Homemade Bubbles Solution Review – Which Soap Works Best?

4 out of 5 leaves

4 out of 5 leaves

Blowing soap bubbles is a classic and fun childhood pastime   Typically the bubbles only last for a few seconds, but kids love to chase and try to catch them before they pop.  Often the bottle of soap runs out all too soon, forcing you to toss the plastic bottle and wand, run out to the store, and drop a couple more dollars for a few minutes of fun.  The good news is that recipes are out there for homemade bubble solution.  But is making your own bubble soap a green idea?  And which type of soap works the best?

The Good:

  • Better for you – you know exactly what’s going into the bubble solution, so no worries about unknown ingredients
  • Better for the Earth – you can reuse the old bottle and bubble wand, and you’re not buying soapy water that has been shipped halfway around the world (hello carbon savings!)
  • Saves Money – depending on what type of soap you buy and the cost of other ingredients, you can make your own bubble soap for up to 50% savings
  • Educational – get the kids to help you make the soap, and they learn math, fractions, recipe following, etc


The Bad:

  • Takes a little bit of time to whip up a recipe.  Not long, but longer than it would take to order a gallon refill online.

My Experience

I have a four year old, and a two year old.  Obviously blowing bubbles in the yard is seriously good times at our house.  And in Los Angeles it’s something we enjoy almost year-round.  But the bubbles run out so fast!  (Especially when one or more of your children get a kick out of DUMPING whole bottles of bubbles at a time.  Ahem.)  I thought there must be a better way than spending $$ on soapy water shipped in from China.

Making your own bubble solution is a great green idea, and fun for the kids too.  There are lots of different recipes online (example Pinterest search here).  Most recipes are variations on the same theme, so I’ll let you pick out the one you want to try.  (Hint: skip the ones with baking soda or cornstarch – they just don’t work).  I ended up preferring the water+dish soap+glycerin recipe the best.

The scientist in me couldn’t resist testing out the different types of dish soap I had hiding under the kitchen sink: a standard dish soap, a foaming soap, and a natural ingredients soap.  I wondered which one would perform the best.  I also wondered if bubbles from all natural soap were even possible?

Standard dish soap, natural dish soap, foaming dish soap.


My little guy and I had a nice time rigging up the different bubble solutions, and filling them into old bubble bottles. We tested them out and rated the different solutions based on quantity, size, and longevity of bubbles.  And the results are in!

  1. Standard dish soap – this solution performed the best: as well as any store bought bubble solution I’ve seen.  Bubbles were numerous, well sized, and lasted a respectable amount of time
  2. Foaming dish soap – this solution was a close second, with the bubbles seeming to break on thier own slightly sooner than the standard solution
  3. All Natural dish soap – not bad!  I did not have high hopes for this after experiencing the natural soap doesn’t work on dishes.  However, the bubble performance was only slightly sub-par.  It was a little harder to blow a big bubble, and the bubbles popped sooner.  But my little guys didn’t seem to notice, and still had lots of fun.  That’s what it’s all about right?
Overall, the homemade bubble solutions worked well – even the all natural one!  I definitely recommend making your own.  I made them in small batches at first because I didn’t know how they would turn out.  Next time, I plan to make a gallon at least, maybe rigging up a bubble refill system like this.

Have you ever tried making your own bubble solution?  What is the secret behind your favorite recipe?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
This entry was posted in Baby and Kids, DIY Green Ideas and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Homemade Bubbles Solution Review – Which Soap Works Best?

  1. Bama Girl says:

    Thanks for your experiment and for sharing the results with us! I know which one to use now! Blessings from Bama!

  2. Good to know! Thanks for the info…

  3. Joan says:

    My daughter is grown and on her own but this would be fun for me. 🙂

  4. beth says:

    So what is the recipe with the standars dish soap?

  5. Pingback: 3 Fun Summer Writing Activities with Bubbles - Imagination Soup Imagination Soup Fun Learning and Play Activities for Kids

  6. Lisa says:

    I’m going to try standard Dawn dish soap, as I was disappointed that a whole gallon of solution wouldn’t form not one single bubble 🙁 having used glycerin + water + what I had on hand: Palmolive “OXY power degreasing” formula dish soap.