How to Light a Match Without a Striker

by Faith Alessio

Our modern society has come a long way from the old-fashioned method of using flint and steel to start a fire. No longer do we have to carefully hoard our coals lest the fire will go out. Today, we have matches, allowing us to have a fire anywhere, anytime we want it. But what do you do when you've got a pocketful of matches, but you've lost the box? Don't worry, you can still strike a match without the box.

  1. Swipe the match quickly across any rough surface such as a brick or a stone. Make sure that you hold the match securely so it doesn't snap.

  2. Briskly scratch the head of the match with your fingernail if there is no rough surface available.

  3. Light a match by holding its head in an existing flame source such as a candle or hot coals.

Items you will need

  • Strike-anywhere matches
  • A rough surface


  • Hold the stick of the match tightly between your thumb and middle finger.
  • Place your index finger firmly on the stick close to the head.
  • Strike firmly and smoothly away from your body.


  • Strike-on-the-box matches will not work without the box.
  • The striker strip for this type of match contains a chemical needed to light the match.

Photo Credits

  • Mandy Schaffer/Demand Media