How to make your cutting mats “like new”

Did you know that you can apply new adhesive to your cutter mats?  I’ve been doing this for years and it works great.  There are several different adhesives that you can use.  Here is a list of some of them:

  • Repositional spray adhesive (Krylon makes one, not sure what other brands are available)
  • Basting spray (It’s in the fabric section)
  • Xyron re-positional adhesive for the sticker makers, or re-positionable glue runners
  • Zig 2 Way glue (I’ve been told they have a wide marker, I tried the chisel tip on a smaller area)
  • Aleene’s Tack-It Over and Over diluted with equal parts water (I use a foam brush to paint it on)

Here are the basic steps for any of the adhesives:

  1. Clean your mat.  You can use baby wipes or wash the mat with soap and water.  Let the mat dry.  This works great in between applications too since it removes all of the extra paper bits and lint sticking to the adhesive.
  2. If you are using a spray, mask off the edges of your mats.
  3. Apply your choice of adhesive, then let dry if needed.
  4. Most of these adhesives will leave your mat overly sticky, so pat the mat all over with your hands to reduce the stickiness.

I have tried several of these, but my favorite is Aleene’s Tack-It Over and Over.  It does have a longer dry time, but you don’t need to mask your edges (just be careful with your foam brush) and it doesn’t have fumes like the sprays.  I’m all for the quick and easy!  I have a container that I use to store the diluted Aleene’s and the foam brush I use to apply it.  When I need to re-apply adhesive I just get out my container and I’m ready to go with no prep time.  🙂


9 Responses to How to make your cutting mats “like new”

  1. Weena says:

    I’m glad to know that, thank you for the tip!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I use Goo Gone to clean my mat. I leave it on for about a minute then scrape off the mess with an old used up gift card. It works great! Putting on some medical gloves beforehand keeps cleanup simple, but strictly speaking isn’t necessary.

    Right now I am using the Krylon Repositionable Adhesive. That works well, but a light application is key. I’ve overapplied it in spots, and then found lightweight papers become not so repositionable anymore. I believe there is about a three hour drying time, so plan accordingly.

  3. peacefulgardens says:

    I’ve used the Zig wide tip that you mentioned and this adhesive works great. Because of the wide tip it goes really fast when trying to cover the whole area. It’s very sticky when dry so I took an old t-shirt and just patted it all over the matt. Works like a dream.

  4. I’ve been using the Zig wide chisel tip, but I have the Ailene’s tack it over and over and will give it a try…thanks for the tips. Now if you can just fix the issue with Provo Craft and SCAL…..haha

  5. Jani says:

    Thanks for sharing this info. I have used the Zig glue but it takes time and I sometimes miss areas. I have also sprayed the mat but it takes time to mask th edges. I never thought about my Xyron adhesives. I had also forgotten about my Aleen’s tack it. (mine is now too old to work…will have to get more)

  6. eva says:

    Can you share how you dilute the Aleeenes?

    • imagesbyheatherm says:

      I just put the glue into my container (glad-ware large enough to close with the foam paintbrush inside) and mixed in the water. I think I actually used more than half water, mine looks like whole milk and it works great.

  7. Jeanette says:

    Thank you so much for this good advice. I appreciate your generosity in sharing and I’m sure going to try it.

  8. What a great tip, I never would have thought of this and I do have one or two of the old mats I just couldn’t bring myself to toss out. Thank you so much for sharing this idea!

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