How to Choose the Right Adhesive to Use in Your Scrapbook

The many adhesive options available on the scrapbooking supply market may leave you mystified as to which ones you need for your project. Not only are countless types of adhesives available, but you often are given choices between a number of brands as well. This can leave beginners frustrated and ready to go home and use a hot glue gun for the whole project. A word of caution, however-learning to use the different types of adhesives will help protect your photographs and keep your work in tact for many years.


  1. Understand that there are three basic types of adhesives: glues, tapes, and corner mounts.
    • Glue. Hot glue and tacky glue, both common items around the house, are not good for your scrapbooking project. Although these adhesives are strong and permanent, the heat and acidity that comes with using them will ruin your photographs over time. Make sure that any products say that they are safe for photos.
      • Glue sticks are inexpensive, but remember that you get what you pay for glue sticks lose their stickiness over time, and your pages will come undone.
      • Glue pens are popular, but one of the most innovative products in recent years has been glue dots. This product is pressure-sensitive and works very well for adhering embellishments to the page.
      • Another helpful scrapbooking glue product comes in an aerosol can. When sprayed to an item such as vellum or tissue, you can adhere the light paper to the page without leaving marks showing through. Glue dots and aerosol sprays can be pricey, but are effective when used correctly.
    • Tape products. Again, be sure that the product label ensures that it is safe to use with photographs, since not all tapes are made the same. Traditional tape options, such as foam mounting tape or double sided tape are good to use in your album, but also check out the products made exclusively for scrapbooking. Mounting squares are a popular item, as are roll-on tape dispensers. Some temporary products are also available in case you don't want to permanently attach your photographs to the page.
    • Corner mounts. Related to the tape family, these little triangles allow you to stick photographs to the page without commitment. Corner mounts work especially well with valuable photographs, but can only be used when you have cropped your pictures in a square or rectangular shape.
  2. Whatever adhesive choices you make, remember that it is important to use the products correctly. Not all glues and tapes are made for the same purposes, so learning to use these products is vital. By experimenting with technique and following the usage guidelines you can create a beautiful and long-lasting album.

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