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10 Crazy, Unexpected Uses for Bubble Wrap

What do you use bubble wrap for? Most use it for packing fragile or delicate objects for shipping or storage. But let’s be creative and explore ten crazy and unexpected uses for bubble wrap.

For the uninformed, Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day is celebrated the last Monday in January. Use the hashtag, #BubbleWrapDay when posting on Social Media.

The uses of bubble wrap go far beyond packing and popping.

History of Bubble Wrap

Bubble Wrap (originally Air Cap) is a trademarked brand of Sealed Air Corporation that includes numerous cushioning products made from bubble wrap. It all began when engineers Marc Chavannes and Alfred Fielding sealed two shower curtains together in 1956 in the town of Hawthorne, New Jersey, USA.  This technique created a smattering of air bubbles which the engineers initially thought would make great wallpaper!  Sales for the wallpaper never materialized, so they moved to selling the product as greenhouse insulation.

The Sealed Air Corporation was founded in 1960, but Air Cap wasn’t used for shipping until IBM starting shipping the 1401 computer in 1961.Bubble Wrap is a trademarked brand of Sealed Air Corporation.

Stress Relief – Popping Bubbles

Popping Bubble Wrap is sometimes used as stress-relief, and Sealed Air’s corporate offices have “stress relief boxes” that are filled with Bubble Wrap for the employees to pop. We all know the excitement of a parcel that is covered in bubble wrap, and releasing your inner child as you get to pop and pop and pop.

Clever Wrapping

Lay out the Bubble Wrap with the bubble side facing upwards. You may have noticed that one half of the Bubble Wrap has a completely flat surface, and the other contains all of the tiny bubbles. A common mistake people make is to wrap up the item with the bubbles on the outside and the flat edge against their item.

Insulation for Shopping

Simple cloth grocery bags get an easy upgrade with bubble wrap, turning them into insulating bags that keep takeout hot or groceries cold. Simply cut the plastic and slip it inside to line the shopping bag.

Create a Countdown Calendar

If you have little ones who keep nagging about when you are going on holiday or how many days till their birthday, create a countdown calendar with bubble wrap, by cutting out a piece of bubble wrap with the required amount of bubbles, mounting it on cardboard and putting it up on a wall. The little ones can now pop one bubble every day.

Protection for Plants Against the Cold

Anxious gardeners can protect plants from unexpected frosts and harsh weather with spare wrap. Cut and mould Bubble Wrap around taller plants, or blanket groundcover and small seedlings in the plastic to protect against snow, frost, or extreme winds. Bubble Wrap also can be used as a mini greenhouse to keep plants and soil warm until average temperatures increase.

Handle Cushions for Brooms, Rakes

Using wooden or plastic hand tools, such as rakes and brooms, can lead to blisters. To take the pain out of yard work, wrap tool handles with bubble wrap and secure with tape or a rubber band for extra cushioning that makes cleaning a bit more comfy.  This popping stuff is perfect for creating make-shift handle cushions. Whether you want to add more comfort to the handles of crutches, or a broom, this will stop you getting sore palms.

Rainy Day Craft Project

You can produce some funky art pieces with bubble wrap by using it as a printing press. One idea is to cut out some interesting shapes and designs from the material, and paint onto the surface. Press this against some paper or card and you have some personalised wall art, which is also a great activity for kids. Bright colours are best for a bold impact, but there are lots of ways to be creative.

Sleeping Mat for Camping

Make camping more comfortable with bubble wrap—just place a larger sheet under your sleeping bag for comfortable insulation that keeps you dry and slightly warmer. It will cushion you from the hard ground.

Bubbles Provide Insulation

Bubble wrap is a very good insulator thanks to small pockets of air trapped within the bubbles. … During the winter, bubble wrap can effectively protect your home or greenhouse against the cold penetrating inside and prevent heat from moving out.

Insulate Comfy Pet Beds

Bubble Wrap can help insulate pet bedding for both indoor and outdoor pets in cooler months, and provide extra comfort year-round. Placing layers of the air-filled plastic underneath bedding (where it’s not easily accessible) can help retain heat while adding some extra padding that your pet pal will thank you for.

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