Relaxation Jars

Yes, this idea is all over the internet  … but I’ve fallen in love with them and just had to share them on my very own post.

tips on how to make and use a relaxation glitter jar

They are super simple to make.  All you need is:

  • a container (I used pint-sized Mason jars, but you can use a empty soft drink container, plastic jar …  pretty much anything that is clear and has a lid)
  • warm water
  • Glitter Glue (1.8 fl oz)
  • a hot glue gun (to seal the lid if you wish to avoid spills)

I created mine by filling the Mason jar halfway with the warm water, emptying the glitter glue into the jar, (using more warm water to rinse and empty the remaining glitter glue out of the container  … adding the water and shaking vigorously), adding more warm water if needed to fill the jar to the top, and then putting on the lid.

"ingredients" for a relaxation jar

I found I needed to shake the mixture very well for awhile and also let it sit for a bit so that the glue would dissolve and fully mix with the water.  (however, even when it is fully mixed the glitter will settle awhile after it is shaken.)  As it would make sense … the greater the proportion of glitter glue to water the more dense the water becomes and the glitter “hangs” in suspension for longer.  Experimenting with different amounts can give you a variety of effects.

glitter jar FAIL

I also discovered that NOT ALL GLITTER GLUE works for this project … a couple of kinds that I had (they tended to have larger glitter) would NOT dissolve in the water (like the above clumpy pink glitter!).  The Glitter Glue that I found works best is the Createlogy Brand sold at Michael’s.

tips on how to make and use relaxation jars

These beautiful, easy to make jars are absolutely wonderful for staring at a relaxing … just losing yourself in the swirling glitter for a few moments helps to center oneself.  They’ve been used as “Glitter Jars“, “Calm Down Glitter Jars“, “Calming Glitter Jars“, “Calming Glitter Bottle“,  “Mind Jar and awesome gift card free printable” (that has a great explanation of how you can use them), and “Time-out Jar“.  Whatever they are called … or however they are made (there’s a few variations) they are truly wonderful for helping kids settle down and relax.  The idea is that by the time the glitter settles at the bottom the viewer would be calmer.

Creating these at home, school, or in therapy with a child would be a perfect, simple hands-on activity that they could take home as a great tool to help center them.  Whether they tend to be anxious or hyperactive … Heck, anyone could use this tool to help chill out during the day!

For more Self-Regulation & Calming Techniques check out my Pinterest board:
Follow Laura Hutchison @ PlayDrMom’s board Self-Regulation/Calming Techniques on Pinterest.

I shared this post with … Pinning for Play, Tuesday Tots, Sharing Saturday, Kids Co-Op, Saturday Show & Tell

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Laura Hutchison

Laura Hutchison (aka PlayDrMom) is a chubby kid turned competitive figure skater tween turned high school pom pon girl turned MSU Spartan turned grad student turned Mrs. HutcH turned Dr. turned Mom. She adores living in the Mitten, is addicted to Diet Coke, and firmly believes that ice cream is a main food group.

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  1. Bonnie

    I have also seen this a lot but you provide some really useful tips such as gluing the lid closed to avoid spills and it is good to know that not all brands of glitter glue work. Thank you for sharing. I found you through Tutus and Tea Parties Pinning party.

  2. Laura Hutchison

    Thanks a bunch for your comment, Bonnie! I was worried about it being kind of a copycat post … but wanted to share mine too. I really appreciate you taking the time to comment!

  3. Erin

    This looks like so much fun. I am adding this to our list of to-do’s. Thanks for the great idea.

  4. Lauren

    I am going to make these for my daughter. She definitely needs something to help her calm down at times and this might do the trick to keep her focused. Thank you for sharing at our Pinning for Play link party!
    Lauren recently posted…Pinning for PLAY | Link Party for Children’s Activities OpeningMy Profile

  5. Laura M

    Pinned this! They look great, I think I want one for myself! 🙂 Hopping by from Pinning for PLAY!
    Laura M recently posted…September to Remember $200 Cash Giveaway!My Profile

  6. Debs

    Thanks for linking up to Tuesday Tots. I’m featuring this lovely post this week on Learn with Play at home 🙂

  7. Carrie

    What pretty ones! I love the different colors. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!!
    Carrie recently posted…Flamingo Friday–Paper Plate FlamingosMy Profile

  8. Yvette

    Can u give me a hint what kind of glue it is? I am from Holland and i want to make this with seperate glue and glitter, since we have different glitterglue and some of it wont work (the liquid gets milky, not seethrough. Thanks. Yvette

  9. Laura Hutchison

    Hi Yvette! I believe the glue is a gel glue (rather than a white glue). Let me know how it works!

