Make Your Own Finger Paint

My kids were asking to finger paint today. Problem was, we were out of finger paint. Homespun with Love did a wonderful guest post here where she made finger paint using Jello. Problem was, we were out of Jello too. But we did have cornstarch and sugar. When I was teaching, I remember using these ingredients to make finger paint. It worked perfectly! The kids had a blast and I didn’t have to spend money on finger paint. Read on to see how you can make some too.

You will need:

  • Cornstarch
  • Sugar
  • Water
  • Food coloring
  • Containers
  • Popsicle sticks or something to use for mixing the colors

Combine 1/2 cup of cornstarch and 4 tablespoons of sugar in a pot.

Next, add 2 cups of cold water. You can have kids help with these parts, but you will want an adult to do the next step.

Place the pot on the stove over medium heat and stir the mixture until it thickens.

Remove the mixture and let it cool a bit. If your kids are like mine and anxious to play with their new finger paint, this wait will seem like an eternity.

You can now add food coloring to the mixture in the pot if you want all one color finger paint, or you can scoop the cornstarch sugar mixture into separate cups and add various colors of food coloring there.

Squeeze a few drops of food coloring in the cup of cornstarch mixture. If you want really dark colors, use more food coloring.

Use the Popsicle stick to blend until the entire mixture is evenly colored.

Now it’s time to play and create!

Finger paint is such a great sensory experience for kids. Some kids are more cautious with it, like my daughter B who only paints with her index finger.

While my daughter A loves the feeling of it all over her hands.

A fun time was had by all my kids though a day later they still have blue and green tinged hands. I love how inexpensive this was to make compared with purchasing finger paint. It’s also great to be able to create your own custom colors. Finger paint comes in primary colors and we stuck with primary colors for this batch, but you make all sorts of cool colors depending on the the occasion.


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