I first tried Jamberry a few years ago when an awesome reader, Brittany, was kind enough to send me a sample to try. The application was difficult and I absolutely damaged my nails upon removal. Since then, I’ve been fairly vocal about my “yawn Jamberry, please go away” attitude. I’ve had conversations with Alli about how OMG NO ONE CARES ABOUT JAMBERRY. We’re were totally #TeamSallyHansen (and still are). Their real nail polish strips are top notch.
I hadn’t really given Jamberry until I noticed my work pal, Kate, was a consultant. FYI: She’s also my rival in a made up best dressed competition and she’s hilarious. So, I’m pretty sure I said something along the lines of… if you give me some Jamberry wraps to try for free, I’ll try them again AND review them. So, here we are. So, full disclosure, I received half sheets of Bubbler and the December hostess exclusive wraps to try in exchange for an honest review. Kate let me borrow her mini heater and I did purchase the Jamberry Application Kit so I could go all in.
I put it off for a few days because… I figured it’d be like my Blue Apron experience and take 6 hours – I’m slow. Love me anyway. I decided Saturday night would be THE night. See, Kate was having a little Halloween party over on her Facebook Page and I saw a few Halloween designs I totally loved but I didn’t want to buy any if I was just going to end up hating them again. You got me? Yeahhhh.
So… I decided to get to work. I got out the mini heater and the nail prep kit. Included in the nail prep kit: two orange sticks, one cuticle pusher, a nail file, a buffer block, clippers, small scissors, and two nail prep pads (all pictured above). The kit retails for $12.50 and it’s not a bad deal really – clippers and files and buffers individually can add up quickly plus you get a nice little bag – which is my favorite part because I hoard small cosmetic sized bags. However, since you’re here, you’re probably a nail addict and you probably already have all of this already. The nail prep pads are very simply alcohol wipes in a
condom cute like package. I didn’t use these because I figured this would be the one thing you guys didn’t have at home.
So… how’d it go? Check under the jump to find out my thoughts on the entire process.
It’s good to be back.
If your eyes are already tired and you JUST can’t read another word – pop on over to Kate’s Jamberry Facebook Page – she does giveaways from time to time. You can also check out her Jamberry Consultant Site and see some of the awesome designs.
Okay! If you’re still reading, hi! Thanks! That was the longest intro ever. I’m sorry (#notsorry). I’ve really missed blogging. I’m feeling super chatty today. Plus I’m having a little anxiety. As I’m writing this The Walking Dead season 7 premiere is a few hours away…. you understand.
I watched the official Jamberry Application Video and followed the instructions exactly. Go ahead, watch the video if you’d like. I’ll wait. You probably won’t, so I’ll summarize: wash & dry your hands, file your tips, buff your nails, push back your cuticles and clean one last time with the alcohol prep pads (or, alcohol on a cotton ball). You are officially prepped. This is all super standard. See. Here are my naked nails, all prepped & ready to go – this is my gift to you for sticking with me. I am fairly certain I have not once posted my naked nails. You’re welcome.
Since I failed to take pictures while I was actually applying my wraps, here’s a peak at my work station. See that little thing? That’s the mini heater. It was a huge help not having to try and do this while turning a blow dryer on and off.
So, I followed all the rules. I selected my wrap, cut it in half, heated it up, placed it on my nail, and applied pressure to seal the deal – as the saying goes. They probably weren’t talkin about nail wraps. Sometimes I’d place my nail back under the heater and apply some more pressure or to smooth out little bubble, but for the most part this was a lot simpler than I remember – probably thanks to the mini heater vs. hair dryer situation.
NOW here is where I had some trouble. After this, you file (at a 90 degree angle) off the excess. I’m used to this – it’s the same process as the Sally Hansen wraps. I GOT THIS. Except, I didn’t. I think maybe having a less rough file would help, but at first my edges weren’t perfect and some still aren’t.
I’m willing to chalk this up to practice makes perfect. I tried the buffer instead of the file on a few nails – that absolutely helped. Then I whined to Kate before moving on to hand #2. She suggested actually clipping the nails just a TINY bit to get a nice smooth edge, then heating again – BAM. This was the trick I needed. Smooth edges on hand two. HOLLA.
I will say this tip absolutely won’t fly if you’re applying these over acrylics, but I haven’t worn acrylics in a decade-ish so no problem-o. Do people still get acrylic nails? I mean, aside from my Nana? She just turned 90 by the way. She’s so glam.
As far as the design goes – I love it! It’s summery and fun and makes me think of waves. I’ve been staring at my hands all day. It’s just FUN. Here a few pictures…. there are about 30 more but I’m pretty sure that nothing is 30 pictures worth of interesting. I’m okay with the imperfections showing in the picture because you REALLY can’t see them unless I shove my hands in your face and if my hands are that close to your face, you should probably turn around and run.
I hate swatching without the comfort of a bottle to wrap my hands around, so I grabbed my long time favorite cuticle oil – CND Solar Oil ($8.50 on Amazon with Prime shipping!).
When I tried Jamberry before, I struggled more with removal than application, so this was really the big make it or break it for me. There are a handful of suggested methods for removal. Jamberry recommends two different methods: Quick removal and Gentle Removal:
“Heat the wraps with a blow-dryer for 15 seconds. Then break the seal by getting under the edge of the wrap with your opposite thumbnail. Slowly peel the wrap from side to side. If the nail wraps are not peeling easily or the adhesive is still bonded to the nail bed, then follow the Gentle Removal Process.”
“Soak the nail wraps in nail polish remover for 20-30 seconds and gently rub them off. Soaking will break down the adhesive bond and allow them to easily slide off the nail bed.”
Gentle Removal sounds like the way to go.Here’s my set up:
WHOA WHOA WHOA. YOU GUYS. I am SO pleasantly surprised – I used a hybrid method – soak for 45s then slowly peal off the wrap. No damage – my nails look as perfect as… well as perfect as my nails can ever look.
Final thoughts & How to Purchase:
This was a much better experience than I remembered. I guess it doesn’t hurt to give things a second chance. I don’t see myself going ALL Jamberry ALL THE TIME, BUT I love the idea of wearing these on special occasions and holidays and the every so often accent nail. Just a little something extra, especially if you are a bit nail art challenged, like myself.
I’m really REALLY excited to try out Night Fright for Halloween. I know I’ll be buying some as gifts – especially for the rabid sports fans in my life. There’s a good selection of colleges & sororites as well as NFL teams & NBA teams. I’m
Wraps retail for $15, that includes a fulls heet of strips enough for 2 full “jamicures” and pedicures as well. After trying these I purchased 4 sets – Night Fright & three other designs I’ll show off in the future.
If you’re new to Jamberry…you can opt for the Basic Bundle – which is what I wish I’d done. It includes 4 full sheets of wraps, the mini heater, and the basic application kit. It’s a good value – $58.50.