I glued 2 of my fingers together with Rapid Fuse superglue.

I have tried rubbing alcohol, butter, and warm soapy water.

  • 3
    Regardless, you've learned through experience to not allow this to happen again. That's valuable.
    – Criggie
    Nov 29, 2023 at 18:35
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    If you are accident-prone with that sort of thing, I suggest that you get into the habit of wearing safety glasses. Nov 29, 2023 at 19:53
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    ...how did you manage to type your question? ;-)
    – Vorbis
    Nov 30, 2023 at 13:11
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    Gloves also wouldn't be a bad idea :) Nov 30, 2023 at 15:07
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    As a miniature wargamer, I can't tell you how many times this has happened to me.
    – aslum
    Nov 30, 2023 at 17:37

7 Answers 7


Per DAP's website for RapidFuse® All-Purpose Adhesive in the FAQ section

How do I remove dried adhesive? Cured adhesive may be cut away with caution using a sharp blade or removed with acetone (if appropriate/compatible with your application surfaces).

I personally like to wear latex or nitrile gloves when working with super glue; I don't like the chemicals on my skin and I use activator also, so it helps on that front as well. If I do get CA glue on an ungloved finger, I use a piece of sandpaper (like 220 grit) to remove it by moving my finger over the sandpaper; it is gentle and pretty effective.

  • My fingers became unglued on their own this morning. I chose to throw the cyan-acrylic glue away. I will use Gorilla Glue that has been very sucessful in the past. I considered wearing gloves with the superglue but decided it was a hassle.
    – fixit7
    Nov 29, 2023 at 11:15
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    @fixit7 Note that "Gorilla Glue" is a brand name. While the original Gorilla Glue was a polyurethane adhesive, the Gorilla Glue Company now makes a variety of adhesives, including cyanoacrylate ("superglue") glues.
    – R.M.
    Nov 29, 2023 at 15:22
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    I recently spilled some super glue (cyanoacrylate) onto my bed sheets. Surprisingly rubbing 100% acetone onto the rock solid super glue stains did not work at all to remove them. Nov 30, 2023 at 19:21
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    @pacoverflow I've found the same, not with bed sheets (I don;t want to know why), but trousers. I think you'd need to arrange a way to soak the fabric, but acetone is volatile enough that you'd need a closed container so it didn't all evaporate
    – Chris H
    Nov 30, 2023 at 21:30

The solvent for cyanoacrylate "superglue" is acetone, often found in nail polish remover.

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    Note that not all nail polish remover consists of acetone. Look on the label. In addition, it doesn't dissolve instantly. Might have to soak the fingers for 10-15 seconds and slowly peel them apart.
    – LarryBud
    Nov 29, 2023 at 1:29
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    @LarryBud Acetone is fabricated by your own body when deconstructing fat to recoup energy from it. It is absolutely harmless to soak your finger into it. You might not want to expose it to heat or flame and not inhale too much of it as it will get you feel nauseated like when you fast.
    – Léa Gris
    Nov 29, 2023 at 16:47
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    @LéaGris That's exactly the problem. It defats your fingers. It is not absolutely harmless. Ask some epoxy workers who have permanently damaged their hands by washing them in acetone too much.
    – DKNguyen
    Nov 29, 2023 at 19:20
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    It should at least be treated like other organic solvents (avoid too high concentration or exposure time (either accumulative or at one time)), and not as harmless. Nov 29, 2023 at 19:22
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    @LéaGris Formaldehyde is also naturally produced by the body, but I wouldn't recommend soaking your fingers in it. Not saying that this means your comment about acetone is incorrect, but the logic that chemicals produced by the body are safe is not necessarily sound. Nov 30, 2023 at 15:14

Acetone/nail polish remover is the answer.

