Polymer Clay is an amazing alternative to regular clay. It has a lot of advantages compared to Air-Dry clay and it is very easy to use. You can fire it at home in your oven and the end result will be just as good as with regular Clay minus the need of a kiln. After you read this article you will know everything about polymer clay storing, if it drys and what to do when it is crumbling.
So can Polymer Clay dry out? The short answer to this question is no, it can´t. Polymer clay is basically soft workable plastic until you cure it in an oven. So it can´t dry out but it can be stored wrong. If it gets too much exposure to heat or direct sunlight it will begin to partially cure and become unuseable.
Polymer clay is a PVC Plastic. It is very soft and you can shape it in any form you like.
After you are done shaping it you can harden the Polymer clay by heating it in a kitchen oven.
Polymer clay is basically plastic meaning it can´t dry out over time. You can store Polymer clay for years and it will still be useable as long as you keep the clay away from any heat source or direct sunlight.
Can I Air Dry Polymer Clay?
The short answer is no, you can´t. Polymer Clay will only harden when it is exposed to heat. Only once Polymer Clay is heated up a chemic reaction will harden the plastic clay. So you will need to harden your Polymer Clay in an oven following the instructions on the package.
Polymer clay can only be cured by heat, so in order to harden it, you will need to put it in the oven.
Depending on your Polymer clay variant you will have to heat up the oven to about 270°F and leave the clay in the oven for at least 15 minutes.
Polymer clay will not dry like other traditional clays, it will actually harden through a chemical reaction, that needs heat.
So Polymer clay will never dry it will only cure through heat.
How Do You Fix Dry Polymer Clay?
The short answer is, Polymer clay can´t dry. Polymer clay can only be cured by being exposed to heat. So if your polymer clay is hard, then you can simply soften it by kneading it for a while, if it is crumbly or has hardened parts in it, then it has partially hardened because it was exposed to heat or sunlight and you can´t fix that.
The most important thing to mention is, that polymer clay can´t dry, so don´t add any water to your polymer clay!
Water will not make your polymer clay softer! You can soften polymer clay by simply kneading it for a while with your hands. The longer you knead it the softer it will get until it is as soft, as it can get.
If your polymer clay is crumbly or has some harder parts in it, then the package was probably not stored correctly and it got too hot, either by a heat source or by being hit by direct sunlight.
If you find hardened parts in your Polymer clay, then you won´t be able to reverse this anymore. This clay will, unfortunately, be unusable because it already cured partially.
So try to store your polymer clay as far away from any heat source as possible. As long, as the polymer clay will not get hot then you will be just fine.
How Do You Keep Polymer Clay From Drying Out?
Polymer Clay can´t dry out, it is not a waterbased clay it is actually a PVC-Plastic clay. So it is basically plastic and it will only cure when it is heated up in an oven.
So store your Polymer clay in a cool location away from any sunlight and you can store polymer clay pretty much forever.