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Glitter Tattoo Glue - The Ultimate Guide to the Perfect Body Adhesives

Glitter tattoos are a fun activity for parents to do at home with their kids and many look on the internet for clues on how to do them correctly. One of the questions that comes up more often is what kind of glue or adhesive can be used for glitter tattoos.

In this blog we will cover what can be used, what should not be used and some extra tips on how to protect your body glue so that it can last a long time.

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What Glue can I use for Glitter Tattoos?

The only adhesive that should be used when doing glitter tattoos or applying gems to the face is body safe adhesive, also known as glitter tattoo glue or body art glue. There are a few brands out there offering such adhesives, you just want to make sure that they are safe to be used on the skin. Most of the ones offered for sale look and feel almost like Elmer's glue when wet, but instead of being a craft glue, they are a medical grade and intended to be used on the skin and dry with a soft and flexible texture that cannot be easily peeled off.

ProsAid is the largest manufacturer of glitter tattoo glue sold under different brands like Amerikan Body Art, Glimmer, Art Factory, Ybody, etc. ProsAid is a medical grade adhesive that is safe to be used on skin.

There are other brands of adhesives that are acrylate based or water based. Those do not provide such a strong hold and are not water proof, but they are also safe for the skin.

Is Glitter Tattoo Glue Safe?

Glitter tattoo glue and body adhesives are safe when used as directed. It is designed for application on the skin, and is hypoallergenic. We do not recommend using the ProsAid style glue on the face as it is fairly hard to remove and it requires some extra scrubbing or alcohol to be removed. If you want to apply a glitter tattoo on the face then it is best to use the water or acrylate based adhesives.

How to Apply Glitter Tattoo Glue?

To apply glitter tattoo glue simply peel off the paper backing from the stencil, lay down your glitter tattoo stencil, press it firmly against the skin and then apply a thin layer of body adhesive. Let the adhesive dry a little bit until it becomes clear. If you do not wait for the glue to dry it may not be dry once you try to brush off the access glitter, resulting in getting glue on your duster brush and smearing the design. Once the glue is clear you can apply the glitter with a small brush. Make sure to always use cosmetic grade glitter as craft glitter can hurt the skin and damage the eye if it falls inside of it. 

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How Long will Glitter Tattoo Glue Last?

A glitter tattoo can last anywhere from 1 to seven days depending on how well you care for it and how well applied it was. Before applying the glue make sure you clean the skin with alcohol to remove any oils or dirt, this will make the glue last longer. Once applied, try to avoid rubbing, friction, sweating and water if you want your tattoo to last a long time. Although glitter tattoos are water and sweat proof, a long exposure to either situation will make them come off faster.

How to Remove Glitter Tattoo Glue?

In order to remove glitter tattoo glue from your skin it is best to use alcohol as that will help break down the glue faster. If you don't have alcohol, you can soak the glue area with baby oil or lotion, wait a few minutes and then use a gentle sponge and some soap to slowly remove it. The longer you wear your tattoo the easier it will be to remove. Do not try to peel the glue off the skin without using alcohol or an oil based remover because the peeling can irritate the skin.

How Can I Make my Glitter Tattoo Glue Last Longer?

Make sure to never expose your glue to excessive heat or cold, as cold will make it freeze and become rubber like. Do not add water or alcohol to glue if it got thicker than normal, as that will spoil it. Keep it away from direct sun light and always keep the cap on in between each use to prevent it from drying out.

Can I Make my Own Home Made Glitter Tattoo Glue? 

The quick answer to that is no; unless you have a lab at home and a medical degree. Body glue must be made with cosmetic grade and or medical grade ingredients since it will be in permanent contact with the skin for several days. Using home made ingredients can end up with allergic reactions and rashes. 

Can I use Elmer's Glue for Glitter Tattoos?

No, you can not. Elmer's glue was not designed as a skin safe adhesive. Being non toxic just means you won't die by manipulating or ingesting a small amount of the product, but it does not mean that you should use it that way. Elmers glue is also very easy to peel off and it could cause an allergic reaction. You need to use a skin safe adhesive designed to be in contact with the skin like ProsAid, Amerikan Body Art, Glimmer, Ybody and Art Factory body glues.


Can I use regular Craft Glitter for Glitter Tattoos? 

No, craft glitter is usually made from metal and it contains pigments that are not safe to be used on the skin. Craft glitter is not made to the same standards as cosmetic glitter and may have tiny fragments or dust in it that can get in the eyes. You should always use cosmetic grade glitter which is made from polyester and uses safe dyes that will not harm the skin when in contact with it. Also, cosmetic grade glitter is cut in a hexagonal shape that helps prevent damage to the eye in case it were to come in contact with it, unlike craft glitter that can really damage your eye if a particle falls inside of it.

How Can I Do Glitter Tattoos?

If you want to learn how to do glitter tattoos, head to our How to Make Temporary Tattoos and Glitter Tattoos for Kids page to learn all about it. We have step by steps and video tutorials! See our Glitter Tattoo Stencils by The Art Factory and Glimmer Body Art Here. 


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