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I like the idea of being a craft mom…. but I do not enjoy being a craft mom. Or rather, I do not like the aftermath of being a craft mom.
I used to do crafts and sensory play stuff with my kids… back when I had just one or two kids! Once I had my third, the thought of mess overruled any benefit of play and I stopped doing crafts and left it up to grandma’s house to cover that area of my kids’ lives. What would we do without grandmas?
However, every now and then I’ll feel a smidgen of guilt and I’ll break out the fun stuff for my kids (confession, it’s usually just when I want to write a craft blog post… what can I say, my kids are getting major blogger’s kid perks).
Being the natural mama that I am, I don’t really want them playing with products that have weird ingredients. This leaves me to making our own craft products.
Now moon sand is probably the world’s easiest craft to make. It doesn’t require cooking like playdough does. It’s not as messy as homemade slime and it definitely doesn’t require the time to make like herbal window clings.
All those are extreme fun and entertaining projects for the kiddos by the way but when you want a non-toxic craft in less than a minute, moon sand is where it’s at!
What is Moon Sand?
Moon sand (or sometimes called cloud dough) is basically moldable flour. It’s not actually sand which is honestly great because flour is so much smoother and feels great when squished with your hands. It’s soft, it crumbles, it forms. Hours of entertainment as my kids just displayed today when even my pre-teen boys played with it for a solid hour!
As I already mentioned, I want non-toxic craft products for my kids. In fact, it’s even better if it’s edible! Not that I want my kids to actually eat this stuff but it’s nice to know that if they do eat it, I don’t have to worry even a little bit.
This moon sand is 100% safe! It’s safe to play with and even safe to eat. Not that they’d want to because it’s basically just flour but you can rest easy if your toddler suddenly has moon sand in their mouth.
Ingredients in Moon Sand
Some moon sand recipes use baby oil but I like to avoid as it’s a petroleum product and obviously not edible. Instead my recipe uses coconut oil because coconut oil is safe, edible, and well I like using coconut oil for everything!
Most moon sand recipes use food dyes to color the sand and while my kids aren’t (hopefully) going to be investing the food dye (which is usually the main concern when it comes to food dyes) I don’t necessarily want it coating their skin either.
Now, I could just use natural food dyes but they tend to be a bit pricey and often times I don’t have them in the home. Instead, I decided to use herbal powders. Even if you aren’t into herbal remedies, you likely have at least some herb powders or spices that you can use! (check the bottom of the post for some herb ideas)
Herbal powders will not be as bright as commercial food dyes but they will be about as vibrant as natural food dyes would be. For pastel shades use 1/2 teaspoon herbal powder. For slightly more vibrant shades use 1 teaspoon herbal powder.
The pink moon sand in the photos used 3/4 teaspoon beet powder. The green moon sand in the photos used 1/2 teaspoon spirulina.
Also if you were wondering… the herbal powders do not dye your little one’s hands. My son played with the beet powder moon sand for at least an hour today and while his palms were ever so slightly pink after playing, it all washed off instantly.
Herbal Moon Sand
1 cup flour (all purpose or gluten free)
2 tbs melted coconut oil
1/2-1 tsp herb powder
In a small mixing bowl, combine all ingredients.
Mix well using your hands. (this really is the best and fastest way to mix the moon sand)
Once well mixed, you are done and your kiddos can start playing!
Store in a jar or container when not playing.
Less Mess Tip: Moon sand is messy. Expect your little one to be covered in flour by then end of playtime. To help contain the mess, place moon sand on a baking sheet that has a lip to it.
Herbal Color Suggestions
Pink – Beet Powder
Yellow – Turmeric
Green – Spirulina
Purple – Blueberry Powder
Brown – Cocoa Powder
Black/Gray – Activated Charcoal (may be messy)
Looking for more non-toxic homemade crafts?
All Natural Playdough
Homemade Herbal Slime
Herbal Window Clings
My boy unfortunately is already too old for that, but when he was younger he loved to play with salt dough. Have you tried that so far? It’s 100% mess-free, edible (to a cerzain amount *cough*) and you can even bake (dry) it afterwards in the oven and paint it. We did a lot of items for his play kitchen and made small figurines and items for his matchbox car system.
Oh yes, I’ve made this with my 2 year old using lavender essential oil. She loves it and it smells great. I love it because it’s safe!
Yes! I thought about adding essential oils! I bet it smells great!
I´m a spanish mom and I don´t know what´s herb powder. Could you help me? Thanks!
Herb powder is simple herbs that have been ground into a powder. I have color suggestions linked at the bottom of the post. Turmeric (ground) is great for yellow, beets which have been turned into beet powder is great for pinks, etc.
This is such a fun idea. Thanks for sharing.