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Make ‘Elephants Toothpaste’!

Dr Martin Abelar - May 31, 2020 - 0 comments

With many kids still home on quarantine and school about to break for the summer, you may be anxious to try something new to bust the stay-at-home boredom blues. While kids may quickly grow tired of toys, there are tons of fun science experiments online that you can do at home with just a few ingredients.

One such experiment is called the “elephants toothpaste” experiment! This fun dental-themed experiment doesn’t really make toothpaste for elephants (or anyone else for that matter), but it sure looks like it does.

Here’s how you and your family can make your own elephants toothpaste in the comfort of your own home!

First, assemble your ingredients. You will need:

1 teaspoon of yeast
2 tablespoons of warm water
Food coloring
Dish soap
One empty plastic bottle (20 ounces or larger)
6 percent hydrogen peroxide solution (available at beauty supply stores)

Once you have your ingredients together, it’s time to have some fun!

To start, pour a half cup of hydrogen peroxide solution into the plastic bottle. Mix in a few drops of food coloring to get your desired color.

Next, add one tablespoon of dish soap to the bottle. Swirl it around so it mixes with the peroxide and food coloring.

Next mix the yeast together with the warm water in a separate cup and stir for about 30 seconds or until it looks like what one site calls “melted ice cream.” If it’s too thick, add a little more warm water to get it to this consistency.

When your yeast is well blended, place the funnel into the bottle containing the peroxide and dish soap. Pour the yeast mixture in and voila: See what happens next!

What should happen is a foamy explosion of color, akin to the foam we generate when we brush our teeth – except in this case there’s so much foam it looks like an elephant-sized portion of toothpaste.

But just to be clear, this is not real toothpaste, it should not be ingested, and it should not be used on your teeth (or any elephants’ teeth, either). While it is safe to be handled with bare hands, we recommend you don’t because of the strength of the peroxide. We also recommend you conduct the experiment in a sink, bathtub or inside a deep bowl or baking pan.

We hope you and your family enjoy making this foamy concoction on your own!

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