As an Orbeez expert, I’ve learned a thing or two about the importance of proper storage. You see, I used to keep my Orbeez in a jar on my desk, thinking that was the best way to show off my colorful collection. But over time, I noticed that they started to lose their squishiness and didn’t absorb water as well as they used to.
That’s when I started doing some research and experimenting with different storage methods. And let me tell you, the difference was like night and day! Not only did my water beads stay plump and vibrant for longer, but they were also much easier to work with when it came time for my next project.
So, if you’re an Orbeez enthusiast like me, or just looking to get started with this fun and creative activity, you’ll want to pay close attention to this post. I’ll be sharing my top tips and tricks for how to store Orbeez properly, so you can keep your collection looking and feeling its best. Let’s dive in!
How To Store Orbeez Beads?
When it comes to storing Orbeez, there are a few different ways you can use depending on your needs and preferences. Here are some of the most popular and tested techniques, along with their pros and cons:
1. Ziplock Bags
This is one of the simplest and most affordable ways to store Orbeez. Simply place your squishy water beads in a ziplock bag and seal it up tight. This process works well for small to medium-sized collections and is easy to transport.
However, it’s important to note that ziplock bags may not be the most effective at preventing mold growth over time, especially if the Orbeez are stored in a humid environment. In addition, removing all the air from the bag can be difficult, which may cause some of the beads to deform.
Most affordable option.
Easiest to use.
Lightweight, portable and space-saver.
Not the most effective at preventing mold.
Not suitable for larger collections.
2. Airtight Containers
For a more secure storage option, consider using an airtight container. These containers are designed to keep moisture out and are great for preventing molds and keeping your Orbeez fresh and plump.
When using this method, it’s important to choose a container that is the right size for your collection of Orbeez. If the container is too large, there may be excess air inside, which can lead to mold growth. If the container is too small, it may be difficult to get all the balls inside.
Designer bottles like this one on Amazon is my all-time favorite for storing Orbeez in an airtight condition. It doesn’t only seal the air, but is also pretty durable and good looking when filled with the colorful beads.
Effective at preventing mold formation.
Very durable option.
Easy to stack and store.
Can be more expensive than other options.
Takes up more space.
3. Vacuum-sealed Bags
If you’re really serious about storing your Orbeez fresh and plump, you might consider using a vacuum-sealed bag. These bags remove all the air from the bag, creating a tight seal that keeps your water beads in perfect condition.
While this vacuum-sealed bags are highly effective, they are more expensive than other storage solutions. In addition, you’ll need to invest in a vacuum sealer to use this way, which can be an added expense.
Extremely effective at preventing mold growth.
Keeps Orbeez fresh and plump for longer.
Most preferable in terms of quality.
Expensive storage method.
Requires a vacuum sealer.
4. Silica Gel Packets
Silica gel packets are small packets of a desiccant material that absorb moisture. Placing these packets in your Orbeez storage container can help keep them dry and prevent molds.
To use this, simply place the silica gel packets in your container of Orbeez and seal it up tight. It’s important to replace the silica gel packets every few months, as they become saturated with moisture over time.
While silica gels are inexpensive and effective at preventing mold growth, I didn’t find them as effective as other storage solutions. In addition, you’ll need to purchase silica gel packets regularly to maintain their functions. But, it’s worthy trying out.
Effective at preventing mold.
Inexpensive way of storing, although you need frequent replacement of silica gels.
Not very effective as the previous options.
No matter which storage procedure you choose, it’s important to keep your Orbeez out of direct sunlight and in a cool, dry place away from kids and pets. This will help prevent drying out, mold growth and keep your Orbeez looking and feeling their best for your next project.
Orbeez And Mold Growth: How Are These Two Related?
Like pretty much any water-based product, Orbeez or water beads are prone to fungal growth once hydrated. This is especially true for used beads due to the exposure to contaminants.
Provided that you store the hydrated Orbeez properly, they should be fine for at least a couple of weeks. Watch out for signs of mold, though – you should throw away the balls if they start getting cloudy or develop black patches. Playing with moldy stuff is extremely unhygienic.
I found a few tricks to store wet Orbeez by preventing mold growth:
Rubbing some alcohol on the water beads can make them last longer and avoid being smelling, as both salt and alcohol have antimicrobial properties.
If you already know while growing the Orbeez that you’re going to store them for a long time, you can add a bit of salt to the water to keep them fresh.
Using distilled or demineralized water can help prevent or delay mold growth too. The fewer contaminants the water contains, the lower would be the chances of mold formation on the Orbeez beads.
These methods proved effective for me, and I hope you will find them helpful too. However, if the beads are still getting molds, the only option is to dry them to normal size under sunlight and then store and reuse them later.
What Else Can You Do, Apart From Storing Orbeez For Later Use?
Apart from storing Orbeez after use, they have lots of alternative applications. In case you don’t want to go through the hassle, here are a few ideas on what to do with them.
- If you have a garden or houseplants, you may put the water beads in the soil. They will help retain moisture in the soil, ensuring a constant supply of water for your plants.
- Did you know that Orbeez can be used to make air fresheners? Just hydrate the balls in water mixed with a few drops of essential oil. You may dry and shrink them first to increase their ability to absorb moisture. Once ready, just put the nice-smelling Orbeez in a shallow and beautiful container.
- You can even make a stress ball out of your used water beads. Stuff them into a clear balloon to create a beautiful squeezy toy.
- If you have a glow stick, you may turn it into a beautiful lamp using Orbeez. Fill a glass vase or other narrow container with colorful beads and put the glow stick in it.
- Orbeez balls can also be used to make flower and candle holders. The beads will help stabilize the flowers or candles and hold them in place.
- Of course, you also have the option to dispose of the Orbeez beads if they grow moldy or if you don’t want to use them. Just seal them up in a plastic or paper bag and throw them into the trash.
- You can also use the them for foot spa, where you need to keep them hydrated even after use.
Honestly, there are plenty of things you could do with used Orbeez.
Frequently Asked Questions
Orbeez are a type of water-absorbing polymer beads that start off as small, hard pellets and expand into soft, squishy balls when placed in water. While they are typically used in their expanded state, they do not need to be kept in water to remain in good condition. In fact, storing Orbeez in water can actually cause them to break down more quickly over time. The water can promote the growth of mold and bacteria, which can cause the balls to become slimy and eventually decompose.
Orbeez are designed to absorb water and expand into soft, squishy balls, and they will start to break down and deteriorate if left in water for too long. As a general rule, it’s best to use your gel balls within a few days of soaking them in water, as they will begin to lose their shape and texture over time.
When not in use, it’s best to dry out Orbeez completely by spreading them out on a clean towel or paper towel. Once they are dry, you can store them in an airtight container or vacuum-sealed bag to help preserve their texture and quality for future use. It’s important to keep Orbeez in a dry and cool place, away from direct sunlight and heat. If you plan on using them again in the near future, you can also store them in water for a few days, changing the water every 2-3 days to prevent mold growth.
By following the tips and methods I have shared, you can keep your Orbeez clean, fresh, and ready for use in your next sensory project or Orbeez gun game. Whether you choose to store them dry or in water, it’s essential to keep them in a clean, dry, and enclosed environment. With proper storage and care, your water beads can provide endless hours of fun and creativity.