Chemistry Projects - How-To Guide
- Chemical Volcanoes
- Chemistry Magic Tricks (47)
- Color Projects
- Crystals for Kids
- Dry Ice Projects (17)
- Fun Fire Projects
- Glow in the Dark Projects (40)
- Holiday How-To's (62)
- Home Chemistry Kit
- Lava Lamps (4)
- Reviews & Product Guides (26)
- Slime Recipes (25)
- Smoke & Smoke Bombs
Science Projects Photo Gallery
The best part about science projects is actually doing them, but seeing them is pretty cool too. This is a photo gallery of science projects so you can see what to expect from projects. I've included links to instructions for doing these projects yourself or buying kits online.
Household Product Recipes
You can use home chemistry to make many of the everyday household products that you use. Making these products yourself can save you money and allow you to customize formulations to avoid toxic or irritating chemicals.
Top Chemistry Projects for Bored Kids
Are you searching for something fun and educational to do that suitable for kids? Here are some great chemistry activities and projects to get you started. They are safe and use easy-to-find materials.
Top Chemistry Demonstrations & Activities
This is the list of my personal favorite chemistry demonstrations and activities. They tend to involve pretty colors, fire, or ice. Some projects require adult supervision or access to a chemistry lab. Others are easy and safe enough for kids to perform.
Slime Step-By-Step Instructions
Slime is easy and fun to make, plus it only requires glue, borax, and water. Here are step-by-step instructions for making classic slime, complete with photos.
Rock Candy Instructions
Rock candy is candy made by crystallizing sugar. You can grow sugar crystals yourself, plus add color and flavor to make rock candy that you can eat.
Decade's Best Chemistry Projects
I started writing About.com's Chemistry website in 2001, so this list of top chemistry projects for the decade is also my list of top chemistry projects ever. These chemistry projects feature spectacular results, are easy to perform, and use ingredients you can make or find at home.
Gifts You Can Make Because You Know Chemistry
Your command of chemistry gives you a certain edge in the gift-making department. Use your skills to make some cool presents, to keep for yourself or give to others.
Absinthe has been enjoying a resurgence in popularity, as countries lift the ban on making the green wormwood and anise-flavored spirit. Learn about the history of the liqueur, why it was banned, a bit about its chemistry, how to make absinthe, and how to drink it.
Ammonium Nitrate Synthesis
You can make ammonium nitrate from common household chemicals. The ammonium nitrate may be used to make pyrotechnics or cold packs or to perform other interesting demonstrations.
Aspirin Synthesis - Acetylsalicylic Acid
Learn how to synthesize aspirin, acetylsalicylic acid, from salicyclic acid. Get information about the history of aspirin, the effects of salicylates, and see the structures of the reactants.
Baggie Chemistry - Experiment with Chemical Reactions
Introduce students to chemical reactions and experimentation using common materials and baggies.
Baking Soda & Vinegar Foam Fight
This is a twist on the classic baking soda volcano, where you use the ingredients to make squirt-able fountains of foam.
Baking Soda Stalactites and Stalagmites
Make your own stalagmites and stalactites using baking soda or sodium bicarbonate. It's an easy, non-toxic crystal project.
Baking Soda Volcano
Okay, it's the kitchen equivalent of a volcano, not a real one. The 'eruption' is cool all the same! It's also more or less non-toxic, which adds to its appeal.
Use chemistry to make gifts or to pamper yourself. These are instructions for scented and colored bath salts.
Bend Water with Static Electricity
Use static electricity to bend a stream of flowing water. This is an easy science activity that illustrates how opposite electrical charges attract each other.
Big Alum Crystal
Do you want to grow a big single crystal instead of a mass of crystals? Then try out these instructions for growing a big alum crystal. You can apply the techniques used here to grow big single crystals of other substances, too.
Biodiesel from Vegetable Oil Tutorial
As the price of diesel continues to climb, you may wish to consider making your own diesel from cooking oil, called biodiesel. It's easy and could save you money.
Bismuth is one of the easiest and prettiest metal crystals that you can grow yourself. The crystals have an interesting geometric hopper shape and are rainbow-colored from the oxide layer that quickly forms on them. Try these step-by-step instructions for growing bismuth crystals.
Black Powder or Gunpowder
Black powder is used as a propellant for bullets, as well as for fireworks and rocketry. Use these instructions for history, not practical application!
Black Snakes or Glow Worms
You can make black snake or glow worm fireworks yourself, safely and easily.
Blue Bottle Color Change Demonstration
Learn how to perform the blue bottle chemistry demonstration, in which a blue liquid becomes clear, then returns to blue when swirled around. Instructions are also given for red -> clear -> red and green -> red -> green reactions.
Blue Fire Instructions
It's very easy to make blue fire. Here are a few of the ways you can make blue fire yourself.
