Are you looking for a fun and inexpensive sensory activity? Follow our step-by-step instructions to create your own batch of this easy 2-ingredient, no-cook cloud dough!
What is cloud dough?
Cloud dough is a term used to describe super soft homemade playdough. You can make cloud dough with lotion, conditioner or baby oil. Our recipe below will show you how to make different colored cloud dough with conditioner, cornstarch and food coloring (optional).
Moon Dough vs. Cloud Dough
Some people will say that they are the same thing, however, they may differ in ingredients and textures.
Moon dough is typically made from a combination of cornstarch and a type of oil or fat, such as vegetable oil. Cloud Dough is typically made from cornstarch or even flour and lotion or conditioner.
Regardless of what you call it, these recipes are super fun for kids to experience.
- Bowls For Mixing: we repeated the recipe 3 times in different bowls to make 3 different colors.
- 2/3 cups Cornstarch
- 1/3 cup Hair Conditioner: We have found that unscented works best, but you can use whatever you have on hand
- Optional: Food Coloring
How To Make Conditioner Cloud Dough
Note: You can easily modify the amount of materials used. Use different bowls to make different colors at the same time.
Step 1: Add Lotion To Mixing Bowl
Add 1/3 cup hair conditioner to 3 different small bowls.
Make sure to take into account any allergies before choosing your conditioner.
Optional Step: Add Food Coloring
Add a few drops of food coloring into each bowl of lotion and mix. By doing this now, you will save your hands from getting messy.
Learn From Our Mistake
Regular food coloring will work better when added directly to the conditioner. You can see how the gel coloring was a little speckly and needed to be mixed more once the cornstarch was added.
Feel free to experiment with colors and scents by adding food coloring or essential oils to customize your cloud dough
Step 2: Mix In Cornstarch To Bowl
Slowly add 1 cup of cornstarch to each bowl of lotion. Knead the ingredients together.
After one minute, the dough should be moldable and feel like a softer homemade playdough. It also should not be sticking to your hands.
Knead the dough until is soft and moldable without crumbling.
Tips For Mixing
- The amounts of materials needed may vary based on the type and brand of conditioner you are using.
- If you are having trouble with a sticky mess, use the back of the spoon to push this playdough back together.
- If it is too wet, add additional cornstarch to get a good mix.
- If your cloud dough is too dry, add a 1/2 teaspoon of conditioner at a time. Knead in between to get your desired consistency.
- Cloud dough is generally safe, but it’s not meant for consumption. Monitor your youngest children to make sure that they are not putting this in their mouths.
- Be cautious if anyone has allergies before letting them play.
- It’s a good idea to play with cloud dough on a surface that’s easy to clean, as it can get a bit messy. Playing with this outside is always a great idea!
- If the dough starts to “dry” out. You can clump it back together.
- Put a little bit of lotion or conditioner on your hands to help collect the dried pieces.
- Have your children work in one space and then just simply vacuum up the rest once it dries up.
Cloud Dough FAQs
It can last for a few days in an airtight container or Ziploc bag. We were able to continue to play with ours for about 4 days after.
We have seen how-tos where they use lotion, baby oil, or baby lotion hair or shampoo in place of conditioner.
Our children did not seem to notice any difference when playing with the conditioner cloud dough or the lotion cloud dough. They had fun with both sensory materials!
Follow us on Pinterest for more free art and craft ideas!
More Sensory Play Activities
- Simple Oobleck Recipe
- How To Make Homemade Playdough Without Cream Of Tartar
- Fun Food Sculpture Art Project: Uses our favorite no-mess material.
Regardless of the ingredients you chose to make your cloud dough, we know that your kids love sculpting, squeezing, and imagining.
Do you like this art project? Be sure to give us 5 stars below 🤩🤩🤩🤩🤩 and have fun being creative with your family.
Cloud Dough Recipe With Conditiioner
- Small Mixing Bowls 1 bowl for each color you are making
- Add 1/3 conditioner to each bowl.
- Optional: Add a few drops of different food colorings to each bowl.
- Slowly add 2/3 cups of cornstarch to each bowl.
- Use a spoon first to mix together and then your hands to knead the materials together.
- Add small amounts of conditioner or cornstarch to get your desired consistency. After 1 minute, you should have a soft playdough to work with.
- After one minute of kneading, the dough should be moldable and feel like a softer homemade playdough. It also should not be sticking to your hands.
- If it is too wet, add a small amount of cornstarch and kneed together again.
- If it is too dry, add a 1/2 teaspoon of lotion and knead.
- You may need to slowly adjust the recipe to get your desired consistency depending on the exact type conditioner used.