How to make slime for a kid’s party

Slime has become a very popular science project for kids to do in school or at home during a party.

If this is something that’s new to you, you’ll find everything you need in this article to make slime at home, the different types of slime and the frequently asked questions about slime.

What is Slime?

Slime is a toy made from a gooey, squishy and oozy material that acts both like a solid and a liquid. Kids have fun stretching, splitting and squeezing the material. It’s completely non-toxic and safe to handle.

The appeal comes from the unusual texture. The fact that it’s “gross” to touch makes it fun to play with. Squishing it between fingers is inexplicably satisfying.

The material also acts in an unusual way. Depending on the force that you apply, slime acts like a solid or a liquid which is extremely intriguing for kids. 

The history of slime goes back more than a century.  However, the toy was introduced to the market by Mattel Toy Company in 1976. They sold the ready-made slime in a tiny plastic “trash can”. These are used by kids to make “amusing noises” in conjunction with the slime….

How to make slime?

Making slime is a great end-to-end project for kids to do at home. There is something fascinating about seeing basic ingredients magically turn into a new substance.

Once the slime is made, they now have a new temporary toy to play with. Even adults can’t resist touching it.

There are countless ways to make slime. Just like cooking, everyone has their take on the recipe.

Picture Credit: Little Laughs

Easy Slime Recipe

Below we’ve detailed a simple recipe that you can then tweak depending on your needs. 

Ingredients for Slime:

  • School Glue or White Glue – What you’re looking for is PVA glue. The most recommended brand for slime is Elmer’s glue which is mostly sold in the US but can be found in the UK and Ireland. However, any PVA school glue should work.
  • Borax (or sodium tetraborate) – Depending on where you live, you can buy borax in the cleaning aisle of the supermarket or hardware stores. If you live in the UK or Ireland, it’s not impossible to find but it can be harder to find. You can always find it online or use a slime recipe that doesn’t use borax.
  • Food colouring – Adding colour to the slime is optional but it’s recommended as it adds to the fun.
  • Water

Making Slime Step by Step

  1. Start by adding 25 ml of glue inside a bowl and 50 ml of water and mix it with a stirring stick. If you’re making coloured slime, add 3 or 4 drops of food colouring and stir.
  2. Add 25 grammes of borax to the bowl and mix slowly. The slime will start to form immediately. Keep stirring as much as you can.
  3. Once the slime is hard to stir and pulls away from the side of the bowl, take it out and knead it with your hands. Expect to leave some water behind in the bowl!
  4. Keep kneading the slime until you’re happy with the texture.

Pro-tip: Experiment by adjusting the amount of glue and borax to achieve your desired Slime texture.

No Borax Slime Recipe

While borax isn’t particularly dangerous, you might still want to make borax free slime. It can be a bit trickier to make as borax really helps with the texture of the slime.

However, here is a basic borax-free recipe we use:

Ingredients for Slime:

  • School Glue or White Glue – Same as before
  • Food colouring – Same as before
  • Contact Lens Solution – For this to work the brand you use needs to contain boric acid and sodium borate in the ingredient list.
  • Baking powder
  • Water – Same as before

Making Slime Step by Step

  1. Inside a bowl, add 25 ml glue, 50 ml of water and ½ a tablespoon of baking soda. Mix the ingredients with a stirring stick. If you’re making coloured slime, add 3 or 4 drops of food colouring and stir.
  2. Add 1 tablespoon of contact lens solution. The slime will start the form immediately. Keep stirring as much as you can. Add a few more drops of contact lens solution until you’re happy with the texture.
  3. Once the slime is hard to stir and pulls away from the side of the bowl, take it out and knead it with your hands. Expect to leave some water behind in the bowl!
  4. Keep kneading it until you’re happy with the texture.

Perfecting slime requires a bit of a trial & error. Adjust the recipe as you go to it to make the perfect substance. Play around with the two recipes and you will soon be an expert!

Picture Credit: Little Laughs

What are the different types of slime?

By tweaking the basic recipe, you can create different types of slime. These will have different textures, different properties and different colours.

We’ve listed some of the most popular variations below.

1. UK & Irish Slime

This is a recipe for slime made with ingredients that can be found in the UK or Ireland. You can find all the information you need in this video by Talisa Tossell.

2. Edible Slime

This isn’t slime that you should eat but rather slime that isn’t dangerous to ingest. Perfect for toddlers and younger kids to play with. You can find three great recipes in this wikiHow article.

3. Fluffy Slime

This is slime with a slightly fluffier texture, most often achieved by adding shaving cream to the basic recipe. You can find a step-by-step recipe in this article by The Best Ideas For Kids.

