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Patent Searching and Data


Title:
NAIL COVERING
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2016/041068
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Waterless thin adhesive films bearing ink or pigment are transferred by pressure and/or heat (e.g. body heat) without using water to release the film from the backing. Excess film on the skin adjacent the sides or cuticle is not a problem, as this can be wiped clean following a top coat cure on the nail. Because the waterless thin adhesive is already dry and clean, a greater number of top coat formulations can be applied to the film remaining on the nail without delay to secure the film, providing an effective and durable nail covering lasting longer (up to 3 weeks in some cases) without losing its shine or decorative benefits.

Inventors:
MALAFARINA, Sandra Blanche (3555 Côte des Neiges, suite 1703Montreal, Québec H3H 1V2, H3H 1V2, CA)
Application Number:
CA2015/050891
Publication Date:
March 24, 2016
Filing Date:
September 15, 2015
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
BEAUTY SOLUTIONS AGENCY INC. (3555 Côte des Neiges, suite 1703Montreal, Québec H3H 1V2, H3H 1V2, CA)
International Classes:
A45D29/11; A45D29/00; A45D34/04
Foreign References:
US20060154031A12006-07-13
US6264786B12001-07-24
US6074721A2000-06-13
US4421816A1983-12-20
US4559957A1985-12-24
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
ANGLEHART ET AL. et al. (1939 de Maisonneuve Ouest, Montreal, Québec H3H 1K3, H3H 1K3, CA)
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Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A method of applying a nail covering comprising: preparing a coating application strip having a base layer, an ink layer and an adhesive layer; applying the coating application strip to a clean and dry finger or toe nail to cause the adhesive layer to stick to the nail; removing the base layer from the nail, leaving the adhesive layer and the ink layer on the nail; and applying a top coat to the nail to protect the adhesive layer and the ink layer on the nail.

2. The method as defined in claim 1 , wherein the coating application strip is dimensioned to be larger than the nail, and said removing comprises at least one of: tearing the adhesive layer and the ink layer near the edges of the nail as the base layer is removed carrying part of the adhesive layer and the ink layer beyond the edges of the nail; and providing an excess of the adhesive layer and the ink layer beyond the edges of the nail on a surrounding skin, and cleaning said excess following said applying a top coat, wherein the cleaning removes said excess without affecting the adhesive layer and the ink layer on the nail and protected by the top coat.

3. The method as defined in claim 2, wherein a tool is used to apply pressure on the base layer to cause the adhesive layer to attach to the nail.

4. The method as defined in claim 2, wherein the coating application strip comprises a transfer coating layer between the base layer and the ink layer.

5. The method as defined in claim 3, wherein the coating application strip comprises a transfer coating layer between the base layer and the ink layer.

6. The method as defined in claim 1 , wherein the coating application strip comprises a transfer coating layer between the base layer and the ink layer.

7. The method as defined in claim 1 , wherein the base layer is transparent to make a design pattern of the ink layer visible, and said applying comprises aligning the coating applicator strip with respect to the nail.

8. The method as defined in claim 1 , wherein the base layer is opaque and has alignment marks printed thereon that correspond to an alignment of a design pattern of the ink layer, and said applying comprises aligning the coating applicator strip using the alignment marks with respect to the nail.

9. The method as defined in claim 1 , wherein the coating application strip is provided with a releasable protective layer over the adhesive layer, further comprising removing the protective layer prior to said applying the coating application strip to a finger or toe nail.

10. The method as defined in claim 2, wherein said cleaning comprises wiping said excess,

11. The method as defined in claim 10, wherein said cleaning comprises using a cleaning or toning product.

12. The method as defined in any one of claims 1 to 11 , wherein the coating application strip is dimensioned to be larger than the nail in a lengthwise direction, and said applying comprises covering skin adjacent to a cuticle of the nail with said ink layer and said adhesive layer, preferably the coating application strip is also dimensioned to be wider than the nail and said applying comprises covering skin adjacent to lateral sides of the nail with said ink layer and said adhesive layer.

