That’s a wrap: Popping the secrets behind the different types of bubble wrap

Posted by Marty Boyer on

Scientists have studied the phenomenon that makes it strangely satisfying to pop it, 200,000+ have a watched a video dedicated to a young girl battling Leukemia on how it’s made … but there’s a practical reason to use bubble wrap exists: To safely ship packages. All those bubbles provide cushioning to prevent items from getting scratched, dented and/or broken from your company’s location to its eventual destination during the shipping process. The bubbles may burst, but your dream of keeping your customers happy won’t since the added layer of protection will suffer the damage, not the goods you’re sending them.

Originally developed by the Sealed Air corporation, which owns the official Bubble Wrap® brand name, in the 1960s, the plastic material is well-known in the shipping business. What you may not know, however, is that like people, bubble wrap – the little sheets of transparent plastic with protruding, air-filled hemispheres for cushioning – comes in a variety of colors, thicknesses and sizes. There are so many variations in fact that it might seem a little overwhelming at first, which makes knowing what’s right for your shipping needs worth researching.

As Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky’s leading packaging and box company, however, we at 3D Corrugated deal with issues like these daily and have done the work for you already. Find out everything you ever wanted to know about bubble wrap by reading along below.


Bubble wrap is a common type of void fill. As detailed in a previous blog post (which you can find by clicking here), void fill is any material used to cushion or pad an item to prevent it from becoming damaged during the shipping process. Bubble wrap doesn’t exist in a bubble, however. There are many different types of bubble wrap and thicknesses as well, each of which are for different uses.

These include:

  • Basic or general bubble wrap – made with a medium weight plastic, this is made with medium weight plastic and is the type typically found on store shelves.
  • Anti-static bubble-wrap – Available in a variety of grades, this type of bubble wrap is made for electronic shipments like smartphones and tablets all the way up to larger devices like Smart HDTVs.
  • High grade bubble wrap – best used for heavy items, these feature bubbles that don’t pop as easily due to their strong grade and thickness.
  • Temperature-controlled or thermal bubble wrap – Designed to keep the items from suffering the ill effects of temperature swings like freezing, breaking and condensation, temperature-controlled or thermal bubble wrap is exactly as its name describes.

In addition to these types, you can find bubble wrap in sheets, rolls and, depending on the manufacturer, shape or material. Some companies make bubble wrap that winds tightly around odd-sized, small or large objects that sticks to itself without leaving any residue on the product itself. The Sealed Air corporation also debuted “iBubble” wrap, an unpoppable wrap which distributes the bubbles along a chain rather than the traditional staggering in its individual pouches.

Knowing just how much bubble wrap you’ll need, of course, is key to successful shipping and satisfying customers. Bubble wrap commonly features a ½ inch-thick bubble on a 48-inch-wide roll perforated in 12-inch segments that are usually 250-feet in length. These are usually sold in three widths (12-, 24 and 48-inches) that are 250 feet long, which you can easily order by clicking here. It’s protection that won’t go pop, until you need it to do so.


Given how much space rolls of bubble wrap can take up storage-wise, many companies may need a solution that’s cost-effective when it comes to storing their shipping supplies. Because bubble wrap takes up a lot of space on a vehicle during transit, the simplest and easiest way to save on bubble wrap is to buy locally to save on shipping. Another way to save quite a bit is to buy in bulk. If you don’t have enough room to store that bubble wrap, no problem. That’s why 3D Corrugated warehouses items from boxes to void fill on site until you need them.

Located just across from Downtown Cincinnati in the Covington, Kentucky, we’re always happy to help you find the right material, bubble wrap or otherwise, to help you meet your packaging needs.

Learn more by emailing or give us a call at (513) 241-8126 today.


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