1 – Skin has oily residue which prevents tape/glue from sticking
Suggestion – wipe the area with a cotton ball soaked in witch hazel a few minutes before using glue or tape. You may have a lingering residue from skin oils, but also from lotion, make up, after shave or other skin products. It’s best to start with clean, dry skin and not to use any products on areas where you intend to use glue or tape.
2 – The product you’re using just doesn’t work effectively with your skin chemistry
Suggestion – there’s a plethora of adhesive products designed for attaching lace backed hair goods to skin. Spirit gum is common, cheap and easy to find but doesn’t work well for some people, even with perfect prep and use. Tape is also wonderful, but there are some people for whom it simply doesn’t stick. Try some other types or brands of liquid adhesive – a great starting place for this is to talk with other Santas or call the manufacturer and ask for their recommendation based on your skin type.
3 – Improper use of product or incorrect method
Suggestion – make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions if using a liquid adhesive. Some need to be applied in two parts (one to the piece, one to your skin), others might have a specific set-up time before the piece is applied.
4 – Not leaving yourself plenty of time to practice and experiment
Suggestion – plan to try a method of application at least two or three times, on different days, before you decide it’s a non-starter. Leave yourself plenty of time to prepare your skin and the piece and to do the application. If you try a product or method and find it doesn’t work, note what seemed to be the issues, and then consider if there are any ways to adjust the process for next time.
For example, you could try letting product cure for another few minutes before applying, cleaning your skin with a different product, or changing where you start to put the piece on. For that final one, it might mean you start putting your mustache on from the middle of the upper lip, not the side (or vice versa)
5 – Not giving yourself enough time to get used to the process and the feel of having pieces attached
It’s an odd sensation the first few times one attaches hair to their face that didn’t grow there on its own. Even if the process of gluing/taping and application goes perfectly, it’s still good to give yourself plenty of time wearing pieces and becoming accustomed to have they feel. It can also be easy to let one or two unsuccessful attempts put you off the whole process, but give it a few more tries and see how it feels.
These issues may not resolve the problem of your mustache falling off or coming loose, but they’ll give you some ideas to try. It’s truly very rare for a person to find no adhesive product or method works for them, but it can be a daunting, and even frustrating, process to figure out the best product and methods.
If you’re having trouble keeping your mustache on, see if any of these suggestions help. Do you have a foolproof method for securing your Santa mustache? Tell us in the comments!
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