Homemade lava lamp

How to make a homemade lava lamp

Primary age children will love making their own lava lamp but older students may enjoy it too!

You will need:

  • A clean and clear 1 litre plastic bottle
  • Vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup of water
  • Fizzing tablets like Alka Seltzer
  • Food colouring

Students Sebastian and Aiden conduct a homemade lava lamp experiment.

Homemade Lava Lamp


  1. Pour the water into the bottle
  2. Use a funnel to pour the vegetable oil into the bottle, almost filling it up. Wait a few minutes to let the water and oil separate.
  3. Add drops of food colouring, about 10 drops will work (any colour you like). The colouring will pass through the oil and mix with the water at the bottom of the bottle.
  4. Break a fizzing tablet in half and drop into the bottle. It will sink to the bottom and the bubbly action will start!
  5. To keep the colourful bubbles going add the other half of the tablet.

Other things to try

You can store your lava lamp by screwing the cap on tight and then just adding another fizzing tablet next time you want to use it.

Why not experiment and see what happens if you use a different sized bottle? Will keeping the cap on making any difference to the bubbles?

How about if you put a larger or smaller piece of tablet in?

Homemade Lava Lamp