Is Nail Glue the Same as Super Glue?

Is Nail Glue the Same as Super Glue?
Super glue and nail glue are both adhesives, but they are quite different. Here’s how they differ and how you can use super glue on nails!

Nails are an important part of our body that protects the sensitive tips of the finger and toes. Nowadays, people are trying to make their nails noticeable and that’s why they have chosen nail enhancement. For beautifying their nails and doing nail art, people are going for new techniques and ways such as acrylic nails, dip nails, gel nails, and so on. For attaching nails to their desired shape and length, nail glue is an important thing to make the nails adhere to the skin.

So, is nail glue the same as super glue? While nail glue is an adhesive made from cyanoacrylate, alcohol, and methacrylate specially designed for artificial nails, super glue is strictly a cyanoacrylate adhesive that is very strong and used for different purposes. While they might be both made from similar types of ingredients, their differences are more than just them being different types of adhesive purposes. So let’s look at the differences between these adhesives more closely and figure out if super glue is possible to use as a nail glue or not!

Differences Between Nail Glue & Super Glue

Nail glue and Super glue are adhesive types that can bond more things together. But they are not the same and are designed for different purposes. There are some key differences between nail glue and super glue.

Differences between nail glue super glue

1. Durability

Nail glue lasts longer but this may vary with different brands. It is formulated to create a strong bond but it may not be as strong as super glue. On the other hand, superglue is generally stronger than nail glue but can quickly weaken if exposed to moisture.

2. Composition

Nail glue is specially formulated to use on nails. It contains citric acid and benzoyl isopropanol that is gentle for the skin. Nail glue can also be used as false eyelash glue. On the other hand, Super glue is pure cyanoacrylate and makes a quick and strong bond. It contains harsh chemicals that can be harmful to both skin and nails.

3. Drying Time

Super glue takes less time to dry than nail glue because it contains elements that are activated by moisture. It contains ingredients that create heat and makes strong chemical bonds. That’s why it dries very quickly and leaves very little time for repositioning. Nail glue takes a longer time to dry up. You may get more time to adjust your nails into your desired position.

4. Effect on Nails

If nail glue is removed properly, it won’t damage your nails. On the other hand, super glue weakens the top layers, or the cuticle, of your nails and leaves them damaged instead!

5. Uses

Nail glue is only designed to secure artificial nails or help them adhere together. On the other hand, superglue is used for a variety of purposes. It is used for repairing broken objects such as glass, metal, or plastic.

6. Safety Issue

Super glue is a long-lasting adhesive and it is harmful for both skin and eyes. It is not that safe for nails as it is much stronger. On the other hand, nail glue contains ingredients that make it a good option for nails. It helps to make a good bond without damaging the nails.

7. Strength

Super glue is stronger than nail glue. That is why, it can bond a wide range of products including metals, plastics, etc. Nail glue is not that much strong and it is only designed for a specific purpose and that is attaching artificial nails or repairing damaged nails.

8. Removal

Nail glue is very easy to remove. It can be removed with common nail polish remover such as acetone. But. Superglue is very difficult to remove and it may require harsh solvents.

Can Super Glue Be Used as Nail Glue?

Superglue is not designed for use on nails. There are some reasons why you must avoid using this on your nails. Some of them are as follows-

Can super glue be used as nail glue

1. Damage Your Natural Nails

Superglue contains harsh chemicals such as methyl 2-cyanoacrylate. As a result, it can damage them by making them too brittle or weak. This happens because superglue can dehydrate the natural nail. As superglue contains an etching agent, it can damage the top layer of your nails. As super glue is hard to remove, it can damage your nails severely if removed incorrectly.

2. Cause Skin Irritation

Superglue contains elements that can cause skin irritation. When it comes contact to with the skin, skin reactions such as irritation, and redness is experienced in most people. More especially, if it goes to your nail bed or cuticles, it may cause dermatitis. Moreover, this is not designed to use on your nails. So, harmful chemicals can get mixed in your body and cause severe skin problems.

