I've never liked hot melt glue very much, but it has its advantages. It's cheap, durable and not too heavy. The downside, at least for me, is that it takes some practice before you can make good looking heads. My solution is to encase the glue in a short length of drinking straw. This gives a smooth and very durable head, which can then be wrapped in whatever nice and shiny material you can get your hands on!
The variant shown above has been my most productive one so far. It's hard to see on this picture, but there are a few strands of pearl flash along the side.
One of many healthy autumn pike caught on this fly.