When you first start using your Cricut, your mat will be very sticky and will remain so for several more cuts. However, over time, the mat will become less sticky and may even lose its adhesive qualities entirely.
In order to make a Cricut mat sticky again, you need to clean it first.
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When to Clean Your Cricut Mat
After several uses, your Cricut mat will start to accumulate residue and pieces of cut material. This residue essentially covers the adhesive layer on the mat, making the overall stickiness duller and less effective.
Ideally, you should perform a light cleaning of your Cricut mat after every use in order to keep it sticky and effective. However, cleaning your mat after every use is not always practical.
You’ll know it’s time to clean your Cricut mat when it’s visibly covered in marks and residue and materials no longer stick to it.
How Often Should You Clean Your Cricut Mat?
You should clean your Cricut mat after every three to five cuts, depending on the size of the jobs.
Frequent and regular cleaning of your mat will ensure that it stays sticky for as long as possible.
You should also always cover your mats with the plastic sheet covers that come with them when you’re not using them.
How to Clean Your Cricut Mat
Cleaning your Cricut mat will help it last longer and stay sticky. The following methods are the best ways to clean a Cricut mat and make it sticky again:
1. Use a Scraper
You should use a plastic scraper to scrape off all the surface debris on your Cricut mat before proceeding with any other cleaning methods.
Gently run the scraper across the surface of the mat to remove large bits of material and debris. Repeat as many times as necessary to ensure that all of the big pieces of material are cleaned from the mat.
2. Use a Lint Roller
You can use lint rollers to remove any fine particular build-up on your Cricut mat. Lint rollers are especially useful for lifting fine dust and glitter from your mat. They also come with the added benefit of restoring some of the stickiness to your mat.
To clean your Cricut mat with a lint roller, simply run your clean lint roller across the mat. Repeat until you’ve removed all of the easily-removable particles, dust, and glitter from your mat, or until you’ve picked up enough to fill up the lint roller sheet. Remove the dirtied sheet and continue, when applicable.
3. Use Baby Wipes
You can use baby wipes to clean your Cricut mats. Baby wipes are a very effective option and come with the added benefit of moisturizing the rubber as they clean it, making the mat more likely to regain and retain its stickiness.
Scrub your Cricut mat with baby wipes to remove excess stains and residue. While baby wipes are effective, you may need to scrub hard to remove some of the more stubborn stains and materials.
Make sure to only use non-alcoholic baby wipes when cleaning your mat! Baby wipes that contain alcohol will strip the stickiness from your mat permanently, leaving it dull and smooth.
4. Use a Sponge and Soapy Water
You can thoroughly clean your Cricut mat by soaking it in soapy water (dish soap and warm water) for a couple of minutes. Soaking helps to loosen some of the build-up and dirt from the mat.
After letting the mat soak for a few minutes, use a scraper to first scrape away all of the loosened buildup. Then, use a sponge to scrub the rest of the mat to the level of cleanliness desired.
5. Dry the Cricut Mat
Now that you have removed the stains and buildup from your mat, gently dab it dry with paper towels. Then, let the mat air dry for 15 minutes or longer.
While the mat is still wet, the surface won’t feel very sticky, but don’t panic! Once the mat is completely dry, you should be able to notice a much-improved level of stickiness.
How to Make Your Cricut Mat Sticky Again
Once you have thoroughly cleaned your mat, you should notice a much-improved level of stickiness. However, if you were unable to completely restore its adhesive qualities, or the stickiness is not to your desired level, you may need to consider other options.
Below are the steps you should follow to make your mat sticky again.
1. Clean Your Cricut Mat
Before adding adhesives or other sticky materials, you need to clean your Cricut mat thoroughly to ensure that every bit of your mat is uniform and can be completely covered in the new adhesive.
2. Remove the Original Adhesive Layer
Your mat came with a layer of adhesive that made it sticky. In order to get the stickiness back, you must first remove that original layer.
Use alcoholic wipes or rubbing alcohol and paper towel to rub the surface of the mat and remove the adhesive layer.
An alternative to alcohol is a stickiness remover like Goo Gone. Substances like these will allow you to easily remove the sticky layer from your mat.
3. Tape Off the Edges
You are going to apply the new adhesive to the entire mat. However, the edges need to remain non-sticky so that they can go through the Cricut’s rollers smoothly.
In order to ensure that the edges of your mat don’t become sticky with the new adhesive, you should tape them off with masking tape or blue painter’s tape, which you will later remove.
Remove stickiness from the edges of your Cricut mat. Otherwise, the edges get pulled through the rollers of the machine.
4. Cover Your Mat With Adhesive
Make your mat sticky again by coating it with an adhesive spray. You can find many suitable adhesives on Amazon.
Follow the instructions as provided by the adhesive product, coating the mat in a thin layer of adhesive.
Repositionable glue sticks, repositionable scrapping book glue, and tacky glue are all possible alternatives to adhesive sprays.
5. Allow the Adhesive to Dry
Next, let the adhesive dry for about 15 minutes. This will enable the adhesive to bond firmly with the mat’s surface.
Once the adhesive has dried completely, you should notice a nice stickiness on the surface of the Cricut mat. If the level of stickiness is not to your preference, repeat steps 4 and 5.
Making your Cricut mat sticky again should no longer be a problem. Residue and material particles from continued use are the primary cause of reduced stickiness, so if you give your mat a thorough cleaning, you can usually restore the stickiness.