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Best slimes

By Hannah Fox

We’ve tested a range of slimes and putties to check they’re safe and fun to play with. Find out what to consider when buying it, and some of the best slimes out there

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Slime is a toy you're more than likely to have come across if you have children. Whether it’s bought from a shop or made up from a slime recipe at home, this astronomically popular tactile toy is one fad that refuses to fade.

We've tested a selection of popular slimes and putties and found three we've rated as Best Buys. They're highlighted in red in our table below.

What are the best slimes and putties?

Only logged-in members can view what our recommendations in the table below scored. If you're not yet a member, sign up to Which? today for instant access to this and all our reviews.

Glam Goo Deluxe Slime Slime or putty Price Boron level Star rating

Glam-Goo-Slime-table-v2

Bought from: Argos

Slime £22.50 75mg/kg
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Miffy Slimes Peach Snowball Slime or putty Price Boron level Star rating

miffy-slime TABLE

Bought from: Etsy

Slime £5.15 200mg/kg
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Orb Slimy Elasti Plasti Slime or putty Price Boron level Star rating

Elasti-Plasti-Magnapink-TABLE

Bought from: Argos

Slime £12.95 280mg/kg
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Out Of The Blue Crazy Slime Slime or putty Price Boron level Star rating

CrazySlime TABLE

Bought from: Amazon (Bargains Galore)

Slime £6.99 110mg/kg
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Slime Marshmallows Peaches & Cream Slime or putty Price Boron level Star rating

Marshmallow-slime-TABLE

Bought from: Etsy

Putty £5.50 660mg/kg
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Tobar XL Neon Slime Slime or putty Price Boron level Star rating

XLNeonSlime TABLE

Bought from: Hamleys

Slime £4 290mg/kg
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Zuru Oosh Slime Slime or putty Price Boron level Star rating

ZuruOoshSlime TABLE

Bought from: Argos

Slime £20 (as part of a multi-pack of slime) 270mg/kg
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Zuru Oosh Putty Unicorn Poop Slime or putty  Price Boron level Star rating

ZuruOoshPutty TABLE

Bought from: Argos

Putty £20 (as part of a multi-pack of slime) 140mg/kg
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Prices and information last updated December 2018.

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How we tested slimes and putties

We put a selection of popular slimes and putties through two rounds of testing.

The first tests were in an accredited laboratory.

The requirements of the EU safety standard for toys (EN 71-3) states that any chemical elements within a toy should fall below certain levels. Tests can be carried out to check the migration of certain elements, including arsenic, zinc and lead.

We check the level of all these elements.

Levels of boron need to be below 300mg/kg for slimes and 1200mg/kg for putties. Those which contain above a certain level could be potentially unsafe if your child was to regularly handle and play with the toy.

We discovered six slimes and putties where the level of boron exceeded this EU safety standard.

Discover the names of these Don't Buy slimes.

The remaining slimes were assessed by an expert panel on whether they would also be fun to play with.

We rated them between one and five stars, based on the following criteria: elasticity, residue, viscosity, attractiveness and smell.

The best slimes had plenty of stretch, a great consistency, didn’t have too strong a smell and looked great. The worst slimes were runny, too sticky, left a residue on your hands or broke apart too easily. Slime which scored four stars or above qualified as a Best Buy.

Borax slime - what's the issue?

Borax (a compound of boron) is used in slime to give it its gelatinous texture. Borax and other derivatives of boron, such as boric acid are found in a number of products around the home, such as pesticides, face creams, contact lens solution, household cleaners and laundry detergent.

Exposure to excessive levels of boron may cause irritation, diarrhoea, vomiting and cramps in the short term. Even more worryingly, studies of high levels of boron in animals have been linked to low birth weights, birth defects and developmental delays.

The EU states that exposure to very high levels of boron may impair fertility and may cause harm to the unborn child in pregnant women.

Where can you buy safe slime?

We've tested slimes and putties from high street retailers and popular online marketplaces such as Amazon, eBay and Etsy and we've found potentially unsafe slime isn't limited to one retailer or outlet.

Our advice is that all slimes, both homemade slime recipes and shop-bought slime, need to be approached with caution.

The only slimes we can recommend are those we've tested.

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