Are you tired of the mess when using liquid glue? A great alternative that is equally as efficient and a lot easier to use is glue sticks. These tubular craft tools that work much like lipsticks can bond on various surfaces apart from paper. Glue sticks are also perfect for school work and arts and crafts.
With the wide range of glue sticks available online, how do you know what is best for your needs? We’ve gone ahead and scoured the internet for the best glue sticks today. Elmer's All Purpose School Glue Sticks were our favorite for their classic and versatile application and quick-drying features. For more great options, read on! And if you're not satisfied with our choices, read on to the end for a buying guide full of helpful shopping tips.
There a few factors you can keep in mind when buying a glue stick. Take a look at our buying guide below to give you an idea of what you should be considering.
A glue stick comes in a plastic tube with a roll of soft and pasty adhesive that you rub onto different materials. Whether you’re looking for a glue stick for school or crafting, the most important consideration you need to keep in mind is the glue stick’s compatibility.
In order for a glue stick to be effective, it needs to be able to bond onto whatever material you wish to work with. A glue stick’s adhesive dries pretty quickly and leaves behind a clear surface, unlike liquid glue that takes time to dry and can leave a surface bumpy and blotchy.
Almost all glue sticks will work without any problems on paper; however, if you wish to use the tool on more complex surfaces like glass, photos, foam, fabric, wood, and the like, it’s best to check the glue stick's product description beforehand. Most glue sticks will specify what materials they work on.
Usually, the more rigid the material, the thicker adhesive consistency you will need. Since surfaces like paper and cardboard are smooth, you won’t need super thick and pasty glue sticks. However, surfaces like fabric and wood are rough and require a thick glue that can bond to their crevices.
While a glue stick’s compatibility and consistency are essential aspects to consider, it’s also worth ensuring that it's washable and safe to use. This is especially important if children will use the glue.
Since some young kids might tend to place things in their mouths while they work, it’s best to go for glue sticks that specify that they are made from non-toxic materials and safe for children to use.
Some glue sticks are made from plastics that can cause harm when ingested. Other glue sticks also contain solvents that can irritate eyes and skin.
In addition, if you plan to work with delicate surfaces like photos, picking acid-free glue sticks will protect your material from damage.
It’s hard not to get glue stick adhesive on your hands while working, too. Make sure that the glue stick is washable and can come off with warm water and detergent. You can often confirm this by skimming the customer reviews, too.
When you’re hard at work designing your scrapbook or completing a DIY project, the last thing you’d want is to turn your glue stick tube only to find out you’ve run out of adhesive.
Glue sticks come in a wide range of sizes, starting from regular six-gram tubes to large tubes over 35 grams. The size of your glue stick solely depends on what you plan to use the tool for. If you have a lot of pasting to do, go for larger tubes. However, large tubes may be difficult for small or narrow surfaces.
Another factor to consider is the quantity. You can purchase glue sticks one at a time, but you can also get them in sets. You can even find bundles with 30 or more tubes, which are great for classrooms or large households.
Most glue sticks have a white or transparent adhesive. Once applied on a surface, the adhesive almost immediately dries. This can be challenging if you want to see the exact location of the glue for precise application.
Luckily, you can find purple or blue colored glue sticks that appear colored on the paper but dry to a clear finish. These types of glue sticks help you see where you’re applying the adhesive and are useful for detailed arts and crafts.
The list below includes glue sticks that work on different surfaces. Take a look to see which is best for you!
All Purpose School Glue Sticks
Purple Glue Stick
Clear Repositionable Glue Stick
Kids Glue Stick
Scotch Wrinkle-Free Glue Sticks
Washable Glue Sticks Great for School
Jumbo Purple Glue Sticks With Disappearing Adhesive
Clear Glue Sticks That Let You Change Your Mind
Glue Stick With a Clear Barrel
Multipurpose Stick That Bonds to Different Surfaces
Glue Sticks Made From Recycled Plastic
Clear Glue Stick With a Screw Cap
Extra Thick Glue Stick for Tough Surfaces
A Glue Stick That Doesn't Cause Wrinkles
Extra Large Odorless Glue Stick
|Volume||7g each||40g each||8g each||7.4g||6g each||43g each||8.2g each||40g||7.6g each||90g|
|Compatible materials||Paper, photos, cardboard, foam board, display board||Paper, photos, fabric||Paper, photos, card stock, cardboard, foam board, wood, felt, craft foam, sequins, ribbons||Paper, photos, cardboard, foam board, fabric, glass||Paper, wood, fabric, felt, sequins, photos, construction paper, plastics, card stock, foam board||Paper, cardboard, photos||Paper, cardboard, photos||Paper, photos, wood, fabric, foam sheets, foam board, poster board, cardboard, some plastics, some metal||Paper, photos||Paper, cardboard|
|Compatible materials||Paper, photos, cardboard, foam board, display board|
|Compatible materials||Paper, photos, fabric|
|Compatible materials||Paper, photos, card stock, cardboard, foam board, wood, felt, craft foam, sequins, ribbons|
|Compatible materials||Paper, photos, cardboard, foam board, fabric, glass|
|Compatible materials||Paper, wood, fabric, felt, sequins, photos, construction paper, plastics, card stock, foam board|
|Compatible materials||Paper, cardboard, photos|
|Compatible materials||Paper, cardboard, photos|
|Compatible materials||Paper, photos, wood, fabric, foam sheets, foam board, poster board, cardboard, some plastics, some metal|
|Compatible materials||Paper, photos|
|Compatible materials||Paper, cardboard|
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