How to make slime: Which recipes are safest to use?

how-to-make-slime
Erika Rawes/Digital Trends

If you have children or you work with kids, you’ve likely heard about slime. Slime is pretty much everywhere — slime kits, slime products, and slime recipes. Children and adults alike enjoy the gooey substance, as it acts as a sort of stress reliever when you fidget with it. Slime appears to be a trend that’s on par with fidget spinners and soap cutting.

Making slime at home can be sticky business, though. If you use the wrong recipe, you could end up with a huge mess. Or, even worse, you may create something that’s hazardous to your health or irritating to your skin. We researched dozens of different ingredients and tried several slime recipes. We found some recipes that turned out great, and others that were epic fails. We also found recipes that were safe, and others that used ingredients that were questionable at best. Here, we’ve listed the best and safest recipes for making slime. Happy sliming!

How to make slime with glue (the “traditional” method)

This recipe is a variation of the Elmer’s recipe. It uses white school glue, baking soda, and contact lens solution. According to Elmer’s website, “Elmer’s new slime recipes are safe to make at home and include commonly used household ingredients such as baking soda and contact lens solution. Containing only trace amounts of boric acid, contact lens solution can be purchased over the counter and is regulated by the FDA. Baking soda is a common safe food ingredient.”

Here’s what you’ll need:

-4 oz. school glue
-1 and 1/2 teaspoons of baking soda
-1 tablespoon of contact lens solution
-food coloring (optional)

How to make slime with glue:

1) Pour the glue into a disposable cup or bowl.
2) Add the baking soda and stir until everything is well-mixed.
3) Add a small amount of food coloring. If you use too much, the slime will color your hands and other surfaces.
4) Add the contact lens solution slowly, and stir and knead the mixture until it becomes thick and putty-like. Do not add too much contact lens solution. If you add too much, your slime will have a wet feeling, and it will not last as long.

How to make edible slime

Some of the edible slime recipes we’ve seen use raw flour or cornstarch as a thickener. However, if the recipe calls for raw ingredients, keep in mind that eating raw flour or starch may not be the best idea. Raw starches can be difficult to digest, and can cause you to get a stomach ache.

We tried a variety of edible slime recipes. After comparing the ingredients, texture, and taste, we came up with a formula for chocolate slime. Although it doesn’t exactly look appetizing, it actually tastes pretty good, and it has a consistency that’s similar to the traditional glue slime.

What you’ll need:

1 cup of confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon of cocoa powder
1/8 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon of butter, margarine, or coconut oil
2 teaspoons of warm water

How to make edible chocolate slime:

1) Melt your butter, margarine, or coconut oil in the microwave for about 30 to 45 seconds.
2) Add the warm water and stir.
3) Add the confectioners sugar, cocoa, and salt and stir the mixture until it’s smooth.
4) Let it sit for about 5 minutes.
5) Play with your edible slime and eat it!

Questionable ways to make slime

You can find slime recipes online using just about any ingredient ranging from shampoo to toothpaste to borax to dish detergent. While mixing shampoo and toothpaste will create something that’s sticky and gooey, it’s not something you’ll want to play with because it ends up being more of a slop than a slime. Plus, because slime is something you touch and keep in your hands for long periods of time, some of these ingredients are not exactly ideal.

The National Center for Biotechnology Information published research on the effects of over-washing hands and overusing hygiene products. Overusing soap products can damage the skin by changing the proteins and intercellular lipids. When soaps and detergents deplete those surface lipids, they can then get into the superficial skin layers. If you have dry skin (or it’s dry-skin season), this tends to happen more quickly. Damage to the skin also changes skin flora, which allows for more bacteria (like staph) to grow.

Also, some people are allergic to soaps and shampoos. According to the National Register of Adverse Effects from Cosmetic Products, symptoms of a soap or hair care product allergy can included redness, itching, eczema, blisters, or worse. We recommend that you avoid slime recipes that contain any of the ingredient above, and stick to the natural stuff. You’ll be glad that you did.