Visiting the Sloomoo Institute: Soho's Museum of Slime Produces Ooey-Gooey Fun

If the ooey-gooey-slime craze has crept into your life, and you've been known to celebrate a discount deal on a gallon of Elmer's Glue, Soho's Sloomoo Institute is a must-visit. From its DIY slime bar, whose products far outpace our favorite make-at-home slime recipes, to its Nickelodeon-style sliming at Sloomoo Falls, the Sloomoo Institute is a slime lover's paradise and an over-the-top sensory experience that left my daughters begging for more slime time.

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A brightly colored storefront, complete with "slimers" honing their craft in the window for all to see, is the gateway to the timed-entry experience that's part science experiment, part art exhibit, and all hands-on, slimy fun.

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Sloomoo Institute in NYC girl with slime
Space-age-looking capsules sprinkled throughout Sloomoo hold gallons of slime in every color, texture, and scent imaginable.

Vats of slime—more than 30 of them!—dot the path you'll travel through the 8,000-square-foot space. Each slime you experience has a different combination of texture and smell. We played with a purple butter slime that smelled exactly like Welch's Grape Soda and dunked our hands into a cloudlike slime that looked like cotton candy when stretched.

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Sloomoo Institute in NYC slime sling shot
Test your aim with the slime slingshot at Sloomoo Institute.

Along the way, play with the slime in unexpected ways—including by adding onto a slimy mural and sling-shotting slime across the room at your friends (or mom!) Slimy facts dot the walls, and the experience calls out uses for slime that go far beyond child's play. In fact, Sloomoo Institute co-founders Karen Robinovitz and Sara Schiller both fell in love with the healing, stress-relieving power of slime as adults share that love with the masses at Sloomoo. And, take it from me: If you think you're just bringing your kids here to play, you're in for a surprise. Despite my disgust with the constant slime-making at home, I spent our visit elbow-deep in slime and puzzling over my favorite texture before we made it to the included-with-admission DIY Slime Bar.

By the time we sidled up to the Slime Bar, we had touched, stretched, and sniffed our way through dozens of slimes. Every ticket includes a custom-made 8-ounce slime. While the base is pre-mixed, there's plenty to personalize: Choose your custom scent and pigment, then add in a selection of mix-ins, which range from pearly beads to mini-plastic creatures.

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Sloomoo Institute in NYC girl at the Slime Bar
Spring green slime scented with roses was the concoction my younger daughter dreamed up. 

You'll leave with a generous container of slime that's all your own. My oldest daughter cooked up sparkling gold icee slime that smells of lavender. My younger daughter's spring-green snow fizz slime smells like roses and overflows with cute unicorn and alpaca charms, and even my slime-averse self had fun crafting a lilac-hued cloud slime that smells like angel food cake, is flecked with pearls, and now lives on my desk where I'm hoping it will help cure my next bout of writer's block.

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Sloomoo Institute in NYC glow-in-the-dark-room
Morph yourself into a slime creature and see your moves projected on the wall in a glow-in-the-dark room. 

Though the Sloomoo Institute was originally launched in 2019 as a temporary pop-up, the business is here to stay and recently refreshed its exhibits. There's a fun room where you can transform yourself into a slimy blob thanks to a little technological help, which projects your likeness onto a wall-sized screen where you can have fun moving and grooving. Other new additions focus on adding ASMR to the experience. You can also book its private party room downstairs for a cool birthday party experience, and we were excited to hear a membership plan might be in the works so frequent slimers can save some money and mess by visiting often.

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Sloomoo Institute Sloomoo Falls
Opt for the enhanced experience if you want to get slimed at Sloomoo Falls! 

Entertaining as ever is Sloomoo Falls, where an enhanced ticket grants you the chance to be slimed. The ooey-gooey stuff is poured over you from sky high—and, admittedly, it's more fun than I imagined. Thanks to a double layer of rain slickers, throwaway shower caps, and a power wash of our lower legs, my daughter and I had plenty of giggles under the falls but left all the slime behind.

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Sloomoo Institute's slime obstacle course
It's over, under, and straight through the slime-filled obstacle course for some full-body fun at Sloomoo Institute.

Another fun addition is the slime-filled obstacle course, and though I didn't take off my shoes to feel it squish between my toes, I did get plenty of giggles watching my girls wade through.

As for where all the leftover slime ends up, Sloomoo has teamed up with Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute to develop a slime recycling program. Another feel-good aspect to Sloomoo? A portion of all proceeds is donated to mental health charities.

What to Know Before You Go to Sloomoo Institute

  • Sloomoo Institute is located on Broadway between Broome and Grand Streets in Soho.
  • Dress comfortably, in clothes that can be rolled up so you can really dig into the slime.
  • Sloomoo is an all-ages attraction, but all guests ages 1+ must purchase a ticket. Kids under age 14 must be accompanied by an adult.
  • Timed-entry tickets start at $48 and include your take-home, custom-made slime. An enhanced ticket goes for $80.
  • For those questioning cleanliness, wipes and hand sanitizer are ubiquitous, and you'll be encouraged to clean your hands before and after you touch each slime.
  • Whether one custom-made slime is enough or not, you'll be forced to exit through the gift shop which teems with tons of pre-made slimes, slime kits, and more, so you may want to set some ground rules for the outing!
  • Can't make it to NYC to explore Sloomoo? Consider signing up for a Sloomoo subscription and have its fun products delivered directly to your door.

Unless noted, photos by the author

Originally published in 2019.

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