Blueprint Paper - How to Make Blueprint Paper
Blueprint paper is a specially-coated paper that turns blue where it is exposed to light, while areas kept in the dark remain white. Blueprints were one of the first ways to make copies of plans or drawings. Here's how to make blueprint paper yourself.
Borax Snowflake Instructions
Do real snowflakes melt too quickly? Grow a borax snowflake, color it blue if you like, and enjoy the sparkle all year long!
Bouncing Polymer Ball
Use chemistry to make a bouncing polymer ball, then alter the procedure to see the effect the changes have on the charactertistics of the bouncing ball.
Briggs-Rauscher Oscillating Color Change Reaction
The Briggs-Rauscher reaction, also known as 'the oscillating clock', is one of the most common demonstrations of a chemical oscillator reaction. Three colorless solutions are mixed together, producing a mixture that oscillates between clear, amber, and deep blue.
Bubble prints are like fingerprints, except made with bubbles. You can make bubble prints and learn about how bubbles are shaped and how pigments combine to make different colors.
Save some pennies and make this bubble mix yourself! Most drugstores and pharmacies carry glycerine.
Burning Bubbles Project
Bubbles are fun no matter what, but bubbles you can burn just has that added extra appeal. Here's an easy science project you can do that proves propellants in common products are flammable and allows you to burn some bubbles.
Burning Money Chemistry Demonstration
Set money on fire and watch it burn out without damaging the bill. This is a nice magic trick, based on everyday chemistry.
Candle Science Magic Trick
You know you can put out a candle flame by pouring water on it. In this science magic trick, the candle will go out when you pour 'air' onto it.
Carbonated Fizzy Fruit
Use dry ice to carbonate fruit. The fruit will be filled with tingly carbon dioxide bubbles, like a soda. The fizzy fruit is great to eat on its own or it can be used in recipes.
You can use chalk and alcohol to perfom chromatography to separate the pigments in food colorings or inks. After you've finished making your chromatogram, you'll have colored chalk.
Charcoal Crystal Garden Instructions
Make delicate, colorful crystals! This is a great classic crystal-growing project. You use charcoal briquettes (or other porous materials), ammonia, salt, bluing, and food coloring to grow a sort of crystal garden.
Learn four ways to make fire using chemical reactions. No matches or lighter are needed to start the fire.
Chemical Volcano Video Tutorial
The baking soda and vinegar volcano is the classic chemical volcano that you see at science fairs. Watch how easy it is to make a chemical volcano that produces a memorable eruption.
Chemistry Fun with Pennies
Use pennies, nails, and a few simple household ingredients to explore some of the interesting properties of metals. Clean the pennies chemically, make verdigris, and plate the nails with copper.
Christmas Chemistry - Make Peppermint Cream Wafers
Chemistry and cooking share a lot in common! You can have some Christmas chemistry fun in the lab making these peppermint cream wafer candies.
Christmas Tree or Floral Preservative Recipe
Is there a secret special ingredient in those little packets of floral preservative? No! It's easy and economical to make your own Christmas tree or cut flower preservative, using ingredients found at home.
Chromatography with Candy and Coffee Filters
Analyze the dyes used in your favorite candies with paper chromatography using a coffee filter, colored candies, and a salt solution.
Classic Chemical Volcano
Here are the instructions for making the classic chemical volcano. This demonstration uses ammonium dichromate to produce 'Vesuvius fire', with glowing sparks and a cone of deep green ash.
Cloud in a Bottle Demonstration
Here's a quick and easy science project you can do: make a cloud inside a bottle. This simple project uses water vapor and smoke from a match to help form a cloud.
Color Change Chemical Volcano Demonstration
This chemical volcano features lava that changes color. The chemical volcano can be used to illustrate an acid-base reaction and the use of an acid-base indicator.
Have you ever wanted to color fire? Here are simple, nontechnical instructions for making your own colored flames. Add extra interest to your fireplace or campfire!
Use a chemical reaction to create a genuine silver ornament. The oxidation-reduction reaction silvers the inside of a glass ball, essentially forming a mirror inside the glass.
Have you ever wanted to color your urine or wondered what causes urine to become colored? If so, you're in luck, because I have the answer! Here's a little applied color chemistry for your entertainment and experimentation pleasure.
This is cool colored chalk, for sidewalks or anywhere! Washes off with water, too.
Colored Fire Spray Bottles
You can spritz a flame with chemicals to change the color of the fire. Colored fire spray bottles are easy to prepare and use common chemicals.
It's easy to make your own colored flowers, especially carnations and daisies, but there are a couple of tricks that help ensure great results. Here's how you do it.
Colored Smoke Recipes
Colored smoke is easy to make and requires few ingredients. Here's a list of some colored smoke formulations to try.
Colored Soap Bubbles
Make brightly colored pink and blue soap bubbles that won't stain clothing or surfaces.
