Can You Use Spray Adhesive to Hang Wallpaper?
Can You Use Spray Adhesive to Hang Wallpaper?

Once considered a choice for older people, many younger and hip couples are choosing to incorporate wallpaper into their home decoration. This recent resurgence offers a unique wall covering option while also being notably easier to install. With this new popularity comes the questions of whether you can use spray adhesive to hang wallpaper. The short answer is yes, but there is much more that goes with that than you can probably imagine. Before we jump into how spray adhesive interacts with wallpaper, let’s first touch on other types of wallpaper and their respective installation methods, with the help of B A Madden, a painter and decorator in London.

What are the Different Types of Wallpaper?

In terms of material, there are many kinds to choose from, with vinyl coming in multiple options such as solid sheet, coated, and regular. There are also other choices like non-woven, easy-walls, prepasted, and grasscloth wallpaper.

Vinyl is one of the most popular choices because it can be used just about anywhere. It is notable for being easy to install, clean, and remove if necessary. There are a few subtypes of this material type that should be touched on.

Solid sheet is the most durable on the account of its remarkable thickness and comes embossed for extra style. Fabric and paper options are also available with a vinyl coating, which gives the respective qualities of each with the improved durability and cleanability of vinyl.

If you’re one of those that wishes for a more biodegradable option over vinyl, look no further than non-woven wallpaper. Known for installing easily on account of it being tear resistant, it also has remarkable mold protection as well.

Another option that is vinyl free, the ink in easy-walls is also water-based. This material is similar to non-woven variants in that it is easy to clean and mold resistant. It typically has a pre-applied adhesive on the back.

Made completely from natural components, grasscloth is the ultimate wallpaper for those trying to reduce their carbon footprint. That being said, this type does have the disadvantage of being harder to clean; spot treatment and vacuuming is necessary to keep it looking good.

What Is Prepasted Wallpaper?

Traditional wallpapers typically need glue attached to the back before it can be applied to the wall. There are multiple types of adhesives that come in buckets premixed or needing mixing, with spray adhesives available as well. As the name suggests, a prepasted wallpaper is one that already has adhesive on the back of it. All of the above types of wallpaper can be prepasted. The adhesive itself is dry when bought and is activated by applying a small bit of water.

Prepasted has its advantages for sure; it’s more convenient for one, requiring less work on your part. That being said, prepasted wallpaper is notable for its lower quality, as it it has a tendency to peel earlier. This peeling is hard to fix and often means entire rooms will need to be redone.

Most people seem to think unpasted wallpaper is better quality, as a well done unpasted wallpaper is often made from superior materials. That being said, this is much more difficult to apply and can cause a mess if you aren’t careful. Because you need to purchase glue with it, unpasted wallpaper often costs more.

How Do You Hang Unpasted Wallpaper?

You’re going to need a paint tray and roller to smooth out any bumps, a rag to soak up any excess glue, a measuring tape to ensure you are cutting everything accurately, along with a sharp knife to give you a clean slice through the wallpaper along with a straight edge.

Spray adhesives can work in place of traditional glues and are much more convenient. Using an aerosol can, you can easily spray down a section of wall, allowing you to quickly apply a strip of wallpaper without having to worry about getting anything on the floor or your clothes.

There are many good spray adhesives on the market now but 3M Spray Adhesive is probably your best bet.This type of glue goes on fast and can be applied to just about every material. It works great in residential applications, with many contractors swearing by it.


Spray adhesive is a good choice to use on wallpaper and is easier to apply than most adhesives while causing the wallpaper to last longer than prepasted variants. Picking the right wallpaper for you depends on not just the style, but what material you prefer.