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National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day

It’s true that these days, there is a national holiday for just about anything! I bet you didn’t know that the last Monday in January is officially National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day. 

History and Origins

The roots of National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day are traced back to and credited to a radio broadcaster named Jim Webster of Spirit 95 WVNI Radio in Bloomington, Indiana back in 2001. According to lore, the radio station had been shipped microphones that were packaged in bubble wrap. During the unpacking, the popping of the bubbles was somehow captured on a live radio broadcast and from there Webster declared this annual, national holiday. It stuck and continues today, now 21 years later! 

The origins of bubble wrap itself are even more inspiring! Before being known by its name brand, Bubble Wrap, these air pockets were first known as “air caps.” In 1957, these air caps were made out of shower curtains sealed together and first sold as wallpaper and eventually as greenhouse insulation. Neither concept took off. 

By 1960, Bubble Wrap had been remarketed for its protective properties by inventors March Chavennes and Alfred Fielding. These two innovators rebranded their new corporation as “Sealed Air.” Most notably in 1961, IBM used Bubble Wrap to protect its 1401 computers during the shipment process. Today, Bubble Wrap is widely used and accepted as one of the best forms of protection for mail shipments as well as for transporting delicate or fragile items. 

For many military families and others who relocate frequently, Bubble Wrap can save the day. It can protect fine China, keep family heirlooms safe, and even be a fun distraction for bored children who love to pop the plastic! 

Helpful Uses Beyond Shipping and Packing

According to House Beautiful, below are ten additional helpful uses for Bubble Wrap: 

  • Create art by using the Bubble Wrap as a printing press
  • Keep food cold by lining shopping bags for insulation
  • Insulate windows to prevent heat loss
  • Stop car frost by placing on the windshield under wipers the night before
  • Make handle cushions for items like a broom handle or crutches
  • Use as protective knee pads for activities like gardening 
  • Line your toolbox to protect the interior and items inside from banging around
  • Protect your plants by wrapping them up before a freeze 
  • Make a sleeping mat to create a layer between the ground and your sleeping bag 
  • Relieve stress by popping the bubbles to release dopamine

Whether you are soon to be packing or unpacking all of your household goods or you simply need a stress relief session with all you have planned in the upcoming year, take today to recognize this often overlooked and underappreciated holiday. Happy National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day! May it be a popping good time!