Copper and Brass Cleaner
Use these easy instructions to combine common household ingredients to make your own copper, brass, and bronze cleaner.
Copper Plating Christmas Ornament
Copper plate a holiday decoration as a Christmas ornament or for other decorative uses.
Copper Sulfate Crystals
Copper sulfate crystals are among the easiest and most beautiful crystals that you can grow. The brilliant blue crystals can be grown relatively quickly and can become quite large. Here's how you can grow copper sulfate crystals yourself.
Copper Sulfate Preparation
Mske copper sulfate or copper sulphate yourself from copper and sulfuric acid.
Crystal Geode Project
Natural geodes are hollow rock formations that contain deposits of crystals. Assuming you don't have a geological timeframe to obtain a geode, it's easy to make your own crystal geode using plaster of paris, alum, and food coloring.
Crystal Spikes in the Sun
Most crystals take days or weeks to form. Use this technique if you have a sunny day and want crystals FAST!
Cup of Quick Crystal Needles
Grow a cupful of epsom salt crystal needles in your refrigerator. It's quick, easy, and safe.
Cut Flower Preservative Recipes
It's easy and economical to make your own cut flower preservative. Adding floral preservative will help keep your flowers beautiful much longer than if you simply filled a vase with water.
Make a liquid layers density column with as many as seven layers using common household liquids. This is an easy, fun and colorful science project that illustrates the concepts of density and miscibility.
Disappearing Ink Instructions
Learn how to make blue or red ink that will disappear after exposure to air. Tips for restoring the color and an explanation of the acid-base chemistry of the reaction are also included.
Dissolve Styrofoam in Acetone
Dissolving Styrofoam or another polystyrene product in acetone is a spectacular demonstration of the solubility of this plastic in an organic solvent, plus it illustrates just how much air is in the Styrofoam.
Dry Ice Bubble
The giant bubble you can make using dry ice and bubble solution sort of resembles a crystal ball. This is an easy and spectacular science project.
Diving Ketchup Magic Trick
Place a ketchup packet in a bottle of water and make it rise and fall at your command, as if by magic. Of course, the magic involves some basic science. Here's how to do the diving ketchup trick and how it works.
Duck Tape Triboluminescence
You can use duck tape to see an example of triboluminescence, the glow given off when some materials are subjected to mechanical stress or friction. The duck tape triboluminescence project is extremely easy and only take a few seconds to try.
Most slime recipes are non-toxic, but there are only a few you can actually eat and none that taste as good as this one! Here's how to make edible slime.
Edible Fake Barf
Making a simulant is a form of chemistry, right? Here are instructions for making your own edible fake barf. Ick!
Egg in a Bottle Demonstration
You don't see air and might not think much of it is contained in a bottle, but air and the pressure it exerts can be very powerful. The egg in a bottle demonstration illustrates the concept of air pressure.
Electroactive Slime Instructions
This recipe makes cool, non-toxic slime that appears to have a life of its own!
Endothermic Reaction (Safe)
Most endothermic reactions contain toxic chemicals, but this citric acid and sodium bicarbonate reaction is safe and easy.
Endothermic Reaction Demonstration
Here's an endothermic reaction demonstration that is easy to do and cold enough to freeze water.
Exothermic Chemical Reaction
Exothermic chemical reactions produce heat. In this reaction vinegar is used to remove the protective coating from steel wool, allowing it to rust. When the iron combines with oxygen, heat is released.
Epsom Salt Crystals
Epsom salt crystals are easy to grow and form quickly. Here's what you need to know to make your own magnesium sulfate crystals.
Fake Blood Recipe
This results in a non-toxic, realistic stage blood.
These instructions will result in either clear or amber glass, depending on the cooking time used.
Fake Neon Sign
Do you love the look of neon signs, but want an inexpensive alternative that you can customize to say whatever you want? You can make a fake neon sign using fluorescence to make inexpensive common materials glow.
This is a gooey, gross variation of the traditional slime recipe, great for Halloween and other occasions requiring snot.
Fake Snow Instructions
You can make fake snow using a common polymer. The fake snow is non-toxic, feels cool to the touch, and looks similar to the real thing.
Write a message using a special invisible ink. Reveal the message in fire with this fire writing chemistry project.
Let's combine chemicals (ingredients) to make fake wounds suitable for Halloween or other special events.
Firebreathing involves breathing a fine mist of fuel over an open flame to form a fireball. It's the most stunning fire trick and potentially the most risky since most firebreathing involves using a flammable, toxic fuel. Here are instructions for a safer form of firebreathing, using a non-flammable, non-toxic fuel that you have in your kitchen.
If you can find a tee shirt and some lighter fluid, you can make small fireballs. These fireballs are re-useable. Theoretically, you can hold them in your hand.
