Play-Doh has been around for a very long time, providing children with countless hours of creative fun. However, some of your children’s creations are so precious that you want to keep them forever. So how do you save their beautiful creations? Can you bake regular Play-Doh in the oven to preserve it?
You can bake regular Play-Doh in the oven to preserve it. However, the trick is to bake it on low heat (200 Degrees Fahrenheit) to prevent cracking or burning. If your dough is too flat, the risk of cracking is higher, so stick bigger sculptures with a bit more body.
Even though there is a chance that your Play-Doh could end up a bit brittle, there are things that you can do to fix it. This article will discuss the best and most effective ways to make your Play-Doh masterpiece last longer, including an easy guide to making your very own playdough.
How To Bake Regular Play-Doh
First, you need to assess your sculpture. Is it big? Is it small? Is there fine detail that might dry out too fast and break off? If you have a big sculpture, you can bake it a bit longer, but you should reduce the baking time to prevent it from burning and cracking if the sculpture is relatively small.
What You Need
- Wax paper
- Oven mitts
- Cookie sheet/baking tray
- Play-Doh sculpture
Before you start, preheat your oven at 200°Fahrenheit.
Place a layer of wax paper onto your baking tray. Place your Play-Doh creation onto the wax paper. If you have a nonstick baking tray, wax paper is not required.
Place your baking tray into the oven, close the oven door and bake it for about 5 to 10 minutes.
After about 7 minutes, carefully open the oven door and test it with a toothpick. If your dough is still a bit soft, place it back into the oven for another 5 minutes. Make sure you keep a close eye to prevent it from drying out entirely and cracking.
Unfortunately, Play-Doh isn’t a high-quality clay to bake. Play-Doh is closer to the consistency of cookie dough than clay. It consists mainly of flour and salt, whereas clay has elements of soil or mud. Therefore, Play-Doh is called a modeling compound instead of modeling clay.
Play-Doh is edible (even though I don’t recommend it), non-toxic, and safe enough for small children to play with.
Time To Seal You Play-Doh Sculpture
After you have baked your Play-Doh and left it to cool completely, paint a clear sealant over the entire sculpture. The sealant works almost like an exterior body glue that holds all the pieces together. It also adds a professional-looking, glossy finish.
You can use another method to preserve your Play-Doh creation, and that is through air drying. If you choose to air-dry your Play-Doh creation instead of baking it, you need to seal it before it is completely dried out. Air-drying Play-Doh causes it to start salting on the outside.
If you don’t seal it before the salting starts, your sealer or paint will have difficulty sticking. The best sealer to use is Mod Podge because it adds a glossy, smooth look to your sculpture. Just be careful not to concentrate the sealer in the cracks of the sculpture; otherwise, it won’t dry clear.
You can also use EX-74 (a two-part UV-resistant resin). Click on the link below to view this product;
Do not use low-cost varnishes that you get in craft stores. It does not bond well with the salt and oil in the dough. Glass Mod Podge seems to be the best sealer for this, and it also takes care of most of the salting.
Air-drying Play-Doh takes about two to three days to dry out completely, depending on your creation’s thickness and size. Play-Doh contains mineral oils, which keep the dough malleable for longer.
Paints and sealants that you can use
- Tempera paint
- Glitter gel pens (waterproof)
- Markers (waterproof)
- Nail polish (two coats) (paint and sealant)
- Polyester resin (sealant
- Extra glossy sealant
- Mod Podge (matte or glossy)
Tips And Tricks for Baking Regular Play Doh
- The lower you set the heat on your oven, the less likely the Play-Doh is to dry out and crack, and the inside will become hard without burning the outside.
- Never work use an oven without asking your mom or dad to help you, and always wear oven mitts.
- Do not use spray varnish because it contains chemicals that could damage your masterpiece.
- Do not use clear protective paint as a sealant; it won’t stick to your sculpture.
- Don’t paint your Play-Doh when it is still wet; only apply paint after it has baked and cooled down.
- If you are working with resin-based sealers, make sure you are in a well-ventilated area as these chemicals can be harmful to your health.
- If a piece of your sculpture has broken off, you can use super glue to stick it back on. Remember, the dry Play-Doh will be pretty porous and absorb most of the glue, so make sure to use a sufficient amount and be careful not to get it on your skin.
How To Make Your Own Playdough
If you accidentally burn your Play-Doh in the oven or it is too dry and falling apart, you may need to replace it with new playdough. Did you know that you have everything you need in the kitchen to make your own playdough?
What You Need
- 2½ Cups (625ml) of flour
- 2½ Cups (625ml) of water
- 1¼ Cups (312.5ml) of salt
- 1½ Tablespoons of cream of tartar
- 5 Tablespoons of vegetable oil
- Food coloring (any color)
- Measuring cup/jug
- Measuring spoons
- Wooden spoon
- Small bowls to mix the different colors of dough
- Mix all the ingredients in a saucepan and cook it over low heat. Stir constantly.
- Continue stirring the mixture until you have a ball of dough in the middle of the pan.
- Remove from heat and leave it to cool.
- Once it is cool enough to handle with your hands, divide the dough into as many balls as you need for all the different colors.
- Add a few drops of food coloring to each ball and work or knead it into the dough. Wear gloves to prevent e food coloring from staining your hands.
- Place your in airtight containers when you aren’t playing with it.
- Add a drop of essential oil to each ball of dough and work it through. Not only does it make the dough smell lovely, but the oil is great for your skin.
You can try both methods to see which one works better, but you can’t go wrong with baking your sculpture in the oven. Just remember to keep it on very low heat and use a high-quality sealer for a professional finishing touch!