Making homemade slime is a craze that has taken school children by storm. Kids love creating these goopy concoctions and Google has plenty of recipes. In fact, homemade slime has become so popular that parents are even hosting “homemade slime” parties where kids gather and partake in making their own squishy goop. But now, parents around the world are speaking out and warning of the dangers associated with this schoolyard craze.
Last year, Kathleen Quinn went viral after she suffered third-degree burns while making homemade slime at a sleepover party.
The 11-year-old from Rockland, Massachusetts, had been using Elmer’s school glue and sodium borate (also known as borax) to make the substance when her hands started to feel hot and tingly.
“She was crying in pain. ‘My hands hurt; my hands hurt!’ And we looked at them and they were covered in blisters.”
When Kathleen’s parents rushed her to the doctors, they were told the girl’s burns were from extended exposure to borax in the slime.
Consumer Reports chief scientific officer James Dickerson, told PEOPLE: “It’s [borax] a material that is known to be an irritant to the eyes and to the breathing passages and nasal cavities, respiratory tracts. And it can be an irritant to the skin.”
Sadly, Kathleen’s story isn’t unusual. More and more parents are speaking out about borax after their children experienced similar injuries.
Deejay Jemmett from Prestwich, Manchester, UK, is another child who suffered chemical burns after playing with homemade slime containing borax.
Her mother, Rebekha D’Stephano told Daily Mail UK: “She is an avid YouTuber and came to ask if she could make some slime.”
“Within 48 hours, her skin had started to peel off. From there it got worse.”
Deejay’s burns were so severe, the little girl was referred to the Wythenshaw Hospital’s burn unit to see a plastic surgeon.
Although Kathleen and Deejay’s stories were publicized last year, children around the world are still getting sick and injured from homemade slime.
Last week (July 20), 6-year-old Riley Godfrey spent three days in the hospital after playing with a batch of slime made by his kindergarten teacher.
The teacher had used an online recipe which included contact lens solution— an item which often carries boron compounds. “I could have lost my son,” his mother Amy told The Sun UK.
Around this same time, Layla Fisher, 10, was also burned while making homemade slime with contact lens solution.
“It’s a real craze with kids that age,” said her mother, Gemma Wilson. “They play about with it, stick their fingers in it, pull it around and then put it in a container.”
“She had open sores on her hands and the skin was just peeling off her fingers. It was horrible.”
“A small patch had spread to her face and arm. It was then we were told she had impetigo.”
Unfortunately, many of the recipes online claiming not to use borax still use borax-containing ingredients, like contact lens solution. If you’re looking for a real alternative, check out this recipe, which uses only cornstarch and shampoo. Be sure to tell the parents you know about the dangers of borax and homemade slime. As James Dickerson told PEOPLE:
“It’s something that should be used solely for its intended purpose as a cleaner or a laundry booster, not as something for children, particularly, young children, to play around with in making things like slime.”
Hear Kathleen’s shocking story below.
Please SHARE this with your friends and family.