Firecracker How To
Firecrackers are extremely easy and inexpensive to make yourself. Learn how to make homemade firecrackers and how to light them safely.
Fizzy Potion Recipe
Make a non-toxic fizzy Mad Scientist potion using ingredients from your kitchen. The potion looks evil, but it is safe enough to drink.
Fizzy Bath Bomb
Use your chemistry to make a fizzy, scented bath bomb. Make them for yourself or give them as gifts!
Flaming Gel Recipe
Use three common household ingredients to prepare a gel or jelly that you can set on fire. This is an easy fire chemistry project that you can do at home.
Make your own version of Floam, a type of slime that contains polystyrene beads so that you can mold it into shapes.
Fried Green Egg
Red cabbage juice contains a natural pH indicator that changes color from purple to green under basic (alkaline) conditions. You can use this reaction to make a fried green egg.
These are step-by-step instructions on how to make fruity putty.
Use dry ice to freeze bubbles solid so that you can pick them up and examine them closely. You can use this project to demonstrate several scientific principles, such as density, interference, semipermeability, and diffusion.
If you have fruit, a couple of nails, and wire then you can generate electricity to turn on a light bulb. Learn how to make a fruit battery. It's fun, safe, and easy.
Here are simple instructions for preparing common gases from ordinary chemicals. The gases include carbon dioxide, oxygen, nitrogen, methane, nitrous oxide, chlorine, and several others.
Gel Air Fresheners
Feeling crafty? If you can make Jello, then you can make your own gel air fresheners. It's easy and fun. You can choose your own scents and colors. For holiday fun, consider layering different colored gels or using seasonal fragrances (e.g., pine or cinnamon for Christmas).
Geode of Copper Sulfate Crystals
Geodes are rocks that contain crystals. Normally, millions of years are required for flowing water and minerals to deposit crystals, but you can make your own 'geode' in only a few days. Grow blue copper sulfate crystals inside an egg shell to make your own geode.
Colorful gelatin shapes can be used to make jewelry, mobiles, decorations, and more!
Glow in the Dark Crystal Geode
It's very easy to make a glow in the dark crystal geode. The rock is a natural mineral (eggshell). You can use one of several common household chemicals to grow the crystals. The glow comes from phosphorescent paint, which you can get from a craft store.
Glow in the Dark Alum Crystals
Alum crystals are among the quickest, easiest, and most reliable crystals you can grow. Did you know you can make them glow in the dark by adding a common household ingredient to the crystal growing solution?
Glow-in-the-Dark Crystal Snowflake
Learn how to make a glow-in-the-dark crystal snowflake or other glowing holiday ornament. This is a safe and easy project that's great for kids and kids-at-heart. The crystal decorations are light-weight and inexpensive to make.
Glow in the Dark Ice
Learn how to make ice cubes that will glow in the dark when exposed to a black light. The glowing ice is easy to make and safe to use in drinks.
Glow in the Dark Ink
These are instructions for making glow in the dark ink. However, the instructions are presented as a curiosity or for information only, NOT for use.
Glow in the Dark Mentos & Tonic Water Fountain
It's easy to make a mentos and soda eruption glow. All you need to do is use tonic water or diet tonic water instead of the usual diet soda and shine a black light on the fountain.
Glow in the Dark Slime
What is better than regular slime? Slime that glows in the dark, of course! This is an easy and fun project that is suitable for kids.
Glow in the Dark Mountain Dew
All it takes is a few easily-obtained materials to turn a bottle of Mountain Dew into a glow in the dark bottle of Mountain Dew.
Bubbles are already awesome, but glowing bubbles are even better. It is easy and safe to make bubbles glow, plus it doesn't require any hard-to-find materials. Here is what you do.
Glowing Printer Ink
Learn how to make homemade glowing printer ink that you can use to print glowing pictures, iron-on transfers, posters, and more.
Gold and Silver Pennies
Take copper pennies and turn then silver, then make them gold. This is an easy chemistry project that uses common laboratory chemicals.
Make squishy non-toxic goo that hardens in your hands when you squeeze it, but flows like a liquid when you pour it.
Green Fire Instructions
It's easy to make brilliant green fire. This cool chemistry project only takes two household chemicals.
Green Fire Video
See how to make green fire using common chemicals. You can apply the same method to produce fire in other colors using different metal salts.
Grow Silver Crystals
All it takes is silver nitrate and either copper wire or mercury to grow these sparkling metal crystals.
This is sort of like slime, but drier and very non-toxic if left uncolored.
Handheld Fireball Video
All fire is not created equal! If you apply a little chemistry know-how, you can make a fireball cool enough to hold in your hand. See how it's done, then try this simple fire project yourself.
Learn the chemistry behind how hair detangler works and get recipes to make your own homemade hair detangler.
Hollow Penny Project
This is an easy chemistry project that uses common materials. You take a post-1982 penny, score the copper surface to expose the zinc interior, react the zinc with acid, and are left with a hollow copper penny.
