Now that my nails have become longer and healthier, I’m finding joy in at-home manicures again. I’ve only recently gotten on board with the whole nail wrap craze after my first ever successful attempt earlier this year. Now that I’m not a beginner at the process, I’m finally venturing into other brands in hopes of finding more ways to dress up my nails easily.
Recently, a pile of new designs of Color Street nail strips landed in my lap. These looked particularly interesting, and unique from other nail wraps I’ve tried, as they’re made up entirely of actual nail polish— they’re not just stickers. The strips are polish that’s almost completely dry, but has enough flexibility to stretch a bit before setting completely.
Something to note: Color Street is a brand that is sold through independent representatives, but they also sell directly on their website if you don’t live near a “nail stylist” or just don’t want to deal with in-person sales.
Color Street has nail strips for both manicures and pedicures, though I’ve only tried the manicure version so far. Inside each kit, you’ll find eight sizes of nail strips, with two strips per size (16 total). While that may seem like enough considering you only have ten nails, I didn’t feel like I had enough size variety to get the perfect fit width-wise. I’d say most of the strips are mid-sized, with only the smallest one being close enough to fit my pinky, but still not fully covering it. So if you mess up beyond redemption of a single strip, you may be out of luck. Also inside the kit is a Nail Prep Pad and a cute nail file to help trim the tip of the strip once it’s applied
Since the strips are made out of real nail polish, they’re thin and very delicate. It took a bit of time for me to get used to handling them, as I’m used to a thicker plastic feel with the brand I previously used. Because they stretch easily, it’s also easy to tear them. I tore the first one I tried applying, because it got stuck to my finger and it ripped in half when trying to peel it off my skin. Also, they’re not as forgiving if you need to adjust mid-application, as peeling them off the nail can stretch them out too much.
With that said, the stretchiness is actually very helpful in creating a realistic look. The flexibility allows them to conform to the nail bed with ease, and without any buckling at the tip. In fact, they don’t alter the nail shape in any way— they don’t make them look thicker, and they lay down at the tip perfectly.
The application process is standard: you line either side up with your cuticle, pressing downward moving toward the tip. The nail file helps trim excess product, so the edges match up. They trim very easily since they’re on the thinner side, and I found myself applying these much quicker than other sticker-like strips because of this! It only takes a few swipes of the file to create the perfect edge.
Unlike other nail strips I’ve tried, they also don’t cause the tip of your nail to feel blunted or dulled. While you don’t have to add a top coat, it certainly won’t hurt and can help seal the strip in if you’re particularly hard on your nails. I chose to apply one for the sake of hardening my nail (it helps me prevent breakage).
With the top coat, it took four days for the nail strip to show wear. I noticed tip wear first, and then the cuticle ends started to flake away. I didn’t feel like they looked worn enough to take off until day 7. I think getting a full week out of the manicure is pretty decent. Not as long as my other favorite nail strips, but long enough to get my money’s worth, in my opinion.
Overall, I’m definitely a new Color Street fan! I really like how natural they look on the nail, they have a huge variety of fun designs, and they have been the quickest to apply once I got the hang of their flexibility. I love the convenience of nail strips as there’s no worrying about dry time or smudging, and they allow me to wear so many cool looks that I’d never be able to do by hand. At $13 a kit, they’re also cheaper than a salon manicure! However, I truly wish that the kits came with about two more sizes on the smaller side, as that’s the main reason I would possibly use a different brand over these.