What to do with Orbeez (water beads)

If you have kids, by now you've been begged for some of these squishy, bouncy water balls. Even if you don't have kids you've probably seen the commercials. Little tiny marbles that grow when you soak them in water and provide hours of creative fun. Yeah right!

My son lasted about 20 minutes before he went "But what do they DO?" Ummmm...nothing. Somewhere a man is flying cross country in his new jet laughing his butt off at all of us, but I digress. Now that you bought the Orbeez and the kids are bored with them, what can you do with water balls?

How to use water balls around the house

First, let's start with what they are. Orbeez are a superabsorbent polymer that can absorb and retain extremely large amounts of liquid relative to their own mass. These SAPs are then formed into a ball for that waterball look. 

You're probably more familiar with them though as the stuff inside diapers & sanitary pads or those gel like chunks in the pot of plants that grow in water like the Lucky Bamboo plants. Which brings me to my first 'alternative' use....

How to use Orbeez

You can plant them! Superabsorbent polymers were originally invented to conserve moisture in soil. The amazing thing is the plants suck the moisture out of the water beads when the soil starts to get dry. The water bead swells back up next time you water the plant, effectively storing moisture for the next time the soil starts to dry out. These are especially helpful for those that don't remember to water their houseplants very often!

disclosure

Party decorations: I used clear ones in glass vases with Color changing submersible LED light balls for decorations at oldest daughters Graduation Party. I decorated dollar store vases with ribbons and decals in her theme (music) then let the bead filled vases sit there all day. When night came we just clicked the light balls on and dropped them in for a lit up display. So pretty!

Candle holders: Fill a short glass vase with water beads and add a long taper candle and they will hold the candle in place. Or use a large vase, add water beads and water then place a floating candle on top.

Flower holder: Fill a glass vase with water beads and some water then add fresh cut flowers. The beads will help stabilize the flowers so you can arrange them.

Graduation party lights

Glow light: For a fire-less approach, activate a glow stick and place inside a vase full of water beads to illuminate the area.

Make an air freshener: Add a few drops of essential oil to the water when you hydrate the Orbeez. Drain when full size and place in a shallow bowl for a cool looking air freshener. Here are my simple instructions to make your own air fresheners.

use Orbeez as an air freshener

Sensory play: Young kids love to squish and sort things and what better way to use Orbeez than to play with them? Check out these 8+ Water Bead activities for kids.


Water beads come in many colors, I just happen to use clear for most projects. The colors can be mixed together or even layered for a really cool look. They were originally made by the Maya Company but now are available just about everywhere.

Sadly, now that you shelled out the cash....that is about all that water beads AKA Orbeez are good for. I'm not actually sure what the point of orbeez are though, as a parent they just seem like a mess waiting to happen! The upside is, at least they are good for something!

Now, what are you gonna do with all that slime the kids just had to have?


~L


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How to use orbeez

38 comments:

  1. Nice & Informative post on custom color Water beads.
    Thanks for this blog!!

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    1. Thanks! ...and thanks for stopping by!

      ~L

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  2. They make incredible ice packs for injuries or dental needs aka (wisdom tooth extraction) place orbeez in a sandwhich size ziploc freezer bag with 4 oz of rubbibg alcohol and 2oz of h2o and freeze.

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    1. Waat a great idea! Thanks for the tip!

      ~L

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  3. my daughter put them in a balloon to make a stress ball.

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  4. I have seen these use to hold fresh cut flowers. Didn't know more of the many ways these beads could be used.

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    1. That is a great idea! I'm going to try making a stress ball with orbeez now!

      Lisa

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  5. How interesting! I didn't know so much could be done with these. My daughter loves to play with them, I know that. I think the glow light would be cool to have in the house.

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    1. I definitely think orbeez are more of a girl toy, my boys got bored quick but my daughter played with them quite a bit more.

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  6. I have seen these used in my sons class when he was in kindergarten. He absolutely love them. There is definitely a lot you can do with these. It looks like you have lotta fun ideas to try.

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  7. I haven't used Orbeez in ages. I never knew they could be used in so many creative ways. Love that air freshener idea.

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    1. I love using orbeez in air fresheners because I don't have to worry about harmful chemicals since they're made with essential oils.


      Lisa

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  8. I've used water beads in the past for my floral arrangements. I had no idea about these other options as well. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Orbeez are great in fresh floral arrangements and can even be scented with essential oils and used to hold artificial flowers in place too!

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  9. I have heard of these but never really knew what they were for. I don't even know that I have seen them in the store!

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    1. When Orbeez first came out they were an "as seen on Tv product". They're in stores now but it's totally possible that you haven't seen them!

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  10. These are all really lovely ideas. They do make great sensory play toys, my kids love to play with them as they are so soft and squishy!

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  11. It is amazing all the different things you can do with orbeeze, they seem like they could be quite a relaxing thing to play around with at times.

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    1. Yes, orbeez are quite fun to play with!

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  12. I have seen Orbeez everywhere lately. Mostly for sensory play. I had no idea there were so many uses.

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  13. I have always wandered what to do with Orbeez water beads! I honestly had to idea. I love the sensory play idea!

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    1. Ya know, they come with all these setups like spa's and counting towers...but I think they're best by their own. Their so fun to squish!

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  14. My kids love these. I refuse to buy them because I know they would be all over the house :)

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    1. LOL and that is exactly where they end up!

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  15. Very informative post to read. My kids loves playing a water beads but I have never tried to use it as a decor or anything like this. Next time will do these things once we buy another set of water beads.

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    1. Try them! It's so nice to actually have a use for the kids toys once they get bored with them!

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  16. Wow! I am impressed how many usees orbeez water beads can have. Some of them are really cool. Thank you for sharing!

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  17. When my kids were a bit younger, they love playing with this. I put them once in the vase with flower but at the end of the day, they were gone lol.

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  18. We have a bunch of bags of orbeez (dry), and it would be fun to use them for one of these projects. I like the idea of planting them!

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    1. I currently have orbeez in my bamboo plant and mixed into the dirt of my basil plant. They really work for regulating moisture in houseplants....they're my secret weapon so my plants don't dry out when I'm on vacation.

      Lisa

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  19. This is so neat! Who knew there we so many uses for them. I love that they can be used in plants.

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    1. I have them in my bamboo plants right now. I also like to use orbeez in my plants so I don't have to worry about them getting watered while I'm on vacation.

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  20. I think my oldest niece would love this! She has always loved squishy things plus she's big into science.

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    1. She would probably love Orbeez! Waterballs are fascinating because of their ability to retain and then share their moisture. I'm sure they could be used in lots of experiments!

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  21. My kids are obsessed with water beads! We have an entire bucket that they just play with almost daily!

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    1. That is awesome! My kids were over the water beads within an hour. lol

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