Scrubbing Bubbles Experiments


How well does Scrubbing Bubbles kill germs?

Answer: It does great on the shower and bathtub when you put a thick layer on and let it sit 5 minutes. 

Experiment Details

After many requests, I finally tested Scrubbing Bubbles. My sister uses scrubbing bubbles to spray off her showers and bathtubs a few times a week and INSISTS that it keeps them white and clean. She figured that it must be killing germs, too. The can does say that it kills 99.9% of bacteria. I decided to put it to the test. 

Scrubbing Bubbles on the bathtub and shower

For these experiments, I tested Scrubbing Bubbles on an actual bathtub. This bathtub was not artificially contaminated. It was just my kids' bathtub that I hadn't cleaned for at a week. First, I rinsed the bathtub with clean water to remove dirt, sand, and grass. The bathtubs looked pretty clean. 

Then I swabbed each side of the bathtub and rubbed the swab onto a clean agar plate. 

Then I sprayed one half of the bathtub with a thick layer of Scrubbing Bubbles. I sprayed the other half with a good layer of 3% hydrogen peroxide. I let the cleaners sit for 5 minutes and swabbed each side. I rubbed the swabs onto clean agar plates and let the plates incubate for 48 hours in my warm incubator. 


Both the 3% hydrogen peroxide and the Scrubbing Bubbles did a great job killing germs in the bathtub. However, I was worried that if even a tiny bit of hydrogen peroxide got onto the Scrubbing Bubbles side when I was spraying, it would kill the germs and make it look like the Scrubbing Bubbles was killing more than it really did.

So, I repeated the experiment without my hydrogen peroxide positive control. I tested my kids' bathtub, my neighbor's kids' bathtub, and my shower. For these experiments, I rinsed out the bathtub or shower with water to remove debris. Then I swabbed all over the floor and sides of the dirty bathtub or shower and rubbed the swab onto a clean agar plate. Then I sprayed a thick layer of Scrubbing Bubbles to completely cover the bathtub/shower. I let the Scrubbing Bubbles sit for 5 minutes. Then I swabbed again and rubbed that swab onto another clean agar plate. The plates were incubated for 48 hours. 

As you can see, Scrubbing Bubbles Bathroom Cleaner  did a great job killing bacteria in the bathtub and shower. It also really helps the bathtub look white and clean. After this, I started using Scrubbing Bubbles on my showers and bathtubs. My sister was very happy with the results. 

Scrubbing Bubbles countertop experiment

I also tested Scrubbing Bubbles in my countertop experiments. For these experiments, I put dirty water onto countertop squares, let it dry, and put the .5 mL of cleaner on for 5 minutes.  Scrubbing bubbles was difficult to measure because it is a foam. I sprayed it into a paper cup and let it sit for 5 minutes to let the bubbles pop. That is the only way I could accurately measure out .5 mL of the liquid. After the Scrubbing Bubbles sat on the square for 5 minutes, I swabbed the square and rubbed the swab onto an agar plate. 

As you can see, Scrubbing bubbles did not do that great killing germs on my artificially contaminated kitchen countertop. This means that Scrubbing bubbles is not as powerful at killing bacteria as 3% hydrogen peroxide or the pure thieves oil. However, there is a lot of dirt and germs in my countertop experiments. Many products that don't do well in my countertop experiments, still do fine during normal use. Scrubbing Bubbles still did great on bathtubs and my shower which is what you are really going to use it on. So, I think Scrubbing Bubbles is a great choice for normal time when no one is sick. 

If you would like to suggest an experiment, please post on my facebook page. I also really need to earn money from this website in order to keep doing experiments (agar plates, essential oils, and cleaning products are expensive). If you want to contribute, please use my Amazon affiliate links. Just click on any of my links that go to amazon, and buy whatever you want. You don't have to buy what I recommend or even the product that the link goes to. Here is a link. I'll get a small percentage of the sale and use the money to buy experiment supplies. Thank you.

--Annie Pryor, Ph.D.