13. The method as defined in any one of claims 1 to 12, wherein said applying the top coat encapsulates the ink layer and the adhesive layer.

14. A nail covering kit comprising: a coating application strip having a base layer, an ink layer and an adhesive layer, said strip being dimensioned to be larger than a nail to cover at least skin adjacent a cuticle and lateral sides of a finger or toe; a tool for applying the coating application strip.

15. The kit as defined in claim 14, further comprising a top coat product for applying to said nail.

16. The kit as defined in claim 14 or 15, further comprising wiping material for use with said cleaning or toning product.

17. The kit as defined in claim 14, 15 or 16, further comprising a cleaning or toning product for cleaning the nail and said skin following a curing of a top coat.

18. The kit as defined in any one of claims 14 to 17, further comprising instructions for following the method as defined in any one of claims 1 to 13.

19. A method of manufacturing finger or toe nail coating application strips for delivery of an adhesive film having an ink layer to a clean and dry finger or toe nail for subsequent encapsulation on the finger or toe nail with a top coat material, the method comprising producing a sheet material having a base layer, an ink layer having a desired solid color and/or pattern and an adhesive layer, and cutting the sheet to form finger or toe nail coating application strips.

20. The method as defined in claim 19, wherein the individual coating application strips are dimensioned to be larger than the intended nail, and said strips are for delivery to the nail to cover an entire surface of the nail by applying pressure to the base layer to cause the adhesive layer to attach to the entire nail surface and to tear the adhesive layer and the ink layer near the edges of the nail as the base layer is removed carrying part of the adhesive layer and the ink layer beyond the edges of the nail.

21. The method as defined in claim 19 or 20, wherein the sheet material further comprises a transfer coating layer between the base layer and the ink layer.

22. The method as defined in claim 21 , wherein the sheet material further comprises a releasable protective layer on the adhesive layer, and said strips are for delivery to the nail by removing the releasable protective layer prior to applying the strips to the nail.

23. The method as defined in any one of claims 19 to 21 , wherein the base layer is transparent to make a design pattern of the ink layer visible, and said strips are for delivery to the nail by aligning the coating applicator strip with respect to the nail prior to applying the strip to the nail.

24. The method as defined in any one of claims 19 to 23, wherein the base layer is opaque and has alignment marks printed thereon that correspond to an alignment of a design pattern of the ink layer, and said strips are for delivery to the nail by aligning the coating applicator strip using the alignment marks with respect to the nail prior to applying the strip to the nail.

25. The method as defined in any one of claims 19 to 24, wherein said finger or toe nail coating application strips are cut into individual nail portions.

26. The method as defined in any one of claims 19 to 24, wherein said finger or toe nail coating application strips are cut into a roll for use with a number of individual nail applications.

Description:
NAIL COVERING

This application is a continuation-in-part of US patent application serial number 14/486/403, filed September 15, 2014, and claims priority of US provisional patent application 62/1 19,256, filed February 22, 2015. Technical Field

This patent application relates to finger nail and/or toe nail covering products and application methods, as used and implemented by professional nail technicians, aestheticians, beauty professionals, cosmeticians and/or consumers.

