50 Dangerous Things: Superglue Your Fingers Together

Task:  Superglue your thumb and forefinger together and experience life without a thumb.



  • Superglue
  • Wax paper
  • Nail polish remover (optional)

Possible Hazards:

  • Frustration
  • Property Damage
  • Cuts and Scrapes
To avoid the hazard of cutting or ripping the skin off your fingers, do not attempt to force your fingers apart.  As your skin produces oil and moisture and the outer cells naturally slough off, the glue will come unstuck.  If this is taking too long for your liking, you can soak your fingers in nail polish remover to speed up the process.


Be sure to cover your work area with wax paper.  Errant drops of glue can damage some surfaces and fabrics.


How It All Went Down:


Elena and I were the willing participants of this task.  Eli wasn’t too sure about it, and after doing it I wouldn’t recommend it for the 6 and under set.  The glue is, well, super sticky.  I can imagine younger kids getting a bit freaked out by it and maybe not having the self control to resist forcing their fingers apart.  If you’re wary of using superglue or you have younger kids who want the experience, try taping the thumb to the palm.


For the true risky types, here’s what you do: decide which hand you’ll use. I picked my dominant hand, while Elena chose her non-dominant hand.  Apply a drop of superglue on your forefinger.  Press your thumb to your forefinger and hold for 30 seconds. Now you’re stuck!


After gluing our hands, we set out for dinner.  It was immediately evident that losing the thumb on your dominant hand is much trickier than losing it on your non-dominant hand.  Eating a burger?  Not that difficult for Elena.


Superglue your fingers together

Me, on the other hand, I was having major frustrations.  Cutting Eli’s chicken was downright painful.  And why did I think a chili-cheese dog was a good idea?



For all the ease of eating a burger, Elena found other tasks more difficult … like the ever important texting and playing Minecraft.


Superglue your fingers together

Try doing a variety of things while your fingers are glued, like opening a jar, tying shoes, giving a handshake, or sealing a bag.  Not so easy is it?


Elena’s glue came off within an hour.  I don’t know if I used more on myself or what, but I ended up using nail polish remover to get mine off … not super fun either.  However I’m happy to report that we survived with no skin damage and a greater appreciation of our thumbs.


Want more?  Read about the rest of our experiences with 50 Dangerous Things. Inspired by Gever Tulley’s book 50 Dangerous Things (You Should Let Your Children Do).