Liquid Densities Dyson Science DIY Project

Liquid Densities

Layer different liquids in a tube and discover how and why they settle in a certain order. Different liquids have different densities and therefore, different weights. The heaviest liquids will sink, the lighter liquids will rise to the top. Density is a comparison between an object’s mass and volume. Remember the equation:

Based on this, if the weight – or mass – of something increases but the volume stays the same, the density has to go up. Lighter liquids, like water, are less dense than heavy liquids, like honey, and so float on top of the more dense layers.


  • A test tube
  • Honey
  • Oil
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Water
  • Dish soaph
  • Two shades of food coloring


Start by adding food coloring to the rubbing alcohol and to the water – using a different shade for each. This will allow you to identify each liquid.


Measure out equal quantities of each liquid. Add them to the tube, one by one.

DIY Details


Avg. Duration

1 hour

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