Science in the Parks
Super Bubble Recipe
If you’re a little ambitious, here’s exactly the recipe that we use. If you’d like something simpler, take a look at our general recipes with a straightforward but still very good bubble recipe. Or, if you want to experiment more, take a look at this soap bubble wiki.
We make 4 batches of this (in two large buckets) each time we visit the park. This makes one batch, which takes up about half of a bucket and is plenty for a family. It’s easier to mix in this portion size, but you can double the recipe to start if necessary.
- 6 liters of Hot Water (cold tap water will also work, but hot makes mixing easier)
- One capfull of J-Lube powder (about 15 ml, but precision isn’t important here). J-Lube is used by veterinary clinics for delivering large animals. It’s very slippery!
- 125 ml of surgical lubricant (or 1 4.25 oz tube). We’ve found that it’s equivalent to use something like “K-Y Jelly” or a generic version of this, but we blush when we buy 4 tubes of this at the grocery store.
- 125 ml of glycerin. Also typically available at the pharmacy in a grocery store along with other skin treatments.
- 600 ml (about 20 oz) regular Dawn dish detergent. The most basic (or “ultra”), blue version of this works great. The versions that have more things added don’t make better bubbles, and might make them worse.
Note: We’re quoting everything in ml, or milliliters, simply because that’s a consistent set of lines on a lot of our measuring devices. If it helps, 15 ml is a Tablespoon, and 125 ml is about half a cup.
Stir together (using paint impeller or equivalent, or just a lot of gentle stirring) all the ingredients except for the Dawn until it’s consistent. Add the dish detergent last just to limit the foaming.
For best results, let sit overnight or for a day, but these should be very functional immediately.