Making Slime: Are Borax and Glue Safe? ⋆

Making Slime: Are Borax and Glue Safe?

The current craze for slime has meant kids are mixing Elmer’s glue and borax and some people are questioning how safe this is. Slime-making is so popular that many stores are running out of glue – one of the main ingredients – and also food coloring like Borax.

There are currently hundreds of home recipes out there all designed to help kids make slime at home, alongside hundreds of Instagram posts and YouTube videos telling kids how to make it and showing off their own creations.  Slime has been pimped with glitter, beads and all sorts of other things too.

These slime fans even have a name – Slimers – and the posts show themselves working on their creations and even selling them on for cash.  To a parent it might seem strange that someone would hand over good hard cash for some hand made goo but the fact is that kids are doing exactly that!

Getting Supplies is Getting Harder

The craze has meant that supplies of white Elmer’s glue and Borax have started to get so low that local stores are even running out.  In fact, Elmer’s announced a hike is sales in 2016 that was directly due to slime fever.  The company even increased production.

However, it seems that some in the medical community have their own concerns.   Pediatricians have been on record saying that chemicals should not be used by children to make toys.

They have particular concerns about the use of Borax which has been implicated in eye, skin and respiratory irritations and has been said to cause infertility.  When ingested in certain quantities Borax is known to cause seizures.

Other doctors, including a toxicologist, disagree.  They say that the small amounts of Borax used to make slime is not a risk, it is not absorbed through the skin and in order for toxicity to occur a large amount would have to be ingested.

Doctors do agree that parents should warn their children not to taste the mixtures no matter how good they look or smell.  If a child does ingest slime containing Borax they should contact the American Association of Poison Control at 800-222-1222 immediately.

The decision as to whether or not kids make slime using Borax is something that is the responsibility of the individual parents.  However, if you do allow it make sure the kids are not left unsupervised especially if they are young enough to still want to put everything in their mouth.

If you are into the idea of slime-making but would rather avoid Borax, there are lots of Borax-free recipes out there online.