I'd never tried Hama Beads before (they're not as easy to find in the USA), and I was very surprised by what I found.
Hama beads have a much different feel to them than any bead I've used. They are actually a bit smaller than other beads (making it difficult to handle them with the perler tweeze tool, and they didn't want to stay in place on the pegboard!) The plastic feels almost soft, and when they're fused, they become almost spongy--they still retain their shape, but they're much more flexible than any other beads so far. This flexibility might be helpful when crafting items that will be handled by children who tend to bend them. They will break if handled too much, but they'd probably withstand more than other beads. ***Please remember that ALL small items can be potential choking hazards for babies and small children!***
(Pictured above, Hama Beads: Dark blue, light blue, yellow, white, and red.
Perler Beads: Pastel blue, light yellow, pink, black, green, purple, and orange.)
Hama beads have a lower melting point than perler beads, and you can see from this picture that they look quite a bit different when melted. The hama beads ended up being noticeably shorter and more rounded at the top (like nabbi beads) than perler beads. They also have a bit more gloss to them than perlers.
Read more about hama and other types of beads here.
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