Crystals are a spectacular way to transform items from drab to eye-blindingly fabulous. However, you need a reliable adhesive for your crystals to stay put on stuff amid life’s hustle and bustle.
So then, what is the best glue for crystals? The best glue for crystals is tenacious, transparent, and resistant to elements such as water, UV, vibrations, and shock. Types of glue that may be up for the job include epoxy, polyurethane, and super glues.
If you are searching for glue for DIY crystal embellishments, read on. In this post is a buying guide complete with a rundown of the best glues for crystals to help with your project.
How To Choose Glue For Crystals
Of the various ways to fix crystals – sewing, prong setting, heat setting – gluing is the most preferred method. This is mainly due to its versatility and simplicity.
However, the plethora of glue brands available makes it difficult to settle on the right one for your crystal craft.
This is especially true if you are unsure of the characteristics to look out for. You should take into consideration the following factors when choosing glue for crystals:
The first consideration when choosing glue for crystals is tensile strength. Weak glue can cause you embarrassing moments when the crystals detach prematurely.
Imagine giving a DIY crystal-embellished gift only for the gems to start popping off right out of the box. Or someone brushing against you at a party and the rhinestones on your purse or sleeve fall off.
These are familiar scenes for items handled or moved around frequently, like clothing, tumblers, phone cases, etc. Therefore, ensure you go for glue with superior strength and long-lasting hold.
There are three types of glue with the strength needed to hold crystals.
- The strongest glue
- Bonds all surfaces
- Can be one-part or two-part
- Longest drying time
- Ideal for all crystal sizes but best for heavy and large ones
- Water and impact-resistant
- Very strong
- Works on all surfaces, porous and non-porous
- Flexible when dry and absorbs shock
- Secures all crystal sizes
- Strong but thin
- Works best on non-porous surfaces
- Instant drying
- Brittle and cracks with impact
- Best for light and tiny crystals
Water And Chemical Resistance
If you intend to glue crystals on surfaces that will come into contact with water or cleaning solvents, you must pay attention to two things: whether the glue is waterproof and chemical-resistant.
Some glues dissolve in water or are weakened by cleaning agents. Avoid these when fixing crystals on a piece of clothing, shoes, or anything that will be hand/machine washed or dry cleaned.
The color of glue you choose for crystals matters. Clear glue is recommended for several reasons.
First, some crystals are transparent and tinted glue will show through, which may not be the effect you want. Also, it might inadvertently coat the top of the crystal, blocking its shine.
Furthermore, the glue might also seep out around the edges of the crystal, making the application unsightly. You can get away with a messy application with crystal clear glue as it goes unnoticed.
Flexibility is critical when fabrics are involved. Fabric has drapey, flowy, or stretchy characteristics that give it a certain structure.
These characteristics are affected when you adhere crystals with inflexible glue. Ensure the glue is elastic after drying to maintain the structure and wearability of the fabric item.
This factor is, however, irrelevant when you are gluing crystals on flat rigid materials that won’t expand, contract, or stretch like cardstock or acrylic phone covers.
Glues can be runny, gel-like, or very thick like a paste. Runny glue is harder to control than heavy-bodied glue, but is the best for small crystals.
Crystals come in various shapes and sizes, but most are small and others very tiny. Applying these accurately is difficult if the glue is runny.
A precision tip bottle, syringe, or cap can come in handy to enable you to dispel fine amounts of glue for a controlled application.
Controlled application is helpful for patterns or specific designs. It also minimizes wastage from excess glue oozing out and promotes neatness.
Thick formulas, on the other hand, provide a stronger fusion and are ideal for carrying the weight of heavier crystals.
You may want to select your glue based on how fast you need to put the craft to use. Instant glues like regular super glues are ideal where there’s urgency, but these can also get brittle and crack quickly. In addition, they are unforgiving.
Tacky glue has a longer drying time allowing users to reposition misaligned crystals. This type of glue is, however, best for flat applications as the crystals may slide when placed on vertical surfaces.
Other glues take up to 24 hours to fully cure but are worth the wait and form the toughest bond. Remember also to check whether the application of pressure on the crystals is necessary.
Suppose there are multiple crystals to glue, and you have to hold down each one for a few seconds or minutes. It adds up to the total time you’ll take to complete the project.
