How to make a zipper glide

zipper image by Radoslav Lazarov from

A sticky or stubborn zipper can make life difficult. Whether the zipper closes a tent, a wetsuit, a jacket or a pair of trousers, when your zipper does not glide smoothly, it can cause frustration. You have several options for making a zipper glide smoothly up and down.

With minimal effort, you can ensure your zipper stays functioning.

Close a metal zipper completely. Run the sharpened tip of a graphite pencil up and down the closed teeth of the zipper to lubricate a sticky zipper. After coating the zipper teeth generously with the pencil graphite, open and close the zipper several times to work the graphite inside the nooks and crannies of the zipper teeth.

Zip a nylon or plastic zipper up completely. Run the edge of the beeswax bar gently over the closed teeth of the zipper to coat the teeth lightly with beeswax. Open and close the zipper two to three times after applying the beeswax to distribute the beeswax evenly inside the zipper teeth.

Clean the zipper teeth with a special zipper cleaner and then coat the zipper with a lubricant. Unzip the zipper and use a special brush on the end of the zipper cleaning fluid to apply the zipper cleaner to the zipper teeth. Wipe any excess zipper cleaner off with a paper towel. Open and close the zipper several times to work the cleaning product into the zipper teeth. Apply the zipper lubricant to the teeth of the open zipper by rubbing it lightly up and down the front of the zipper teeth. Open and close the zipper several more times to distribute the lubricant.