Does polymer clay dissolve in water?

Polymer clay is a versatile and popular medium used for various crafting and sculpting projects. However, one question that often arises is whether polymer clay dissolves in water. In this article, we will delve into the properties of polymer clay and its reaction to water to understand whether it dissolves and how to handle it around moisture.

The Composition of Polymer Clay

Polymer clay is made from a combination of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) particles, plasticizers, and pigments. During the baking process, the clay undergoes a chemical reaction known as polymerization, causing it to harden and become a solid material. This composition and curing process play a significant role in determining how polymer clay interacts with water.

Polymer Clay and Water

Polymer clay is generally considered water-resistant, which means it does not readily dissolve or disintegrate when exposed to water. Unlike water-based clays that can absorb moisture and become soft or mushy, polymer clay maintains its shape and structure when wet. This water resistance is a result of the chemical changes that occur during baking, which transform the clay into a durable and stable material.

Precautions and Best Practices

While polymer clay is water-resistant, there are still some precautions and best practices to keep in mind when working with it:

  • Moisture Prevention: Store your polymer clay projects in a dry and cool environment to prevent any potential moisture absorption.
  • Water Exposure: While brief exposure to water is unlikely to cause significant damage, it’s best to avoid submerging or soaking polymer clay items in water for extended periods.
  • Avoid Water-Based Sealers: When sealing your polymer clay creations, opt for sealers that are not water-based, as water-based products could potentially affect the clay over time.
  • Drying: If your polymer clay gets wet, allow it to air dry completely before baking or storing to ensure there is no residual moisture.


Polymer clay does not dissolve in water due to its chemical composition and the polymerization process it undergoes during baking. While it is water-resistant and can withstand brief exposure to water, it’s important to take precautions to prevent prolonged contact with moisture and to ensure proper drying if the clay does get wet. By following these guidelines, you can continue to create beautiful and durable polymer clay projects without worrying about water-related issues.

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