I have always been a big fan of Orbeez, ever since I was a kid. Through my own experiences and with the help of others, I’ve learned that the lifespan of these tiny gel balls can vary depending on a few factors.
For example, when Orbeez are in water, they can last for several weeks, as long as they remain hydrated. However, once they are taken out of water, their shelf life reduces. And once the water beads start to get dry, they will shrink and lose their shape, becoming smaller and harder.
In this blog post, I’ll go into more detail about the lifespan of Orbeez, including how long they last in water, without water, and after soaking. I’ll also provide tips on how to keep them fresh as long as possible. So, if you’re curious about the longevity of these fun water beads, keep reading!
How Long Do Orbeez Last?
Orbeez can last anywhere from a few months to a few years once they’ve been fully hydrated. Their shelf life can depend on several factors, including the quality and size of the beads, the temperature and humidity of the environment they’re in, and how often they’re played with or rehydrated.
If you enclose the Orbeez inside an airtight container with low humidity, sealed in a cool, dry place, they can last for 2-3 years before expiring. However, if left exposed to air or sunlight, they will start to shrink, discolor and lose their shape over time. In my experience, water beads may even dry out completely and become brittle. It reduces their lifespan significantly- sometimes less than a month.
Do Orbeez Last Longer In Water?
Orbeez beads have been known to last quite long in water in good condition– as much as a few weeks. Beyond that, the balls get too fluffy and soft, lose their integrity, and then slowly start to break down.
If the container is left open to the air and all the water is absorbed, the beads will begin to shrink and eventually come back to their primary size, which can take a few days to a few weeks.
However, if you store the Orbeez inside a sealed container with water, they will last much longer- even for years. But here you may have to deal with mold forming around the beads. To prevent it, you can add a little bleach or salt in the water and improve their shelf life. With proper care, Orbeez can provide years of fun!
Recommended Read: Will Orbeez Stay Good If Left In Water Too Long?
How Long Do Orbeez Last Without Water?
Orbeez last much longer without water than in water: sometimes 3-5 years. This is because the polymer chain does not break and they do not lose their integrity. Once they are taken out of water, the moisture content slowly evaporates, losing their original size and shape over time.
With that said, how long gel blaster balls would last out of water depends on several factors. Let’s consider a few different scenarios:
- Exposure To Sunlight: After soaking, I left some hydrated Orbeez without water in sunlight to see how long it takes them to dry up and shrink back. The process took up to two days and was especially quick after the first 24 hours.
- Indoor Storage in Open Container: Orbeez balls kept out of the water but not exposed to sunlight, or heat can easily last two to three weeks. This might be helpful if you plan to use these gel beads for art or decoration purposes.
- Inside Airtight Container: In case you want to put Orbeez balls into light-up products to make them more colorful and vibrant, it gets even better. Assuming that the blaster balls won’t be exposed to air, they can last several years even without water.
Do The Water Beads Eventually Dissolve?
Despite being gel-like in nature, water beads do not dissolve in water. They can break apart or even disintegrate into slush, but they will still be separable in the container. The broken gel balls will release some of their water content, thus growing smaller. The super-absorbent polymers used to make Orbeez are biodegradable with a shelf life of 1-2 years under normal environmental conditions.
Gel blaster balls are made of the same materials and also have a similar lifespan as they are a special variant of Orbeez or water beads. However, the balls used in gel blaster guns have more strict requirements for their size. This is because bigger or smaller gel beads beyond the range of 6-8 mm causes malfunction in the gun.
Learn More: Do Gel Blaster Bullets Dissolve?
Tips To Keep Orbeez Fresh & Long-lasting
If you want to grow a large batch of Orbeez balls at once for later use, you’d want to keep them fresh for as long as possible. Well, I was trying to find out about this during the holidays, and here’s what I discovered:
Store them properly: Proper storage is key to ensuring that your Orbeez last as long as possible. Keep them in a sealed container in a cool, dry place away from sunlight and heat sources.
Avoid exposure to water: While Orbeez need water to hydrate and expand, they should be kept away from excessive moisture or water exposure when not in use. Excessive exposure to water can cause them to break down and lose their shape.
Change water frequently: If you are using Orbeez in water, it’s important to change the water frequently to prevent bacteria growth and mold formation.
Use high-quality Orbeez: High-quality beads are less likely to break down or lose their shape over time, so it’s important to purchase from reputable sources.
Don’t mix different types of Orbeez: Mixing different types of beads can cause them to break down or lose their shape, so it’s best to stick to one type at a time.
Avoid direct sunlight: Direct sunlight can cause Orbeez to lose moisture and become brittle, so it’s important to keep them away from direct sunlight when not in use.
Avoid freezing temperature: While direct sunlight reduces the life-expectancy of Orbeez, a sub-zero temperature does the same. I highly recommend not to freeze Orbeez beads as it can make them brittle and unrecoverable.
In conclusion, Orbeez can last for a considerable time period, both when hydrated and when stored properly without water. Their lifespan depends on various factors such as quality, storage conditions, and usage.
By following the tips mentioned in this article, you can help to extend the life of your Orbeez and enjoy them for a longer period of time. So, have fun playing with Orbeez and don’t forget to take care of them properly to keep them fresh and everlasting!