The gem selects an object that they wish to encase inside the bubble, and concentrates to create a bubble that can surround the object. With experience, this process becomes much more instinctual, shown by how easily gems like Garnet are able to do it. The resulting bubble is a different hue based on the type of gem that bubbled it, and has unusual properties. These bubbles are able to float, hence their chosen name, and were able to support Steven as shown in "Monster Buddies" but can be moved with ease as shown in "Catch and Release". Bubbles are significantly stronger than natural bubbles, and can remain intact for an incredibly long period of time undisturbed. However, bubbles can be popped very easily by outside forces. The majority of bubbles are seen in the Crystal Temple inside The Burning Room, although due to the fragility of bubbles only Garnet is allowed inside of it. After bubbling an item, the holder can either keep it in their possession or teleport it to a different location via physical contact. It is assumed that this teleportation ability works on bubbles only, and operates on a sort of previously set waypoint system, as the only known receiving location is The Burning Room, and Steven was able to send the Centipeetle there on his first attempt.
The purpose of bubbling a gem is to contain its gemstone and prevent it from generating a new physical form. In the main series, this process is used solely on gems the Crystal Gems deem dangerous, as Peridot was bubbled just like any other corrupted gem. The series suggests these bubbled gemstones may have another purpose, which is hinted at on many different occasions. The most notable of these include the lung-like structure of the Burning Room, the fact that Peridot referred to the process as "gem harvesting", and the significantly dwarfed state of the Centipeetle Mother after spending time bubbled in the room. All of these events strongly suggest that energy is being harvested from the gems contained in the room in a way similar to how air is processed and pushed through a human body (hence the lung-like design of the room), although the purpose of this hypothetical energy collection process is still unknown.
- It is unknown if all Gems possess the ability to bubble objects.
- Garnet is able to bubble gems with and without her gauntlets which implies that Gems don't always need physical contact to bubble gems.
- An active object or person is capable of bursting the bubble from the inside, as demonstrated in "Monster Buddies" and "Message Received".
- There is an apparent size limit to what can be bubbled, as demonstrated by Pearl's and Peridot's incredulity to the prospect of bubbling the entire Cluster in "Gem Drill".
- Gem Shards have the ability to bubble even without their physical form, as shown in "Gem Drill".
- Peridot was horrified at the concept of being harvested in "Catch and Release", showing that the process causes lasting or permanent harm to any gem involved.