There are many ways to make slime, but a lot of slime recipes, including laundry starch slime, Borax slime, and slime made with contact solution, all contain Boron, which is a mineral that can be irritating to the skin, throat, and lungs if a person is exposed to it on a regular basis.
If your kids love making and playing with slime a lot, it is helpful to have some Borax-free slime recipes for them to try instead. Naturally, most Borax-free slime recipes aren’t quite as stretchy as the original, but this dish soap slime is one of the stretchiest, fluffiest non-Borax slime recipes we’ve found to date. And we’ve made a LOT of slime at our house.
An issue that many families seem to have with fluffy slime is that the combination of the laundry starch or Borax and the shaving cream can make little hands itchy and red. This combination of ingredients can cause more irritation than regular slime. However, this version, using baking soda and dish soap, leaves hands feeling soft and is non-irritating to all but the most sensitive skin.
What you’ll need to make dish soap slime:
Mix 1/2 a cup of Elmer’s glue with about a tablespoon of dish soap. Add 2-3 tablespoons of water and stir. The mixture will start to foam, at which point you can add in your favorite color of food coloring.
Add one cup of baking soda to the mixture and stir. The baking soda and glue will start to react, creating a stretchy slime that is slightly heavier in texture than regular slime. How much baking soda you end up adding will depend on the humidity of the room you are currently in, but you will want to keep adding baking soda until you can handle the slime without it sticking to your fingers.
The slime won’t be quite as stretchy as borax-based slimes, but it will stretch and pull to some extent. If you add too much baking soda, however, you will transform the slime into a play dough, which although fun to play with, doesn’t quite have the same effect.
If you do end up putting too much baking soda in, you can add a little more dish soap to thin it out again.
Kids will love this fluffy version of slime. My kids loved puffing it up into a ball, then pressing their hands into it. They also had a blast stretching and pulling the slime like they do with traditional borax-based slime.
I really liked this version of slime, because once the kids were done with it, their hands were so smooth and smelled amazing!
If you make this slime, be sure to share your results with us!
Tips & FAQ:
Store your fluffy borax-free slime in an airtight container or plastic bag. It should last for 3-4 days. Because it’s not preserved with borax, it is likely to get sticky and runny after a few days.
This slime won’t have the same texture as traditional slime. In most slime recipes, the borax helps the ingredients bond, giving it a stretchy texture. This version is more like a stretchy, soft play dough, which will have some of the same sensory benefits as traditional slime but won’t act like “true” slime due to the absence of borax. It is a wonderful alternative for kids with sensitive skin to provide the sensory input without skin irritation.
Make sure when you mix the glue dish soap that it creates a foamy, airy texture. This is what will make the slime work. Some brands of dish soap work better than others. We used Gain and it worked great, but Dawn dish soap should also work.
If your slime is too runny: Add more baking soda until it thickens. Depending on the humidity in your room and how liquid your dish soap is, you may need to double or even triple the amount of baking soda.
If your slime is too solid: Add a bit more dish soap until it has a pliable texture.