Chasing Cheerios

Friday, August 10, 2012

Homemade Lava Lamps

I've had making homemade lava lamps with the girls on my to-do list for almost a year, and we finally did it this week!  We had SO much fun, and this is definitely an activity that we'll do again soon.

The idea came from this blog via Pinterest.  To make a homemade lava lamp, you need cooking oil, water, food coloring, alka seltzer, and a bottle (we used glass Snapple bottles).

First, we filled 2 bottles (1 for each girl) 3/4 full with cooking oil.

Then, we added the water until the bottle was close to full.

The girls chose their colors and added in 10 drops of food coloring.

We watched the food coloring rain down through the oil and into the water.

Then came the really fun part!  I gave each girl an alka seltzer tablet, which they broke into 4 pieces.  They put one piece in the bottle at a time.  It was SO much fun to watch the bubbles go crazy in the bottle!

The girls shook their bottles up, and they were pretty excited by the thousands of tiny bubbles.

They wanted to keep adding alka seltzer, and they ended up putting 3 tablets into each bottle.

They added in different colors into their bottles to see what would happen. O(6) said "This is awesome!"

E(2) LOVES her lava lamp and wanted to carry it with her everywhere.  They are looking forward to adding more alka seltzer to their bottles when we get home from vacation :)


  1. I found directions for these in an old science experiment book, but instead of alka-seltzer it called for using frozen cube of baking soda and water. You use vinegar instead of water along with the oil. A little cheaper, and we always have vinegar and baking soda on hand!

    1. do you mean vinegar alone?? or vinegar with water? or vinegar with oil? .... thanx :-)

  2. Here's a link back to you. Thanks for the inspiration:

  3. Fun fun fun!! I can't wait until Little A is big enough to try this and understand a little of the "science" behind it.

  4. That is really neat! Never even thought you could make your own lava lamp! Thanks for sharing!