Vortex Clear Sphere Balloons Have Arrived!
Here's everything you need to know!
What are Vortex Clear Sphere Balloons?
Vortex Clear Sphere Balloons are brand new to the UK market and are predicted to become the next best-selling totally transparent party balloon, alongside Aqua Balloons, Deco Bubbles, Clearz and Bobo balloons.
The Vortex Clear Spheres are available in two sizes: 18 inches or 45.7 cm and 24 inches or 61 cm. These are the maximum sizes to which the Vortex bubble-like balloon should be inflated. You can even inflate them a few inches smaller. For example, the smaller of the two Vortex balloons achieves a lovely spherical shape when inflated to 15 inches (38.1 cm) and up to a maximum of 18 inches.
How Do I Inflate a Vortex Clear Balloon?
For a demonstration of how to inflate a Vortex Clear Sphere Balloon, check my video tutorial here, where I share a few vital tips which aren’t included in the manufacturer’s inflation instructions:
A key thing to look out for is the balloon’s left-right balance. When inflated, look at the balloon sideways on so you’re looking at the central seam which goes all around the balloon. Look to the left of the seam, then to the right. If one side looks less rounded or smaller than the other side and the balloon doesn’t look spherical, then the left and right sides of the balloon are not balanced. If your balloon isn’t yet fully inflated to 18 inches, top it up with a little more air or helium depending on which gas you’re using and the left-right balance should correct itself as the balloon approaches its optimum inflated size.
Can I Inflate a Vortex Clear Sphere Balloon With Helium?
You can inflate a Vortex Clear Sphere balloon with helium or with air. When inflating with helium, you will need to use a latex balloon regulator or value to inflate the Vortex Clear balloon with helium. Do not use a balloon regulator or valve designed for use exclusively on valved foil balloons as it will not work correctly on Vortex Clear Spheres.
Can I Inflate a Vortex Clear Sphere Balloon With Air?
You can inflate Vortex Clear Spheres with air or with helium. When inflating a Vortex Sphere with air, use a balloon hand-pump or an electric balloon inflator. For more help, click here to watch my How to Inflate a Vortex Balloon tutorial.
How to Tie Vortex Bubble Balloons?
There are a couple of ways you can tie a Vortex balloon bubble. If you have really strong fingers, you can stretch the neck of the balloon and tie it into a knot the way you would a latex balloon, but it’s much more difficult to get a good knot in a Vortex balloon than it is in a latex balloon. When tied this way, the knot on the Vortex balloon tends to be rather bulky and it can be difficult to get a proper seal … you really do need super-strong fingers to get it right!
The second way to tie your Vortex Clear Sphere balloon is to tie it the same way you would a Deco Bubble or other valveless clear bubble-type balloon. You’ll need to use either a 160 or 260 size modeling balloon, which you wrap around the neck of the Vortex balloon once you’ve inflated it.
Wrap the 160 or 260 around the neck several times in one direction, then take hold of the other end of the 160 or 260 balloon and wrap it around the balloon neck several times in the other direction. Once you’ve done that, tie the two ends of the 160 or 260 together securely, then tie them together a second time.
Do I Need to Stretch a Vortex Bubble Balloon Before Inflating?
The manufacturer’s inflation instructions state:
1. Inflate balloon slowly.
2. Do not inflate above recommended size of 18 inches or 45.7 cm (or in the case of the larger size balloon, 24 inches or 61 cm).
If you watch my tutorial where I show you how to inflate a Vortex transparent balloon, you’ll see that I begin by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Once I’ve done that, I use my balloon-instincts (they’re a bit like spidey senses but less tingly!) and I demonstrate how to inflate the Vortex balloon using my method. You can decide for yourself which you think is the best way!
Are Vortex Balloons the same as Qualatex Deco Bubbles?
There are quite a few differences between Vortex Spheres and Qualatex Deco Bubbles, many of them positive.
Unlike the Qualatex Deco Bubbles, when fully inflated the Vortex Clear Sphere Balloons are almost completely spherical … in fact, they may even be perfectly spherical, but that’s too bold a statement for me to make!
The Vortex Clear Spheres are also extremely transparent … in fact, they may be perfectly transparent! So, the Vortex Spheres have got the edge over Qualatex Deco Bubbles when it comes to clarity and transparency as the Qualatex Deco Bubbles can appear somewhat dusty inside.
Like Qualatex Deco Bubbles, Vortex transparent balloons don’t have a valve and so can be tied in the same way as a Qualatex Deco Bubble. The necks on the Vortex balloons are also longer and wider, which makes it easier when tying and also when stuffing the balloons.
Are Vortex Balloons the same as the Anagram Crystal Clearz Balloons?
