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Pepper and Soap

Wit-Bit

In this post, I will be explaining how to do the pepper and soap experiment! This simple experiment is cool to watch, and involves a pretty interesting science concept.

You will need: a bowl, water, pepper, dish soap, and a Q-Tip.

Prepare by filling a bowl with water, and putting some dish soap in a small container. Sprinkle some pepper on top of the water. The first time I did this, I put way too much pepper and it ended up not working well! You only need a bit. Note how the pepper does not mix with the water and floats on top.

Take your Q-Tip and dip it into the dish soap. Now, dip the Q-Tip into the middle of the water and watch how the pepper rushes to the outside of the bowl!

Why does the pepper run away?

This occurred because of surface tension!

Water has droplets that team up to create surface tension. Imagine a group of water droplets coming together and forming a barrier. Soap is able to break down this barrier, which makes the droplets upset. So, the droplets run from the soap, carrying the pepper with them!

That is how the pepper ended up running to the side of the bowl.

Through this experiment, your kids learned about surface tension! Check us out on TikTok and Instagram for more content, and check out our other blog posts posted on stemchef.com for more fun food based experiments!

- Roshnee Gulati