Type Of Surface
All glues are not made equal. Some are designed for paper alone, some work on fabric, and others are for multi-surface use.
So before settling for a particular glue, determine the type of material you are adhering crystals to. Ensure the glue supports the bonding of both surfaces and won’t eat into one of them.
The Best Glues For Crystals
You wouldn’t want to take chances with glue, considering how time-consuming securing crystals is. Well, here are the best glues for crystals rated and reviewed just so you begin on the right foot.
|1.||Beacon Gem-Tac Permanent Adhesive||Water-based and non-toxic, permanent, clear, waterproof|
|2.||Aleene's Liquid Fusion Clear Urethane Adhesive||Versatile for multi-surface bonding, non-toxic, clear, waterproof|
|3.||E6000 Fabri-Fuse Adhesive||Flexible when dry, works on all fabrics, permanent, waterproof, clear|
|4.||Shoegoo Mini Adhesive||Strong bond and thick for tough jobs, clear, waterproof, economic|
|5.||CAT PALM Adhesive - Multi-Function Glue||Precision tip, strong, clear, water-resistant, shockproof, flexible|
|6.||GS Supplies G-S Hypo Cement||Fast setting, clear, waterproof, medium strength, multi-surface|
|7.||Aleene's Jewel-It Embellishing Glue||Fast-drying, bonds to all fabrics, crystal clear, washable|
1. Beacon Gem-Tac Permanent Adhesive
The overall winner for crystal glue is Gem-Tac by Beacons. It is strong, dependable, permanent glue in a 4fl-oz bottle.
It is specially formulated for attaching gems to fabrics though it holds up well on other porous surfaces too. You can use it to fix crystals on clothes, sneakers, boots, bags, tumblers, etc.
The best thing about this formula is that it is water-based and non-toxic. What this means is that it is solvent-free.
There are no nauseating fumes to put up with or health concerns. You can even safely glue crystals to a face mask without compromising the quality of the air you inhale.
Another reason to love this glue is that it is waterproof. Bedazzled items can be washed without fear of your crystals coming loose.
This glue goes on clear and retains the same clarity upon drying. However, it takes considerably longer to dry, which can be a problem if you are impatient.
Gem-Tac has a slow setting time of one hour and a 24-hour cure time. On the bright side, you get a longer window period to reposition crystals if you need to.
The bottle’s opening is not precise and releases uncontrollable amounts of glue. Its thin consistency doesn’t help either. You’ll be better off working with a syringe or precision cap as it is a small amount that gives sheer results.
2. Aleene’s Liquid Fusion Clear Urethane Adhesive
Aleene’s is a recognized brand with several commendable glue products. Their urethane glue is packaged in 4fl-oz bottles but, unlike other urethanes, is non-toxic and has a low odor.
It is as transparent as water in any state which is perfect for crystal application. It is also waterproof and UV resistant, so there is no yellowing over time.
This glue’s best selling feature is that it is not surface picky glue, thus super versatile. Whether blinging rubber crocs or a plastic tumbler, Liquid fusion will hold up extremely well regardless of the surface.
Its tensile strength is superior too. And crystals cannot be picked easily once the glue is fully cured. Liquid fusion doesn’t dry instantly but still secures the crystals onto the surface. Therefore, you can spread it out in one area and add the crystals.
The bottle tip dispenses a lot of glue which will work for such a broad application. But for precise individual gluing, a syringe or precision cap is required.
It takes up to an hour to dry, but curing takes 24 hours.
3. E6000 Fabri-Fuse Adhesive
This Fabri-Fuse glue is the best glue for bonding crystals to clothing, costumes, and washable items. Though the one part epoxy glue works with all types of surfaces.
It is strong and permanent once cured. The glue is waterproof and elastic when dry and holds up well to moderate heat. You can throw your jeweled articles in the washer or dryer without fear of losing the crystals.
Fabri-fuse takes a longer duration to dry, about 8 hours to set and 48 hours to cure, but it’s worth the wait. As long as it sets solidly and undisturbed, the crystals are going nowhere.
The consistency is pretty thick but spreadable. And the tube has a precise tapered applicator to dispel tiny amounts of glue for individual crystal placement.
