Today I’m joined by Tinkerlab reader Natasha Levochkina McCain, who’s sharing her glowing playdough recipe with us today. This is one of the coolest ways to update play dough, and I think you’ll get a kick out of it. We sure did.
This play dough inspired my whole family.
Not just my two sons (three and five years old), but even a very busy and sometimes moderately grumpy Dad and our 15 year old.
Not only was it exciting for the kids to stay up after dark to play with the dough, but they also created space landscapes, alien creatures and even an alien alphabet. While it was not an entirely accidental invention, it was not too far from it.
I started mixing the ingredients before I realized that I only had unbleached whole wheat flour left.
Disaster? Not at all!
I decided to go ahead and to make the dough anyway. I used my favorite Tinkerlab play dough recipe (with exception to the whole wheat flour) for the playdough itself:
- 5 cups water
- 2½ cups salt
- 3 tbsp. cream of tartar
- 10 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 5 cups flour
- Food coloring or liquid watercolors (optional)
- Glo Away by Plaid (glow in the dark paint via Amazon)
- Black Light
- Mix everything but the food coloring and the glo-away together in a large pot until somewhat smooth. It will be lumpy. Not to worry, the dough will get smoother as it cooks.
- Cook the dough over a low heat. Mix frequently. The water will slowly cook out of the mixture and you’ll notice it starts to take on a sticky dough appearance.
- Before it gets too sticky add a few tablespoons of Glo Away
- Keep mixing until the edges of the dough along the side and bottom of the pan appear dry. Pinch a piece of dough. If it’s not gooey, the dough is ready.
- Place the dough on a counter top or large cutting board or cooking tray that can withstand a little food coloring.
- Knead the warm dough until it’s smooth
- Store the dough in a large Ziplock bag or sealed container. Unused, it should keep for months.
- Turn the lights down low and illuminate the play dough with a black light.
The glowing particles distribute themselves differently because of the larger grain fragments. While kneading the dough on a plastic cutting board (to avoid stains) I added some green food coloring to it.
And of course, you’ll need a black light to illuminate the glowing dough.
Here’s what it looks like in the dark:
The next day I also made “regular” play dough with regular “white fluffy” flour. I added no color to it, just the Glo Away.
The glow pigment looks different in this one and it is fun to use them both for creating amazingly fun extraterrestrial creatures and landscapes.
About Glo Away: The manufacturer says that it’s “Safe to use on fabric, wood, glass, plastic and ceramics. Non permanent washes away with soap and water. Certified AP non-toxic. Great for decorating kids rooms and ceilings.”
Thanks for joining us today, Natasha! If you have a favorite art recipe to share, email us at rachelle at Tinkerlab.com.
Note: This post contains affiliate links, but we only share links to products that we adore or that we think you’ll find useful.
Is this your first time here? Join the Tinkerlab network and be the first to know about simple art + science projects for kids, creativity tips, and simple ideas that will make your life more creative. Sign up for our newsletter here.