Elephant Toothpaste

elephant toothpaste in my backyard

I started going back to school a few days ago and my life has been going back to normal bit by bit. But the thing is – I miss having a lot of time and freedom to keep sleeping way into the morning! I am not saying that school is boring because I love school. Being with my friends, learning many new things but at normal school, I have to get up on time and not whenever I want and I follow a set timetable and cannot mix up my subjects my way.  I miss having loads of time to go riding the cycle with my friends or playing with my cat or even just having a nap! I needed to pick up the pieces and make it better, I needed to get myself organised. While coming back to these changes, I stopped experimenting and writing about it too. it was good to have a long weekend to catch up and put things in better order. Where do we start? with another experiment, of course!

What is elephant toothpaste?

Elephant toothpaste! What on earth is that!! Elephant’s don’t brush their teeth! Do they?

Elephant toothpaste is basically a super cool, foamy, soap-like fountain which is the first experiment I actually wanted to try, since the beginning of Cool Brain. We did not have a few of these chemicals and I had postponed it. Now the stores are open and I can get them, Yay!!

Apart from the name, the experiment bring out the unlimited amount of spongy foam, that too,  it can be any colour you want ! I know you’re still wondering “why is it called elephant toothpaste?” Well, I did some research and found that elephant toothpaste is called that because the foamy mess looks like toothpaste squirting out of a bottle. And for only an elephant would use toothpaste as big as that!

Here is what I did

Before you begin, I should warn that some of these chemicals are irritants to the skin. Be careful and take help of an adult.

You will need:

  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Hydrogen Peroxide 3%
  • Tablespoon measuring cup
  • Food colouring
  • 1 tablespoon yeast
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 Small plastic bottle (with a narrow neck)
  • A tray 
  • Small bowl
  • ingredients for elephant toothpaste

Put the bottle on the tray.

Pour the water into the small bowl. Add the yeast and stir well. Keep aside till we need it. the yeast will activate

Pour an inch of dishwashing liquid into the bottle and two to three drops of the food colouring you like.

dishwashing liquid science

Add an inch of hydrogen peroxide to this mixture. 

hydrogen peroxide experiment

Quickly pour a few spoonfuls of the yeast-water solution into the bottle.

yeast in the bottle

Wait and watch!

elephant toothpaste in my backyard

Why does this happen?

The yeast we added is a living thing. living things have an enzyme catalase needed to produce energy in their body. Yes, we too have catalase enzyme in our body. This Catalase enzyme helps to break down the hydrogen peroxide we have poured in the bottle into water and oxygen gas. This oxygen is trapped in the dish solution making it foamy and pushing it out of the bottle. As this foam oozes out,  it looks like toothpaste. and definitely the elephant will not brush its tooth with it. it is unpleasant so please do not brush your teeth with it as well. ( source)

In our body, Hydrogen peroxide is used to clean wounds and that is why they show bubbling at the spot and this kills the germs around it.

Save this experiment to do it later, using this pin

Have you read my previous posts? Here are some:

Self-sustaining Terrarium

Tangy Fizzy Sherbet

Oops!! my jelly did not set!!

I am glad I got back to these, hope you will try them as well. 

elephant tooth paste experiment


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