How to Make Lava - Free Science Experiments

Ok, so it’s not the ‘real’ lava from volcanoes but it’s still pretty awesome, completely safe and I bet that you’ve already got everything that you need! 

Let’s get cracking!

WARNING: Parents, this may remind you of the lava lamps of days gone by and make you feel very nostalgic!

Dragons Den Approved!

What Do I Need?

  • Vegetable oil
  • A glass or transparent cup
  • Food colouring
  • Salt
How to Make Lava - What Do I Need?

How Do I Do It?

STEP1 - Fill your glass just over half full with water and add a good few drops of food colouring.

STEP2 - Pour just less than 1 quarter cup of vegetable oil into the cup. It will soon settle out to form a layer on top!

STEP3 - Sprinkle a good dollop of salt on into your cup to start making your lava!

How to Make Lava - How Do I Do It?

What’s Going On?

First of all the oil will settle out to form a layer on top of the water because it’s lighter (technically it’s less dense) so it floats on top.

When you add a dollop of salt it’s heavier (more dense) so it sinks through the oil and water pulling some of the vegetable oil down with it.

Next, the salt will start to dissolve into the water. This will free up the oil and as it’s lighter (less dense) it will rise back up to float back on top of the water.

Oil and water don’t mix (scientists like to say that oil is hydrophobic – almost meaning scared of water!) and so the oil stays together as a blob as it rises through the water – giving you your very own cup full of lava!

How to Make Lava - What’s Going On?
More Fun Please! - Experiment Like A Real Scientist!

Try different types of oil, olive, sunflower etc and see how it changes the lava

How long will the lamp work for? Can you just keep adding salt forever?

What’s the best shaped container to make the perfect lava lamp? Tall and thin? Short and fat? Experiment and find out!

Want A FREE Science Experiment Book?

If you like fun science experiments then you'll love this FREE Science experiment book....

It's packed full of awesome experiments you can do at home with "stuff" you've already got. 

Your FREE Science experiment book is:

  • 5 Star Reviewed
  • Dragons' Den Approved
  • Yours completely FREE. 

Click Here to download your FREE copy now!

Your FREE Science Experiment Book!

Kids Party Coming Up?

If you like fun science experiments then you’ll love the Dragons’ Den winning Sublime Science Party. Check price & availability in your area and grab your FREE Kids Party Survival Guide right now!

Dragons Den Winning Science Party
Award-Winning Science Party

Home - About - Privacy Policy - Terms & Conditions - Contact


Copyright 2008-2022 - Sublime Science - All Rights Reserved - Registered in England and Wales, Company Number 6680269. Registered Address: The Sublime Science Lab (Unit4) Fernleigh Business Park, Blaby Rd, Enderby, Leicester LE19 4AQ - Call: 0116 380 0750

50% Complete

You Just Couldn't Resist!

There's some serious science behind why you just clicked! 

If you'd like more awesome science experiments then enter your email address below and grab your FREE science experiment book!

You'll get your FREE copy of 'Don't Eat Your Slime', weekly 'Top Secret Science Experiment Printables' and occasional awesome offers. Happy experimenting!

Close
50% Complete

(enter your email address below to get your FREE science experiment book)

YES, I Want My FREE Experiment Book!

(You'll get your FREE copy of 'Don't Eat Your Slime', weekly 'Top Secret Science Experiment Printables' and occasional awesome offers. Happy experimenting! 

Close