Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Review: Rebel Nails

I've been dying to try out a Minx manicure ever since I heard about them.  Interesting patterns, shiny finish, no chipping - what's not to love about that idea?  Sadly, though, I've not yet managed to find time to get to a salon to have them done.  So I bought some Rebel Nail wraps, which are one of the closest ways of getting the Minx look at home, in a do it yourself fashion.

A few companies have sprung up offering these stick on, heat cured decals, which offer all the intricacy of design that an in-salon treatment does, but with a much lower price point.  Rebel Nails have a pretty decent selection of patterns, costing between £7 and £9 per set.  I chose a design with white snowflakes on a blue background, which cost £6.99.

The pack contains eight pairs of nail decals, so that you can match the width easily to your own nails.  To apply, you simply peel off, blast a little with a hairdryer, and then smooth onto the nail from the middle of the nail outwards, and heat again to set.  To trim, you just pull the end of the decal over the edge of the nail, and file away the excess with a nail file held at a 45 degree angle.

I'll be the first to admit that I'm rather inept with anything that requires manual dexterity or a delicate touch, so it took me a while to get used to applying the decals smoothly - hence the almighty crease on my thumb, which I just couldn't get right.  I found it quite difficult to position and smooth the stickers onto my right hand; if I were to do this again in the future, I think I'd ask a friend to help me get the positioning exactly right.

Despite all my faffing, the end result looks pretty good.  Being a bit picky, I find it a little jarring that the base of the decals is so rounded, which looks a bit weird given that my cuticles are more square.  I also had trouble matching my ring fingernails to a good width: I ended up going for one which was a little too narrow, rather than going too wide and having them flap over the edges.

Wear wise, I got three days out of these, and they were starting to look very ragged at the end of those three days.  They certainly gathered some compliments - nails this intricate do seem to grab people's attention - and I couldn't stop looking at them myself.  Unfortunately, the feel of them on the nail was very strange - brushing my fingernails across anything left me with a slightly scratchy, sandpapery, uneven feeling.  I was very definitely aware that there was something stuck onto my nails.  

So, would I buy these again?  I'm not sure that the three day wear is worth £7.99 for the purposes of every day wear, but if I had a big party or event and wanted a really eye catching nail look, then they represent good value.  The selection of designs is reasonable, and I'm kind of tempted by the chrome version - although I'd be wary of causing more creases, as they'd definitely be more noticeable.  

All in all - well worth the investment for a special occasion if you don't have the time, money or inclination to go for a full on salon Minx manicure.  You can buy the full range online at the Rebel Nails website, where they will cost you between £7 and £9 for a full set.


  1. Wow they are AWESOME! I really need to get more creative with my nails!!!

    I'm your newest follower by the way :)

    Jo xoxo

  2. Hi Jo! Welcome :)

    I think Rebel really take the hard work out of creative nails... with my clumsiness I'd never manage anything ornate myself, so these are a good middle ground!


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