Note that fluffy slime doesn’t keep as well. It usually loses its fluff overnight. 

4. Glow in the Dark Slime

There are two variations of glow in the dark slime.

The first type glows fluorescent with blacklight (or UV lights). Most often the recipe uses UV reactive face paint. You can find a step-by-step tutorial in this video by Leaning Science is Fun.   

The other type glows in the dark by adding glowing powder or glow in the dark blue. You can find a recipe for it on Little Bins For Hands.

5. Radioactive Looking Slime

Of course, it isn’t but kids find the name catchy. Most often the recipe is the same as glow for glow in the dark slime. Just using vibrant green colouring. 

6. Magnetic Slime

Magnetic slime is perfect for older kids. It combines the fun of slime with the magic of magnets. Magnetic Slime is most often achieved by adding iron powder. You can follow along with this video tutorial by Kiwi Co.

7. Sand Slime

Unsurprisingly this variation is achieved by adding sand to the basic recipe. It looks nice and it changes the texture of the slime. If you want to make some at home, you can follow this quick video tutorial by FimoKawaiiEmotions

8. Rainbow Slime

Rainbow Slime is a combination of six different coloured Slimes (Purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, red) assembled to look like a Rainbow. The colours make the Slime look really nice. It won’t last long once the mixing begins…

You can find a recipe for Ranbow slime on The Best Ideas For Kids.

9. Glitter Slime

As implied by the name, Glitter Slime is just regular slime with glitter added to it.  Just remember, you will be vacuuming glitter for next month… Even with the best precautions, glitter goes everywhere.  

10. Unicorn Slime

Unicorn slime is themed on unicorn colours. It’s identical to rainbow slime but with different colours (Usually blue, gold pink) and glitter. You can find a recipe for it on the Kid’s Activities Blog.

11. Galaxy Slime

Galaxy Slime is another multicoloured slime with glitter. Most often it’s done with purple, blue and a bit of pink. You can find an easy recipe on the Inscrutables.

12. Super Stretchy Slime

Slime specially made to be extra stretchy. It can be 3 to 5 times stretchier than regular slime. Different recipes have different claims which can be hard to verify. You’ll need to experiment and see for yourself.  You can find a recipe for it on The Chaos And The Clutter.

13. Slushie Slime

Slushie slime is slime with small slushie beads added to it. These breads change the texture of the slime and make it crunch when stretched. You can find a basic recipe for it here by Cheeksxo3.

14. Butter Slime

Butter Slime doesn’t actually contain butter but the texture is similar to that of butter or playdough. It’s less stretchy than other slime recipes but more mouldable. You can find a recipe for butter slime on The Best Ideas For Kids.

Picture Credit: Little Laughs

Slime FAQ

Is Slime Dangerous?

Slime is not dangerous to touch, even when made with borax. However, it’s not edible and should be kept away from small children.

Is Borax Safe?

Borax has been classified as non-carcinogenic.

However, some countries, such as the US and Chine, consider that borax isn’t safe to ingest. Notably, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) banned borax as a food additive.

In addition, excessive use of borax can be a mild skin irritant (just like baking soda) but it does not penetrate the skin. This means that the repetitive use of borax does not make it more dangerous than a single-use.

If you have any concerns, please consult a medical professional.

How long does slime last?

When played with regularly, slime doesn’t have a long life span. Especially homemade slime. It gets dirty/dusty and slowly stops sticking. After a few days, you’ll most likely need to throw it away.

However, slime itself doesn’t go bad. Over time, it does dry up or go mouldy but it should last for a few weeks depending on the recipe.

How to Store Slime?

To preserve slime and to make it last longer, seal it in a container or a plastic bag and place it in the fridge.

What can you do with slime?

Slime is mostly used for fun and relaxing. It has very few practical uses as it goes mouldy or dries up over time.  

Contrary to a lot of viral claims, slime isn’t great for cleaning… Even if you make the perfect recipe, it gets dirty quickly and you’ll most likely loose pieces as you go.

Can you use dish soap to activate slime?

Yes – Some recipes use dish soap and cornstarch to make the slime.

Can you make slime with shampoo?

Yes – Some recipes use shampoo and cornstarch instead of borax.

What is a slime activator?

The slime activator is the ingredient that turns the liquid into the sticky slime substance. Most often the activator is borax but a different one is used for the borax-free recipes.

What is the recommended age for slime?

Every child is different but we usually find that Slime works best for kids who are aged 7 or more.

That’s a Wrap

That’s a wrap, you’re now ready to go out and make your first ever batch of slime! If you’ve enjoyed this content, consider subscribing to the newsletter. Get our latest content directly in your inbox.