The wet strength of cellulose-cellulose joints, reinforced with PAE-loaded microgels, was decreased by nearly a factor of two when the labile disulfide crosslinks on the supporting microgels were exposed to a reducing agent. The supporting microgels were temperature and pH sensitive poly(
N-isopropylmethacrylamide-co-acrylic acid) microgels, prepared with a disulfide crosslinker. The level of PAE loading increased with the microgel carboxyl content. This work illustrates a new approach to increasing the recyclability and compostability of wet-strength papers made with PAE wet-strength resin.