I’ve wanted to try snowmaking (to make fake snow)for a long time. This is a handcraft that will help us to decorate our nativity scene at Christmas or if we make a model with the little ones and we want to give it a touch of realism with snow. Or just to get your hands dirty and enjoy for a while.
I have tried 5 different methods to have artificial snow, I show them to you and compare them throughout the article. Internet is full of tutorials on how to make snow in diapers and I find it a disastrous activity and not suitable for children.
After a first frustrated attempt I liked the experience so little that I have looked for more method to make homemade artificial snow, in a much safer, spectacular way and that you can do easily with your children. Here you have it all.
These are the ingredients that we are going to use for all the recipes.
Ingredients (for 5 instant snow recipes):
- Shaving foam
- Baking soda
- Fine corn flour
- Hair conditioner
- Diaper and/or Sodium polyacrylate
At the end of this article I have left a video with all fake snow experiments
Recipe 1 – With diapers
It is a very easy and known experiments, we have read in thousand webs. People take some diapers and cut them. They extract the cotton which is mixed with Sodium polyacrylate and it seems like magic. All works fine.
Polyacrylate is a polymer that can absorb up to 500 times its volume and when it has caught water it is very similar to snow.
But this, that seems easy in a first sight has several problemas. And I don’t see people talking about them.
Polyacrilate is mixed with cotton fiber and snap it is nos very easy. I have test it with one baby and one adult diaper, and I could not snap polyacrilate and fiber. And, when you are rub the cotton fiber, no polymer falls. And you can see a cloud of fiber and polymer floating around you. I don’t like breathe that, and neither do my daughters breath it
As much as I rub the cotton fiber almost no polymer falls but around you a cloud of fluff forms floating in the air, formed by cotton fiber and I guess polymer. And the truth is I do not like to have to be swallowing it, much less to think that my daughters breathe that.
So I have discarded this method until I discovered an efficient and safe way to get the polyacrylate out. Meanwhile, if you want to try this recipe there are stores where they sell this artificial snow.
Methods that I see suitable for children and that would be like experiments for children are the following:
Recipe 2 – Fine corn Flour and shaving foam
Let’s go to start with Corn flour and shaving foam recipe.
Maizena is a brand we use in Spain when we talk about fine corn flour. You can use the brand you want, the important thing is that it is highly sifted.
There are not exactly proportions for de mixture.
The snow make of corn flour and foam has a very soft touch that usually likes children very much. It’s something yellowish so it does not give that feeling of real snow, as it happens with bicarbonate blends.
One thing to consider if you want to make a lot of corn flour snow is its price. It is much more expensive than the other alternatives explained into the article.
And this fake snow dirty hands and clothes.
Recipe 3 – Baking soda and shaving foam
Next is baking soda and shaving foam recipe. As you can see, shaving foam is widely used in home experiments, from these types of snow to different kinds of slime.
When you go to buy baking soda to supermarket or buy it online I recommend you buy 1kg (2,2 lbs) are cheaper than plastic bottles.
Steps are equal than corn flavour. Put baking soda and shaving foam into a bowl and mix them. If it is lumpy add baking soda and if it is “free”(when compacting it does not keep anything in shape) add shaving foam. And so on until we find the desired texture.
Unlike the previous snow, this is a pure white color, and visually it looks much more like real snow.
Recipe 4 – Baking soda and Water
This is my favourite recipe to make instant snow. Really easy, fast and simple. To make fake snow using only water and baking soda.
Although it seems a lie, the snow in this way is very similar to that of the foam and the conditioner that we will see at the end. So much so that I did not mark the dishes in which I kept the snow; My daughters were playing and then I did not know what each one was.
I was very interested in having them identified because I wanted to see how they evolved with each passing day and at the end I had no choice but to taste them, because no matter how much I touched them I did not distinguish them. The touch is a bit different in each one, but nothing that makes the difference.
And I take this to remember to be more rigorous in future experiments and write down things, have them well identified and write everything down in a notebook so as not to lose data over time or in some carelessness during the experiment.
The recipe for the snow is the same as the others, baking soda water and mix them. You do not have to use a lot of water.
At the beginning I said it’s my favorite. We get very similar results with the other recipes being simpler. It is true that children can enjoy less because they like to get their hands dirty, but this is the cheapest version of all.
Recipe 5 – Hair conditioner and baking soda
And the last instant snow recipe.
We are going to make a mixture with hair conditioner and baking soda. It It is the most sticky method . I don’t love it and when mixtures is finished you get soapy hands.
There are to put a little hair conditioner quantity.
The snow seems heavier than before ones. You find this difference at first hours. When time passed all recipes become indistinguishable.
We don’t compare diaper recipe. I will buy polyacrylte and I will update this review.
The photos shown the 4 fake snow I have made. These ones made with baking soda are whiter than corn flour snow which go yellow. And they are visually indistinguishable after a while.
The disappointment of the snow comes at 24 hours, the mixture has dried and what we have left is as if we had cornflour or baking soda and we would have to re-mix or hydrate it so that it would take on the consistency of snow again. That’s why the water method is the one I like the most.
Fakesnow make with baking soda lasts longer. But I mut to test it.