How to Remove a Festival Wristband Without Cutting It

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How to remove your fabric festival wristband without cutting it - Glastonbury Festival 2022 wristband

Getting your wristband at the start of a festival is such leaves you feeling elated. It’s symbolic – the start of a wonderful few days full of magical, life-changing experiences and creating wonderful memories that will like forever.

But, all good things must come to an end. And that includes your wristband.

As beautiful and sentimental as you think that grimey piece of metallic fabric is, it’s got to go.

How dirty is your old festival wristband? 🤔

Very. Staphylococci is a type of bacteria that can cause boils, cysts and nasty skin infections. If that bacteria travels to your face and gets inside your mouth, it could also give you very unpleasant stomach symptoms. 

Most festivals crimp your wristband onto your wrist to prevent it from being easily removed for the duration of the event. This is usually a mental or a plastic clamp, it’s easy to accidentally scratch your face when sleeping, so that’s another reason to remove your wristband as soon as possible.

If you leave it in place, you may notice it starts to smell bad, damp or sour over time. Just take it off!

Should you cut off your wristband after a festival? You should definitely remove it as soon as possible for hygiene reasons, but you don’t have to cut it if you want to keep it undamaged as a keepsake.

Of course, if you’re not interested in keeping a physical keepsake in the form of a wristband, then by all means, grab a pair of scissors and carefully cut it off.

Be careful not to catch your skin when cutting it off!

How to remove your festival wristband without cutting it

See also: How to remove festival car parking stickers

There are a few different methods you can try to successfully remove a festival wristband without cutting it off.
Most of these methods are pain-free, but if ypu do experience any discomfort then do not continue.

Gently work the wristband over your hand

This works well if you have slim hands or if the band wasn’t secured tightly enough for your wrist. 

If you were lucky enough for this to happen to you, then it’s easy! Simply squeeze your thumb in towards your palm, then use your other hand to gradually work the wrist band off, stretching it slightly if necessary.

Tip: put your wristband-ed wrist under cold running water for 30-60 seconds before trying this. The cold helps your skin and muscles contract, making this easier

If the wristband was on too tight to begin with, it’s unlikely this will work.

Remove your festival wristband with a plastic bag – my favourite method!

This is a great trick! Removing festival wristbands using a plastic bag has become a popular method as it works almost every time!

In my experience, it does work, but it can hurt, so be careful!

Using any standard carrier bag, the 5p thin ones are better for this as the “bags for life” are too thick.

colourful plastic carrier bags
Most British households have a bag full of these stashed away somewhere in their house! You can’t throw these away anymore – for a good reason – so you’ll surely have some of these hanging around.

Stick your hand inside the bag, tucking the carrier bag underneath, all the way around the wrist band.

Then, pull the “open end” of the bag away from your hand. It helps if someone else does this for you!

Voila, a perfectly removed wristband!

Remove your wristband with pliers 

This mainly applies to wristbands clamped in place with a metal clasp, but it may also work with a plastic one too.

The goal here is to break or damage the shape of the clasp, freeing the wristband. Be very careful and definitely get someone else to help.

Using pliers or a flathead screwdriver, gentle squeeze or prize at the clasp until it’s loose enough to free the fabric.

See also: 10 Creative ways to repurpose your old festival wristbands

Final Thoughts

while festival wristbands hold sentimental value and remind us of the incredible experiences we’ve had, it’s important to remove them for hygiene reasons. These bands can harbour s***loads of bacteria and become gross over time, posing potential health risks.

However, you don’t necessarily have to cut them off if you want to keep them intact as keepsakes. After all, they’re not just pieces of fabric, they hold special memories that we want to relive – so keeping them safe (and off your wrist) is important too.

See you in field!

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