Beat the heat

How to remove hot glue simply and easily

Because it can stick to almost any material and surface, hot glue is a and handy versatile tool. Get it where it doesn’t belong, though, and it can quickly become a real nuisance. Fear not – with just a few common household items, you can remove quickly remove the glue and carry on with the task at hand.

How to get hot glue off skin

  1. Cool. When hot glue makes contact with your skin it can really burn – if this happens, run the affected area under a cold tap for five to 10 minutes. Alternatively, submerge it in a sink of cold water or place an icepack on it.
  2. Freeze. Once the burning sensation has subsided, press down on the glue with an ice cube to harden it (if this hasn’t occurred under the cold water).
  3. Rub. Soak a cotton ball or pad with olive oil or an alcohol-based solution and rub it on the hardened glue, which should quickly loosen enough to peel off and remove from your skin.

An alcohol-based solution, such as rubbing alcohol, can be very painful if applied to burnt skin. If this is the case, use olive oil instead.

How to remove hot glue from carpet

  1. Iron. Place a piece of disposable fabric on top of the glue spillage and press down on it with a medium-hot iron.
  2. Check. Lift the iron and check that the glue has been absorbed into the piece of fabric. If any glue remains in the carpet, either place a clean area of the fabric or an entirely new piece on top of it and press down with the iron again.
  3. Clean. Use a carpet cleaner or warm water with detergent to clean any trace elements of glue from the affected area.

When using the iron in this procedure, do not run it back and forth like you would when ironing clothes. This can cause the glue to spread to other areas of the carpet and make it harder to remove.

How to get hot glue off clothes

  1. Freeze. One of the most common mishaps with hot glue is getting on your clothes. If this happens, take the item off and put it in the freezer for around 45 minutes.
  2. Pick. When the 45 minutes is up, the glue should’ve hardened to the extent that it feels brittle, at which point you’ll be able to pick it off by hand.

If it isn’t possible to get the item of clothing into a freezer, or the glue has really gotten into its fibres and threads, follow these steps.

  1. Soak. Let the piece of clothing dry, then soak a cotton ball or pad in either an acetone-based solution such as nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol and press it firmly against the hardened glue.
  2. Peel. After around a minute, the glue should have loosened enough to peel off with your fingers. More acetone or alcohol may need to be dabbed on it as you pull.
  3. Clean. Wipe the affected area down thoroughly with a cloth or sponge and hot water to remove any remnants of glue and traces of acetone or alcohol.

How to remove hot glue from stucco

  1. Soak. Allow the glue to dry, then soak one tip of a cotton swab with rubbing alcohol and wipe it firmly around the edges of the glue.
  2. Peel. As you work inwards with the saturated swab, the edge of the glue should loosen and you can begin peeling it off, continuing to swab as you go. It it is too difficult to peel with your fingers, use a plastic scraper to scrape the glue off.
  3. Heat. If the glue refuses to loosen, apply heat to it with a hair dryer. After a few minutes, the glue should soften.
  4. Clean. Wipe the affected area down thoroughly with a cloth or sponge and hot water to remove any remnants of glue and traces of alcohol.

When removing glue from a painted, polished or varnished surface, test an inconspicuous area by applying a small dab of rubbing alcohol and leaving for a minute, to confirm that it doesn’t mark or cause any damage.