Reportedly there is an online recipe for what is supposed to be a fun play substance called “slime.” That recipe recommends the use of water, food coloring, glue and borax. It turns out that last ingredient is the problem. CBS News reports Kathleen Quinn, 11, is now recovering from painful second and third-degree burns to both hands, with doctors saying the cause was prolonged exposure to one of the ingredients in the "slime," namely Borax. What was supposed to be a fun family activity turned into sheer agony.

Doctors are now warning parents against the DIY project due to the possibility of burning.

In Kathleen’s case, it turned out to be agonizing pain as both hands were severely burned. She said it felt hot and tingly and her mother Siobhan said her daughter was crying in pain and her hands were instantly covered in blisters.

Home-made ‘slime’ has been around for a while

While the idea of making home-made “slime” has been around for some time, like everything it finally ended up on the Internet, with many websites promoting the simple recipe. According to doctors, prolonged exposure to Borax is what causes the burns. Dr. Hillary Branch, a pediatrician working at Baystate Medical Center says the substance is an acid and can easily cause a significant burn to the hands. She said the burns happen when there is too much Borax added to the substance, or if it isn’t correctly dissolved.

The doctor did note that if used correctly – and in the right amounts – it will be fine, but she said children tend to misinterpret teaspoons and tablespoons, meaning they add too much Borax to their “slime,” with painful results.

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In fact, Branch says in extreme cases the Borax can dissolve the skin. She also said healing can take some time as it takes a while for the skin to rejuvenate.

Don’t use Borax in home-made ‘slime’

Branch said other similar burning incidents had been reported from the same cause.

She said rather not use Borax at all. According to a report by AZ Family, Borax, or boric acid, can easily be replaced with liquid starch or corn starch, making the “slime” a much safer and fun toy for kids.