Homemade Hand Sanitizer
Some commercial hand sanitizers contain ingredients as scary as the germs they protect you from, so why not make your own hand sanitizer from ingredients you select? This is an excellent project for kids as well as adults, since the project can be expanded to include a discussion about hygiene and disinfection.
Honeycomb Candy Recipe
Honeycomb candy is an easy-to-make candy that has an interesting texture caused by carbon dioxide bubbles getting trapped within the candy.
Hot Ice Video Tutorial
Hot ice is a non-toxic chemical you can make in the kitchen from baking soda and vinegar. You can cause the saturated solution of hot ice to crystallize in 'ice' that gives of heat or you can build crystalline towers as you pour the hot ice onto a container. Here a step-by-step video that shows you what to do.
How to Grow Great Crystals
Do you want to grow crystals, but you aren't sure where to start or what to do to make sure your crystals turn out well? Here's some basic information on crystal growing. I've provided links to recipes so you can start growing crystals. These instructions are general, so if your recipe calls for something special (like no vibrations or dark), be...
Ice Cream in a Baggie
Make a tasty treat and learn about freezing point depression, too! All you need are some basic ingredients and two ziploc baggies. It's easy, fun, and educational.
How to Make Snow
If you want snow, but Mother Nature won't cooperate, you can take matters into your own hands and make snow yourself! This is the homemade version of real water ice snow, just like the snow that falls from the sky except without the need for clouds.
Ice Cube on a Wire
Pull a wire through an ice cube without cutting the cube! This trick works thanks to a phenomenon called regelation, in which the ice melts from the pressure of the wire and freezes up after the wire passes. Here's how to put a wire through an ice cube or hang the ice on wire.
Ice on Fire
Have you ever wondered whether you could set ice on fire? These are instructions for how to make ice appear to burn and also instructions so that you can actually set it on fire.
Instant Fire Chemistry Demonstration
Learn how to perform the instant fire chemistry demonstration in which potassium chlorate and sugar are reacted to produce an incredible purple flame and a lot of smoke.
Invisible Ink - Baking Soda
These are quick and easy instructions for making non-toxic invisible ink using baking soda (sodium bicarbonate).
Invisible Ink - Corn Starch
The writing for this invisible ink technique is done using corn starch. An iodine solution is used to reveal the message.
Invisible Ink - Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is acidic and weakens paper. When paper is heated, the remaining acid turns the writing brown before discoloring the paper.
Invisible Ink Revealed - How to Read Invisible Ink Messages
It's easy to write a message using invisible ink, but it's a little trickier to read the message. Here are tips for revealing an invisible ink secret message.
Ivory Soap Microwave Trick
Microwave a bar of Ivory soap and watch it expand to over six times its original size. The foam trick is good clean fun, plus it can be used to demonstrate Charles' Law, physical change, and foam formation.
Make your own invisible ink so you can write and reveal secret messages. Get information about inks that are activated by heat, chemical reactions, and ultraviolet light.
Ketchup and Baking Soda Volcano
The acetic acid in ketchup reacts with baking soda to produce an extra-special type of lava for a chemical volcano. This is a non-toxic volcano recipe that is sure to please!
Iron from Breakfast Cereal
Cold breakfast cereals are usually fortified with iron. What does the iron look like? Find out here!
Kitchen Science Experiments
Do you want to explore science, but can't find or can't afford chemicals? Here are science experiments and projects you can do that use common kitchen chemicals.
Kid-Friendly Elephant Toothpaste Demo
The elephant toothpaste demo produces a growing column of foam that looks like what you would get if an elephant squashed a giant tube of toothpaste. Here's a kid-friendly version of this classic chemistry demonstration.
This recipe results in an edible, fruit-scented playdough.
Lava Lamp - Non-Toxic Version
While real lava lamps and lava lites rely on trade secrets, you can get a similar effect with simple household ingredients.
Laundry Detergent Recipe
It's easy to make your own laundry detergent, plus the cost of using it is about a tenth the price of using store-bought laundry detergent. Here's how you make this cleaner yourself.
Lava Lamp - Realistic Version
These instructions for making a lava lamp or lava lite are for the experienced hobbyist, not kids or novices.
Lemon Fizz Science Project
The lemon fizz project is a fun bubbly science project using kitchen ingredients thatâs ideal for kids to try.
This is a recipe for non-toxic sticker glue.
Lichtenberg figures essentially capture the image of lightning. Here's how you can make your own Lichtenberg figure from common materials.
Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream
Make liquid nitrogen ice cream as a cool cryogenics or phase change demonstration or for a quick and tasty treat.
Liquid Magnets - Synthesize Ferrofluid
Make your own ferrofluid, or liquid magnet, which can be used with a magnet to change the liquid's density and to form spikes and other amazing shapes.
