Although it's not a new activity, the DIY "slime" (also known as "goo" or "gak") trend has exploded recently, with the more enterprising kids making slime that they then sell to their non-DIY-inclined friends. Buying slime, however, is an option for parents who'd rather their kids not stir up glue-ridden concoctions in their kitchens. But, if you opt to buy over DIY, want to make sure your slime is safe. So what's the safest slime to buy and how do you know that what you're buying isn't potentially dangerous?
Recently, parents have started to raise concerns about whether homemade slime recipes are safe for kids. The cause for concern stems from a recent event when an 11-year-old girl suffered burns from making her own slime. According to CBS News, the burns came from exposure to Borax, a common household cleaning product and ingredient in some slimes. Although the amount of Borax in homemade slime is small, for kiddos with sensitive skin (or ones who might be tempted to take a little taste), Borax exposure could cause pain and irritation. Given the fact that some parents aren't too keen on letting their kids play with something that contains a lot of chemicals, YouTubers and bloggers have created a number of safe slime recipes.
Whether it's the chemicals that freak you out or you're just not a big DIY-er, you don't have to make your own slime to get in on the gooey fun. You can easily purchase slime at toy stores or online, if that's more your jam. But still, safety can be a concern. Look for slimes made without Borax and only with non-toxic glue. As Dr. Jason Hack, a physician at Rhode Island Hospital, told WPRI in Rhode Island, it's important for parents to double check that the glue involved in slime-making is ACMI-approved non-toxic, which is denoted by a seal on the bottle.
There are also many safe, non-toxic slimes available for sale on Etsy. Toronto-based FreewayStudios also has an "all-natural" slime for sale, made without Borax, laundry detergent, or contact solution, and is also color-customizable.
The best way to make sure that the slime you're buying is safe is to do your research and check the ingredients to the best of your ability. Knowing what's in the products you're giving to your family can put your mind at ease and let you join in on the fun. If you're especially concerned, attempt to DIY or provide adequate supervision when your kids are playing with slime. Most are relatively safe, but it's still a good idea to cautiously touch the slime before diving in to make sure that it doesn't cause any problems.