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The Best Adhesive Removers

🕚 Updated February 2023

An adhesive remover can come to the rescue for those sticky moments that water and soap can't handle. Use it as a citrus spray gel or an actual tool to obliterate any residue. Here are some of our favorite products.

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  Best for Heavy-Duty Use Best Scraper Tool Best Remover Wipes Best for Skin Best Wheel
  Goo Gone
Adhesive Remover Spray Gel
Plastic Razor Scraper
Uni Solve
Adhesive Remover Wipes
Goo Gone
Bandage Adhesive Remover for Skin
Rubber Eraser Wheel Adhesive Remover
Our SummaryThis is an almost too good to be true, citrus-scented gel spray for all surfaces and gunkThis superstrong all-plastic razor scraper is engineered to remove caulk, glue, and crud of all kinds from hard surfaces.This medical adhesive wipe softens sticky bandage residue without irritating the skin.This is a solid solution to get rid of almost any adhesive goo on the skin.This rubber eraser wheel and drill adapter combo is the best for auto decal removal.
ProsRemoves an extensive variety of goo from any surface, causes no harm to paint, non-drip formula, sweet orange extract for refreshing scent.High-quality hot injection molded plastic razor scraper, removes glue, caulk, stickers and more from hard surfaces, ergonomically designed handle, comes with ten double-edged plastic blades, compatible with metal blades.Softens sticky bandage residue, prevents irritation of skin around wounds, effective on removing acrylic, rubber, and hydrocolloid-based adhesives.Skin-safe and sting-free solution removes gum from hair, temporary tattoos, face paint, and more, simple to use.Removes trim, striping, graphics, and decals, larger wheel than other comparable products, works with any standard electric drill of a max of 4,000 RPM, prevents scratching acrylic enamel, urethane paint, or denting car’s surface.
ConsComplete list of ingredients isn't marked on the container label, back label has several danger warnings.Not as sharp as metal.Has a lingering odor.May be inappropriate for sensitive skin.May require a solvent to remove the final bits of residue.
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18 Models Evaluated

9 Hours Researched

50 Reviews Analyzed

The Best Adhesive Removers

Green adhesive remover tool, goo gone spray, eraser wheel.

Buying Guide for Adhesive Removers

A person removing adhesive from car.
ellinnur bakarudin/Shutterstock.com

Why buy an adhesive remover?

Sometimes you don’t know you need adhesive remover until you need it. It makes sense to have some on hand for accidents with markers and gum, especially if you have little ones at home. From your skin to your car to the windows in your home, there is an adhesive remover for that. 

What should you look for in an adhesive remover?

  • Uses: No single adhesive remover works for all surfaces or purposes. Some adhesive removers are specialized for one purpose only, like medical bandage residue removal. Other products work on almost any household surface but cannot be applied to the skin.
  • Ingredients: Some adhesive removers are tools you use to scrape off caulk and other crusty materials with no solution required. However, many are liquid-based and contain more than one chemical. Unsurprisingly, an adhesive remover that can tackle oil, blood, tree sap, and makeup from any surface would contain harsh chemicals. Still, pay attention to label warnings and research ingredients if they’re not available. Some individuals have more sensitive systems than others and can react to certain chemicals that others won’t. 
  • Safety: Speaking of harsh chemicals, don’t forget to wear safety gear. If the adhesive remover you’re using has warnings like do not get in eyes, skin, or clothing, you should probably wear gloves. Some may want to wear a mask, depending on their sensitivities. If the instructions on how to use a product end with wash hands thoroughly with soap and water, then do so. Pay close attention to all safety instructions and consider your sensitivities and those of the people and pets you live with before use.

What should you know about DIY adhesive remover?

Making your adhesive remover can be fun and a lot of work. It might be worth trying out a few recipes if you have severe allergies to ingredients used in commercial products. Typical recipes ask for baking soda as an abrasive and oil like coconut or canola oil. Add essential oils like orange extract to give your DIY goo a pleasant scent. There are single-ingredient solutions, too, like butter, mayonnaise, or hair spray.

Our Picks for the Best Adhesive Removers

Best for Heavy-Duty Use

Goo Gone Adhesive Remover Spray Gel

This is an almost too good to be true, citrus-scented spray gel for all surfaces and gunk.

Pros: Goo Gone removes an impressive variety of undesirable—goo—from any surface. Spray it on fabric, carpet, and hard surfaces like walls and floors. Use it to remove crayon drawings from your walls with no worry, as Goo Gone won’t strip the paint. The list of surfaces this stuff can tackle is long, as are the messes it can remove. What’s the secret? The ingredients, of course. The substance is engineered to cling to the unwanted goop to stay long enough to break it down. It won’t drip as it works its magic, yet another dazzling quality. One more thing—the ingredients include sweet orange extract for a refreshing scent.