Luminol Chemiluminescence Test for Blood
You can use the luminol chemiluminescence reaction as a quick and easy forensic test for blood. Here's a look at what you need to perform the test, how to do it, and an explanation of how the luminol test works.
Magic Crystal Christmas Tree
A magic crystal Christmas tree is an easy crystal project you can do for the holidays.
Magic Colored Milk Science Project
If you add food coloring to milk, not a whole lot happens, but it only takes one simple ingredient to turn the milk into a spinning color wheel. Here is what you do.
Magic Rocks - Chemical Garden
Learn about the chemistry behind magic rocks and make your own chemical crystal garden.
Make a Mixture and a Compound from Iron and Sulfur
Do you know the difference between a mixture and a compound? Combine iron and sulfur to make a mixture and then react them to form a chemical compound.
Mentos & Diet Soda Chemical Volcano
Candies and diet soda together can make a chemical 'volcano' with an eruption several feet high. If the normal baking soda volcano is too tame for you, give this project a try.
Marbled Paper Project
It's super-easy to make elegant marbled paper, which you can use for a variety of projects including gift wrap. What you may not know is you can scent your paper while you marble it.
This recipe makes a non-sticky sort of 'rubber' or gelatinous slime.
This is how ethanol is distilled. The potable form of ethanol from corn is sometimes called Moonshine or White Lightning.
Modeling Clay Recipes
There are several ways you can make homemade clay for modeling, making ornaments, and for other projects and crafts. Here are several clay recipes, including a refrigerator clay, a clay you bake to harden, one you coat for a glossy finish, and one that works up and stays pliable much like store-bought modeling clay.
It's fast, easy, non-toxic, and fluoride-free! Use these instructions to make your own natural toothpaste.
Nitrogen Triiodide Chemistry Demonstration
Learn how to perform the nitrogen triiodide chemistry demonstration, a spectacular touch-sensitive decomposition that produces a cloud of purple smoke and a loud 'snap'.
Natural Plastic from Dairy
Plastics are generally produced from petroleum, but they can come from other sources as well! All that is really required is the ability to join molecules containing carbon and hydrogen together, which you do whenever you curdle milk.
Natural Easter Egg Dyes
These are easy instructions for making your own natural Easter egg dyes, using fruits, vegetables, and spices.
Non-Toxic Glue from Milk
Use common kitchen materials to make your own glue. Add vinegar to milk, separate the curds, and add baking soda and water. Glue!
Natural Insect Repellent Recipe
You can make natural insect repellent yourself. The insect repellent is safe and effective, plus it costs much less to make it than to buy it.
Natural Mosquito Repellent Recipe
It's easy to make your own natural mosquito repellent. You can control exactly what goes into the project so you won't need to worry about any unwanted chemicals.
These finger paints are just right for aspiring artists! Use soap and water for clean-up. Be aware that the food coloring could stain fabrics and furniture.
Non-Toxic Smoke or Fog
While renting a smoke machine is a reliable option, here are fog instructions for the do-it-yourself types.
This is the classic, simple flour paste.
Learn how to make Oobleck, a type of slime that has properties of both liquids and solids.
If ordinary fire just doesn't do it for you, why not kick it up a notch by making it into orange fire? It's easy to make orange flames. Here's what you do.
Paper Chromatography with Leaves
Most plants contain several pigment molecules, so experiment with different leaves to see the wide range of pigments.
Patio Table Crystals
Turn the surface of your glass patio table into a safe place for kids to explore crystals. Here's an easy crystal project you can do on any warm, sunny day using ingredients from your kitchen.
Patriotic Density Column
This is a fun chemistry-type decoration for July 4th or any time you want a colorful demonstration of density layers. Use different colored lamp oils and food colors for other holidays.
Perform the Mohs Test
The Mohs test is one way to determine the hardness of a rock or mineral. You can use the Mohs hardness to help identify an unknown specimen. Here's how you can do the test yourself.
Poinsettia pH Paper
You can make pH indicator from poinsettia flowers, then use the indicator to make your own pH paper test strips.
Perfume is a classic gift, but it's even better if it is a scent that you made yourself, especially if you package it in a beautiful bottle. Perfume you make yourself is free from synthetic chemicals and is fully customized to your personal taste. Here's how to make your own perfume.
Purple Chromium Alum Crystals
Learn how to grow purple chromium alum crystals and how to grow clear crystals over a core of colored crystals.
Potassium Chlorate from Bleach and Salt Substitute
Potassium chlorate is an important potassium compound that can be used as an oxidizer, disinfectant, source of oxygen, and component in pyrotechnics and chemistry demonstrations. You can make potassium chlorate from common household bleach and salt substitute.
