Introduction: How to Make a Gel Ice Pack

Picture of How to Make a Gel Ice Pack

This is an easy to make gel ice pack to be used at home.  They are commonly recommended by physical therapists because they are cost efficient and easy to use on any body part.  These ice packs are better than traditional ice packs because they do not leak and melt as readily.  In this Instructable, I will show you how to make a gel ice pack with a 2 to 1 ratio of water to rubbing alcohol; however, if you want a stiffer ice pack that is more frozen, you can have a ratio of 3 to 1.

If you really want to avoid leaking, you may double bag the ice pack so that even if it leaks it will leak into the second bag and not on your skin.

Quart sized resealable plastic bag
70% rubbing alcohol
Measuring cup

Time Required
It takes about 5 minutes to make the ice pack, but depending on your freezer it could take 4 hours to overnight to fully freeze.

Note: Since the rubbing alcohol does not freeze and makes up 1/3 of the mixture, you need to have your freezer set on one of the highest settings initially to make sure the bag freezes fully.

Safety Concerns: Do not drink the rubbing alcohol and avoid contact with eyes and skin.

Step 1:

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First, you should collect the materials needed: quart sized resealable plastic bag, 70% rubbing alcohol, and a measuring cup.

Step 2:

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Measure out 2 cups of water.

Step 3:

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Pour the water into resealable plastic bag and seal the bag while you measure the rubbing alcohol.

Step 4:

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Measure out 1 cup of rubbing alcohol.

Step 5:

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Then, you pour the rubbing alcohol into resealable plastic bag.

Step 6:

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While holding the bag upright on a flat surface, squeeze out as much air as possible and seal the resealable plastic bag.

Step 7:

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While holding the bag in both hands, shake it gently to ensure full mixture of the contents.

Step 8:

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Place the bag flat in freezer and allow to freeze for 4 hours

Step 9:

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Remove any excess air still present by opening bag and rolling the frozen mixture to ensure full air removal

Step 10:

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Place the bag back in freezer and leave it until ice pack is needed


dekanireland (author)2016-06-30

nice thanks. did it refreeze well and not mold?

SparkySolar (author)2014-10-19

Thank you for your Instructable

Nice job.


Jdsardone (author)2014-04-14

I do this as well, but I typically double bag it because zip-locks tend to start to leak at the corners after a while.

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