More than just a cosmetic product, hairspray is a potent adhesive to help maximize your 3D printing success. Providing much-needed adhesion (as well as making prints easier to remove), here’s our top recommendations for which hairspray to use for 3D printing:

Glue sticks are often recommended, but are a messy option. The best way to create a tacky texture on your 3D printing bed surface is to spray it with a thin layer of hairspray. Aqua Net hairspray is easy, inexpensive, and incredibly effective for all of your 3D printing adhesion needs

Top Picks

Quick Overview

  1. Aqua Net Extra Super Hold Unscented: Best overall
  2. Suave Max Hold (pack of 3): Best for 3D printing adhesion
  3. FRAGFRE Hair Finishing Spray: Best unscented hairspray
  4. Rave 5X Freeze Hairspray: Best budget hairspray

The Best Hairsprays For 3D Printing

1. Best Overall – Aqua Net Extra Super Hold Unscented

Aqua Net Extra Super Hold Unscented front and back of product

Aqua Net hairspray is the best-known standard spray adhesive in the 3D printing world. The Amazon reviews are filled with people saying that they can’t speak to the product’s use in hair because they purchased it specifically for 3D printing! Reviewers comment on using this hairspray for a huge variety of printers and filaments including PLA, PETG, and ABS.

It’s a classic for good reason. This hairspray is strong enough to create a reliable layer on your 3D printer bed surface. It’s thick and clingy so you’ll never have to worry about your parts not sticking to the bed properly.

This hairspray is also our top choice because its simple ingredients don’t include any additives that could potentially interfere with your bed or filaments. Aqua Net’s pure adhesion power is perfect for a wide variety of filaments and will always ensure your parts stick to the bed and print appropriately.

Aqua Net has a very even spray, which makes it easy to thoroughly coat the entire bed surface in one uniform layer. This consistency is key for removing your finished part from the printing bed surface and preventing sticking or chipping.

It’s also super durable. You can spray your printer’s bed surface just once, and then print onto that layer of hairspray up to 10 times before it’s time to reapply again.

Overall, Aqua Net is the best hairspray choice for most 3D printing needs. It’s inexpensive, strong, and generally a very reliable choice, which is why it’s the brand most people turn to when facing printing bed adhesion issues.

2. Best For Adhesion – Suave Max Hold (pack of 3)

Suave Max Hold front and back of product

If you’re having trouble getting your filament to initially stick to the printing bed surface, your priority will be finding the stickiest adhesive for your model to cling to. This prevents any movement and makes sure that you don’t have issues with globing or stringing on the print.

Suave Max Hold Hairspray has one of the strongest hairspray formulations that will guarantee effective sticking.

This is another hairspray that is famous for its non-cosmetic purposes, coming recommended by artists to seal in finished acrylic paint projects. It has a robust hold without being too thick, and is firm and dependable.

The unique formula in Suave Max Hold that gives this hairspray its notable hold strength and makes it appealing for sealing in paint also makes it a perfect base layer for your 3D printing because it is certain to provide adequate adhesion.

3. Best Unscented – FRAGFRE Hair Finishing Spray

FRAGFRE Hair Finishing Spray front and back of product

Sometimes even a product marketed as “unscented” or “fragrance free” can be overpowering. If you are particularly sensitive to fragrances, or if your 3D printer is in a very tight studio space, the last thing you need is a strong-smelling hairspray that bothers your skin and has you wheezing throughout your print.

FRAGFRE hair finishing spray is specially formulated to be odorless and gentle on sensitive skin. In a 3D printing space, you can rely on this hairspray to help solve adhesion issues while maintaining fresh air.

You will want to watch out for issues with the spray nozzle. Some people report problems with clogging after a few uses. To avoid this, you can simply rinse the nozzle with clean water after each use, and you should be able to achieve an even spray each time you need to reapply.

For people with allergies, skin sensitivities, or respiratory concerns, or if you simply want to keep the air in your small workspace clear, FRAGFRE’s truly odorless hair finishing spray ensures that a sticky printing bed surface is attainable safely.

4. Best Budget Pick – Rave 5X Freeze Hairspray

Rave 5X Freeze Hairspray front of product

If you want to give hairspray adhesion a chance for your 3D printing, but want to keep your costs low, Rave 5X Freeze Hairspray is one of the most affordable options on the market.

This spray is strong and will definitely help with bed adhesion issues. It is widely available in grocery stores and pharmacies, so you may be able to find it in your local area without too much trouble.

While this hairspray is unscented, you may find that the odor of the spray is stronger than some of the others on this list. If your 3D printer is in a well-ventilated area you may not notice the strong smell, but in a smaller space you may find it overpowering.

Why Use Hairspray For Your 3D Prints?

  1. Improves adhesion: A thin layer of hairspray on the printing bed surface provides a sticky surface that improves adhesion, ensuring your first layer sticks well.
  2. Prevents damage to the 3D printer bed: Hairspray creates a barrier between the bed surface and your 3D printed model, so a chunk of the bed material (e.g., glass) doesn’t break off with your print.

For more information, you can read our guides on fixing the 3D print not sticking to the print bed, as well as our article on general first layer issues.

parts of ender 3 glass bed cracked after removing print
Sections of Ender 3 glass bed adhered to the filament. Source: Reddit

Hairspray vs Glue Sticks

Glue sticks are often recommended for 3D printers, but they take longer to apply than hairspray, and even with the extra time, it’s hard to get an even layer. Glue sticks can also be messy and difficult to clean up after. For more information, read our guide to glue sticks for 3D printing.

Hairspray is inexpensive, easy to use, and extremely effective at both making sure your parts stick to the bed, and also serving as a separator so that the part will lift from the bed easily and without damage.

How To Apply Hairspray Correctly When 3D Printing

  1. To use hairspray on your 3D printer, first remove the printing bed surface from the printer. 

(If you are using a printer that does not have a removable bed, be careful to spray only on the printing surface and avoid the rest of your machine.)

  1. Spray the hairspray directly onto the bed in a thin, even layer. 
  2. Wait about one minute for the hairspray to dry, then carefully put the bed back into place.

The surface of your bed should now be slightly sticky to the touch and ready for 3D printing.

Then, reapply another layer of hairspray every 5-10 prints.

Using this technique with a printer that has a heated bed will give you very reliable returns. If your printer does not have a heated bed, an effective adhesion strategy is even more important to ensure proper results, so using one of the hairsprays we recommend will save you a lot of time and effort.

spraying aquanet extra super hold on prusa heatbed steel sheet
Spraying Aqua Net Extra Super Hold on Prusa heatbed steel sheet. Credit: Grimm3D


Does Hairspray Work With All 3D Printers?

Yes, you can use any hairspray on any 3D printer. All kinds of hairspray will help provide better adhesion and prevent damage to the printer bed surface.

aqua net extra super hold hairspray and 3D printer
Great first layer adhesion using Aqua Net Extra Super Hold Hairspray. Source: Imgur

Which Types Work Best?

You should always use strong, unscented hairspray for 3D printing. Look for hairspray with labels like “extra strength” that can create a durable printing surface. Unscented hairsprays don’t contain any ingredients that can affect 3D printing.

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