On a recent shopping run to my local Deals, I spotted a wide variety of Essie Sleek Stick Nail Appliques selling for $1 per pack.  Now I try my best not to form any type of opinions up front when it comes to dollar store beauty finds, because over the years I have found some great hidden gems that I still continue to use.

Essie Sleek Stick Beauty Review

This review is not sponsored or endorsed by Essie or L’Oreal.  All products featured were purchased by me and reviewed without bias for the benefit of my readers.

Plus Deals usually has a LOT of major brands mixed in with their regular inventory, so I often can find many of my beauty products here for much less than most of my retail favorites.

Let me first start off by saying that I love Essie Nail Polish and have been a fan of their polish for quite some time now.  I consider Essie to be a top quality nail brand so when I saw these Nail Appliques in the store I was very excited to try them.  These normally retail for around $10 per pack at Belk, Target and Beauty.com so to snag these for a buck really is a steal!

Sleek Stick Review, Essie

Here’s a closer view of each design I bought

Essie Nail Stickers, Manicure

(c) 2015 NaturallyStellar.com Essie Sneek-e Nail Applique

Manicure, Essie Nail Appliques

(c) 2015 NaturallyStellar.com Essie Glam It On Nail Appliques

The particular Nail Appliques that I’ve based my review on is this one #280 Shoot For The Moon, which is a deep pigmented blue with a really striking diamond-like design at the base.

Essie Sleek Stick, Nail Appliques

(c) 2015 NaturallyStellar.com Essie Shoot For The Moon #280

The Review

Product Claims:  These are UV Cured, Nail Applique (Nail Stickers), Long Lasting Wear, High Gloss Finish, Easy to apply, A Mani that promises to commit.

Contents: 18 Nail Applique Strips, 1 Cuticle Stick, 1 File & Buffer and an Instructions sheet

My Observations: The packaging & presentation is very eye-catching with reflective silver foil background on each pack. The reflective surface really highlights each design well giving them a sort of 3-D effect.  The first thing I noticed about these when I opened the inner package is that there wasn’t a heavy nail polish smell.  I was expecting to be overwhelmed with fumes much like I am with some of my other nail polish strips, but I could actually apply these in any room of my home without disturbing anyone’s senses or having to open a window.

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The strips come on a clear plastic sheet and are easy to remove, but not so easy to apply.  You have to have a steady hand when lining up your design, making sure to cover the entire surface of your nail.

The texture of these is much different from traditional polish strips in that they are very thick and flexible.  So the feel is very much like a sturdy, stretchable plastic sticker.  They are also extremely sticky, so you have to try to be precise when applying.

I noticed that as I was going through trying to size up my fingernails to each strip, most of them didn’t fit well.  They were either too small or too big for my nail beds.  Now I don’t mind strips that are over-sized because they can easily be cut to size with scissors, but the overwhelming number of strips that were too small really turned me off.  I mean out of 18 strips, at least 10 should fit me perfectly.

But I did the best I could to size them up and did manage to get all 10 digits covered, making sure to follow the directions completely for the best result.

My results:  After applying, I wore my Nail Appliques for about 1/2 day before they started slowly peeling away around the edges.  I found myself re-smoothing them throughout the rest of the day.  By day 2, the blue color near my fingertips had already begun to fade from wear and a clear plastic film (or the high gloss shine) was left frayed on the edges of my nails.  By day 3, I realized it was time to remove the strips.  My nails just looked horrible at that point.  I had ripples down the middle of my nails, where the strips had shifted from wear and the tops of the ripples had color fade as well.

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Essie Sleek Stick Review

I guess in hindsight, I could have applied a top coat to help prolong the life, but I wanted to give these an honest test to see if they could hold up to the claims on the packaging without any crutches.

Essie Sleek Stick, Shoot For The Moon

I’m not at all impressed with these.  Although I do see them as a nice alternative to jazz up your nails for a special occasion.  I don’t really see where the “long-lasting” claims come from.  To me long-lasting means it can hold up past a regular no-gel, no-shellac manicure and these just didn’t cut it for me.


My Grade:  I’d have to rank the Essie Sleek Stick Nail Appliques high for great packaging, good ease in applying, the no-smell factor and having a wide variety of designs.   As far as everything else goes, these get low scores for durability, long-lasting wear & color fading, which to me are the most important factors. Unfortunately, although I love Essie, I have to give the Essie Sleek Stick Nail Appliques a D for not living up to the product claims and their performance over such a short period of time.


 Have you tried any of the Essie Sleek Stick products?  If so, what was your experience?

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Founder, E of Women's Lifestyle Blog, Naturally Stellar | Copywriter and Content Creator | I left corporate life 8+ years ago, to pursue my goal of becoming a writer. Boom!! I did that! Now I'm an accomplished copywriter and then some! You should hire me. #RockStarMoms
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Essie Sleek Stick Nail Appliques - #280 Shoot For The Moon
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