We believe moms are put on this great Earth to make magic more magical. This hack not only makes creating snowmen possible in the great indoors but makes said snow glow in the dark. It’s also perfect for winter parties since the unique reusable substance (which we’ll get to in a moment) doesn’t melt into puddles on your floor or countertops. As you may already know, Insta-Snow is a legendary and non-toxic tradition for teaching kids S.T.E.M. But of course, we had to take the fluff—which looks and acts like the real thing—one step further.
1 Line up your small bowls. While wearing gloves, use pliers to take apart each highlighter. The inside of each marker will have a small tube full of ink you’ll need to carefully squeeze into the bowl. Repeat for each different color you’ve chosen.
2 Add a little water to the colored ink in each bowl to give it more volume for pouring.
3 Now pour the contents of your Insta-Snow container onto your baking tray. And pour the glowing liquid onto the Insta-Snow.
4 Add water to make the snow fluffy and slush-like.
5 Turn on your black light and prepare to be amazed.
The Sci Behind the DIY
Snow days are nature’s gift to children. So is it any wonder kids love snow? Supreme to rain, sleet, hail—and perhaps even sunshine—snow forms in the coldest of weather when tiny ice crystals inside clouds begin to clump together. These clumps are affectionately known as snowflakes. When a bunch of snowflakes start to form and become heavy, they float to the ground where they begin to accumulate and cover everything in sight in white, glorious white.
Insta-Snow, made from the same family of superabsorbent polymers found in baby diapers, looks so real that special effects artists actually use it to create storms and such in the movies. The good news is that the water you add to it will eventually evaporate and your faux snow will turn back into a dry powder you can sweep up.
The concept is not so complicated: these elastic-y polymers act like tiny sponges and not only absorb water through osmosis but boast long chains of molecules that swell to an enormous, if not visually miraculous, size when mixed.
You will sound like a science super authority when you tell your snow angels this is known as a physical reaction where a substance itself does not change when mixed with something else.
And if that doesn’t stick, whip out an ice cube, let it melt and prove this solid, which is now a liquid, is still considered water.