7 Adhesives to Keep Your Diabetes Devices Stuck This Summer

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Summer is coming, and with the sunshine and hot days come sweat, sand, and other seasonal woes that compromise the stickiness of your diabetes devices.  It can be a challenge to keep insulin pump sites, CGM sensors, and other diabetes gadgets stuck safely and firmly in the hot, hot heat.  But it can be BEYOND  frustrating when the edges of your device tape start to curl and unfurl … especially if it’s only been a day or two. 

Nobody has time for that. 

We have a few tapes, sticky overlays, and other adhesives for diabetes devices that can help your stuff stay stuck.  Check out the list below for tapes that are sometimes fun, always sticky, and occasionally covered by insurance.


Tegaderm–  From 3m, this transparent film “allows for continuous monitoring of the insertion site.”  Handy when you’re using the tape to cover a continuous glucose monitoring device, or a pump site.  The tape is waterproof and sometimes covered by insurance companies, so check and see if your insurer is on board.

Opsite Flexifix– This tape is made by Smith & Nephew and can be ordered through their website (sometimes covered by insurance companies – be sure to ask if yours covers tapes), but many people purchase their roll of Opsite Flexifix from Amazon.  Opsite has been around for several years and can be cut to fit a multitude of device needs. 

IV 3000–  Another staple (not literally) in the diabetes community, IV 3000 is a tape option from Smith & Nephew billed as a “moisture responsive catheter dressing” that many PWD use to keep their devices secure all year ‘round.  Like Opsite and Tegaderm, it can be cut to fit whatever is flopping.  (Note: I’ve always loved the name of this one because it reminds me of Andre 3000 from Outkast, which makes me want to tell Miss Jackson I’m sorry.)  

RockADex– Based in Australia, this tape keeps devices stuck, it does. And with a pile of shapes, colors, and options to choose from, your Dexcom, Freestyle Libre, or Omnipod will be ready to brave any wave without coming loose.  (Their selection isn’t limited to sticky tapes – they have a bunch of decals and other decorations to help customize your diabetes!)

StayPut Medical–  Whether you’re looking to secure a CGM or an Omnipod, the Stayput Medical overlap tape will keep your device stuck to you for the FDA approved timeframe … or (shhhhh) beyond.  Available in a variety of colors, this egg-shaped overlay tape will keep your site stuck.  Unsure if you’ll like it?  The StayPut team will send you a sample so you can try it before you buy it, so send them an email.

Rock Tape– You may have seen Rock Tape sold at your local pharmacy, but “thanks” to a gestational diabetes diagnosis, the team at Rock Tape has created a diabetes-centric option for people looking for a solid stick for their devices.  You can order CGM covers online, including this snazzy argyle option

Grif Grips– GrifGrips started when “a NASA engineer watched his son struggle to keep his Pod on when being an 8 year old kid.”  And with shapes like dinosaurs, monsters, flowers, cats, and robots (check out the available themes) as well as the launch of the Power-X grips, there are many ways to customize your gear. Grifs are sold in packs and they ship globally.

As always, your devices have the best chance of staying stuck when they are applied to clean, dry skin (and prepping the skin with an alcohol swab or some SkinTac can help, too).  Be sure to do a skin test for any new adhesive that you’re trying out, and if there are tape options we missed on our list, stick a link in the comments! 

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Theresa Dobson
Theresa Dobson
5 months ago

What would a person/kid use for the tslim x2 insulin pump? We just started using the pump. Very active with sports and don’t want to risk the curling of adhesive.

Miles
Miles
1 year ago

I hate to say it, but Gorilla tape is the only thing that keeps one on for me the last three days. My body gets irritated to the point of very deliberately trying to expel any adhesive things on my me after about 40 days of a CGM, and then duct tape or Gorillat tape might hold it for the last four or five days (I can’t get new sensors before then ’cause insurance), and then I kinda need to keep one off me for about ten days before I can keep a sensor on me again for the full… Read more »

Jackie
Jackie
1 year ago

Any suggestions on what adhesive to use. I am very allergic to Tegaderm and Dermabond with excoriated skin and blisters. I can use regular bandaids, paper and plastic tape.

Kyara
Kyara
1 year ago

Griff Grips are cool (for my 11 yr old son) but they come off around the edges after pool time.

Alecia
Alecia
3 years ago

Ahhh Kerri, I will never see IV3000 the same again. Hey ya! ;)

James Murphy
James Murphy
3 years ago

In order for something to stick, you have to clean the surface from the oils(especially from our skin). I have been using 91% alcohol from Walgreens for only $2. I purchase the alcohol swipes from the store and then just pour some of the 91% alcohol on the swab. Then i am cleaning the oils off with the 91%, instead of the 70%. This really gets my skin clean. I then let that dry for 1-2min, then use a thin layer of SkinTac. Again, then i let that set for 45 sec, and then apply my Dexcom. This method has… Read more »

Linda
Linda
1 year ago
Reply to  James Murphy

When you train for an Ironman, what waterproof adhesive do you use for the swim??? Thanks:)

C s
C s
3 years ago

We used mefix tape for years to help keep the pod on. Basic, but it works.

Rebecca (Becky) Smith
Rebecca (Becky) Smith
3 years ago

My son’s skin is irritated by Grif Grips. We like ROCK TAPE and this Self Adherent Wrap – Camo Cohesive Bandage Medical Vet Tape for First Aid, Sports, Wrist, Ankle
by Juvale
Link: http://a.co/apgeuXj

Jana
Jana
3 years ago

I’m having trouble with being rashy under the tape. Any tips for what to put on as a base between me and the CGM?

Debbie
Debbie
3 years ago
Reply to  Jana

I use iv-3000 first, then apply my sensor and canula over it. Keeps the dexcom adhesive from irritating my site or coming loose swimming or bathing. I sometimes get 2 full weeks wear even in summer.

Sarah
Sarah
3 years ago
Reply to  Jana

We used iv 3000 and cut a hole in it where the opening needed to be, attached the cgm to the patch and then applied to the body after using skin tac. Was a little tricky but seemed to help.

Terrell
Terrell
2 years ago
Reply to  Jana

Hi, I use Flonase …or the Sams brand… I squirt it on a cotton swab and I don’t itch much at all…

Hailey
Hailey
3 years ago

My kids love Expressions Med tapes. Cute designs and a different smooth texture. In a pinch we also use athletic tape strips from Dollar tree and cut to fit.

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