Polymer clay is a unique and versatile material that is used by artists and crafters to create a wide variety of projects. One common question that arises is whether polymer clay will dry if it is left out in the open. In this article, we’ll delve into the properties of polymer clay and discuss whether it dries when exposed to air.
1. Understanding Polymer Clay’s Composition
Why polymer clay is different from air-dry clay:
Polymer clay is not an air-dry clay like traditional ceramic clay or some other modeling clays. Unlike these clays, polymer clay does not dry or harden when exposed to air. Instead, it undergoes a chemical transformation through baking to become solid and durable.
2. Curing Process
Baking for Curing:
The role of heat in hardening polymer clay:
In order to make polymer clay hard and durable, it needs to undergo a curing process. This is achieved by baking the clay in an oven at a specific temperature for a designated period of time. During baking, the plasticizers within the clay molecules evaporate, causing the particles to fuse together and harden. This transformation is what gives polymer clay its strength and durability.
3. Leaving Polymer Clay Out
Avoiding Unintended Hardening:
What happens when polymer clay is left out:
If you leave raw or uncured polymer clay out in the open, it will not dry or harden like traditional air-dry clays. Instead, it may become slightly firmer due to exposure to air, but it will remain pliable and malleable. Leaving polymer clay out for extended periods of time may cause it to become less workable over time, so it’s advisable to store raw polymer clay properly to prevent unintentional hardening.
4. Proper Storage
Protecting Raw Polymer Clay:
How to store polymer clay to maintain its workability:
To ensure the best results with your polymer clay, store it in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag when not in use. This helps prevent moisture and air exposure that can lead to unintended hardening. By properly storing your polymer clay, you can maintain its soft and workable texture until you’re ready to use it for your creative projects.
Polymer clay does not dry when left out in the open like traditional air-dry clays. Instead, it requires a specific curing process through baking to achieve its desired hardness and durability. By understanding the properties of polymer clay and following proper storage practices, you can ensure that your polymer clay remains in optimal condition for your creative endeavors.