A Jamberry Review: An Honest Look at the Popular Nail Wraps

Monday, November 2, 2015

Okay, so it seems that everyone knows a Jamberry Consultant (or four) and it has become nearly impossible to go a couple of months without receiving an invite for an online Jamberry Party. These nail wraps have gotten huge hype over the last year or so, and if you are like me, you are quite skeptical of any major fad. But let's admit it, there is no way you have not noticed how cute these wraps are.

Almost any Jamberry Consultant will offer you a free mini sheet of a few nail wraps for you to try out. Of course, loving anything free, I accepted and sent my address over to some rando person on Instagram... (In hindsight....don't do this....find a person you know). The sheet came with about 4 or 5 different design in various sizes and accompanying instructions. I did my best to follow the directions, but that same day, I found the wraps peeling up at the tip of my nail and around the edges. After about 2 days, they were driving me crazy and I peeled it off with ease. I decided that these were completely stupid and overrated and I was over it. I began to think of Jamberry to be the nail equivalent of ItWorks (Stop it, no it doesn't. Nobody loses 30 lbs from one wrap. Sorry. Not Sorry.) I didn't think about these wraps again.

Well, that is, until a couple friends started posting more pictures of their "Jamicures" and claiming that they last up to 2 weeks. I wanted to call BS, but since they were actual friends of mine, I was having a hard time believing that they would lie. They would post update pics two weeks later with their nails looking a little worn, but still REALLY good. I knew they had nothing to gain from lying, so their addiction fueled my curiosity.... I thought, "they must know something I don't." They became so obsessed that they signed up to be consultants, just so they could get a deal on purchasing the wraps! I decided, what the hell, let's give this another go. I placed my order for 4 wraps and became determined to figure this out.

These were the wraps I ordered.
From left to right: Double Trouble, Siren Song, Black and White Stripe, and Friday Flannel

Then I got started on my research. They are bit pricey, so I wanted to make sure I wasn't going to waste them. There are tons of videos online, but these were the two videos I watched. One from Beauty and Jams and one from Erin Hicks. Both show different application strategies and different tips. With new information and a better understanding of what I needed to do, I set up my table as I had seen in the Beauty and Jams video.

The Jamberry instructions will tell you that you can use a hair dryer, which is what used when I got the free samples. You need to warm up the wraps, but didn't really specify how. Now, it seems really simple, but at first I would blast the hair dryer on the nail wrap, not paying attention to which side the heat was hitting. I would burn my fingers and curse and then try to apply the wrap, which of course didn't work well. After watching the videos I mentioned above, I saw that I could use an iron.

Now, there are a couple reasons why I now prefer the iron method:

1. It is quiet.

If you have a kid and you are like me, the only time you get to apply the wraps is at night after the kids are in bed. This also means you can watch your shows since you aren't making all this noise with a hair dryer.

2. There is no air.

Using a hair dryer makes the nail wrap fly away from you and doesn't, in my opinion, evenly heat up the wrap. Plus, using a hair dryer is a more coordinated effort, which, honestly, I can't be bothered to do for 10 nails.

3. This is easy and cheap.

Jamberry sells a heater, but it's just an extra expense when you can use what you have at home. I used tweezers to hold the wrap and when it starts to curve, that is how you know it is nice and heated. You just stand the iron on the table and let it do the work.

Here is a closer look at my set up and the supplies I used.

(Not pictured, my tweezers)

I am really partial towards Ulta since I used to work there, but no lie, their cotton pads, mani & pedi sticks and nail polish remover are AWESOME. Plus, you earn rewards points and can use coupons and well, I'm getting off topic here. The scissors and nail file were given to me after I won a contest in an online Jamberry Party and the 4-way nail block is perfect for application too, this just came from a local store. Everything however, is available at your local Ulta or drugstore store or you can even use what you have at home already.

When reflecting back, I also realized another mistake I was making: I was choosing the wrong sized wraps for my nails. I think it is common to want to completely cover the nail, just as we do with nail polish, but resist the urge. A wrap that is too large will peel up, warp and wrinkle and drive you absolutely mad. Go smaller. You want to be able to see your nail around the wrap. TRUST ME on this. Also, when you go to file your nails, finish it by filing at an angle, so that the tiniest bit on your nail tip is showing. Again, trust me on this.

After following all the tips I saw in the videos, I completed my first Jamicure! SUCCESS!

(Clearly, I am not a hand model. Clearly my rings are quite dirty.)

I was so excited! The looked to so great! A massive improvement from my first attempt long ago.

They were great for a couple of days and then I noticed a few things. The bottoms of the wraps closest to my cuticles started to lift a little bit and if I ran my fingers through my hair, strands would get stuck under the edge the wraps. After about a week, the sides of some nails started to wrinkle and the same thing would happen with my hair. It literally drove me bonkers, but I decided I wanted to see, all the way through, what my experience with these wraps would be.

The wraps lasted 12 days before I removed them. This is what they looked like after almost 2 weeks.

Nail polish never would have lasted this long. Even though the hair thing annoyed me, these wraps have some pretty good lasting power. I also was given the tip a couple days after application that I should seal it with a top coat. Jamberry sells their own top coat, but I'm sure any will do. I thought about sealing them, but I really wanted to be able to give an accurate review. I feel very confident that a clear coat will help to keep the jams from warping and from catching my hair. It probably extends the life of your manicure significantly since it probably won't chip from the top, like at all.

So here, FINALLY, is my review. I used a scale of 1-10, 1 being the worst and 10 being the best.

Design: 10/10

They really have the cutest designs. You can almost find any design to fit your needs and you can even create your own!

Application: 6/10

It is not that they are hard to apply, but without all these extra tips, your jams aren't going to last. Do yourself a favor and watch the videos above before attempting.

Durability: 9/10

These suckers can last honestly about 2 weeks. With a top coat, I'm sure they can last even longer!

Availability: 7/10

You can't pick these up in the store, so you have to purchase them online in advance and have them shipped. However, there are many consultants available to help you and some may even offer some awesome deals.

Price: 8/10

At $15 for a sheet, you are going to spend a pretty penny on these wraps. However, the good news is that 1 sheet seems like it can last up to 4 Jamicures. They can be cut down, so even larger wraps can be used for smaller nails. Each little wrap does two nails, so they will last you quite a while. I believe if you buy 3, you get one free, which also sweetens it up a bit.

Drying Time:10/10

They take absolutely NO drying time! Have no fear because no matter what you need to do during application, you won't mess up your nails! The same cannot be said for polish.

Overall Rating: 8/10

Overall, these nail wraps really do live up to the hype. They are super cute and long lasting and it is hard to not become a fan once you have figured out how to get the best application. They are worth the effort to put them on because your nails will look great until you take the wraps off. I would definitely recommend giving these a try (or a retry) because they are the best way to keep your nails looking great for the maximum amount of time. Add these to your Christmas list, because you are going to want to give these a try! Seriously.

So that's my honest review! I was not prompted by anyone and do not have any secret motives to write this except to want to share my experience with anyone else who might be curious or skeptical about these wraps. So find a consultant, ask them for a sample and give these a try!

So off I go to apply my next Jamicure! Bye!