Today we’re sharing a simple 3-ingredient recipe to create these stretchy hand bubbles. This is guaranteed to keep the kids entertained at home and is a fun way to encourage outdoor play.
Special Note: Please use your own discretion when making this recipe and patch test if your kids are allergic to anything before using. Bubble mixture should not be rubbed in eyes or put in the mouth so please supervise kids whilst they are participating in this activity, and if you think they are likely to put this in their mouth then don’t do this activity.
Sometimes you come across an activity that’s an absolute winner – and that’s what this one is! My girls can’t get enough of these bubbles they create with their hands. While their hands are all soapy they are able to catch the bubbles, stretch them, squeeze them and even poke their fingers inside them without them bursting. It’s really lots of fun and quite amazing to watch.
We’ve experimented with hand bubbles before using liquid hand soap, but this time we made a basic DIY bubble mix recipe and it worked even better.
One thing I will say is that your kids will likely get a bit wet and drippy with this activity so it’s best done on a warm day outside. It’s the first week of Winter here so we were lucky to get a warm-ish sunny afternoon for our bubble-making, but if the kids hands look a little red and cold in these pictures that’s why.
Here is a short video so you can see these bubbles in motion – they truly are mesmerising!
DIY Hand bubbles recipe
• 2 1/3 cup water
• 1 cup dishwashing liquid – note that the brand of dishwashing liquid you use can make a real difference with bubble mixtures. We used Fairy, but other brands I’ve heard work well are Morning Fresh or Dawn. If you use a different brand and your bubble mixture fails it’s probably the reason why.
• 1/2 cup glycerine
Mix all ingredients together in a storage container that can be covered with a lid. Allow it to rest overnight – it will work better. Before making bubbles the next day give the mixture another good stir.
How to create hand bubbles
Dip hands into the mixture and rub together until you get a lather, then form hands into a ring shape and blow bubbles. Because you’re hands are covered in a soapy lather the bubbles will stick to them without popping and they can be distorted and passed from hand to hand. The extra glycerine in this recipe causes the bubbles to be stronger and longer lasting than usual bubbles, but if you attempt to catch them with non-soapy hands they will still burst.
Seriously, how much fun are these? Go on, you know you want to make some!
More fun bubble ideas:
• Make GIANT bubbles with this recipe and bubble wand tutorial
• Try some bubble blower painting over at Childhood 101
• Make some awesome bubble snakes by Hello Wonderful
• Personalise your notebook with bubble painting at Make it your own
• If it’s cold enough, try making some amazing frozen bubbles by Housing a Forest
lisa whitehead says
is the glycerin in pharmacys the same thing?? thank you
The glycerine I’ve seen in Australian pharmacies is the same, I’m not sure about in other countries. The packaging will probably differ if you are not in Australia but my guess is that glycerine is glycerine and they will all have the same effect. Corn syrup is a common alternative to glycerine.
DIANE arlene says
Warning: my granddaughter had a severe allergic reaction in her skin to this mixture! It’s unknown whether it was the glycerian or the dawn… I wanted people using this mixture that a reaction is possible. The thought didn’t cross my mind.
That’s terrible! Thanks for letting us know. Is she OK? My guess is the dishwashing liquid is the culprit 🙁
Personally I am allergic to almost all kinds of soap, detergents, shampoo etc (I can only use goats milk based ones) so I know how awful that can be.
Where do you get glycerin??
I bought it in the supermarket in the bathroom care aisle
Is it hand or machine dish washing liquid please?
just regular dish washing liquid, but some brands may work better than others. We used ‘Fairy’
We tried this twice exactly as directed and it did not work.
Hi Jodie, what detergent did you use? Did you try creating a lather on your hands with the mixture first?