How to Make Playdough Soft Again

Опубликовал Admin
18-03-2021, 13:00
When Play-Doh dries out, it gets hard, flaky, and difficult to play with. The putty is simple: it comprises mostly water, salt, and flour. In order to make this material soft again, you'll need to work water into the dough. Read on for several well-tested methods that you can use.

Working Water Into the Dough

  1. Add water. Put the Play-Doh into a small cup or bowl, then squeeze a drop of water onto it. Do not douse the dough. Go slowly, one drop at a time, so that you don't use too much. Try to fill in the cracks.
    • If you are working with a large amount of Play-Doh, feel free to start with more than one drop of water. Try using a teaspoon-full.
  2. Knead the Play-Doh. Use your fingers to work the water deeply into the dough. Roll the Play-Doh into a ball, stretch it out, pull it apart, and fold it into itself. If the Play-Doh is still hard after 15-20 seconds of this, add another drop of water and keep kneading.
  3. Be persistent. Continue to add water and knead the Play-Doh until the putty is soft again. Don't worry if the dough is wet and slimy – just keep kneading. Within a few minutes, the dough should be soft and pliable as new.

Wrapping in a Wet Paper Towel

  1. Wrap a wet paper towel around the dough. You can also use toilet paper, a tissue, a napkin, or any other soft, absorbent paper product. Run water over the paper towel so that it is thoroughly soaked. Then, wrap the wet paper around the dough.
    • This is a good second method once you've already tried kneading water into the dough. The kneading trick is quicker and more straightforward, but it doesn't always work.
    • Make sure that the dough is relatively compact. Try rolling it into a ball or a clump. This way, it will be easier to wrap the towel.
  2. Put the dough into a sealed container. Consider using original plastic Play-Doh container, if you have it, or just using a small Tupperware. Make sure that the container is airtight so that the moisture from the towel doesn't evaporate.
  3. Leave the Play-Doh to soak overnight. Wait a day or so before you remove the Play-Doh from the airtight container. Peel the paper towel away – it should no longer be wet. Feel the Play-Doh: squeeze and pull it. Gauge whether it is soft enough.
    • If the dough still isn't soft, try adding more water and kneading it in directly. The Play-Doh mixture is mostly water, salt, and flour, so you might be able to restore the balance by re-hydrating the putty with enough water.
    • If the dough doesn't become soft again with repeated efforts, it might be time to throw it out. Consider buying or making new Play-Doh.

Using Water in a Bag

  1. Break the brittle Play-Doh into bits. Snap it down into shards so that each piece can absorb water more quickly. This should not be hard to do if the dough has stiffened. If your Play-Doh is very crumbly, be careful not to spill!
  2. Put the Play-Doh pieces into a plastic bag. Make sure that the bag is seal-able and water-resistant. A Ziploc bag is ideal, but you can use a non-resealable bag as long as you tie it shut.
  3. Mix water into the Play-Doh. Seal the bag, then knead the water and the dough together. Start with just a few drops of water, to be safe, and keep adding water as you squeeze. Do not add so much water that the color bleeds and the bag becomes soggy. Go slowly and methodically. Keep kneading until the dough feels soft.
  4. Leave the water and Play-Doh in the bag overnight. Let the dry dough absorb the excess water. Make sure that the bag is sealed so that the moisture doesn't escape! Within a matter of hours, the Play-Doh should be soft, supple, and as good as new! The exact time will depend on how much dough and water you've used.
    • Don't take the Play-Doh out of the bag until it looks fairly dry. If the dough is still very wet, the color might bleed off onto your hands.


  • Adding lotion to the play dough helps make it soft and a little stretchy. Don’t add too much, though, or it will become very sticky.
  • Just sprinkle some water and keep it in pressure cooker for 5mins. Dough will be softer as a new one.
  • Keep adding water if the Play-Doh is still hard.
  • If none of the above methods work, try simply dunking a ball of Play-Doh in water for 15 minutes. The dough should absorb enough water in this time that it becomes soft again. Be aware that the coloring might rub off on your hands!
  • Discard if it doesn't soften. If your Play-Doh really doesn't get soft, buy or make new Play-Doh.


  • It's a craft medium and should be given to a child as such. Please keep them supervised by a responsible person.
  • Be aware that mold and other bacteria may be housed and thriving in the dough. Inspect it for light or dark circles forming around the driest areas and smell it to make sure it's ok. It should not be slimy or rancid.Discard any strangely discolored globs, and connected bits. Then wash your hands before making or handling any more.
  • Despite common misconceptions, while most Playdoughs are non-tix, they are not actually safe to eat. Ingesting even small amounts can induce tummy pain, queasiness, nausea, malaise, fever, bloating, constipation/diarrhea, vomiting (often violent/projectile) and internal blockage.
  • If you add too much water, the dough may get mushy. Keep kneading it until the texture returns to normal.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Play-Doh
  • Bowl or Play-Doh container
  • Spoon to add water
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