Mod Podge is a popular all-in-one product that works as an adhesive, a sealer, and a finisher. It’s mainly used for art and craft projects such as decoupage.
Store-bought Mod Podge can be quite expensive, so crafters often seek out cheaper alternatives or attempt to make their own recipes out of common household glue.
So, can you use glue instead of mod podge? You can use some kinds of glue instead of mod podge if you intend to use it as an adhesive or a sealer for a small short-term project. The best kind of glue to use instead of mod podge is PVA glue or white glue. However, if you’re working on a big long-term project, it’s recommended to use actual mod podge as it will make your project more durable.
Keep reading to learn more about what mod podge is made of and how to make your own mod podge at home using glue.
What Is Mod Podge?
Mod Podge is a kind of synthetic PVA-based adhesive that also works as a sealing and finishing varnish.
It can be applied on various surfaces including on paper, wood, fabric, glass, and ceramic. It’s the most ideal for decoupage art projects as they involve cutting out pictures, gluing them to an object, and then coating them with a protective layer of varnish
What Can Be Used Instead of Mod Podge?
Mod podge can be quite an expensive product. Luckily, there are cheaper and more accessible alternatives that can be used instead such as glue.
The best kind of glue to use instead of mod podge is PVA glue or white glue. That is because this kind of glue is made of some of the same ingredients as mod podge including polyvinyl acetate, ethanol, water as well as other chemicals.
Glue can be used as an adhesive with good binding strength for different surfaces including wood, ceramic, metal, rubber, and various kinds of paper. It can also make a decent sealer when mixed with water.
However, keep in mind that mod podge has additional ingredients like different kinds of varnishes that cannot be found in any kind of glue.
These ingredients allow the mod podge to effectively work as a protective sealer and a finisher as well as an adhesive which makes it more suitable than glue when it comes to long-term projects.
Speaking of replacing expensive products with cheaper ones, check out this guide to replacing liquid latex with glue here.
How to Make Mod Podge at Home Using PVA Glue?
You can easily make mod podge at home using PVA glue. It doesn’t require a lot of ingredients and it costs much less than store-bought mod podge, however, it might not be as effective or durable.
If you use homemade mod podge for long-term projects, your project will eventually yellow, crack, peel, or fall apart completely. So, it’s recommended to use it for short-term projects.
The ingredients you’ll need are:
- White glue or any PVA-based glue
- Water-based varnish
- A jar with a tight-fitting lid
Here are the steps you need to follow to make homemade mod podge:
- Pour 8 ounces of glue into a container. You can use a measuring cup to make sure you have the right amount. Some glue bottles already come containing 8 ounces of glue so you might need to measure it out.
- Add about 4 ounces of water into the container and stir until the water and glue are combined. You can add more water or more glue, but make sure to maintain the same ratio.
- The mod podge mixture will be matte, so you need to add 2 tablespoons of water-based varnish to the mixture to make it glossy or shiny.
- Pour the mixture into the jar, seal the jar tightly with the lid then give it a few shakes.
- Make sure to wash the jar thoroughly before pouring the mod podge mixture into it. You can use a jar that’s made out of glass or plastic
- Apply the mod podge mixture out of the jar and make sure to keep it sealed when it’s not in use.
Here is a simple, 40-second video that explains it more visually:
Is Glue Better than Mod Podge?
Glue is not better than mod podge, especially for long-term craft projects.
That is because mod podge is made from an all-in-one formula that makes it superior and more long-lasting than most kinds of glue. It can be used as an adhesive and it has the added benefit of being a sealer and a finisher. Meanwhile, glue can only be used as an adhesive.
Can You Make Mod Podge Using Flour?
You can make mod podge using flour. All you need to do is mix some flour, sugar, and water in a pot. Put the ingredients on a stove over medium heat and keep steering until you get a thick, glue-like consistency. Let the mixture cool down before using it. Keep in mind that flour-based mod podge is prone to molding, so it’s recommended to use it for short-term projects.
Is Mod Podge Harmful?
Mod podge is not harmful as it’s made of completely non-toxic materials. It doesn’t emit any harmful fumes while it cures. It also won’t cause any damage if it accidentally gets on your skin. However, it’s not recommended to attempt to ingest mod podge of any amounts as it might stick to the inside of your mouth or cause stomach problems if swallowed.
How Long Does Mod Podge Last?
Mod Podge can last from 5 to 8 months after opening it. It might last longer if it’s sealed and stored properly. To make the mod podge last longer, you need to keep it in a dry location away from extreme heat or humidity. You can tell if your mod podge has expired if it becomes discolored or lumpy.
How to Remove Mod Podge from a Surface?
To remove mod podge from a surface, you need to apply heat to the mod podge area using a hairdryer, then put a cloth soaked in warm water over it for about 30 to 60 minutes. This will help soften the bond of the mod podge with the surface so you can easily scrape or wipe it off.
How to Use PVA Glue as A Sealer?
You can use PVA glue as a sealer by mixing it with water then applying one to two coats of the mixture to the surface using a wide-based brush. Sealing a surface with PVA glue will help protect it from dust or UV rays. It will also add a semi-reflective sheen to the surface that will make it more appealing.
You can learn how to use PVA glue to seal acrylics here.
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