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Are snow globes toxic?

4 min read

Asked by: Eric Martinez

Most of us have snow globes in our homes, they are popular gifts to give especially during the holidays, but they are often found on shelves year round. What most people don’t realize is that snow globes are filled with a toxic chemical called ethylene glycolethylene glycolEthylene glycol poisoning is poisoning caused by drinking ethylene glycol. Early symptoms include intoxication, vomiting and abdominal pain. Later symptoms may include a decreased level of consciousness, headache, and seizures. Long term outcomes may include kidney failure and brain damage.

Are snow globes toxic to humans?

Many people think that snow globes are just filled with water. But some globes, especially ones from overseas, actually have a small amount of ethylene glycol (antifreeze) mixed in. This can help keep the water from freezing during shipping, but ethylene glycol can be very harmful if you swallow it.

What kind of liquid is in a snow globe?

One of the secret ingredients to any snow globe is glycerin, a clear liquid typically made from vegetable oils, which is widely used to slow down the effect of shaken water and glitter, to the effect of falling snow.

Are Disney snow globes toxic?

While they’re beautiful to look at and fun for kids and adults alike, snow globes, glitter globes, and snow domes pose serious hazards to our pets. Specifically, the liquid that suspends the glitter or “snow” often contains ethylene glycol, the toxic component of antifreeze.

How much antifreeze is in a snow globe?

2% antifreeze

Another source of antifreeze are the decorative “snow globes” glassware. The liquid in these displays contain 2% antifreeze and are very toxic. Both cats and dog are attracted to the smell and taste of ethylene glycol.

What’s inside of snow globes?

What most people don’t realize is that snow globes are filled with a toxic chemical called ethylene glycol, which is the main ingredient in antifreeze. Ethylene glycol and anti-freeze are sweet tasting and highly attractive to pets.

How do you clean up ethylene glycol spill?

Often soaking ethylene glycol up with an absorbent material is easiest. Sand, baking soda, kitty litter, or vermiculite are decent options (among others). Paper towels or even newspapers can be used in a bind. Once soaked up, you can sweep the absorbent material into a proper waste container for disposal.

Are snow globes toxic to cats?

Some snow globes contain ethylene glycol, a highly toxic substance to all pets. If a snow globe is broken, either by a person or a pet, the sweet smell can attract a pet to lick it up, leading to a potentially fatal intoxication. Snow globes should be kept out of reach of pets.

How much glycerin is in a snow globe?

A good ratio is 1 cup of water, 3 teaspoons glycerin, and 3 teaspoons glitter. Glycerin can be substituted for olive oil, vegetable oil, or baby oil. Adding more oil will make the glitter fall slower. Tighten the lid on jar and glue shut.

Can you use tap water in a snow globe?

Top tips for making a snowglobe
Normal tap water is fine to use, but if you have particularly cloudy water you may wish to use filtered or store-bought water for the clearest effect.

What do you do with a broken snow globe?

What do I need to do to have my broken snow globe repaired? Place the broken snow globe in a plastic bag then pack it very carefully so that the resin insert is protected and does not move around in the shipping box. Use tissue or soft packing to protect the interior sculpture from additional breakage.

How do you make a snow globe without glycerin?

There are plenty of ways you can substitute glycerin when bringing your homemade snow globes to life. Some glycerin alternatives include light corn syrup, mineral oil, baby oil, or a clear cooking oil. Conversely, you can omit a substitute altogether!

Is dried antifreeze toxic?

It isn’t considered harmful in small amounts, according to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). On the other hand, ethylene glycol and methanol are hazardous and poisonous if ingested. It only takes a small amount of antifreeze to poison the human body and cause life-threatening complications.

Does spilled antifreeze evaporate?

No, antifreeze does not evaporate. At least, it doesn’t evaporate in the same sense that water evaporates. That’s because antifreeze contains several chemical properties that are unable to evaporate well.