AI Subliminal Messages: What Are They and How-to Make Them

AI has got some pretty impressive skills these days.

The latest trick in AI’s repertoire is something known as AI subliminal messaging.

AI generated subliminal messages use available AI tools to combine 2 generated images into one.

The result is an image with a subtle text caption that can go unnoticed without squinting the eyes or being far away from the image – hence the name: AI Subliminal Messages.

In this article, we’ll learn exactly what an AI generated subliminal messages are and how they work, some useful applications, and how you can go about making your own.

What Are AI Subliminal Messages?

AI Subliminal message example reading "recycle" disguised in green clouds.

AI subliminal messaging utilize new techniques in generative AI to subtly implant hidden words, logos, or imagery within a larger image.

Whether or not the technique is actually subliminal messaging or not is up for debate, but the name has stuck.

These images are created with generative AI tools like Stable Diffusion and Midjourney with specific settings and additional inputs to control the final composite image. 

A user provides the AI with a text prompt and a black-and-white mask image containing their target text or logo.

The model will then embed the mask image within the outlines of the generated image which was described by text prompt.

While the results may resemble subliminal messaging, the AI is simply following instructions to combine inputs as requested by the user. 

How-to Create an AI Subliminal Message?

There are a few simple ways you can get started generating these AI subliminal messages right away. 

The one issue I have found so far is that due to the novelty of these tools you might end up having to wait for your generations to run, but this will only get better with time.

To get started, make your base text or logo image with whatever software you have available – I used powerpoint. The base image must be a white background with black text.


Spirals is the easiest tool to start making AI hidden messages with. It’s free too.

Just go to the Spirals website, click on the spiral icon to upload your base image, input your text prompt, and execute the model.

Ai Subliminal message generated with Spirals that read "RARE" in a floral arrangement.
Can’t see the message? Try squinting your eyes!

The drawback with Spirals is the lack of customization options. As you can see, the standard settings generate images that super cool! But not really “subliminal”.


IllusionDiffusion is another free tool that allows you to upload your image as an ‘Input Illusion’, adjust some basic parameters, and generate your AI subliminal message.

The main thing you might want to adjust is the Illusion Strength slider. The default value is 0.8, the lower the value the more subliminal your subliminal messaging appears.

AI Subliminal message with a bowl of rainbow ice cream reading the word "RARE".
Can’t see the message? Try squinting your eyes!

IllusionDiffusion also features some advanced ControlNet options but I never had to use them.


Eluna.AI is a generative AI platform that allows you to generate images, text, music, and more.

To generate AI subliminal messages with Eluna simply sign-up, navigate to the ‘Reimagine’ tab, upload your base image, describe your image with a text prompt, and run! I found the best settings were as follows:

  • Effect Strength: 0.9

  • Steps: 85 (Use less steps to save credits)

  • Guidance: 11

Eluna gives you 15 free credits when you sign up which get you about 5 images depending on your settings. Again, Eluna is difficult to use due to the high demand, you might have to click ‘Generate’ a number of times before your job will run.

Other Tools

There are other AI image generation applications like Leonardo that can potentially generate AI subliminal messages, but aren’t purpose built for the task.

Applications of AI Subliminal Messages

While it’s still early days for these so called subliminal messages, there are already a range of obvious areas where this cool technology could be applied:


Perhaps one of the most obvious applications is advertising. Being such a novel application of AI advertisers will likely jump on this in the short term to grab attention and engagement.

Behavioral Nudges

Organizations could use this technology to subtly promote behaviors. For instance, subliminal “Recycle” messages could be integrated into pictures or displays near trash and recycling bins.

Market Research

These images could actually be deployed in test environments to see if they do in fact have subliminal effects. If the results were positive it opens up a range of possibilities.

Personalized Messaging

AI is already being used for targeted messaging, content recommendations, and customer service. In platforms where AI understands user behavior or preferences, AI subliminal messages could be tailored to target individual users based on their likes and dislikes.

Entertainment and Gaming

AI is already being used in entertainment to write entire scripts, generate animations, and even power non-player characters (NPCs) in video games. These AI subliminal messages could add layers of meaning to movies, TV shows, or video games. Filmmakers and game developers could use them to hide Easter eggs or clues that contribute to the story or gameplay.

AI QR Codes

QR codes are widely used by businesses and organizations for reviews, contactless payments, and event check-ins. One area that this technology can be applied is by using AI QR codes to catch attention and lead to personalized landing pages or promotions. 

AI Generated QR code that links to
Try scan this QR code with your phone!

Wrapping Up

AI subliminal messages showcase creative new applications of generative AI to embed hidden text and logos. While still an emerging novelty, these AI-powered images have potential uses in advertising and entertainment. 

Simple free tools like Spirals allow anyone to easily experiment with generating their own AI subliminal messages and as the technology develops further, we may see more subtle and seamless integrations of text and imagery using AI.

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