liquid density experiment

Layering Liquid Density Experiment for Kids

Showing kids a liquid density experiment is fun when you use brightly colored liquids. You can find most of these liquids in your own home making this a simple kitchen science project for kids. Liquids that have more mass per unit volume, or in other words, a high density, will sink below other liquids. In this liquid density experiment, we can show how different liquids react when layered in a jar.


Look through your refrigerator and pantry for liquids of different densities. For our liquid density experiment we used the following:

  • Milk
  • Dish Detergent
  • Water
  • Vegetable Oil

The liquids above are listed from the liquid with the highest density to the liquid with the least amount of density. Experiment with other liquids such as honey, syrup, rubbing alcohol, and lamp oil. Be sure to keep a close eye on young kids so they don’t touch or ingest liquids that could be harmful.

When layering liquids use a spoon, eyedropper, or straw to slowly add liquid to the previous layer. Too much force from a top layer liquid will cause the liquids to mix and the experiment won’t be as successful.


  1. To make a jar that looks like ours start by adding a layer of milk to the bottom of the jar. The milk we used is 1% but 2% and whole milk will work the same.
  2. Next add a layer of dish soap by squeezing the soap through a straw.
  3. Add water over the soap a little at a time. The water shouldn’t make suds in the jar when added.
  4. The last layer we added to our density experiment was vegetable oil. Slowly pour the oil on the water. This is also a good example of how some liquids repel each other.

instructions explaining density experiments for kids

density experiments for kids underway

layering liquids experiment results

How do your layers look in the jar? If you used the same ingredients as we did for our layering experiment you should have four layers in the jar making cool white, blue and golden layers. Share your liquid density experiment pictures with us by giving us a tag on Instagram!

layering liquids experiment in a jar

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