Vortex Balloons have a lot in common with the Anagram Crystal Clearz balloons. Vortex Sphere balloons are similar in size to the Crystal Clearz balloons. Both inflate to a pleasing spherical shape within a range of sizes, so you don’t need to inflate to an exact size to achieve a nice round balloon. Both Vortex transparent balloons and Clearz balloons have a wide and long neck which is helpful when stuffing balloons, although you do need to remove the valve from the Clearz balloons in order to stuff them.
Crystal Clearz are available as completely clear balloons and also with a range of pretty pastel tints.
There are colouring techniques that you can use to create a similar colour tint within Vortex and other bubble-type balloons, which I cover in my Aqua Balloon Techniques series – click here to learn more and watch a trailer.
When unstuffed and filled with helium, float times for Vortex balloons and Clearz balloons are similar.
Are Vortex Balloons the same as Aqua Balloons?
Of all the bubble-alike balloons, Aqua Balloons have the most exquisite clarity and brilliance. They are perfectly clear and light reflection from the Aqua Balloons is unparalleled … in my view. But this does come at a price and Aqua Balloons are considerably more expensive than other similar products … sometimes 4 to 5 times the price. As a result, I reserve my Aqua Balloon displays for my high-end clients who want their event to look spectacular on the day or night of their event and who have the budget to achieve the look they want.
Of all the bubble-type balloons, I find Aqua Balloons to be the most versatile, the easiest to work with, and the easiest to create unique effects with. I’ve created displays using flowers, greenery, feathers. I’ve created water effects with Aqua Balloons and I’ve even created movement inside Aqua Balloons.
If you want to learn more and watch a trailer, check out my two training series: Aqua Balloon Techniques and Bubble ABC: Advanced Techniques for Aqua Balloons, Bobos, and Clearz
Are Vortex Balloons the same as Grabo Globe Balloons?
The 15-inch Grabo Clear Globe balloons are smaller than the Vortex Balloons. 15 inches is currently the maximum size to which a Grabo Clear Globe balloon can be inflated, but my prediction is that Grabo will bring out a wider range of sizes of their Clear Globes given the popularity of clear transparent balloons generally.
Like many of the manufacturers, Grabo has experienced supply issues and many of the balloon wholesalers are limiting the number of Clear Globes they will allow balloon decorators and balloon shops to buy.
Despite their name, the Grabo Clear Globes are not as transparent as some of the other bubble-like balloons on the market and they do not have the beautiful clarity of the Aqua Balloons or even the Vortex Balloons. The other significant downside with the Grabo Clear Globes is that they are made up of 4 panels which are not as visually pleasing as some of the other clear balloons available.
That said, if you have a shop and your market is selling birthday balloon bubbles that you want to stay inflated for a couple of weeks, Grabo Clear Globe balloons are a viable alternative to the 20-inch Qualatex Deco Bubbles.
Like the Vortex Balloons, the Grabo Clear Globe balloons do not have a valve and therefore can be tied in the same way as a Vortex balloon.
The Grabo Clear Globe balloons are also suitable for vinyl, and also for stuffing with latex balloons, flowers and greenery, and other decorative items. To learn more about techniques for stuffing bubble balloons like these and other brands, check out my tutorials on Vimeo here.
Are Vortex Balloons the same as Bobo Balloons?
Vortex Balloons share a lot of similarities with Bobo Balloons. They have similar clarity and transparency. Like Bobos, Vortex Clear Spheres can be inflated to a range of sizes rather than to one specific size before they reach their pleasing spherical shape.
Vortex Spheres and Bobo balloons don’t have v
alves and so need to be tied carefully once inflated. Both have wide, long necks and so are suitable for stuffing with latex balloons, flowers and greenery, and other decorative elements. They are made from a thicker plastic than some of the other bubble-alike balloons which means they have excellent float time comparable to Crystal Clearz balloons and Qualatex Deco Bubbles.
Where Can I Buy Vortex Clear Sphere Balloons?
Vortex Clear Sphere balloons are supplied by Sensations International Limited. If you are a UK-based professional balloon artist, balloon decorator or balloon stylist, contact your balloon wholesaler.
As the Vortex Sphere balloons are supplied in retail packaging, I anticipate that the Vortex Clear balloons will be available for the general public to buy in their local balloon store or party store very soon.
About Melanie Allen
Thank you so much for reading my blog about Vortex Balloons - I hope it was useful. I'm a balloon artist and balloon decorator based in Ripley in Derbyshire in the UK.
I set up my Balloon Artworks business a few years ago after getting hooked on balloon twisting and balloon decor. I spend my days travelling throughout Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire in the East Midlands decorating every type of event and celebration imaginable, from birthday parties (from 1st birthdays to 100th birthday), anniversaries, wedding receptions, corporate events, engagement
parties, baby showers ... you get the idea. I love to create unique balloon art installations that help make my clients' events extra special and memorable.