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    Solvents chemically react with the glue and removes its bonding strength. It is a matter of chemistry and not people giving you random answers. Of course, if you provided the wrong glue, say it was epoxy instead of actual super-glue, then acetone won't work.
    – Nelson
    Nov 29, 2023 at 1:03
  • @fixit7 I have been lucky to not glue two fingers together so far. I have got some one finger and it did rub off in day or two.
    – crip659
    Nov 29, 2023 at 16:53
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    This (@fixit7) is definitely true for cyanoacrylate. In my last job I used superglue as a temporary adhesive, with acetone as the release agent for the workpiece. Apparently it doesn't just simply dissolve the glue, but breaks the chemical bonds. If you let the acetone evaporate it does go very sticky but it's not back to superglue.
    – Chris H
    Nov 30, 2023 at 7:26
  • @Nelson How would you glue your fingers together using epoxy, unless you were trying to do so?
    – Will Chen
    Nov 30, 2023 at 17:12
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    @WillChen fast setting epoxy and holding the workpiece together because it's too awkward to clamp. The bond would probably also be with the workpiece, but epoxy can drip
    – Chris H
    Nov 30, 2023 at 21:32

In addition to dissolving in acetone, cyancrylate also tends to have lower shear strength than tensile, and to be quite brittle. So try bending to fracture it, then slide/roll instead of pulling.

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    Rolling your fingers across each other will also reduce the potential damage to your skin compared to pulling them apart (learned that one the hard way).
    – bta
    Nov 30, 2023 at 1:45

Most super glues are a type of ethyl cyanoacrylate (or CA glue). Fun fact: the glue cures when exposed to moisture. Guess what's in your fingers?

I have tried rubbing alcohol, butter, and warm soapy water.

When CA glue dries, it forms an acrylic bond. None of your solutions will affect cured acrylic.

There's several answers mentioning acetone, but I wanted to add a word of caution. Be aware that acetone can start eating your skin after a while. Use with caution.

The best trick I know of is to use warm water on your bonded skin and carefully pick away at the hardened CA glue. Acetone can help in the extreme cases, but I do find your outer layer of skin can come off without any ill effect. Use acetone sparingly in trying to loosen tougher sticky situations only.

  • 2
    You can use a needle sort of like picking out a sliver.
    – DKNguyen
    Nov 29, 2023 at 16:30
  • Hot water (not burning hot but as hot as you can bear otherwise) is supposed to work. I've never tried that on skin though, only boiling water on parts.
    – Chris H
    Nov 30, 2023 at 7:28

The one time this happened to me, I used a needle file with a D profile to gently work around the edges.

Do not use a sharp knife, the glue is harder than your skin and you risk cutting yourself.

Filing also removed a lot of the cured glue, though it left a dusting of old skin and glue on the bench. Best thing, it was relatively painless albeit embarrassing given it was in high school.

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    I think folded sandpaper (so it sands both sides and the edge) would probably work too. I used to use dressing stones to file away troublesome calluses on my feet and they are really effective. Too effective sometimes. You could make your fingers raw by running your fingers over the dressing stone too many times while washing it under the faucet.
    – DKNguyen
    Nov 29, 2023 at 21:34
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    @DKNguyen sanding with very short strokes works for brittle stuff on skin - the skin moves with the sandpaper rather than being sanded
    – Chris H
    Nov 30, 2023 at 7:29
  • sanding with very short strokes works... --- Yes, the same principle as the oscillating cast saw: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cast_saw but I am afraid that the glued skin and the glue will move together. Nov 30, 2023 at 12:31
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    @pabouk-Ukrainestaystrong exactly. I'd use acetone myself, but if all I had was sandpaper I'd fold it over and have a try, giving up if I felt like I was sanding skin faster than glue, or sanding it much at all. Similarly with a needle file. You're not going to do any actual damage sanding by hand, at least not quickly enough that you wouldn't notice and stop
    – Chris H
    Nov 30, 2023 at 13:09
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    Skin grows back, and most of us have an outer layer of dead cells that is immediately disposable. Depends how much the glue soaked in.
    – Criggie
    Nov 30, 2023 at 17:47

One option is to simply wait for them to come unstuck. This should happen in a few days to a week.

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