Although this glue is transparent, it has a satin finish. Couple that with the thick consistency, and it shows behind the stones if excess.
Therefore, it is important to use it sparingly to remain invisible behind the stone. This glue is solvent-based, but the odor is faint and not off-putting.
4. Shoegoo Mini Adhesive
If you are done finding your large leftover glue tube all dried up and unusable, you’ll love this option. The 4 minipack adhesive from Shoegoo comes in 0.18fl-oz tubes.
Despite the small amounts, the glue is just as effective as the Shoegoo you’ve known for ages. Designed for shoes and tough repairs, this glue is incredibly strong.
It works out well for large and heavy crystals that need the sturdiest bond, especially since it has a thick consistency. It is waterproof too.
The glue is clear and dries so. However, the application can get messy because the capped end has a large opening, and the adhesive is goopy.
It also tends to overflow when you squeeze a bit too much. For a hassle-free time, you’ll want to put it in a separate place and use a toothpick or small brush to apply it.
The biggest bummer, however, is that it releases strong fumes as it is a solvent-based glue.
5. CAT PALM Adhesive – Multi-Function Glue
Our next pick is the B7000 adhesive. It is a versatile glue for multiple surfaces but produces the best results with porous ones like fabric or paper.
With its semifluid gel-like consistency and industrial strength, you can be sure that nothing will budge. In addition, it is water, vibration, and shock resistant and will withstand considerable heat.
The B7000 is clear and dries relatively faster in less than 24 hours. It flexes like rubber upon drying. These features make it perfect for crystallizing washable items like clothing.
It scores massive points with its needle-pointed tip that makes application a breeze and tidy, unlike other thick glues. It is also clog proof once you replace the cap.
The pin tube dispels a tiny amount of adhesive for the smallest crystals. You can squeeze out some more for bigger sizes. Just be sure not to put too much, or it will foam and form a visibly cloudy ring around the crystal.
Unfortunately, this glue has a shorter life span and is toxic too.
6. GS Supplies G-S Hypo Cement
G-S Hypo Cement is another alternative if you are looking for a temporary fix of crystals you’ll dislodge later. It is not as strong as epoxy glue but rather medium strength.
The good thing is Hypo Cement doesn’t affect the crystals nor the surface you are bonding them to. It works on virtually every surface.
The glue is clear and waterproof. It remains clear but rubbery when dry, thus absorbing shock and doesn’t crack.
Its main advantage is its fast setting. It will stay tacky for 10-20 minutes which is a reasonable work time, and cures in an hour or more.
Another highlight is its dispenser. It is pin-sized for accurate detail placement of glue and crystals. Nonetheless, the tube oozes if the cap is not replaced immediately, and glue dribbles even without pressing it.
7. Aleene’s Jewel-It Embellishing Glue
Wrapping up our list of the 7 best glues for crystals is Aleene’s Jewel It Embellishing glue. It is a thin, fast-drying formula available in a 4oz bottle.
This glue is designed for bonding embellishments like crystals to fabric. It firmly grabs crystals within a couple of minutes of application.
For a superior hold, it is best when the embellished fabric is not laundered for at least 7 days. Afterward, the bond is strong enough to handle delicate hand washing.
It is crystal clear and doesn’t cloud your tiny gems after drying. The nozzle is narrow and dispenses a small amount at a time but could be smaller for tinier crystals.
That brings us to the end of our lineup of the 7 best glues for crystals. They are all excellent products for your consideration, having satisfied the qualities to look for in glue for crystals.
They are strong, clear, and water-resistant. Gem-Tac is our favorite because it is water-based and non-toxic, followed closely by Aleene’s liquid fusion.
If you don’t mind fumes and care more about the thickness and strength of the glue, you can opt for Shoegoo or E6000 fabric fuse. These can handle heavy-duty jobs.
Aleene’s Jewel It will provide you with the fastest drying time of all on fabrics and G-S Hypo cement on non-porous surfaces. But if you are prioritizing precise application, go with Cat Palm B-7000.
We understand how messy glue can get, and we don’t want you to fumble. So, we leave you with this helpful video by Crystal Queen Australia on using a syringe to glue crystals easily. Happy crystallizing!
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