The Super-Easy (and Cheap) Way to Get Awesome Nail Art

These nail wraps are basically the bomb.

By Miranda Proctor July 21, 2016

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Confession: I’m terrible at painting my nails. I can barely paint them a solid color without getting the paint all over my cuticles, my palms, my rug, everything. Any attempt at a cute, trendy design ends up coming out like a wannabe Jackson Pollock—and not in a cool way. The problem is I’m a college student eating ramen every night and way too lazy to pay to have my nails done either. That leaves two solutions—getting my artist of a boyfriend to paint them for me or getting into nail wraps. I decided I would save my boyfriend from losing his man card by giving the nail wraps a go. 

It was actually my boyfriend's sister who introduced me to Jamberry nail wraps, vinyl sheets available in hundreds of styles, from Disney and Starbucks themes to classic florals and patterns. They are heat and pressure activated, so you can put them on yourself at home with a hair dryer or Jamberry Heater. They are non-toxic, non-chipping, non-fading, vegan, cruelty free, and much more affordable than salon manicures. Basically they’re the bomb. 

Jamberry even hosts charity months in which they will donate a certain percentage of sales to a certain cause. For example, right now they are helping 15 Olympians competing in Brazil this summer who have to pay their own way to get there by donating $3.50 of each Go For Gold wrap sold. So helping them out while looking cute a good deal all around.

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How To Apply:

  1. Clean unpolished nails with an alcohol wipe and push back the cuticles.
  2. Match nail (finger or toe) to the nail wrap that best fits. 
  3. Peel off the nail wrap and warm with a mini heater or blow-dryer for 3-5 seconds or until soft and flexible.
  4. When warm, press the wrap onto the nail. Apply firm pressure around edges to adhere the wrap to the nail. You can use a rubber cuticle pusher to seal the wrap around the base of the cuticle. Make sure you don’t set it too far up on your nail to the point where it's covering your skin. I did that my first time and it creates a bump.
  5. Trim the top with scissors and file off the remaining wrap using a downward motion.
  6. Apply heat and pressure to the wrap again until it is bonded to the nail. 

If you’re more of a visual learner, you can check out this video tutorial, too. Try to avoid water (showers, swimming) for a few hours once you’ve got them on. When you're ready to remove, you can use the Jamberry lacquer remover or DIY it and dip your nails in cooking oil. Work either one under your nail and slowly work off the wrap so you don’t damage your nail. Jamberry experts recommend applying Vaseline on your nails for a night or two to keep away cuticle skin majiggers (to use the technical term).

Once you've got the hang of it, the options are endless. Mix and match wrap designs to spice things up for a more unique look. You can make the most out of your wrap sheets by choosing some nails to apply the wrap to and saving others to use as accent nails. Once you're fully obsessed, like me, you can even host an online Jamberry party where a consultant provides customized picks to fit your personality—party guests can win free nail wraps and other Jamberry products. Free stuff tends to be our favorite I’d say.

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