Which Crayola modeling clay is best?

Crayola has sold trusted high-quality art products since 1885. Although the company is best known for crayons, Crayola has ventured into nearly every art form that exists, including modeling clay.

Modeling clay is a versatile art product used by both children and adults. For children, playing with clay helps develop motor skills and boosts self-esteem and imagination. Many adults in creative positions, such as sculptors and animators, use it as well. Whatever the need, there are many great Crayola modeling clays available, like Crayola’s Model Magic Primary Colors.

What to know before you buy Crayola modeling clay

Who uses modeling clay?

Modeling clay is great for kids looking to try a new type of art other than coloring, but it isn’t just for children. Adults often indulge as well, sometimes for the same reason that children use it — to destress and express their creativity. Artists, sculptors and animators also use modeling clay for creative projects.

Before you choose a modeling clay, it’s important to keep in mind who will be using the clay and what they’ll be using it for.


Modeling clay is available in many quantities. Four-ounce single-packs are good options for those who don’t need too much and are only working with one color. Packs with several color options are good for a pair or group of friends creating together. Larger packs can include 25 1-ounce bags that are good for teachers buying for a whole class. 


Proper storage for modeling clay is important, especially if the clay will dry out if left exposed to the air. These air-dry clays need to be stored in air-tight containers. Some come in resealable bags that the clay can go back into when not in use. If a container is not included, any air-tight container will prevent the clay from drying out. Clays that never dry up can be stored in any way that’s most convenient for you.

What to look for in a quality Crayola modeling clay


Some modeling clay will leave behind a colorful film on skin or other surfaces. Most clay residue washes off easily with soap and water, but others are more difficult to remove.

Before picking your modeling clay, it’s a good idea to read through the reviews and see what has been said about how washable it is.

Texture and durability

Modeling clay comes in a range of different textures, from light and spongy to dense and tough. Spongy clay is easier to mold but can sometimes become crumbly if it is an air-dry clay. Denser clays hold their shape well but can be problematic for young children.

Room for imagination

Modeling clay helps boost imagination and aids children’s development in many ways. It helps nurture a sense of creativity and self-confidence. Modeling clay that comes with no accessories or guidelines allows the user to take full advantage of their imagination.

Tips for removing clay stains

Sometimes modeling clay leaves behind residue or gets stuck on surfaces. Here are some tips to remove it.

  • Use an ice cube for clay stuck on a smooth surface. The ice chills the clay and makes it easier to scrape away.
  • A good wash should remove any clay if it gets on fabric, but if not, using a cotton ball with rubbing alcohol may help.

How much you can expect to spend on Crayola modeling clay

Prices for modeling clay depend on the amount of clay included and any accessories. Single packs cost from $4-$10, while kits with many colors and tools can run from $5-$40.

Crayola modeling clay FAQ

What if the clay stains your child’s hands?

A. Clay that leaves color residue behind on hands or furniture can often be washed off easily with soap and water. 

Should you supervise my child while modeling clay?

A. Although Crayola modeling clays are nontoxic and safe for children, it should not be ingested. It’s best to supervise to ensure children don’t put clay anywhere it doesn’t belong.

Are there benefits to young children using modeling clay?

A. Modeling clay makes excellent practice for children developing their hand-eye coordination and motor skills. This improves dexterity and prepares them for activities like coloring, writing and cutting.

What’s the best Crayola modeling clay to buy?

Top Crayola modeling clay

Crayola Model Magic Primary Colors

Crayola Model Magic Primary Colors

What you need to know: This spongy modeling clay can be dried overnight to save a creation or put back into its resealable package for reuse.

What you’ll love: This product offers a wide range of color variations. The non-toxic clay doesn’t stain surfaces or hands and only sticks to itself, making it mess-free. The pouches of clay come in a bucket that can double as storage.

What you should consider: Some reviews reported it took up to two weeks for the clay to completely harden.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Staples

Top Crayola modeling clay for the money

Crayola Modeling Clay in Bold Colors

Crayola Modeling Clay in Bold Colors

What you need to know: This kit includes non-drying modeling clay in eight different bold colors, allowing you to shape and reshape it over and over again.

What you’ll love: Because the clay doesn’t dry out, it’s perfect for young artists looking to experiment without feeling they have a time limit. The clay is nontoxic.

What you should consider: The clay starts out thick and stiff, making it difficult for small hands to mold.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Staples

Worth checking out

Crayola Model Magic Build-a-Beast Kit

Crayola Model Magic Build-a-Beast Kit

What you need to know: This kit includes clay and body-frame skeletons of three different animals that can move like real creatures.

What you’ll love: Step-by-step instructions are included to help craft each animal while leaving lots of room for customization. Their tails wiggle and shake, giving them a very lifelike look when completed.

What you should consider: Using this may require an adult’s help. Each body-frame skeleton can only be used once.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Keira Hulihan writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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