Cons: The complete list of ingredients isn’t marked on the container label, just d-limonene and petroleum distillates. While marketed as a plant-based product, the back label has several danger warnings. If you’re concerned with the ingredients, you may want to consider a different product.

Bottom Line: It’s an all-surface safe, all types of substances one can imagine remover. What’s not to like about that? This may be best used with gloves and a mask, just in case.


Best Scraper Tool

EHDIS Plastic Razor Scraper

This superstrong all-plastic razor scraper is engineered to remove caulk, glue, and crud of all kinds from hard surfaces.

Pros: The EHDIS razor scraper is a tool, not a substance, and, therefore, free of harmful chemicals. That’s a nice pro. Also, the scraper was manufactured with high-quality hot injection molded plastic to create a stiff and strong edge for effective glue, caulk, and stickers removal. Honestly, it works to remove most substances from hard surfaces. The ergonomically designed tool enhances control and strength to shorten the scraping time of what could be a tedious job. The plastic scraper comes with ten double-edged plastic blades, a safe alternative to metal razors. However, the scraper is compatible with metal blades too. Use it on metal, plastic, household appliances, and car windshields.

Cons: While the plastic razors are sharp, they’re not as sharp as metal.

Bottom Line: Carry this pocket-size scraper with you as you clean to remove gunk right when you spot it. If you’d rather hang it on your toolkit, you can, as there’s a handy hanging hole at the end of the handle.


Best Remover Wipes

Uni Solve Adhesive Remover Wipes

This medical adhesive wipe softens sticky bandage residue without irritating the skin.

Pros: When you have a wound that requires regular rebandaging and cleaning, you’re probably familiar with skin irritation. The adhesive bandage is necessary to keep out dirt and protect the wound from exposure to a shirt sleeve. But when the injury needs cleaning again, the skin around it suffers. Uni Solve wipes contain aloe extract, which may help soften the adhesive residue, making it less irritating to clean the skin. They make a great home-care product to have around if you need to remove other substances like acrylic, rubber, and hydrocolloid-based adhesives from your skin.

Cons: These have a lingering scent that may be too strong for some people.

Bottom Line: Uni Solve offers a great solution to skin irritation from bandage removal. The wipes aren’t greasy or difficult to use, making them easy to remove any stickiness left behind.


Best for Skin

Goo Gone Bandage Adhesive Remover for Skin

This is a solid solution to get rid of almost any adhesive goo on the skin.

Pros: We’re excited to present this Goo Gone product because it works to remove gum from hair. Until now, scissors were the only answer. With Goo Gone, you can provide your kid with a painless, hairdo-protected gum removal experience. The alcohol-free liquid makes a sting-free band-aid, temporary tattoo, and sports KT tape residue removal. Goo Gone does sting if applied to open wounds, so the company recommends that you stick to healthy skin with some face paint or permanent marker.

Cons: It’s considered medical grade and safe for all skin, young and old. However, the back label states that it may be inappropriate for sensitive skin.

Bottom Line: This is a clear winner for removing all the stuff kids get into, like drawing on themselves and sleeping with gum in their mouths. But let’s be honest; like kids, many adults have fun with body painting and temporary tattoos. Goo Gone is a great household product for any sticky situation.


Best Wheel

ABN Rubber Eraser Wheel Adhesive Remover

This rubber eraser wheel and drill adapter combo is the best for auto decal removal.

Pros: We present the ABN eraser wheel, an invaluable tool for removing those out-of-date decals or graphics you put on your vehicle. The ABN rubber wheel eraser and the drill adapter kit may be the solution you need to erase the sight of the stuff you’ve liked but no longer do. Use it to remove trim, striping, and more. The 4-inch diameter of the eraser wheel is larger than comparable products for optimal efficiency and ease of use. It has a stop-use line, so you know when to replace it. It works with any standard electric drill of a max of 4,000 RPM to prevent scratching acrylic enamel, urethane paint, or denting your car’s surface. It’s easy to use, too; simply follow the directions, and you’ll be good to go.

Cons: The eraser wheel may fail to remove all decals perfectly, so you may need to have solvent to remove the final bits of residue.

Bottom Line: The ABN rubber eraser wheel makes decal removal an easy solution if you have an electric drill. Chances are good that you have one if you’re working on your motorized vehicle, though. You’re all set with a bottle of solvent and this quality-made adhesive remover.

Final Thoughts

You don’t have to get used to marred walls, old automobile decals, or even that red wine stain by the couch. Get the proper adhesive remover for your needs and surface, and remove a crayon or drawing from the wall, maybe with the help of the artist. Tell your home-improvement friends you know that adhesive removers aren’t solely for the removal of gummy residue but caulk, wax, and mascara messes too.

Britta Kallevang Britta Kallevang
Britta is a professional writing tutor and freelance writer that is trained in journalistic, technical, and creative copywriting. At LifeSavvy, she researches products, writes about the items, and shares what she's uncovered with readers. Her writing is comprehensive and sometimes a bit silly. Read Full Bio »
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