  10. Kellie B

    Absolutely love the look of these – can’t wait to try them out, but will need to find myself some glitter glue… Thanks for sharing.

  11. Stacy E.

    We discovered that if you whisk the glitter glue in the warm water in a bowl before pouring it into the jar works better. That way you don’t have clumps and it works for most of the glitter glues.


  12. Laura Hutchison

    Great tip, Stacy! Thanks for commenting!

  13. Crystal Giuva

    What a wonderful craft! I like that not only does it have sensory components after you make it but also while you make it. All the hard squeezing to get the glitter glue into the jar was a great treat!
    We also found that whisking the glue with the warm water in a big bowl before putting it into the jar worked better – less chunks of glitter this way.
    Thank you for sharing a great idea. 😀

  14. Alicyn

    Wouldnt the top get rusty seeing as its metal.

  15. Laura Hutchison

    It might over time, but they are made for canning so the part of the lid the touches the water is coated. Mine aren’t rusted and I made them a year ago!

  16. Anita

    I like this idea I think it could even work for adults too

  17. Laura Hutchison

    Definitely! I LOVE using mine. My teenage clients LOVE them too. Thanks for your comment!

  18. sharon

    Can these be used for just decoration? I was wondering if the glitter glue ever falls to the bottom of the jar?

  19. Laura Hutchison

    Sure they could be used for decoration! The glitter does fall to the bottom after a couple of minutes on most of the ones I have made, but one of them I used a lot of glue and extra glitter and the glitter always stayed suspended. You could try experimenting!

  20. Caitlin

    What do you use for the coloring/tinting and in what amounts?? I would really like to make a set that color coordinated with the Chakras.

  21. Laura Hutchison

    Caitlin, that’s a wonderful idea! The color of the glitter glue is what gives the different tints.

  22. Comment

    Thanks for the Idea

  23. Thanks

    Thanks for this idea
    I Am using it in my class

  24. Cheryl

    I think these would be cute, too, with small articles (little stars, hearts, etc.) suspended in there — even little fish in blue water!

  25. Terri Helms

    This reminds me of those glitter lamp that came out after the lava lamps, these are safer, no electrical use is needed.

  26. Jana

    I have also made these by putting 2 tablespoons of corn syrup in water and adding glitter, shells, sand and any other objects that are fun to look at. Just add more corn syrup to slow down heavier objects. Then super glue the lids shut. Color with food coloring. I love blue with shells and sand.

  27. Michael Johnson

    i wunder if you put them on a candle warmer if it would make the glitter keep moving in the jar if you used glass jar

  28. clothilde

    Hi love what you did with then and I will totally do one for my desk do you remember the name of the color you used for the one on the right the pale pink one? thank you

  29. Laura Hutchison

    It doesn’t have a name – but I know that it was Createlogy pink glitter glue from Michael’s.

  30. Laura Hutchison

    I will totally have to try that! Great idea!

  31. Laura Hutchison

    That sounds beautiful!

  32. sandy

    I think these are awesome!! My idea would be to add a glow stick to them!

  33. Laura Hutchison

    Cool idea! I’ll have to try that too!

  34. Makenzi

    This is such an amazing project my 4year old loved it this is one of your many great ideas it is asome

  35. Maryjo

    My 9 yr old daughter has severe anxiety and we made these today to help her calm herself. My question is how do you prevent the white foam that is always on top after shaking? I tried spooning it out but it comes back every time. It’s almost like there’s soap in it. We used the same glue you recommended. Either way, she and I both absolutely LOVE these jars & made 8 of them!

  36. Laura Hutchison

    Hmm… not sure about that. I’ve never had any white foam in mine. Maybe there was soap in the jar before you added to it.

  37. Kim

    I dont have young kiddos but I love the time out example! I should make a few for myself , especially if get really annoyed and or angry while driving. Just pull over to the side of the rd or go to a parkinglot. Grab my glitter jar shake the heck outta it put my seat so Im laying back a little and stare until all the glitter settles. That would prob be relaxing and calm one down lol.

  38. Whitney

    I’ve tried making this twice now but the glitter glue floats in one big clump rather than settling to the bottom! Help! What am I doing wrong?

  39. Laura Hutchison

    Some types of glue just don’t dissolve well. You may need to try a different brand. It does take a while for any glue to dissolve completely (like 12 hours). Hope that helps.

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