You might have never thought about a recipe for bubble soap, and it may seem strange that we suggest the need for one, but your kids will have a lot of fun with this bubble soap. The most brilliant bubbles are produced from a solution of water, dish soap, and corn syrup or glycerin. Alone, dish soap is too thick to make the large floating spheres we love to see when we blow soap through a bubble wand.
Combined at the right ratio, soap and water produce thinner, more "flexible" bubbles that hold a greater amount of air (thus producing a bigger bubble). The addition of corn syrup or glycerin is to make bubbles that last just a bit longer, once they are blown, and which really catch the light in swirls of color.
Here’s the recipe we recommend:
2 ½ quarts water*
½ cup light corn syrup
1 cup liquid dish soap (such as Dawn or Joy brands)
Large dishpan or shallow container
1-2 quart pitcher
1 cup liquid measuring cup
Spoon (for mixing, but hands work just as well and create a great tactile experience)
*A note about water: Some bubble experts say that the minerals in tap water can make a bubble solution less effective. If you have a water softener in your home, your water will contain less of the hard minerals that make tap water “heavy” and less desirable for bubble solution. If you have hard water in your pipes, you might want to use distilled water.
Combine the ingredients and then mix.
Note: These ingredients must be mixed very gently in the dishpan. If this mixture is vigorously mixed, it will produce suds (lots of tiny small bubbles stuck together) that will make the mixture unreliable for blowing big, beautiful bubbles. So, if you are making this recipe with children, encourage them that patience is also a necessary ingredient in the process! Slow and steady wins the race to a great bubble soap solution.
If you do end up with a soapy solution, you can put the solution aside until the suds burst and leave the solution “flat” again. On the other hand, try blowing bubbles with a sudsy solution. Talk with your child about what happens: Are they able to get the solution to stick to their bubble wand? If so, can they blow bubbles? Are the bubbles big or small? Later, use a “flat” solution and compare what happened with the sudsy solution. Sometimes the best teaching moments and learning experiences come out of unintended outcomes!
Here are some bubble soap toys to have even more fun:
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