Kinetic sand is all the rave these days, and for good reason! It sticks together without water, it holds its shape, and kids love it! However, with the name “sand” in it, parents are hesitant to make the purchase out of fear of finding sand in every nook and cranny in the house! So, the question is, does kinetic sand make a mess?
What is Kinetic Sand?
Kinetic sand is kind of play-sand that gets harder under pressure. Unlike traditional sand, it doesn’t need water to be formed into various shapes and objects. It has the consistency of wet sand that isn’t actually wet and is designed for indoor sand-play.
Kinetic sand found in stores is made from two primary ingredients: fine grain sand and dimethicone. You can however make kinetic sand at home at your own convenience and often for less expensive! To do so you need the following ingredients:
- Cooking oil
Once you have your ingredients, you can mix them all together in your bowl (recipe will vary based on amount of sand desired). Then play!
Does Kinetic Sand Make a Mess?
Kinetic sand does make a mess but not a huge one. The size of the mess will depend on how your kids play with it. If they’re sitting nicely at a table and forming their sand into castles or shapes, then the mess won’t be bad! However, if they’re wiping it off the table onto the carpet or throwing it at each other…slightly different story.
Keep in mind though, kinetic sand doesn’t stick to anything other than itself. So, it won’t get caught to your kids’ skin, clothes, or hair. It falls right off and only sticks to other kinetic sand particles! Additionally, since kinetic sand sticks to itself, you can form a large clump into a ball and kind of roll it around other areas with the sand, and it’ll pick it all up for you!
There are a variety of tactics you can use to ensure your kinetic sand stays in one place and is easy to clean!
Is it Easy to Clean Up?
Depending on the way the kinetic sand was used and what it was made from, it is often easy to clean up! Kinetic sand is made from materials that are not sticky, so the sand usually falls right off any area it touches. It only sticks to itself.
Since it isn’t sticky, you can clean it up by using your hand to wipe it off of a table into a container. If it’s on a hard floor, you can sweep it with no problem! If it’s on the carpet, a quick vacuum will usually get it right up. Kinetic sand doesn’t stick to carpet unless there’s something else mixed into it that’s causing it to do so.
If your kiddo got the sand in their hair, they can shake their head outside so the sand falls out. Then, they should take a quick shower just to be sure it all came out! If you really want to play it safe, incorporate some easy methods to ensure your kids don’t make a mess with their kinetic sand.
Tips for Playing with Kinetic Sand Without Making a Mess?
There are so many ways for your kids to play with kinetic sand without making a mess! Try the following methods next time your kid acts for this moldable substance.
Place the kinetic sand in a clear container: having your kiddo play with the sand in a large clear container is a great way to keep kinetic sand mess free. It’s also a fantastic way to teach your kiddo spatial awareness (bonus!).
Make it fun: Kids don’t often love boundaries, so this can be difficult. Try making it fun by burying a bunch of small items in the kinetic sand and sending them on a treasure hunt! This keeps the sand in the box, but they still feel engaged and playful.
Play with the sand outdoors: Give your kids free range to do what they want with the sand, but outside the house! This keeps the mess outdoors.
Make it fun: Set up sort of an obstacle course with the kinetic sand. Set up small stations where they can play with the sand outside. Set a goal for each station that they need to complete before moving on (such as “make a starfish out of the sand”).
Give them small amounts at a time: If your kiddo wants to mold shapes or animals out of the kinetic sand, give them small amounts at a time. They can always ask for more and you can reevaluate the situation when they do!
Make it fun: “Small amounts” are just not words kids like to hear. So, be engaged with them to make it fun! Have them make small things for you! For example, you could pretend to be at a restaurant and order food from them. Order one item at a time and have them ask for more kinetic sand when they need it!
Does Kinetic Sand Leave a Residue?
Depending on if the sand was bought at the store or made from home, it may leave a residue. If the kinetic sand was made using vegetable oil (or any oil really), it is possible your kids (and the area) will have a slimy residue. However it can be easily washed off!
Kinetic sand from the store however does not leave a residue as it’s made with shelf-sustainable materials.
Kinetic sand does not often leave a mess. This is because it doesn’t stick to anything other than itself. Additionally, kinetic sand is easy to wipe off of hard surfaces and vacuum up off of carpeting. It does occasionally leave a residue if it’s made using an oil, but for the most part, it’s a fun sensory activity that leaves little to no mess behind!