Spirit Gum is a brush on liquid adhesive used for attaching prosthetics, and other special effects to the body without harming the skin or the prosthetic. However, stores only carry it around Halloween here. Is there an alternative to it that I could use, that won't damage me or or the special effects, that I could pick up at a crafting store like Hobby Lobby or even a place like Walmart?

  • Amazon and eBay both have this.
    – scanny
    Aug 21, 2018 at 3:13
  • @scanny online purchase isn't an option for me right now
    – Achlys
    Aug 21, 2018 at 4:03
  • It's a long shot, but if you are lucky enough to have a magic store in your area, you'll probably find the source of many special effects products. Our town has had a shop for a couple of decades and the proprietor caters to professional theatre performers, carrying makeup kits and spirit gum, as well as latex products used for such purposes.
    – fred_dot_u
    Aug 21, 2018 at 15:45
  • 1
    @walrus it'll take some more research than I can do at work, but I'll try to remember to do just that later today
    – Allison C
    Aug 21, 2018 at 18:17
  • 1
    Fancy dress and party supplies shops sometimes also have small sections for related materials, like magic props.
    – Chris H
    Oct 10, 2018 at 7:36

2 Answers 2


Its been a while and I found my own answer.

As an alternative to spirit gum I've found that name brand Eyelash Glue (glue intended for use attaching fake eyelashes) works as an alternative, though the cheap stuff does not. The cheaper Eyelash Glues does't hold up well and the prosthetic is easily pulled off with the most minimal of force, making it a bad choice if one intends on wearing the prosthetic anywhere that there is a chance it will be brushing up against anything (like walls, tree branches, etc.)

The best alternative I've found is Nail Glue (Glue intended for attaching fake nails). The nail glue is relatively cheap. It holds as well as spirit gum but it is also just as easy to remove the prosthetic once you're done as it is when using spirit gum. It does not appear to have damaged the prosthetic either.

Both Eyelash Glue and Nail Glue are readily available where ever make up is sold, including Walmart, Target, CVS and Walgreens.


This article from Popular Mechanics suggests using corn syrup thickened with flour. I found it while looking for a recipe to make spirit gum, which should be possible using rubbing alcohol and rosin (the latter is available from music shops as violinists use it). But I failed to find the proportions.

Other sources suggest an adhesive intended for false lashes.

  • I wonder how well the corn syrup and flour mixture would hold up when exposed to body heat and sweat — but what an interesting alternative idea!
    – Erica
    Oct 10, 2018 at 19:24
  • @Erica I thought that too, but they were quoting a pro. On the other hand maybe in the pro world it can be touched up between scenes/takes
    – Chris H
    Oct 10, 2018 at 19:32

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