Homemade Finger Paints for Children

READY IN: 20mins
Recipe by Jubes

Children always have great fun finger painting. This paint is eady to make and very economical. Use the food colouring to achieve the desired colour- recipe is just a guide as it really depends on the colours that you are after. This recipe was from television "Burke's Backyard" about 10 years ago. Any soap flakes can be used to make this paint. Add Eucalyptus oil or dettol (zaar soesn't recognise dettol as an ingredient). Always in Australia, when times were tough, the good old Aussie spirit would always find a way! Making your childrens fingerpaints is by far cheaper than purchasing paints.

Top Review by Mandy

I loved the idea of this but I had a little trouble when making it, it just didn't want to thicken. I ended up adding a bit more cornflour with water to get it to thicken up but when it cooled it ended up being more like glue than paint. Little Miss DD still had fun with it but I would have liked it closer to a paint consistency.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 cup cornflour
  • 1 liter water
  • 1 cup bath soap, flakes (eg Lux flakes)
  • 5 drops of edible food coloring (add colouring to achieve the desired colours)
  • 5 drops eucalyptus oil (optional) or 5 drops lavendar oil (optional)


  1. Place the cornflour in a saucepan and mix to a smooth paste with a little of the water.
  2. Add all of the remaining water, the soap flakes and the dettol or eucalyptus oil.
  3. Heat and stir until the paint mixture thickens. Do not boil.
  4. Pour into separate containers and add a different food colouring to each container. Cover with lids.
  5. The paint will store in the refrigerator for a few days to a week.
  6. NOTE: If you are worried about children eating the paint, do not add any dettol or eucalyptus oil. The paint will then only keep for a few days.

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a