Test it Tuesday: Do popular nail strips work better than polish?

The pandemic has done a number on our finances and our fingernails. Now some women are looking for cheaper alternatives to the nail salon and polish that chips and peels days after you apply it.
The pandemic has done a number on our finances and our fingernails. Now some women are looking for cheaper alternatives to the nail salon and polish that chips and peels days after you apply it.

Houston – The pandemic has done a number on our finances and our fingernails. Now, some women are looking for cheaper alternatives to the nail salon and polish that chips and peels days after you apply them.

Nail strips are growing in popularity. Essentially, they are fingernail polish stickers that you apply to your nail. There is no mess and no dry time. We asked viewer Liz Deering to try two different brands to tell us which works best and lasts the longest.

Nail Strip Brands

You’ve probably seen Facebook posts selling Color Street. They’re nail strips that already have fancy designs and art on them, and you can’t buy them in a retail store. We chose a set that cost $13.

At Target, we purchased Dashing Diva nail strips for half the price at $6.99.

Deering applied each brand to alternating fingers in order to make the review fair.

The instructions tell you to stick the strip on your nails at the base of your nail bed and then smooth them up. Fold the excess strip over the top of your nail and then cut it. Each package came with a small file you can use to smooth out the edges. She immediately noticed a difference in applying the two brands.

“It definitely seemed easier to do the Color Street than the Dashing Diva,” she told KPRC 2 consumer expert Amy Davis.

She said the Color Street brand seemed to stick better. They are thinner, so she could fold them over the end of her nail and use her other nail to break or cleanly tear away the excess.

The thicker Dashing Diva strips required trimming, filing and a more involved process to clean up the edges. It took Deering about half an hour to apply the strips to all ten nails, but she felt like if she were working only with Color Street, the process would have taken just 10 to 15 minutes.

Dashing Diva designs seem to be made for people with longer nails. It meant Deering had to trim away the coolest part of the nail strip, the gold tip at the top of the strip.

The Dashing Diva instructions recommended painting a clear coat on top of the strips for protection. Deering did that on her right hand only.

Results

For all of the fuss applying the strips, both brands looked nice on Deering’s nails. But would they last? We left Deering to her normal routine and checked back two weeks later.

Two nails chipped: one Color Street strip and one from Dashing Diva. Both strips that chipped were on the hand without the clear coat.

The bottom line is both brands held up about the same. Color Street at $13 and dashing diva at $6.99. Still, Deering said she would pay more for Color Street just for the faster, easier application.

While Deering said she didn’t think either brand of nail strips would replace salon visits completely, she said the strips lasted much longer than regular nail polish and are good for color and design without the manicure.


About the Author:

Passionate consumer advocate, mom of 3, addicted to coffee, hairspray and pastries.