How to Make Bioplastic

A bioplastic is a type of plastic that can be made from plant starches or gelatins/agars. They are better for the environment because they are not derived from petroleum. They can also be easily made at home with a few simple ingredients and a stove!

Using Cornstarch and Vinegar

  1. Gather the necessary materials.To make this type of bioplastic, you will need cornstarch, distilled water, glycerol, white vinegar, a stove, a saucepan, a silicone spatula, and food coloring (if desired). These items should be readily available at the grocery store or online. Glycerol is also called glycerine, so try searching for that if you’re having trouble finding glycerol. The following amounts of each ingredient are needed to make the bioplastic:

    • 100 ml distilled water
    • 10 – 15 g glycerol
    • 15 g cornstarch
    • 10 ml of white vinegar
    • 1-2 drops food coloring
    • Adult supervision is recommended.
  1. Combine all of the ingredients and stir together.Add all of the ingredients to the saucepan and stir to combine with the spatula. Stir until you get rid of most of the lumps in the mixture. At this stage, the mixture will be a milky white color and quite watery.
    • If you add the wrong amounts of ingredients, just dispose of the mixture and start again.
  2. Heat on medium-low.Place the saucepan on the stove and set the heat to medium-low. Stir continuously as the mixture heats. Bring it to a gentle boil. As the mixture heats, it will become more translucent and begin to thicken.
    • Remove the mixture from the heat when it becomes clear and thick.
    • Total heating time will be around 10-15 minutes.
    • Lumps may begin to form if the mixture gets overheated.
    • Add one-two drops of food coloring at this stage, if you would like to color the plastic.
  3. Pour the mixture onto foil or parchment paper.Spread the heated mixture onto a piece of foil or parchment paper to let it cool. If you would like to mold the plastic into a shape, it must be done while it is still warm. See the last method for details on molding the plastic.
    • Remove any bubbles that you see by poking them with a toothpick.
  4. Allow the plastic to dry for at least two days.It will take time for the plastic to dry and harden. As it cools, it will begin to dry out. Depending on the thickness of the plastic, it can take longer for it to dry. If you make one small thick piece it will take longer to dry than a thinner larger piece.
    • Leave the plastic in a cool, dry place for this process.
    • Check the plastic after two days to see if it has fully hardened.

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