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Crystal Easter Egg Project

Easy and Sparkly Crystal Easter Egg

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Cover a real egg with crystals to use as an Easter decoration.

Cover a real egg with crystals to use as an Easter decoration.

Anne Helmenstine
These crystal Easter eggs make great decorations! Basically you grow crystals around a real egg. You can make a crystal geode, an egg decoration or a hanging ornament for an Easter egg tree. Make pastel eggs or vibrant eggs in any color of the rainbow. This is an easy crystal growing project that yields quick results.

Time Required

a few hours to overnight, depending what you want

Materials

You can use pretty much any recipe for growing crystals. Good choices would include sugar, salt, Epsom salts or borax. I chose alum because I wanted large crystals on the egg and quick results. If you want to completely coat your egg with sparkly crystals, borax or sugar would work best. The amount of borax, sugar, salt or Epsom salt is different from the amount of alum. Basically, keep adding material to the boiling water until it stops dissolving. Use this saturated solution to grow the crystals.
  • an egg
  • 1 cup boiling hot water
  • 4 tablespoons alum (which is the size of a typical container in the grocery store)
  • a pin or needle
  • food coloring or Easter egg dye (optional)
  • string or a pipecleaner (optional)
  • cup

Prepare the Egg

You have a few options here.
  • Crystal Geode Egg
    If you want to make a geode, carefully crack the egg or cut it in half. Rinse off the shells and allow them to dry before continuing.

  • Crystal Egg
    You can use a hard-boiled egg to make your crystal egg. This results in a heavy egg that can be used as a tabletop decoration.

  • Egg Ornament
    Use a pin, awl or Dremel tool to pierce a hole into each end of the egg. Push the pin or an unbent paper clip into the egg to scramble the yolk. Blow into the hole on one end of the egg to remove the egg. If you have trouble, try enlarging the hole. The crystals will grow over the bottom hole, so it isn't critical to have an inconspicuous hole.

Make the Crystal Egg

This is how I made the egg in the photograph:
  1. Pour 1 cup of boiling water into a glass.

  2. Stir in 4 tablespoons of alum. Keep stirring until the alum dissolves.

  3. If you want colored crystals, add a few drops of food coloring. The eggshell picks up color easily, so a little dye goes a long way.

  4. Put the egg in the glass so that it is completely covered by liquid. If you blew out the egg, you'll need to submerge the egg until the air bubbles escape or else your egg will float. If you like, you can suspend a hollowed egg using a pipecleaner or string.

  5. Allow a few hours for crystal growth. Once you are pleased with the crystals, remove the egg, hang it or set it on a paper towel, and allow it to dry.
This egg has large sparkling crystals that show the shape of the alum crystals. If you want alum crystals all over the egg, "seed" the egg before putting it in the solution by dipping it in alum powder or painting the shell with a mixture of alum and glue.

Crystal Egg Recipes

  • Sugar Crystal Egg
    Dissolve 3 cups of sugar in 1 cup of boiling water.

  • Borax Crystal Egg
    Dissolve 3 tablespoons of borax into 1 cup of boiling or very hot water.

  • Salt Crystal Egg
    The solubility of table salt or sodium chloride is highly dependent on temperature. Stir salt into boiling water until it stops dissolving. Sometimes it helps to microwave the solution to a rolling boil to get the salt into solution. It's okay if there is some undissolved salt at the bottom of the container. Let it settle out and then pour off the clear portion to use to grow your crystals.

  • Epsom Salt Crystal Egg
    Dissolve 1 cup of Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) into 1 cup of very hot tap water.

More Easter Chemistry Projects

Homemade Natural Easter Egg Dyes
Water Into Wine Chem Demo
Sugar and String Crystal Easter Egg
More Easter Chem Projects

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