Bubble Power: 20/20
It’s the cheap thrill every parent should have in their back pocket: A bubble machine is the single item guaranteed to turn the most humdrum of backyard hangouts into the equivalent of a rager for anyone under five. (Who am I kidding, it’s pretty damn magical for grown-ups, too.)
But here’s where it gets problematic: A bubble machine is also just a single pour away from immense disappointment. Maybe the solution wasn’t drained properly on the last use. Maybe the battery compartment wasn’t airtight enough and liquid got in. Suddenly, what started out as affordable joy has the potential to be quite the investment. (I’m speaking from experience—I shelled out for three different machines last summer, each one with a shorter life span than the last.)
But then my sister called me: She had a recommendation for a bubble machine from Kidzlane that she described as “next level.”My reaction? Add to cart, as they say. After repeated use for the last several months, it’s leaps and bounds above the rest for a multitude of reasons. Here, my honest review.
The design is instant eye candy for the toddler set. Is anyone else’s three-year-old as animal obsessed as mine? This bubble machine comes shaped as a dolphin—one that’s aquamarine blue and bright. Even more important, the button to turn it on and off rests on the dolphin’s head, just in front of its dorsal fin. A light press and it comes alive, spouting 500 to 1000 bubbles a minute. Plus, it’s so user-friendly your toddler can do it. (Raise your hand if you’re a mom who, just once, would like the option to not have to get up every five seconds to help.)
Let’s talk bubble mechanics. The bubble power on this machine is phenomenal and the solution actually lasts. (On previous machines, I felt like I was pouring a bottle in every few minutes.) With the dolphin, I poured a third of a bottle into its spout and got close to five or six minutes of bubble play. The base is also extremely sturdy, which means my toddler didn’t tip it over every time he reached down to interact. The spout also angles upward so bubbles float elegantly into the sky instead of pop-pop-popping immediately on the ground. (In other words, there’s a serious “ooh” factor.)
The only downside. The dolphin machine requires six AA batteries that don’t come included when you buy. But with proper care—i.e. don’t leave it out in the rain and store it upright so the solution doesn’t leak into the battery pack—you’ll get hours of use before a battery replacement is required.