• Question: can you make elefant toothpaste

    Asked by kyak499neb on 2 Feb 2024.
    • Photo: Alexander de Bruin

      Alexander de Bruin answered on 2 Feb 2024:


      yes, though I would probably need to get permission first as it’s quite messy!

    • Photo: Sharron Kenny

      Sharron Kenny answered on 2 Feb 2024:


      yes but its very messy and you always have to remember not to brush any elephants teeth with it because its not actually toothpaste.

    • Photo: Martin McCoustra

      Martin McCoustra answered on 2 Feb 2024:


      Some years ago, I had a student put together a whole bunch of demonstrations of things like Elephant’s Toothpaste for a demonstration lecture for schools. It’s easy to do and you can find lots of videos of it online.

    • Photo: Rachel Edwards

      Rachel Edwards answered on 2 Feb 2024:


      I haven’t, but my friend made some on stage as part of a Christmas lecture! It was very messy, so it was done in a paddling pool (which I’d used for an earlier Christmas lecture for doing the mentos in coke experiment in).

    • Photo: David Bremner

      David Bremner answered on 5 Feb 2024:


      Yes, i have used it in the past for demonstration purposes for some of the activities we do as part of our knowledge exchange/public engagement programme.

    • Photo: Michael Schubert

      Michael Schubert answered on 5 Feb 2024:


      Yes! It’s a really fun experiment to demonstrate. Of course you can’t really brush elephants’ teeth with it, but the good news is that they don’t need toothpaste. They mostly clean their teeth by eating rough things that scrub them during chewing, but sometimes they “brush” with sticks from a plant called the “toothpaste tree”!

    • Photo: Bruno Silvester Lopes

      Bruno Silvester Lopes answered on 5 Feb 2024:


      It is the first time I am hearing about it 🙂 thank you! Looks interesting! I can prob make it!

    • Photo: Sophie Spinks

      Sophie Spinks answered on 6 Feb 2024:


      I can’t but I could watch a youtube video to figure out how! I would make sure I was wearing a lab coat and safety goggles before I start the experiment too

    • Photo: Lisa Humphreys

      Lisa Humphreys answered on 7 Feb 2024: last edited 7 Feb 2024 2:24 pm


      Yes. We use this demonstration when we are teaching Introductory Chemistry courses. It’s great fun but like the others said it can get very messy. https://youtu.be/Kou7ur5xt_4?si=IcqJwqtpa17DcPM9

    • Photo: Kirsty Ross

      Kirsty Ross answered on 19 Feb 2024:


      I’ve not done it, but I did see a tiktok where they experimented with the temperature of the water to see how high they could get it to go.

    • Photo: David McGonigle

      David McGonigle answered on 21 Feb 2024:


      …unlike all the other cool kids replying to this, I had NO idea what elephant toothpaste was. But yes, I can now make it, although I think I’d struggle to work out how to sell it as a demonstration that tells you something about the brain…

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