How to Remove Super Glue

Superglue is a very strong and quick-setting adhesive made up of cyanoacrylate that is used quite commonly in routine DIY tasks. Just like in the case of similar products, overflow and spills are possible when you are working with superglue. That’s just the reason why having the know-how of removing superglue from just about any surface comes in pretty handy.

So, essentially, depending upon the material from which you are trying to remove superglue, the method to be employed varies. For instance, you could just peel off the glue blot, use a rag soaked in warm, soapy water to dab the stain until it’s removed, or you may need to use a product like acetone or margarine to get the job done.

Whichever case aligns with your particular situation, our guide below has got you covered. We have detailed all the methods there are from removing super glue from your skin, metal, wood, fabric, and more.

Note that for each material, several methods are given. Follow them chronologically; if one doesn’t work for you, move on to the next one.

So, without further ado, let’s get started!

How to Remove Super Glue from Fingers

Required Supplies

  • Tweezers
  • Spatula
  • Clean rag
  • Mild soap
  • Warm water
  • Lemon juice
  • Mineral spirits
  • Acetone
  • Nail emery board
  • Margarine
  • Laundry detergent
  • Salt
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Turpentine

Method # 1 – Peeling it Off

Given that your skin is not too sensitive, you can start off by simply trying to peel off the glue from your fingers. However, make sure that the glue is completely dried off before you attempt to do so.

Using the fingernails of your other hand or simply tweezers, grab the edge of the dried glue and gradually peel it off from the skin. If, at any point, the process feels painful, immediately stop.

Method # 2 – Soaking the Glued Area

Prepare a mixture of warm water and 1 tbsp of mild soap in a bowl. Soak the glued area of your fingers in the mixture for about a minute in order to soften the glue. Then, try peeling off the loosened glue. Feel free to use a spoon or spatula to help lift up the glue.

Attempt several times before giving up on this method. If it doesn’t get the job done for you, you can use the acidic lemon juice in the mixture as well as it corrodes the glue.

Method # 3 – Using Mineral Spirits

This method is practically the alternative for the first method for those who have sensitive skin.

Immerse the glued area in mineral spirits, and then try peeling off loosened glue. Repeat several times before moving on to the next method.

Method # 4 – Using Acetone

If you have relatively tougher skin, this method can do wonders for you.

  1. Commence by immersing the affected fingers in warm soapy water to soften the glue. Try adding cool vinegar in the warm water for help. Try peeling off the glue; if it doesn’t come off easily, follow the next steps.
  2. Apply an acetone-based nail polish remover on the affected area and wait for the glue to start coming off. Be sure not to use a cotton swab as it reacts violently with cyanoacrylate.
  3. Once the area has dried, use a nail emery board to remove the glue.
  4. Otherwise, you can wait for the glue to turn white and then come off on its own.

Method # 5 – Using Margarine

For those with sensitive skins, margarine can be just as effective as acetone. Just rub a small amount of the product on your fingers and wait until the glue can be easily peeled off.

Note that if margarine is not available, you can use olive oil; it works quite the same way.

Method # 6 – Using Laundry Detergent

Use around ¼ cup of laundry detergent and hot water to prepare a solution. Soak your fingers in the solutions for roughly 20 minutes to soften the glue before attempting to peel it off.

Method # 7 – Using Salt

A paste of salt can also eat away the sticky super glue on your fingers.

  1. Pour two tablespoons of salt into the affected area.
  2. Put a little water on the salt to make it into a paste.
  3. Rub the paste on your fingers for around a minute.
  4. Keep rubbing until the salt has disappeared. By that time, the glue should be gone as well.

Method # 8 – Using Petroleum Jelly

  1. Using soap, wash your hands in hot water.
  2. Pour enough petroleum jelly on the affected fingers.
  3. Rub the petroleum jelly on the affected fingers until you notice the glue lifting off.
  4. Finally, wash and dry your hands.

Method # 9 – Using Turpentine

If none of the above methods can get the super glue off your fingers, pour some turpentine on your fingers and rub it in for a minute. Then, wash your hands with soap and allow them to dry.

You will notice that most, if not all, of the glue will come off.

How to Remove Super Glue from Metal and Wood

How to Remove Super Glue

Required Supplies

  • Warm water
  • Dish soap
  • Clean rag
  • Acetone
  • Scapula
  • Wood polish
  • Lemon juice
  • Mineral oil
  • Sander

Method # 1 – Peeling it Off

First off, try peeling the glue off the affected surface using your nails and fingertips. If it doesn’t work out, move on to the method ahead.

Method # 2 – Soaking the Affected Area

Prepare a solution of warm water and liquid dish soap. Soak a clean rag in this solution and then lay it over the affected area. Let this cloth sit for several hours.

When the glue softens, try scraping it off.

Method # 3 – Soaking the Glue in Acetone

  1. Immerse a clean rag into acetone and saturate the affected area with it.
  2. Let acetone for a few minutes.
  3. With the glue softened up, use a spatula to lift off the glue.
  4. Repeat until all the glue is removed.
  5. Finally, to remove the excess acetone, wash the area with soapy warm water in the case of a metallic surface and polish with beeswax or olive oil in the case of a wooden surface.

Method # 4 – Using Lemon Juice

As a less corrosive alternative to acetone, you can consider using lemon juice.

  1. Using an old toothbrush to apply the lemon juice to the affected area.
  2. Work the lemon juice around in circles to cover every inch of the affected area.
  3. Continue until the glue starts to come off.

You can also use rubbing alcohol in a similar fashion to achieve more or less the same results.

Method # 5 – Using Mineral Oil

If the surface you are dealing with is not painted, and especially if it’s wood, mineral oil can come in pretty handy.

