell your volunteer that you are going to attempt to read their mind.

  6. Begin dealing cards face up. As you do this, tell your volunteer to keep an eye out for their card but to NOT say anything out loud if they see it.

  7. Keep dealing until you see the Ace of Spades. Once you do, make a mental note of the next card you deal, and then deal a few more cards (3-5 is ideal).

  8. Stop dealing and bet your spectator that the next card you flip over will be their selected card. (We suggest betting something silly like a high five or a hamburger instead of real money). With a bit of acting, you can get them to take this bet since they are convinced you’ve already passed their card.

  9. Once the bet is finalized, reach toward the deck of cards and pretend to take the next card in your hand (as if this is the one you’re going to reveal). Then, stop yourself, and quickly reach down into the pile of cards, take their card (which is on top of the Ace of Spades) and flip it over.

Instant Ice

Water instantly transforms into ice.

YouTuber Wolfie is amazed by a beginner magic trick where water instantly turns to ice. Photo Credit: Steve Johnson from Pexels

What You’ll Need:

  • Water bottle
  • Ice Cubes
  • Bowl

Secret:

  1. Place a water bottle in the freezer about 2 hours before you perform. The key to this magic trick is taking the water bottle out at the point right before it begins to fully freeze.

  2. Take a bowl and place enough ice cubes in it to cover the bottom. Make sure this ice can’t be seen by your audience.

  3. Start pouring the water into the bowl directly over the ice. As soon as it hits the ice cubes, the water will turn to ice.

  4. Once the bottle is completely empty, take it, and the bowl, and pass them both around so your audience can see that all the water has magically turned into ice.

Magic Crayon Mind Reading

You correctly name the color of a crayon chosen by a spectator behind your back.

An variety of different colored Crayola Crayons lined up in a row for a beginner magic trick Photo Credit: Anthony (Pexels)

What You’ll Need:

  • 5-6 different color crayons

Secret:

  1. Hand the crayons to your spectator, turn around and put your hands behind your back.

  2. Have them secretly select a crayon, place it in your hands and then cover the rest of the crayons with their hands.

  3. Turn back around with the chosen crayon still hidden behind your back.

  4. Remind your audience that your spectator could have chosen any color they liked and that there is no way for you know what it is. While you’re doing this, secretly scratch the top of the crayon with your thumbnail.

  5. Bring this hand out from behind your back and place it on your forehead in a thinking pose. In this action, you can quickly glimpse at the color of the crayon wax on your thumbnail. (Don’t stare!)

  6. Pretend to read their mind before dramatically revealing the color they chose.

The Impossible Number Puzzle

A sneaky number puzzle that makes for a great bar bet or party trick.

Impossible Number Puzzle Photo Credit: Gellinger (pixabay.com)

What You’ll Need:

  • Piece of paper (or something to write on)
  • Pen or pencil

Secret:

  1. Challenge your friends to create an equation that uses one number EXACTLY 3 times and adds up to 60. Here’s the catch, they can only use addition (no subtraction, multiplication, or division), and the solution CANNOT be 20+20+20=60.

  2. Let them spend some time on this fun puzzle before finally revealing the solution is 5+55=60.

  3. This solution is true because the number 5 is used 3 times. It seems easy once you know the answer, but, you’ll be amazed at how many people this bar bet fools.

Amazing Coin Prediction

A mind reading coin trick where you correctly predict the coin your volunteer chose.

A pile of American coins used for a mind reading beginner magic trick Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

What You’ll Need:

  • 3 coins of varying values (for example: penny, nickel and dime)

Secret:

  1. Before the trick begins, secretly write “You will select the nickel.” on a piece of paper or index card and fold it up.

  2. Place this prediction card on the table next to the penny, nickel and dime.

  3. Ask your spectator to place their hands on two of the coins and slide them toward you.

  4. If they move the penny and dime, you have an instant miracle! Emphasize that they’ve chosen to eliminate the penny and dime and have SELECTED (the wording is key here) the nickel. Have them open the piece of paper to see you correctly predicted they’d select the nickel.

  5. If they move the nickel and another coin, have them pick those two coins up in their hands. You can then push the remaining coin off to the side, discarding it from the trick.

  6. Instruct them to hand you one of the coins. If they hand you the nickel, say “Great, you’ve selected the Nickel” and then proceed to have them read the prediction.

  7. If they hand you the other coin, place it alongside the other discarded coin on the table and say something like, “Ok, we’ll discard this one too, leaving you with the nickel”.

  8. As long as you practice all of the potential scenarios, you will be able to seamlessly guide them to choose the nickel, or anything else from a group of 3 objects, every time. You’ll look like a real mind reader!

The Magic Rising Ring

A borrowed ring magically rises up a string on its own.

A ring travelling up a string impossibly Photo Credit: Jenny Jennings

What You’ll Need:

  • Rubber band (preferably colored)
  • Ring

Secret:

  1. The secret to this close-up magic miracle is that the “string” is actually a rubber band.

  2. Before you begin, break the rubber band in half and place it in your pocket.

  3. Borrow a ring and thread the rubber band through the center. Be sure to do this from about an arm’s length away and avoid bringing any unnecessary attention to the fact your “string” is actually a rubber band.

  4. Stretch a small portion of the band between your hands with one hand higher than the other. Leave the rest of the rubber band hidden in the palm of your lowermost hand.

  5. Slowly let the rubber band out your lower hand. The ring will appear to magically climb on its own.

Want to learn more beginner magic tricks?

You can learn magic tricks today. We're giving away a variety of mind-blowing card tricks and card magic sleight of hand with our COMPLETELY FREE beginner card magic video taught by professional magician R. Paul Wilson.

Download Now!