Every kid I have ever met loves bubbles. Seriously. I have not met a kid who doesn’t. They provide hours (for some), or at least several minutes, of entertainment. Is it because they float and “fly” through the air? The way they turn cool colors in the sunlight? Whatever it is, they are a well-loved part of most childhoods. Kids love blowing bubbles, and chasing them around. So as a bonus, they’re good for keeping kids active!
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At a cookout last summer, I spent a solid 20 minutes blowing bubbles for my friend’s two kids. They literally chased bubbles around the yard that whole time, and kept asking me to keep going. What an easy and inexpensive form of entertainment and activity for the kiddos! Since then, I have been thinking about a homemade bubble recipe.
Bubbles are readily available and inexpensive in drug stores, grocery stores, and big-box stores in the summer time in New England. But they ALWAYS come in plastic containers, and I have no idea what ingredients are in the bubble liquid.
I wanted a way to play bubbles with kids, without risking irritating sensitive skin, without harming the environment with unknown chemicals, and without buying plastic. I suspected that I could make homemade bubbles using liquid castile soap, so I did some research and experimentation and found something that works great! I found this recipe that seemed most like something I would want to use, and modified the amounts to work best with my castile soap.
Making Homemade bubbles
Is really easy! It only takes three ingredients and less than 5 minutes. These ingredients are natural and contain no harmful or harsh chemicals.
2 parts water (clean, preferably filtered; distilled works as well)
1 part liquid castile soap
1 part light corn syrup* (I used this kind)
*corn syrup is sold in plastic containers, but since my homemade castile soap and tap water don’t use plastic packaging, making these homemade castile soap bubbles require much less plastic packaging than buying store-bought bubbles.
- Pour the three ingredients in a microwave safe jar.
- Gently heat the solution in the microwave. I made a 1/2 cup of bubbles (1/8 cup castile soap, 1/8 cup corn syrup, and 1/4 cup water) and microwaved this in a 1-cup glass mason jar for about 30 seconds in my 1100-watt microwave.
- Stir until all ingredients are completely blended together.
- Allow to cool (this can be accelerated in the fridge) until the solution is about room temperature to lukewarm (I was going for a temperature that was comfortable to hold the container wouldn’t hurt if the bubble popped on my skin).
- Go outside and play with these awesome homemade bubbles!
I have some old bubble wands from my pre-environmentally conscious days, but I also made some of my own! I just twisted some wire and bread ties into a round-ish shape with a handle and I was good to go!
This recipe is not a lower cost option – not one of my frugal recipes, unfortunately! However, I choose to use it because it’s gentler when contacting skin, contains no harmful ingredients, and reduces plastic use.
Cost per 1 cup batch homemade bubbles
Water – I used filtered tap water. Cost in this recipe is essentially $0
Castle soap – Per my recipe, my castile soap is $12/gallon (128 oz); cost for 1/4 cup (2 oz) is ($12/128oz)x2oz=$0.1875. If making with Dr. Bronner’s, it’s a little more pricey: about $16 for 32 fl. oz. ($16/32oz)x2oz=$1.00
Corn syrup – $2.79 for 16oz at Target and similarly priced in my local grocery store; cost for 1/4 cup (2 oz) is ($2.79/16oz)x(2oz)=$0.34875
Total: $0.1875+$0.34875=$0.53625. This soap costs about $0.54 per cup, so while it’s not as inexpensive as the cheap store bought stuff, it is still pretty inexpensive! And if using Dr. Bronner’s it’s a bit more at $1.35 per cup.
Have you tried making homemade bubbles? Or homemade bubble wands? Let us know about this in the comments below!