Viscosity Examples for Beginners: A Step-by-Step Guide

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Wanna know what are some examples of viscosity in daily life? If yes, then you are at the right place at the very right time. Because in this exclusive article, I am gonna explain how viscosity manifests and influences our experiences. So, what is viscosity anyway? By definition, it is a property of a fluid that determines its resistance to flow.

In other words, one can say that viscosity is a force that measures the internal resistance of a fluid to flow. In fact, viscosity plays one of the most significant roles in the determination of the fact that whether the fluid is showing laminar or turbulent flow. Laminar flow has a high viscosity and turbulent flow has a low viscosity.

From liquids we encounter in our kitchen to substances used in industries, viscosity plays a significant role. It is one of the most important properties that affect various aspects of our daily lives. So, without wasting any more time, let’s dive right in…!!!

Viscosity Examples for Beginners: A Step-by-Step Guide

  • Honey
  • Blood Flow
  • Toothpaste
  • Paint
  • Motor Gear Lubricant
  • Body Lotion


Image Source: The Manual

The very first one on my list of viscosity examples in daily life is Honey. Honey is a typical household fluid with very high viscosity. Fluids like honey flow slowly from a jar or a spoon. Because honey is a highly viscous fluid.

The higher the viscosity of the fluid, the higher will be the chance that the given fluid exhibits laminar flow. This is why pouring honey from a jar requires patience and time. Just to let you know that honey has high viscosity due to the high concentration of sugar in honey.

Blood Flow


The flow of blood in our circulatory system is due to a specific viscosity, commonly denoted as laminar. Because it needs to flow smoothly through the blood vessels but still has enough resistance to maintain the required pressure. Just to let you know that the flow of blood can either be laminar or turbulent as per the requirement.

For example, for blood to flow smoothly, it shows a laminar flow that is having high viscosity. However, due to the curve in the aorta and the irregular mixing and shape of the blood vessels, the flow of the blood becomes turbulent in nature.


Image Courtesy: Nia Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics

Ever used toothpaste? Ahh, I am joking. I mean who hasn’t!!! Ever wondered why toothpaste stays on your toothbrush and doesn’t drip off? It happens because toothpaste has a high viscosity. This allows you to apply the toothpaste effectively while brushing your teeth.

However, it should also not have a very high viscosity so it becomes difficult to squeeze it out of the tube. In addition, just to let you know if a substance has a high viscosity, it should be having low velocity. A typical example is your toothpaste.


Image Courtesy: Art Studio Life

Different types of paint have varying viscosities depending on the fact that which type of paint you are using. For example, some paints such as oil-based paints that are thick and highly viscous are ideal for creating textured surfaces. This is why oil paint takes longer time to dry.

On the other hand, paints like watercolors are thinner and have a bit low viscosity in comparison to thick paints are ideal for smooth surfaces. To sum up, one can say that viscosity drastically affects how the paint spread and adheres to the surface.

Motor Gear Lubricants

Image Source: SLS Bearings

One of the practical applications of viscosity is in motor gear lubricants. WHY? Because it ensures proper protection as well as lubrication of all the mechanical parts (such as gears and bearings) of an engine.

These lubricants have low viscosity that helps to flow easily at low temperatures during the ignition of the engine. And, yet remains thick enough to maintain a stable oil film between moving mechanical parts of an engine.

Body Lotion

Image Courtesy: Stylecraze

Last but not least one on my list of viscosity examples is Body Lotion. In order to protect our skin from becoming dry, we apply some kind of lotion. Lotions have a higher viscosity than water, allowing them to be easily spread over the skin.

But it does have a low viscosity to facilitate easy application and absorption into the skin. The thicker consistency ensures that the lotion stays in place and provides moisturization for a longer duration.

Some Other Viscosity Examples in Real Life

Apart from the above-mentioned ones, I am also mentioning a few here.

  • Maple Syrup
  • Ketchup
  • Engine Coolant
  • Shampoo
  • Lave
  • Nail Paint
  • Glue
  • Printer Ink
  • Mollases
  • Chocolate, etc.

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I am a mechanical engineer by profession. Just because of my love for fundamental physics, I switched my career, and therefore I did my postgraduate degree in physics. Right now I am a loner (as ever) and a Physics blogger too. My sole future goal is to do a Ph.D. in theoretical physics, especially in the field of cosmology. Because in my view, every aspect of physics comes within the range of cosmology. And I love traveling, especially the Sole one.

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