3. Hard to Remove

Superglue contains several ingredients that make it difficult to remove. So, if you want to change or remove your nails, using general nail polish remover or acetone may not work. So, you may find it difficult to remove superglue from your nails.

4. Not as Durable as Nail Glue

Though super glue and nail glue contain the same main ingredients, they are not the same. Super glue dries up very quickly and can be brittle. As a result, this is less durable than nail glue. This is also a reason why you should avoid superglue.

5. Better & Safer Alternatives

This is one of the main reasons why you should avoid using super glue instead of nail glue. There are better alternatives to superglue that won’t damage your nails. You must go for those safer alternatives.

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The Best Nail Glue Alternatives

Superglue is not a good alternative to nail glue that one can use. Rather, it can be very harmful to your nail and skin. So if you are out of nail glue, try to avoid super glue and instead use these alternatives instead!

  1. Sticky Nail Tabs: Sticky nail tabs can easily be bought online. These tabs usually come with press-on nail packages. These nail tabs are very easy to apply and gentle on nails. The sticky nail tabs are also less damaging than the nail glue. For a one-time event like a wedding, party, or holiday, these nail tabs can be a great choice. You need only 1-2 minutes to soak your nails in warm or soapy water.
  2. Gel Nail Polish: You can also use gel nail polish as an alternative to nail glue. People who have allergic reactions can get better results with gel manicures rather than nail glue. This can be a good choice for people who desire fake nails or want to add length to their nails.
  3. Acrylic Liquid & Acrylic Powder: Acrylic mixture can also be used instead of nail glue. This may last up to 3 weeks if applied and maintained properly. This mixture can be a good substitute for people with allergic reactions.
  4. DIY Nail Glue: If none of the alternatives works for you, you may go for DIY nail glue. You can make it of your own. This is a very easy method with a long-lasting formula. This may work on your nails better than nail glue.


1. Does nail glue destroy natural nails?

If the nail glue is used frequently and improperly, it can damage and even destroy your natural nails. To minimize the risk of damage to your natural nails, it is important to use a small amount of glue and follow the instructions carefully.

2. Does superglue stick permanently?

Superglue is highly adhesive and it can create a permanent bond. Superglue provides a durable and long-lasting hold that is difficult to break.

3. Can I use eyelash glue for nails?

It is not recommended to use eyelash glue for nails. The ingredients used in eyelash glue are formulated differently from nail glue which may not be safe for nails. Still, many people use this as it creates a bond between real nails and fake nails.

4. Do fake nails stop nail growth?

Fake nails such as acrylic or gel nails don’t stop nail growth. They will just beautify your nails with a bit of extension.

5. Does Vaseline remove nail glue?

Vaseline or petroleum jelly may help remove the nail glue from your skin. It won’t work as quickly as acetone or traditional nail polish removers.

Final Thoughts

Nail glue and super glue both are designed for different purposes. Nail glue is designed to apply artificial nails or add length to nails. Superglue on the other hand serves different purposes including repairing, sealing, and others. Though the main ingredients of nail glue and superglue are the same, they have differences in composition, durability, strength, and others. Superglue is not a safer option to use instead of nail glue. It can damage your natural nails and cause skin irritation. That is why there are safer options out there  that you can use instead! Hopefully this has helped you realize the differences between the two adhesive and you will avoid using super glue on your nails!

Key Points

  • Nail glue is designed to apply artificial nails that are gentle and skin-friendly.
  • Superglue is designed to use for a variety of purposes such as repairing or fixing objects and sealing something.
  • Superglue is not recommended to use for nails as it contains harsh chemicals.
  • It should not be used for nails as it can cause skin irritation and damage your nails while removing.
  • Alternatives such as sticky nail tabs, gel nail polish, acrylic mixture, or DIY nail glue can be safer compared to super glue.

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