Homemade slime is a great way for kids to get their hands dirty and practice chemistry in the kitchen. This kid-friendly DIY slime recipe uses 3 simple ingredients which once combined, create fascinating stretchy slime! All the ingredients are completely harmless. My 7-year-old daughter can experiment with this easy DIY sensory slime recipe by herself! We made a bunch of colors and added some fun mix-ins to our slime variations.
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This awesome DIY sensory slime recipe for kids is a gentle alternative to slime recipes that contain borax or liquid starch. All you need is clear glue, baking soda and generic contact solution!
DIY Slime With Baking Soda & Contact Solution
DIY Slime Ingredients
- 1 cup clear glue
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- food coloring / glitter (optional)
- contact solution (with ingredients boric acid and sodium borate)
Mix up any combination of liquid slime using clear glue, baking soda and generic saline contact solution. Just make sure the contact solution contains boric acid and sodium borate. You can add a variety of mix-ins and colors to these basic slime ingredients. Whatever you add to your homemade sensory slime, it is important to add the contact solution last, after any other mix-ins. The contact solution is the activator that will give your slime its stretchy sensory texture.
How to Make Basic DIY Slime (Pictures)
Step 1: Pour 1 cup clear craft glue into a medium mixing bowl. You can also use white glue to make opaque slime.
Step 2: Stir in 1/2 tsp. baking soda. The baking soda helps to give slime its firmness and substance, when it combines with the contact solution.
Step 3: Add a few drops of food coloring (if desired) and glitter or other mix-ins. Stir until combined. It’s easiest to evenly mix extra things into the slime at this step. Once you add the contact solution, it will “activate” the slime.
Step 4: Add a squirt of contact solution. Stir the contact solution into the slime ingredients with a spatula or spoon. The slime will be goopy at first and then get stringy. Finally, it will turn into mallable slime that stretches and flows. The more you play with slime, the better it gets!
How Slime Works
You can make slime by creating a chemical bond called a cross-link to make the glue molecules stick together. The baking soda produces the cross-link when it combines with the boric acid and sodium borate in the contact solution. The more contact solution you add, the thicker the slime becomes. If your slime gets too thick, you can add a spoonful of water to make it stretchier.
DIY Slime with Water Beads
Once you’ve made basic slime, you can add extra textures as a mix-in. We made a batch of purple slime using craft glue, baking soda, food coloring and contact solution and then we mixed in a handful of aqua water beads.
The water beads didn’t stick to the slime but they did give the slime a slippery bumpy feel. The water beads also kept bouncing around. Because of this, water bead slime is best played with inside a tub or container of some sort. It’s fun to try to squish up the water beads while also squeezing the slime. Also, if you stretch the slime the water beads will fall out of it. Adding water beads to slime is an interesting experience that allows kids to experiment with viscosity and adhesion (or lack thereof). Ultimately, slippery water beads don’t mix well into slippery slime, but the sensory combination is fun to play with.
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DIY Slime with Coffee Grounds
We also experimented with adding coffee grounds to slime. We made a batch of clear slime and mixed in a spoonful of freshly ground coffee beans (although a bit stale). Coffee ground slime acts very similarly to regular slime, although it’s a bit more grainy. The slime can be more or less dense, depending on how much of the coffee grounds you add. Coffee ground slime also smells very earthy.
This java-infused slime flows and stretches as you play with it. Just like glitter slime, if you pull it apart quickly the slime will break. My kids thought the coffee slime was a bit gross, but they were also rather fascinated by it. If you are experimenting with making a variety of homemade slime, coffee ground slime is worth trying out!
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Add a scoop of coffee grounds to your slime to make earthy coffee ground slime!
It would also be fun to try making slime using confetti, tiny foam spheres or even sprinkles. Some mix-ins will add some color to your homemade slime, such as crushed candy pieces. Making slime is a great hands-on science experiment and fun afternoon kids’ activity. What would you add to your DIY sensory slime?
Hi, I’m Katie! I live with my husband and 3 kids in beautiful Coeur d’Alane, Idaho. I love Jesus, coffee, DIY projects, photography, homeschooling my kids, traveling, and serving people. I’ve previously worked as a graphic designer, web designer, journalist and barista. I started Create. Play. Travel. to share some of our creative projects and family adventures. I hope you enjoy the highlights of our creative family life!