These are ultra-thin strips that look and somewhat feel like stickers, but are made of actual nail polish somehow suspended in a semi-wet state — until you press them onto your nails. As the site says, ” It wears like nail polish because it IS nail polish. No dry time, so you’re ready to go.” Their other big attraction is that they come in lots of elaborate nail-art patterns that would be very difficult and time-consuming for even a professional manicurist to draw from scratch. There’s everything from 1960’s florals to houndstooth check to my all-purpose favorite, French tips. (These take two steps, the tip and the sheer layer over them.)
While there’s a lot to like about these nail strips, I can’t honestly say I ended up with a salon effect. When it comes down to it, the effect is only as good as your own fine motor skills.
So what do I like about them? Well . . .
- It’s true, they dry instantly. No boring sitting around, waving your hands.
- If you don’t get them in exactly the right place at first, it’s not too late to grab them off and reposition.
- Any color that accidentally gets on your skin rubs off easily.
- There are 16 strips in a box, so you’ve got extras to go back over any places where you didn’t reach to the edge of the nail.
- The file that comes with the kit actually works for cutting off the excess strip at the end of your nails — I didn’t expect it to work, but it did.
What’s not so likeable?
- Of course, there’s no substitute for skill, which not all of us have.
- The instructions that in the package could be much clearer. (I recommend finding a video tutorial before you start.)
- You end up with dozens of tiny bits of foil, plastic, and backing paper everywhere, not only on your work surface but sticking to your fingers at inconvenient moments.
- Also, online reviews are mixed. Some users find the product doesn’t stick, or doesn’t stand up to wear very well. This may be a function of the age of the product — some of it that’s still on the shelf may be past its usefulness already. The packages aren’t dated, but come only with lot numbers, so it’s hard to tell when they were made.
Nail strips are definitely worth considering, but you’ll have to weigh the pros and cons to see if they’re for you.