A Beginner’s Guide to DIY Slime, According to an Instagram Slime Expert

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Best Slime Recipes
Easy enough to make at home. Photo: craftyslimecreator/instagram

We read Select All’s story on the teen slime phenomenon with a curiosity that morphed into intense fascination. (After all, we’ve written about a similar Instagram phenomenon before.) Of course our next immediate thought was: What if we could make some of this stuff ourselves? So we called up one of the teens featured in the story, Toronto-based, 15-year-old Alyssa J. (whose @craftyslimecreator account has more than 400,000 followers) for a tutorial on how to create our own slime at home. The story went deeper than we even realized.

How did you get started making slime?
Well, I was just doing it as a hobby at home because it was something that was happening at school and on Instagram. I ended up having so much slime all over my room, and started sharing my own videos on Instagram, that my mom was like, “Ally, you can’t make slime anymore because it’s everywhere.” But I was like, “If I sell it, can I make more slime?” I had to give her a whole presentation and everything. I never thought of it as a business venture. It was just a hobby I had, and people on Instagram just kept saying they wanted it.

It’s hard to make it consistently. I tried one of those kits and it never quite came together.
I’ve never tried one of those. I’ve always just made it from scratch. Even the best kits on Amazon are not the same recipes that most homemade-slime-makers use. It’s hard to make slime well, actually.

What’s your best-selling slime?
Definitely Confetti. It’s a white-glue-based slime with colorful beads in it.

What’s the newest slime craze?
No question: It’s butter slime.

What’s that? It’s got butter in it?
No, no. So, you use a soft clay and mix it with slime. And when you spread it with a knife, it actually looks like butter. It has all the knife streaks and everything. It was “created” by slime_og on Instagram, if you want to see what it looks like.

What’s your secret to creating great slime?
I think I’ve been doing it so long that I just sort of know? You have to do it a few times before you get the hang of it. I actually made a video to help out home-slime-makers too!

What you'll need to make slime at home

Start with about a cup (eight ounces) of Elmer’s glue. If you want a clear slime to add glitter to (it shows up better) rather than a white one, you can start with a clear glue instead. I make a glitter slime on my Instagram that’s one of my most popular videos.

So, for a basic slime, you pretty much just add an activator to your glue base. There are a few different activators you can use. I prefer water and Borax. Take half a teaspoon of Borax and stir it into a cup of water. Then just add it one tablespoon at a time to the glue base. You’ll usually need about six to eight tablespoons of this solution.

It’s difficult to give exact measurements because so much of it is eyeballing. But to the one-cup-of-glue mixture, you would use about eight pumps of foaming hand soap, which gives your slime volume and creates texture. I love to use the Bath & Body Works soaps because they smell so good and just give your slime added scent, but you could use an unscented hand soap if you prefer, too.

Optional Textural Ingredients

Corn starch will make it thicker — it’ll turn your slime into something more matte and really sticky. You’ll add this one heaping tablespoon at a time.

Shaving cream makes it fluffy. Slimes with shaving cream are so much fun to squeeze. But the only thing with shaving cream is it will deflate after a few days, so I would never sell slimes with shaving cream. I’d only make them at home. I prefer Gillette — I tried Barbasol and it didn’t work as well. And get the foaming one. If you get the regular cream, you’ll have to foam it up yourself in a separate bowl, but why would you want that extra step?

Baby oil makes it glossy. So when you see people poking it on Instagram and hear those popping sounds, that’s because they’ve added some baby oil. Add it by the teaspoon because too much will make it too oily and not fun to play with.

Lotion you can’t really go wrong with. Add it a tablespoon at a time, but lotion just makes it stretchier, especially with matte slimes that have a lot of corn starch. Again, anything Bath & Body Works I love for the smell, but you could use an unscented lotion like Curel too.

You can also add fragrance oil for scents. And there are so many scents. You want to add a fragrance or essential oil — not a food-additive oil, because that would rot.

Fun Add-ins

So when you see people with slimes with those little foam beads — like Floam — they’ve either taken something like a travel pillow and cut it up to use the beads inside, or bought beads in bulk like this. That penny up there is included for size.

There are so many different kinds of vase-filler beads you can buy. There are those that come in little disc shapes or stars, too, if you prefer.

So this is what you need for butter slime. It’s a soft clay by Daiso, which is a Japanese market, but it’s really hard to find, especially here in Toronto. You take your basic white-glue slime and mix it with the clay. You can use Crayola Air-Dry Clay to do something really similar, too.

These are really cute and come in little fruit shapes or animals or hearts. They’re usually used for nail art, but now they’re super-popular for slime. You can buy the full clay canes and then cut them yourself, but it’s so much easier to buy them already cut.

There’s also fake snow that you can buy on Amazon that gives your slime another crazy, fluffy texture.

All you need is a drop or two of food coloring for a cup of slime. You can also use pigment powders by Pearl Ex, which are my favorite for using with clear slimes.

There’s chunky, fine glitter, and microbead glitter that looks almost like glitter, but is not exactly glitter. There are different shapes and stars of glitter. It’s too much glitter to even get into.

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A Beginner’s Guide to DIY Slime, According to a Slime Expert