Immerse a cloth in the mineral oil and rub it on the affected area until the glue lifts. Finally, use warm, soapy water to wash off the excess oil. Also, in the case of wood, polish to complete the process.

Method # 6 – Sanding off the Glue

For any wooden or metallic surface, oftentimes, sanding the area is your best bet.

  1. Paste masking tape around the affected area to protect the nearby areas.
  2. Sand over the glue stain until the glue starts to come off.
  3. Polish the sanded area to restore it.

How to Remove Super Glue from Fabric

How to Remove Super Glue

Required Supplies

Method # 1 – Soaking in Warm Water

Flush the fabric in warm water and rub on the glue stain to remove as much of it as possible. Adding around 2 tablespoons of a heavy-duty liquid detergent should make the warm water more effective.

Keep in mind, however, that this method may not be suitable for delicate fabrics.

Method # 2 – Using Acetone

  1. Dampen a clean rag and rub the glue stain with it.
  2. Keep rubbing until the glue can easily be lifted off using a spatula.
  3. Wash and dry the fabric as usual.

Be sure not to use acetone on clothes containing acetate as they will get melted. Also, acetone dulls the color of the fabric behind the glue stain, so use it at your own discretion.

Method # 3 – Taking Professional Assistance

If either of the methods above doesn’t work for you or if the fabrics you are dealing with are quite expensive, it can often be more rewarding to seek the assistance of the nearby dry cleaner!

How to Remove Super Glue from Plastic

How to Remove Super Glue

Required Supplies

  • Spatula
  • Dish soap
  • Clean rag or paper towel
  • Kitchen plastic wrap
  • Rubbing alcohol

Method # 1 – Rub and Roll Off the Stain

Using your fingernails, try lifting off the glue stain from its ends. Once you acquire a small lift, try to roll it back off the plastic object you are dealing with.

Note that you can avoid scratches to the plastic by using a spatula instead.

Method # 2 – Dampen the Affected Area

  1. Prepare a solution of warm water and a mild dish soap.
  2. Dip a clean rag or paper towel into the solution and drench it.
  3. Place the rag on the affected area.
  4. Tape a kitchen plastic wrap on the cloth to enhance the humidity near the glue stain and let it sit for several hours.
  5. Over time, the glue stain will soften up. Take off the rag and the plastic wrap.
  6. Drip a clean cloth in warm, soapy water and dab the glue stain with it until all the glue is removed.

Method # 3 – Using Rubbing Alcohol

  1. Dip a soft, clean rag in rubbing alcohol.
  2. Rub the glue stain with the cloth to soften it up.
  3. Liftoff the loosened glue with your fingertips.
  4. Now, remove the residue with a clean rag soaked in soapy water.
  5. Finally, wash the plastic object and let it dry.

How to Remove Super Glue from Glass

How to Remove Super Glue

Required Supplies

  • Razorblade
  • Warm water
  • Clean rag
  • Kitchen plastic wrap
  • Spatula

Method # 1 – Using a Sharp Blade

Using a sharp blade, such as a razor blade, try to lift off the band of glue. Once it gets off, wash the glass with warm water to remove residue and let it dry.

Method # 2 – Saturating the Stain

If the above method doesn’t work out. Here’s what you should do:

  1. Immerse the glass object in a bowl of warm soapy, water for at least an hour. Else, for larger objects, dip a clean rag into the warm, soapy water and hold it over the glue stain.
  2. Tape a layer of kitchen plastic wrap around the rag and let it sit for at least an hour or two.
  3. Once the glue has softened up, scrape it off using a blade or spatula.
  4. To get rid of the residue, you can use rubbing alcohol or acetone.
  5. Wash the glass and let it dry.

Important Tips and Safety Considerations

  • Whenever you are using acetone, petroleum jelly, or any other product mentioned in this guide, be sure to spot-test it beforehand. It will give you an idea of whether or not the concerned product is safe to use.
  • Whether you are dealing with your skin, metal, or anything else, you should focus mainly on the edges of the glue stain. This is because once these edges are lifted, peeling off the rest of the stain becomes relatively easier.
  • In the methods requiring acetone, you can simply use a nail polish remover as it usually contains the aforementioned product. Check the label of your nail polish remover just to be sure.
  • Never wear cotton or wool clothes and gloves when dealing with super glue. This is because cyanoacrylate products can react upon connection with these materials, resulting in the release of a lot of heat, and potential skin burns.
  • When working with acetone, equip non-absorbent gloves and be sure that your workspace is well-ventilated.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Remove Super Glue

Does WD 40 Remove Super Glue?

Yes, aside from a variety of household uses, WD-40 can also loosen the hold of strong adhesives, such as super glue. Just spray some of it on the glue stain, and you should be able to remove the glue.

Can you Remove Super Glue from Car Paint?

Yes, you can, using acetone, though you’ll need to be extra cautious as acetone also removes paint.

Does Acetone Melt Plastic?

Yes, acetone softens the plastic surface, smears it, and may even dissolve it.


We sincerely hope that this guide has answered your particular queries regarding the superglue removal process.

Simply put, before choosing a specific method for removing superglue, you must take into account the type of material or surface at hand. Accordingly, you will require warm water, acetone, turpentine, mineral oil, or something else.

In any case, however, it is mandatory for your well-being that you take the tips and safety considerations stated in this guide seriously.

Liam Weissman

Hello and welcome to PowerToolGenius! My name is Liam and for the last 9 years, I have worked extensively with various power tools and accessories. I have tested hundreds of different brands and models and understand the industry extensively and have been working with tools my entire life!

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