The Hernandez sisters are partners in slime.
Allyea, 8, and Amaya, 10, have made more than 100 batches of the sticky gunk that kids love and schools ban.
The result is an arsenal of slime to stretch, twist, crunch, pop and squish with reckless abandon.
What’s up with that?
Their $25 month allowance pretty much all goes to slime. It’s cheaper and more fun to make than buy already made. Ingredients include glue, shaving cream, contact lens solution, laundry detergent and borax depending on the recipe.
It takes about five minutes to whip up a batch.
“It’s an arm workout,” said Amaya, as she and Allyea made fluffy slime — and a minor mess — at the kitchen table of their Marysville home.
Their interest is more than playing.
“I like to make slime because slime is science and it can take the shape of anything but hold its own form,” said Amaya, a fifth-grader at Immaculate Conception in Everett.
Allyea likes crafting.
“Michaels has a slime headquarters. That’s like my heaven, I love that place,” the third grader said.
Slime isn’t a fidget spinner flash-in-the-pan craze or your father’s Silly Putty. There are millions of DIY slime sites and YouTube videos. The problem is when you search “slime” you get a lot more than a toy product.
Slime first came onto the scene in 1976 by Mattel in little plastic trash cans as a gummy, green ooze. It was messy, gross fun. The enemy of clothes and carpets. Nickelodeon game shows took it a step further, sliming guests from head to toe.
It has evolved into a cash cow for some entrepreneurs. In Texas, home-based Samantha’s Slime Shop run by a 15-year-old girl claims to be making more than six figures a year. That’s nothing compared to Karina “Slime Queen” Garcia, a California woman in her 20s who makes six figures a month mixing goo on YouTube and writing slime manuals.
The Hernandez sisters would need more than a $25 monthly allowance to pull that off.
“If I allowed them to make as much as they want, they’d sell it by the side of the road,” said their mom, Mytyl Hernandez.
“I should let them sell it. They make it anywhere they’re allowed. They’ve made it in hotel rooms.”
The sisters do workshops at Hibulb Cultural Center in Tulalip teaching others. The next one is Oct. 27.
Want to book them? They’re good at cleaning up afterward.
They got hooked a year or so ago after big brother, Malaki, 14, made magnetic slime for a science fair. For real. Slime you can play with and move with a magnet, without touching it.
Touching it is, of course, part of slime’s oddly satisfying attraction. The squish. The pop. The crunch.
The calming, tactile pleasure is part of a phenomenon known as “autonomous sensory meridian response” or ASMR, a low-grade euphoria that also comes from watching videos of slime.
There are thousands of recipes for slime that’s pearly, foamy, glittery, snotty and buttery.
“It’s called butter slime because you take a knife and spread it,” Amaya said. “But my mom doesn’t allow us to have knives.”
The girls sometimes add flavored drops or lotion for scent.
“My lotion is always missing,” their mom said. “I don’t love slime. It gets everywhere. Most is machine washable. The food coloring is not. It’s problematic when it melts and gets stuck in carpet.”
Slime is in-between a liquid and a solid. Scientists call a material that changes viscosity a non-Newtonian fluid.
Most of us just call it slime.
Fluffy slime recipe
1 cup glue
1 cup shaving cream
Contact lens solution, 1 tablespoon at a time
Pour ingredients in a bowl and mix with a sturdy spoon until the slime starts to form and come together. You will see the slime start to separate itself from the bowl and become more solid than liquid.
After it starts to form, we like to ditch the spoon and knead it by hand. If it is still sticky, add more solution until it is not sticking to hands.
When it is perfect, you can add some food color, essential oils, beads, glitter or any of your favorites. You can also leave it as-is. If you don’t have food coloring, you can use nontoxic markers or paints to color the slime as well.
Store in an airtight container.
Amaya’s choice: Use 1 cup clear glue. Elmer’s or Cra-Z-Art works the best.
—By Allyea and Amaya Hernandez