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How to Use Glue Guns, Glue Sticks and Fabric

Posted on April 04, 2013 by Gluegun.com | 15 comments

We are often asked, "Can glue guns be used on fabric?" The simple answer is yes but you will need to know a few things first about the type of glue gun and glue stick you are using. Once you find the right glue gun and glue stick, hot melt is excellent at bonding fabric and other porous materials. 

Glue Guns and Fabric

There are three major types of hot glue guns, standard temperature (also called high temp), low temperature and adjustable temperature. When bonding fabric or other sensitive materials, low temperature or adjustable temperature glue guns are highly recommended. Standard temperature glue guns dispense at around 380 Degrees Fahrenheit while low temperature glue guns have a working temperature around 260 Degrees Fahrenheit. That 120 degree difference can be the difference between the perfect bond to fabric or burning right through your material. Now that you know which type of glue gun to use, it's time to match up the right glue stick

Glue Sticks and Fabric

We know that low temperature glue guns can help from burning a hole in fabric and sensitive material, but now we need to make sure we are using the correct glue stick. Low temperature glue guns must be used with low temperature glue sticks. These type of glue sticks are specifically formulated for melting at lower temperatures making them fabric safe. There are even all temperature glue sticks that can be used in both high and low temperature glue guns. We think these are great for adjustable temperature glue guns so you don't have to own two separate glue guns. 

Additional Tips when Working with Fabric

You must always be careful when using hot glue and fabric. Here are some additional tips to help make your project a success.

  • Try glueing a test piece of fabric before jumping into your project.
  • Be careful not to touch the glue gun nozzle to your material as this is often hotter than the glue and can cause burns.
  • If you are bonding fabric to a sturdier, more temperature resistant material, apply the hot melt to the other substrait first and then let it cool slightly before applying your fabric. Don't wait too long though, the hot melt may set and then you will not get a strong bond.

Recommended Products

Glue Guns

Glue Sticks

Contact us with questions regarding any of your glue gun or glue stick product questions. 

Tags: Fabric
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  • Gluegun.com


    We believe that glue sticks should work for your application. We aren’t super familiar with diamantes, but based off a quick google of that material glue sticks should do the trick. If a general purpose doesn’t work, call and speak with a sale associate.



  • Jessica

    Just wondering if hot glue will work to attach diamantes to fabric that is Polyester & elastane that will not be used in water?

  • Gluegun.com


    We don’t recommend using glue sticks on items that will be washed regularly, like clothing. However, if must use glue sticks on a fabric that will be washed, we recommend hand washing the material. Hope that helps!

  • josie

    Will you be able to wash the material after applying the glue and if so what’s the best method of washing the material

  • Gluegun.com


    Hot melt should be able to adhere a cotton sock to a vinyl doll head. Try a general purpose formula if you have some glue sticks around. If you aren’t satisfied with the bond please check out our Awesome Acrylic glue sticks.

  • Debra

    Will hot glue adhere a cotton sock to a vinyl doll head?

  • Gluegun.com


    We would recommend Surebonder 727 all temperature glue sticks for this application. This glue stick is a little ‘stickier’ than other clear general purpose.

  • dee bridgeman

    which glue is best for putting on crystals

  • Gluegun.com


    Glue sticks will work on Ankara fabric. However, if please keep in mind glue sticks are not ideal for fabrics that need to be washed repetitively. If you have any additional questions please call 855-437-7700.

  • ruqoyah
    can we use it for Nigeria cloth such as Ankara,

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