"Harry looked down at his body, or rather, what had been his body, for it didn't look anything like his anymore. It was not invisible; it had simply taken on the exact colour and texture of the kitchen unit behind him. He seemed to have become a human chameleon."

The Disillusionment Charm (incantation unknown) is a charm that disguises a target as its surroundings, not by making it invisible, but by making it take on the exact colour and texture of its environment, effectively turning it into a chameleon.[2]


Hippogriffs and winged horses may be kept by wizards as long as they perform a Disillusionment Charm on them daily (as their effects are apt to wear off) so that Muggles won't notice anything strange about them. It is also noted that one of the ways to create an Invisibility Cloak is to imbue a travelling cloak with a Disillusionment Charm, the charms on these cloaks wear off with time. In December 1997 Hermione Granger suggested using a Disillusionment Charm when she and Harry Potter were planning the visit to Godric's Hollow.


It is presumed that there are two methods of casting. It seems that if one is using the charm on themselves, they must twirl their wand around themselves as though they were wrapping themselves in rope[3]. If, however, they are using it on an external target, they must merely tap on the target with their wand. This then produces a sensation that a raw egg has been cracked onto the person's head as the charm travels down them[2], granting them invisibility[1].

Known uses

"I don't need a cloak to become invisible."
Albus Dumbledore[src]
Caster(s) Date Notes
Albus Dumbledore 1991 Did not need an Invisibility Cloak because he could perform a Disillusionment Charm that was powerful enough to make him effectively invisible without one.[4]
Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody 5 August, 1995 Cast a Disillusionment Charm on Harry Potter to protect him during the trip from Privet Drive to Grimmauld Place.[2]
Hermione Granger 1997-1998 Used Disillusionment Charms as part of the protective enchantments used to hide the camp she shared with Harry Potter and Ron Weasley during the hunt for the Horcruxes.[5]
Harry Potter Would occasionally cast the protective enchantments (which included Disillusionment Charms) used to hide the camp he shared with Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley during the hunt for the Horcruxes.[6][7]
Lord Voldemort Spring 1998 Cast a Disillusionment Charm to conceal himself from anyone watching from Hogwarts Castle when he arrived to rob Albus Dumbledore's tomb; the Disillusionment Charm worked so well that even he could not see himself.
Vincent Crabbe 2 May, 1998 Used a Disillusionment Charm to hide in the corridor outside the Room of Requirement during the Battle of Hogwarts, which is how they happened to sneak in when Harry, Ron, and Hermione arrived to search for the diadem of Ravenclaw.
Gregory Goyle
Draco Malfoy

Known practitioners

Behind the scenes

  • There are numerous portrayals of things being invisible, or else of people appearing noiselessly in the air; both of these may be various instances of this spell being cast.
  • While Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix claims that this does not induce invisibility but merely camouflages the target, Wonderbook: Book of Spells later states that it does, in fact, cause complete invisibility. This might be a contradiction between two canon sources, or merely a semantic divergence. It's also possible that the charm hides the target as well as the caster intends to, or that only the most powerful wizards and witches can achieve full invisibility.
  • As Dumbledore once mentioned that Grindelwald was able to turn himself invisible without an Invisibility Cloak, it's possible that the latter did so through this charm.

See also


Notes and references