Introduction: Home-made Silly Putty

Picture of Home-made Silly Putty

Turn ordinary PVA glue into silly putty!

This is a fun activity with lots of science involved. The long molecules in the glue are linked together by the borax, making a solid - but the links can move, so the solid can flow like a liquid.

I taught high school chemistry for many years and this was always one of the most popular practicals we did!

Step 1: What You Need

Picture of What You Need

PVA glue
4% Borax solution
Talcum powder
Food colouring

A disposable container (eg plastic cup)
A plastic spoon
Paper towel

Step 2:

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Put about 15 ml (1 tablespoon) PVA glue in your container and add an equal quality of water and a few drops of food colouring. Mix with your plastic spoon. Add about a teaspoonful of talcum powder and stir.

Step 3:

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Now pour in a teaspoonful of 4% Borax solution and stir . The mixture should immediately go thick and stick to the spoon. Lift up the solid and start kneading it. Keep working it until it is smooth and not sticky. You can wipe your fingers on paper towel to help.

Step 4:

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Now play with your putty! You can mould it into a ball and it will bounce a little. If you leave it to stand, it will flow into a puddle like a liquid. If you try to move it quickly it will break in two.


futuredoc (author)2015-08-30

Wow! I can't wait to make this!

But where can i find the PVA and 4% Borax Solution?

marthahunt (author)futuredoc2015-09-06

PVA is sold as craft glue in hobby shops. See other comments for places to get Borax online.

futuredoc (author)marthahunt2016-04-23

Ok, thanks!

evacx (author)2015-08-30

Great little project! I got Borax from

yuwen (author)2015-08-29

love it

Anne36 (author)yuwen2015-08-29

yuwen I'm in Ireland and I don't have borax ♥️

marthahunt (author)Anne362015-08-29

I got borax from It is not sold over the counter in the UK any more, I don't think.

Anne36 (author)2015-08-29

AND I wish you could get borax in Ireland ??????????????????????????????????????????????

Anne36 (author)2015-08-29

plz I need so help here I need people to talk in the video ???????????

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