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Blowing Up Your Party Balloons - Hints & Tips | How To Fill Your Balloons for Maximum Glam Effect

We LOVE LOVE LOVE balloons. That’s no secret at all! After years of blowing up (what seems like) a gazillion balloons, we wanted to share some tips and tricks to blow up your balloons that we’ve gained over the years.


Helium Canisters

With the current global helium shortage, helium is becoming an expensive means of blowing up your balloons. It’s a good thing then, that balloon garlands and arches do not require helium, phew! If your balloon installation or design incorporates floating balloons, you can either purchase small disposable canisters or rent helium cylinders from reputable helium suppliers. 

To use a helium canister, open the valve completely i.e. until it stops. Then, hold the balloon in place on the tip of the nozzle and push downwards to release helium.


disposable helium tank blow up how to diy balloons party shimmer and confetti

Source: Balloon Time

For more tips on helium and choosing the right type of helium for your party balloons, please read here.


Manual Balloon Pump

Most manual/hand pumps available in the market today are double-action pumps. This essentially means that the balloon pumps inflate balloons with both a push and pull motion. Manual balloon pumps are made of plastic and feature a long nozzle specially designed to hold the neck of a balloon.

A good pump nozzle should taper at the tip, allowing for various sizes of balloons to fit snugly on the nozzle, preventing air loss during pumping. To use a hand pump (manual pump), simply slide on the balloon and operate the balloon pump like a standard ball or bike pump.

balloon garland hand pump arch

TIP: We sell these hand pumps separately here.


Electric Balloon Pump

Electric balloon pumps are a very effective method of inflating tons of balloons in a short amount of time. They are also useful when inflating larger-sized balloons (24-36"), where inflating with your mouth or a manual balloon pump is not feasible. 

Electric balloon pumps are more expensive than their manual counterparts, so if cost is a major consideration for you, then you should consider sticking with a manual balloon pump. 

electric balloon pump by shimmer & confetti for baby showers, birthdays

To use an electric balloon pump, hold the balloon in place on the tip of the nozzle as the balloon fills with air. Once fully inflated, remove the balloon and knot it using a tying tool.

TIP: If you are inflating more than 40 balloons, we recommend ordering an Electric balloon pump.



This is by far the cheapest (it’s free, or is it?) method to blow up your balloons. However, caution must be taken when blowing up balloons by mouth. Balloons can pose a serious choking danger to children, and so they should never be left unsupervised with uninflated balloons.

That said, blowing up balloons can help to build lung capacity and stamina. Again, care must be taken when inflating balloons by mouth. If a balloon seems difficult to inflate, don't keep blowing forcefully into the balloon. Instead, try stretching it to reduce the resistance. To inflate a balloon by mouth, pinch the neck of the balloon with your index finger and thumb. Then, take a deep breath and blow air from your mouth into the balloon. 


If you have any other hints and tips for inflating balloons we would love to hear about them. Please leave them down below in the comments.

Browse our wide range of balloon garlands on Shimmer and Confetti. Stay on our blog for more inspiring party ideas!

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