Slime. Kids love it. Parents, not so much.
But turns out, the sticky, colourful goo isn’t just a hassle to clean up – it might also be toxic.
According to UK consumer group Which? many slime products tested contain more than four times the safe level of boron – an ingredient of Borox. Boron is what gives the slime’s super-stretchiness, but it can also make kids very, very sick if accidentally ingested.
Kids’ Slime Warning Due to Toxicity
Which tested 11 different popular slime products, all of which were sold on Amazon. Eight of the slime products failed the test and have since been removed from the website.
However, gooey slime remains a popular item for kids – it’s cheap enough to buy with pocket change and easy to pop into a party bag. Plus, there are heaps of different DIY slime recipes on the internet, most of which do contain Borox.
Nikki Stopford, of Which, warns parents that the toxic substance can have serious side effects, especially for little tummies.
“In the short term it could cause things like vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach cramps or skin irritation,” she said. “Longer term it’s been shown they can cause birth defects.”
Other side effects of Borox poisoning include respiratory damage and skin rashes. The new warning follows reports last year that homemade slime was leaving children with serious burns.
Be aware of the dangers of Borox
Borox is often found in things like pesticides and laundry detergents but these products come with adequate warning labels and are not something marketed to kids. Slime, on the other hand, is sold in the toy section and is clearly designed for little ones.
Roland Earl, of the British Toy and Hobby Association, states, “I think it’s right that parents should expect toys that they buy for their children to be safe and properly tested.”
The presence of a toxic substance in a toy is definitely a worry, especially if your little one does have a tendency to “taste test” toys.
If your kids do have a collection of slime in their bedrooms, it might be a good idea to check the ingredient list or bin the product.
Be safe around slime
If you are thinking about making homemade slime, make sure you look for a recipe that doesn’t call for Borox. Our Unicorn Slime recipe (pic above) doesn’t use Borox (but it does require contact lens solution with boric acid).
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