Potassium Nitrate Recipe
Make potassium nitrate (saltpeter) from common household ingredients. Potassium chloride from lite salt and ammonium nitrate from a cold pack are reacted to yield potassium nitrate and ammonium chloride. This is an easy way to make your own potassium chloride if you can't find it in a store or just want to try a fun chemistry experiment.
The slime you might find in a real Mad Scientist's lab would probably be the result of some horrible genetic mutation. You can make slime that looks radioactive and toxic, yet is actually easy to make and safe. Here's how you do it.
Rainbow in a Glass Density Column
Make a rainbow in a glass using colored sugar solutions with different densities. This project is very easy and safe enough to drink.
Red Cabbage pH Indicator
Make your own pH indicator solution! Red cabbage juice indicator is easy to make, exhibits a wide range of colors, and can be used to make your own pH paper strips.
Make beautiful paper from recycled scraps of just about any paper project you can find. Learn how to add decorative items to your paper and prepare it for writing or stamping. This is a fun craft that teaches about recycling while making a useful handmade product.
Recrystallization is a laboratory technique used to purify a sample based on the different solubilites of its components. Learn how to perform a recrystallization and get tips on how to avoid common problems and improve your product yield.
Red Cabbage pH Paper
Learn how to make your own pH indicator test strips using red cabbage. This is a fun, safe, and easy chemistry project that you can do at home.
Red Fire Instructions
Red fire is easy to produce. This is a classic color for sparklers and fireworks as well as holiday parties. It would also be a cheery coloration for a campfire or fireplace.
Red Potassium Ferricyanide Crystals
These are instructions for growing easy red monoclinic crystals. Don't let the 'cyanide' part of the chemical name put you off -- these crystals aren't edible, but neither are they more toxic than most other compounds.
Resin Papier Mache Paste
This papier mache paste dries to a hard finish.
Remove Fluoride from Drinking Water
Learn how to remove fluoride from drinking water. Also learn ways to reduce fluoride exposure and find out what types of filtration don't reduce fluoride concentration.
Rock Tumbler Instructions
Here are instructions for tumbling rocks using a rotary drum tumbler and a vibratory tumbler, as well as instructions for polishing jewelry in a rock tumbler. Helpful tips are included for improving the polish and troubleshooting problems.
Rubber Egg & Chicken Bones
You can make a hard boiled egg bounce like a rubber ball and cause chicken bones to become soft and rubbery. All you need is a common kitchen ingredient.
Salt Crystal Geode
You can make a salt crystal geode in any color of the rainbow. The geode showcases the beautiful cubic structure of sodium chloride or table salt.
Safe Smoke Bomb Instructions
A classic smoke bomb is easy to make and safe to use, but you can make the project even safer if you don't heat the ingredients. Here's what you do.
Salt and Vinegar Crystals
Salt and vinegar crystals are easy-to-grow non-toxic crystals that you can grow in a rainbow of colors. This crystal growing project is especially good for kids or beginners looking for quick and easy crystals.
Sand or Silica How-To
Sand that you find on a beach consists of several minerals and organic matter. If you could separate out the impurities, you would have pure sand, which is silica or silicon dioxide. Here is how to prepare pure sand yourself in the lab.
Saponification Reaction Instructions
Making your own soap can be a time-consuming process, but you can demonstrate the saponification reaction quickly and easily by reacting oil of wintergreen and sodium hydroxide to make sodium salicylate.
Seed Crystal Instructions
A seed crystal is a small single crystal that you use to grow a much larger crystal from a saturated crystal solution. This is how you can grow a seed crystal yourself.
You can make your own shampoo from scratch using simple ingredients and a little chemistry know-how. Here's a shampoo recipe to get you started.
Learn about the history of Silly Putty, how it works, how to make your own, and what you can do to explore the interesting properties of this viscoelastic liquid.
Sharpie Pen Tie Dye
You can create a pattern resembling tie-dye using colored Sharpie pens and rubbing alcohol. It's a fun and educational project that is great for kids.
Silver Crystal Tree
In this simple chemistry demonstration or crystal growing project you'll grow a silver crystal tree.
Silver Polishing Dip
Why use elbow grease to remove tarnish from silver when all you need to do is dip it in this easy-to-make nontoxic solution? I've also included some tips for preventing tarnish in the first place.
This is the recipe for a singing cake. The cake sings while baking and then it is ready to eat!
Smoke Ring Cannon
You can make a smoke ring cannon that shoots smoke rings in the air or even in water. A smoke ring cannon is a simple science project that uses easy-to-find household materials to illustrate fluid vortex formation in a fun way.
There are lots of recipes for slime. Since most recipes are easy, look for one using ingredients you have on hand.
Smoke Bomb Instructions
You can easily make a smoke bomb using inexpensive materials to produce safe smoke.
Smoking Fingers Trick
Make your fingers smoke when you rub them together and glow in the dark. All you need is a matchbox and a way to burn the striker portion.
