Guide to Different Types of Balloons
Balloons are fun, colorful decorative elements that people of all ages enjoy. Whether you're celebrating a birthday or the start of a new season, a party is more exciting when you have balloons on the tables, chairs, walls or entryways. With so many to choose from, let your imagination run wild and find colors, textures and patterns to enthrall your guests.
Explore the different types of balloons to help you find the best ones for your next event.
Latex vs. Foil Balloons
Balloons are typically either latex or foil. Each of these materials can help create unique decorative elements for your design theme. Explore the characteristics, pros and cons of each of these different types of balloons for a party.
Latex balloons contain liquid rubber from rubber trees native to Southeast Asia. Since they're compatible with helium and air, they can serve many purposes for your design goals. This porous material causes air to leak out over time, so it's suitable for temporary, one-time use. Latex balloons are eco-friendly and biodegradable, making them safe for the environment and your guests.
Mayflower provides the following types of latex balloons:
- Solid: Our solid latex balloons come in round, heart, donut and blossom shapes, along with pastel, metallic and deluxe colors for your selection.
- Entertainer: Create animal balloons and other fun shapes with entertainer latex balloons. Use these balloons to add some decorative flair to your venue or make balloon animals for your guests.
- Specialty: Our specialty balloons come in unique, colorful patterns to fit any party theme. Whether you want confetti-filled balloons or ones with textured paint-splattered designs, these balloons are sure to impress your guests.
Reusable foil balloons contain a mixture of laminated polyethylene, nylon and aluminum materials. Like latex balloons, foil balloons come in many shapes, sizes, colors and finishes. Foil balloons are also compatible with helium and air, but will hold onto helium longer than latex balloons. Due to their sturdy materials, they maintain their shiny appearance for a long time.
Helium- vs. Air-Filled Balloons
Balloons typically get their round shape from helium or air. The type of air you use to fill your balloons depends on several factors, including intended use and cost. Explore the following characteristics of helium- and air-filled balloons to find out what you need for your event.
Based on the material, helium-filled balloons can last several hours to several days in the air. Since helium is less dense than air, it can float. Helium is safe for the environment, and it can create balloons for floating balloon centerpieces and bouquets. Even though helium-filled balloons tend to be more expensive, since most people use foil balloons with helium, keep in mind that these types of balloons tend to last longer and it's easy to refill them. Learn more about our helium & nitrogen delivery services.
Air-filled balloons are a budget-friendly option for decorating a party. Since they don't float, they can serve as centerpieces or parts of larger balloon arrangements. Air-filled balloons are a cost-effective alternative to helium. Most large foil shapes now come with hang tabs. Simply attach balloons to decorative ribbon and string them up! Use cup and sticks to display air-filled foils and shapes. Balloon Wands are created specifically for air-filled balloons and provide that wiggly, wobbly floating impression.
Balloon Arrangements You Can Try
As you figure out how to decorate your event with balloons, think about how you'd like to arrange them. Knowing what arches and columns you want to design can help you find the right products for your event. Check out the following balloon arrangements for your next party:
- Balloon bouquets: A balloon bouquet is a simple decoration that adds a bit of colorful festivity to your party. Use a balloon bouquet as a centerpiece, part of a gift or decor throughout your event's venue. Decorate with a mix of latex and foil balloons for interesting colors and patterns. Look at the space you’re decorating and get creative.
- Balloon columns: To take your party theme to the next level, fill the venue with ostentatious balloon columns. Let guests know where the party is by setting up these decorative columns near entryways. You may also want to put them in hallways and on walls if you're using a large space. With the proper materials and patience, a balloon column takes less than an hour to create.
- Balloon garland: Balloon garlands add a hint of subtle elegance to your party while still keeping it fun. Hang a balloon garland down the center of a table as a runner with latex balloons. For a decorative backdrop, put a balloon garland along the wall.
- Mini Air Balloon Centerpiece: Fill a 5-inch round latex balloon with air to create a four-balloon cluster base and top them with an 18-inch air-filled foil.
- Air Shape Centerpiece: Upgrade your design with an 11-inch round latex balloon cluster and top with a large special shape. This is a huge impact for low-cost air-fill option!
- Candy Cups: This is a great upsell for birthday parties! Fill a cup with your candy of choice. Underinflate a 5-inch latex balloon with air, add a four-balloon cluster and top with an air-filled 9-inch foil balloon.
Tips for Balloon Responsibility
Balloons may be fun, but they require a few safety precautions to make sure everyone has a good time at your party. Protect the planet and those around you by remembering the following tips:
- Keep out of reach of children: Broken or deflated balloons are a choking hazard for small children. Avoid letting the little ones at your party play with balloon fragments to keep your guests safe.
- Avoid inhaling helium: Use a helium tank or balloon pump to fill up your balloons.
- Discard after use: When you’ve finished the party, cut the neck of the balloons and deflate and discard them. Even though foil balloons are typically reusable, it’s important to remember to throw out any balloons you don't plan on using again in the proper receptacle.
- Recycle when possible: Since most of our products are recyclable, find out how to bring your used balloons to a recycle center.
- Keep them on the ground: Many people like the tradition of releasing balloons into the sky. Instead of letting them float away, attach a balloon weight after inflating balloons and discard them properly after the party is over.
At Mayflower, we're committed to balloon sustainability and care. Our products are eco-friendly and safe for the environment, and our goal is to educate all who use our balloons to use them safely.
Explore Balloon Varieties From Mayflower
However you choose to decorate, Mayflower offers fun, colorful balloon products for your next party or corporate event. Use our search filters to find the party supplies and decorations you need to make your bash a success.