How to Make Clay Hard Without Oven | 3 Different Ways

Clay art or modeling clay has been in the household for centuries. It is one of the earliest forms of art that now people take over as hobbies.

You had to make your own clay in the beginning. It is so much tedious work and takes a lot of time. 

Now you can buy soft clay on the market to do your craft. This cuts down on a lot of time and effort for the craftsman and just lets you focus on your art.

How to Make Clay Hard Without Oven

One thing though bugs anyone’s mind, is how to make clay hard without an oven. We all wonder that, because without an oven, you cannot harden your finished clay products. 

We are here to tell you that you can harden your clay without using an oven. Let’s jump right into it.

How to Make Clay Hard Without Oven

If you don’t have an oven, you still can harden your clay. There are 3 different ways that you can use to harden your clay product. And the ways are

  • Using microwave
  • Using a heat gun or hairdryer
  • Using salt and flour mixture in your clay

1. Making Clay Hard With Microwave

To make your clay arts hard, you can use the microwave. But be cautious about what you do with it. Do not put your clay models inside the microwave as it is.

Get ovenproof Tupperware and fill it up with water along with your clay model. Then you can put it in the microwave and heat it up.

This way the clay model will be hardened and won’t fall apart or catch on fire.

2. Hardening Clay Using Heat Gun or Hair Dryer

If you don’t have the luxury of a microwave, then you can simply use your heat gun or hairdryer.

For this, you don’t need to submerge your clay model in any water. Just set your device to the perfect temperature you want and go on blowing it on the model.

Use gloves to avoid injury and keep a safe distance from flammable objects. And do not overdo with the heat as it may crumble your clay models.

This is ideal for smaller clay models than bigger ones.

3. Using Salt and Flour in Your Clay Mixture

This is one of the oldest methods from the book. It is just a simple air-drying method for your clay model that helps it harden quicker.

So you just have to use a small amount of salt and flour before you shape your clay into models. And don’t do it too much as it will start to crumble easily.

After you are done with your models, keep them in a cool dry place and they will dry up in 2 to 3 days.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make clay permanently hard?

To make your clay permanently hard, you can use any heat source on them. Start when the clay is still soft and heat it up in your oven or microwave. You can also use a heat gun or hairdryer if you don’t have an oven. And when it hardens up it will never be softened again.

What kind of clay hardens without baking?

If you are thinking about a huge project and don’t have an oven for baking or anything in between, you can go for air-dry clay. This clay doesn’t require any baking and can harden up after you have formed it into a model.

How to harden natural clay?

To harden natural clay, you have to go through the process of making it pure clay. First, you have to get rid of all the impurities like dirt, stones, and gravel. When you are left with just pure clay, form it to the shape you want. And then you can either air dry them or heat treat them. Baking them or heating them will make them more durable. But as it is, natural clay is good enough to use after air drying. But they are not waterproof.


Clay modeling is not only a form of livelihood but also an expression of art. So whatever you are doing with the clay, can live forever in the world. And as it has natural elements, there is no harm in handling them. But make sure you use the proper tools to harden them up. Otherwise, it will be all for nothing in the end.

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