Snow Globe Instructions
The 'chemistry' part of this lies in choosing a good liquid and sealant for your globe. Nontoxic and fun!
Snow Globe Using Benzoic Acid
Snow made from water crystals melts at room temperature, but snow made from benzoic acid crystals will still be decorating your snow globe when the weather warms up. Here's how to make a snow globe by precipitating benzoic acid to make the 'snow'.
Soap slime is an easy-to-make type of slime that is fun to play with and makes clean-up fun. Here's how you make it.
Snow Ice Cream Recipes
Here is a collection of several quick and easy recipes for ice cream you can make using snow.
These are the instructions for making your own gentle hand or face soap. It's work, but worth the effort!
Sodium Silicate or Water Glass
You can prepare sodium silicate or water glass from gel beads (silica) and drain cleaner (sodium hydroxide). Sodium silicate can be used to make chemical gardens, like those that result from Magic Rocks.
Learn how to make your own sparklers, for Independence Day or New Years Day fun. Use your understanding of chemistry to color the sparks.
Sparkly Paint Recipe
This non-toxic paint uses starch and salt for its glittery effects.
Storm Glass Instructions
Use your knowledge of chemistry to make a storm glass to help you predict the weather.
Stink Bomb Recipes
Stink bombs smell terrible, but they are also fun. Here are instructions for how to use everyday materials to make your own stink bombs.
Sulfur Hexafluoride Demonstrations
Sulfur hexafluoride is a non-toxic, invisible gas that you can use to perform interesting chemistry demonstrations. Breathe it in and make your voice much deeper when you talk. Pour it into a container and float an airplane or a ship on 'nothing'.
You can cool water below its stated freezing point and then crystallize it into ice on command. This is known as supercooling. These are step-by-step instructions for supercooling water at home.
Sugar Crystals - Make Your Own Rock Candy
Sugar crystals are also known as rock candy since the crystallized sucrose resembles rock crystals and because you can eat your finished product. You can grow clear sugar crystals with sugar and water or you can add food coloring to get colored crystals. It's simple, safe, and fun.
Sulfuric Acid and Sugar Demonstration
Ordinary table sugar and sulfuric acid react to produce a growing black column. This demonstration is an example of an exothermic reaction and a dehydration reaction. It is good for discussions about the nature of carbohydrates, hydrogen bonds, and carbon properties.
Table Salt or Sodium Chloride Crystals
It's easy to grow your own table salt or sodium chloride crystals. All it takes is salt and boiling water. One method even yields crystals within a few hours. Here's what you need to know.
Tattoo Ink Instructions
If you understand sterilization techniques, some of the safest and best tattoo inks may be those you mix yourself.
The thermite reaction is a highly exothermic reaction in which metal essentially burns. The thermite reaction has practical applications, such as for welding, plus it makes for a memorable chemistry demonstration. Here's how you can perform the thermite reaction, safely.
Homemade Tattoo Ink Recipe
The earliest tattoo inks came from nature. You can use non-toxic natural ingredients to make your own homemade tattoo ink. This tattoo ink recipe is simple and has been used in various forms for thousands of years.
Tin Crystal Growing Instructions
It's easy to grow crystals of tin metal using a simple replacement reaction. You can see the crystals in an hour or so, or leave them overnight for more/larger crystals.
Ultimate Colored Smoke Bomb
Make a smoke bomb that billows clouds of brightly colored smoke. This project is easy and safe enough to at home. Adult supervision is required.
Water into Wine Demonstration
Turn a clear liquid into a red liquid, then back to clear again. This demonstration is commonly called turning water into wine or blood, and can be used to demonstrate acid-base indicators.
It's very simple to make violet or purple fire. All you need are two easy-to-find ingredients.
Wave tanks use liquids with two different densities that won't mix together. Here's an easy, non-toxic method.
White Smoke Chemistry Demonstration
Learn how to perform the white smoke chemistry demonstration, in which a cloud of ammonium chloride crystals are produced from reacting ammonia and hydrochloric acid.
Most flames from candles or wood burning fire are yellow, but you can color a blue flame so that it will become yellow. Here's what you do.
Yeast & Hydrogen Peroxide Volcano
Here's how to make a safe and easy chemical volcano using two common inexpensive household ingredients.
Stink Bomb Recipe
Make your own homemade stink bombs using this easy stink bomb recipe. The stink bombs are as stinky as those you'd get at the store and can be made with common household ingredients.
Chemical Snow Recipe
This is a recipe for chemical snow. This is a dry snow made from calcium silicate crystals. It's a fun crystal project or useful if you want snow that won't melt!
Use chemistry to make a real flower glow in the dark.
The reaction used to make nylon sometimes is called the nylon rope trick because nylon is produces as a single long hollow tube or rope. Here is how to make nylon or perform the nylon rope trick.