Background Nail covering products in the form of stickers, decals or foil that are applied to finger and toe nails are known. For example, nail polish strips are sold by Sally Hansen® under the name of "Salon effects real nail polish strips" and are provided in 24 styles. Such strips, usually pre-cut to attempt to fit a nail shape and size, are adhesively applied to a dry nail (like a sticker), and the excess strip material is filed away. See also "DIY Nail Art in 5 Easy Steps" by Alessandra Foresto in the June 2012 issue of O, THE OPRAH MAGAZINE. Such nail stickers are also commercially available from a variety of sources and available in a wide variety of patterns and colors. A base coat of nail polish or a top coat covering the sticker strip is not required and in fact may interfere with the sticker's design and shine. It is also known to apply water decals to fingernails. A water decal is a thin film carrying print material that is releasable with tweezers or other small tools, from a backing when wet. As it is applied to the nail, the decal can slide on the surface and needs to be handled to avoid tearing and carefully positioned to deliver its full decorative benefit. A base coat of nail polish is typically required to be applied to the nail to make the decal stand out, and, the decal being thinner, a compatible clear top coat polish could be applied to the decal to attach the decal to the nail and to protect the fragile decal. Such compatible clear top coats are limited to a handful of types with specific chemical composition that will not distort or dissolve the decal's colors. With decals, the ink-bearing film that is transferred to the nail is usually sized to be smaller than the nail, since trimming the decal to fit the edge is complicated, and it would partially lose its design benefit

It is also known to apply foil strips to fingernails. Foil strips are thin and mostly sold in rolls of films carrying metallic ink of various colors and designs. To apply foil to fingernails, it is necessary to first cover each nail with specialized adhesive using a hand brush, and wait for it to dry out for approximately one minute. Once the adhesive is dry, the foil is applied to the nail and the metallic ink is released from the film layer and remains on the nail portions that were covered with the adhesive. A clear top coat can be applied to protect the thin foil from chipping away. The variety of colors and patterns possible with nail strips and the application of water decals and foils is of great interest to professional nail technicians and to consumers. The detailed patterns and visual effects available using strips or decals cannot reasonably be achieved using other forms of polish application or even by using airbrush or other nail covering techniques without uncommon artistic talent and much more time (up to 2 hours), tools and efforts.

Nail strips can be difficult to apply over the whole surface in a smooth fashion because of the curvature of most nails and the thickness of the strips. Further, their thickness and shine make them less compatible with top coats and thus less durable, leading to peel off or damage in a matter of two or three days. And their shape, pre- cut to attempt to fit a nail shape and size, rarely fits well natural nail shapes and/or length leading to material waste that could reach up to 50%. Water decals and water- based temporary tattoos can be difficult to position as explained above and to apply correctly on the nail without tear or distortion, and since the wetness of the covering on the nail, mixed with the adhesive can interfere with the application of a top coat, extra drying time and possibly the use of a small sponge to absorb the water is required to complete the process (up to one minute per nail for drying). Foil strips are more complex to apply than stickers and water tattoos because they require applying adhesive smoothly and evenly with a brush on technique on the nail surface prior to apply the foil. If the adhesive does not cover the entire surface of the nail, including edges, empty spots will remain therefore compromising the decorative benefits of the foil. Foils also require extra time to dry before applying.

Summary

Applicant has discovered that waterless thin adhesive films bearing ink or pigment that are transferred by pressure and heat (e.g. body heat) alone without using water to release the film from the backing can bond with sufficient strength to a clean, dry nail (whether covered, for example with nail polish, UV gel or acrylate formulations, or not) so as to remove the film from the backing while covering up to all around the edges of the nail easily and precisely, with or without covering the skin surrounding the nail. Since there are no compatibility issues because the waterless thin adhesive is already dry and clean, a greater number of top coat formulations can be applied to the film remaining on the nail without delay to secure the film, providing an effective and durable nail covering lasting longer (up to 3 weeks in some cases) without losing its shine or decorative benefits. As no water is used, the application of the top coat is faster and more effective. And since the oversized film covers easily the nail up to the side the edges of the nail, positioning the film to retain the maximum decorative benefits is simpler and easier, and clean-up required for any film overhanging the nail is simplified.

In some cases, the film will tear at the side edges and/or at the cuticle where the film has stuck to the nail and bonded very weakly to the skin, while the adhesion to the backing is strong enough to cause tearing of the film. In other cases, the adhesion to the backing is weaker and the film has "bleeding", namely an excess that extends onto the skin before ending or being torn. Both cases result in the same result, namely a good fit of the oversized film covering the nail. In the latter case, the excess is easily removed following the application of the top coat, since the top coat protects the film on the nail while the excess can be removed with a suitable cleaning method, such as wiping with oil (for example, a mineral oil, such as baby oil or a vegetable oil, such as olive oil) or alcohol (for example, 99% isopropyl alcohol), without limitation to the cleaning solution.

