Abstract: Myrmecologists use a variety of methods for clearing (macerating) and relaxing ants. Bleaching, however, has virtually never been applied in morphological studies. Here we describe a combination of a common bleaching treatment of insect cuticle with hydrogen peroxide and a subsequent clearing of adhering soft tissues with either lactic acid or proteolytic enzymes. This technique allows viewing of the internal morphology of ants without dissection. The resulting glassy specimens reveal valuable morphological characters and may be used as three-dimensional morphological maps to guide the dissection of additional specimens. Bleached specimens are thus particularly useful as teaching material. Positive side effects of the treatment are the extension of (a) retracted mouthparts, (b) sting apparatus and (c) armatures of the male genitalia. An underwater preparation procedure with subsequent fan drying is also described for relaxing specimens preserved in absolute ethanol. Based on tests of relaxing methods, a much less harmful but equally effective modification of the carcinogenic Barber's fluid is described for relaxing and cleaning purposes of pinned or card-point mounted specimens.