In the case that the coating application strip is oversized with respect to the nail, the ink layer and the adhesive layer can cover the skin surrounding the nail, and the time to apply the ink layer is quick, while once the top coat is cured (again, this can be very quick), the clean of the excess on the skin is also very fast, resulting in a very rapid completion of the application process.

The ink layer is so thin that it would not be suitable as a nail covering without the application of the top coat. It would be too easily damaged by casual rubbing or contact with objects. However, with the application of the top coat, it provides a thin and stylish nail covering.

Applicant has also discovered that thin adhesive films bearing ink or pigment that are transferred by pressure and heat alone without using water to release the film from the backing can bond with sufficient strength to a clean, dry nail (whether covered, for example with nail polish, UV gel or acrylate formulations, or not), and then be covered by most any top coat, that will be compatible with the film remaining on the nail. In this case, the film transferred to the nail can be sized to fit within the nail surface without extending to the edges of the nail, including being sized to be used as a partial nail art decoration only.

The film can be provided without a substrate that is sufficiently strong to maintain the ink layer in form and fit to withstand any use without first being covered by a top coat. The ink layer applied to the nail can be so fragile that any contact would disrupt it unless the top coat is applied and cured/dried. Thus the adhesive layer and any coating layer can be sufficiently thin and fragile that the application strip left on the nail would be too vulnerable for use without coating by a top coat.

In some embodiments, transfer nail coating application strips have an adhesive layer that is attached to a clean and dry nail without water, and can be immediately encapsulated with a top coat nail polish. An ink layer bonded to the adhesive layer can have any desired color and/or pattern. When the strips are larger than the nail, the adhesive layer and the ink layer will completely cover the nail up to the edges of the nail with a remainder of the layers either attached to a base layer of the strips when removed from the nail after application and/or cleaned up after applying a top coat to the ink layer. This reduces waste while making it easier to apply to the entire nail surface, without the need for uncommon talent.

In some embodiments, a method of applying a nail covering comprises preparing a coating application strip having a base layer, an ink layer and an adhesive layer, applying the coating application strip to a clean and dry finger or toe nail to cause the adhesive layer to stick to the nail, removing the base layer from the nail, leaving the adhesive layer and the ink layer on the nail, and applying a top coat to the nail to protect, e.g. to encapsulate, the adhesive layer and the ink layer on the nail. The coating application strip can be dimensioned to be larger than the nail, and the step of removing can comprise tearing the adhesive layer and the ink layer near the edges of the nail as the base layer is removed carrying part of the adhesive layer and the ink layer beyond the edges of the nail and/or cleaning up a portion of the ink layer deposited on the skin after the application of the top coat with a suitable cleaning method, such as wiping with oil (for example, a mineral oil, such as baby oil or a vegetable oil, such as olive oil) or alcohol (for example, 99% isopropyl alcohol), without limitation to the cleaning solution. Optionally, a tool is used to apply pressure on the base layer to cause the adhesive layer to attach to the nail. The coating application strip can comprise a transfer coating layer between the base layer and the ink layer.

In some embodiments, a tool is used to create a small separation or gap around cuticle and lateral sides of the nail so that the top coat can better encapsulate the ink layer and adhesive layer provided on the nail, and thus last longer. At the front edge of the nail, the film is easily torn off and the top coat seals the free edge.

The base layer can be transparent to make a design pattern of the ink layer visible, and the step of applying can comprises aligning the coating applicator strip with respect to the nail. The base layer can be opaque and have alignment marks printed thereon that correspond to an alignment of a design pattern of the ink layer, and the step of applying can comprise aligning the coating applicator strip using the alignment marks with respect to the nail.

The coating application strip can be provided with a releasable protective layer over the adhesive layer, further comprising removing the protective layer prior to the applying of the coating application strip to a finger or toe nail. In some embodiments, there is provided a method of manufacturing finger or toe nail coating application strips for delivery of an adhesive film having an ink layer to a clean and dry finger or toe nail for subsequent encapsulation on the finger or toe nail with a top coat material. This method comprises producing a sheet material having a base layer, an ink layer having a desired solid color and/or pattern and an adhesive layer, and cutting the sheet to form finger or toe nail coating application strips. The individual coating application strips can be dimensioned to be larger than the intended nail, and the strips can be for delivery to the nail to cover an entire surface of the nail by applying pressure to the base layer to cause the adhesive layer to attach to the entire nail surface and to tear the adhesive layer and the ink layer near the edges of the nail as the base layer is removed carrying part of the adhesive layer and the ink layer beyond the edges of the nail and/or to deposit part of the ink layer on the skin, which part is to be cleaned up after the application of the top coat. The sheet material can further comprise a transfer coating layer between the base layer and the ink layer. The sheet material can further comprise a releasable protective layer on the adhesive layer, and the strips can be for delivery to the nail by removing the releasable protective layer prior to applying the strips to the nail. The base layer can be transparent to make a design pattern of the ink layer visible, and the strips can be for delivery to the nail by aligning the coating applicator strip with respect to the nail prior to applying the strip to the nail. The base layer can be opaque and have alignment marks printed thereon that correspond to an alignment of a design pattern of the ink layer, and the strips can be for delivery to the nail by aligning the coating applicator strip using the alignment marks with respect to the nail prior to applying the strip to the nail. The finger or toe nail coating application strips can be cut into individual nail portions. The finger or toe nail coating application strips can be cut into a roll for use with a number of individual nail applications.

Brief Description of the Drawings The invention will be better understood by way of the following detailed description of embodiments of the invention with reference to the appended drawings, in which:

Figure 1 is a schematic cross-section of a dry temporary tattoo product showing five layers according to the prior art;

Figure 2 is a schematic cross-section (c-curve) of the nail covering being applied to a finger nail illustrating tearing of the transfer coating adhered to the backing or base layer at the edges of the nail where the adhesive layer is bonded to the nail;

Figure 3 is a schematic cross section of the nail covering applied to a finger nail with a top coat; and

Figure 4, appearing on the drawing sheet with Figure 1 , is a flow diagram illustrating the application steps according to one embodiment.

Detailed Description

Figure 1 is a schematic diagram of a "waterless tattoo" as is more fully described in US patent application publication 2006/0154031 , published on July 13, 2006 to Brian Tomlinson, the specification of which is hereby incorporated by reference. The sheet material of the tattoo 100 has a base layer 110, a transfer coating 120, an ink layer 130, and adhesive layer 140 and a protective top layer 150. Such a waterless tattoo 100 is designed for application of a temporary tattoo to the skin. The top layer 150 is peeled away from the adhesive layer, and the tattoo 100 is pressed against dry skin. With pressure applied to the base layer 1 10, the adhesive layer 140 sticks to the skin and can allow the base layer 1 10 to be carefully peeled away from the transfer coating 120 leaving the layers 140, 130 and 120 intact on the skin.

As shown in Figure 2, a nail coating strip 100' is prepared for application to a nail. The strip 100' is prepared with a protective top layer 150 that is removed prior to application. The protective top layer simplifies packaging and handling of the strip 100', and could be omitted in cases of suitable packaging that would avoid contact or contamination of the adhesive layer 140. The top layer 150 can be transparent or opaque, and provides visibility of the ink layer when transparent. The backing or base layer 1 10 can be opaque or transparent. When transparent, it can help the user to align the strip 100' on the nail 220, particularly when the ink layer has a pattern that can be aligned with respect to the nail. Alignment marks can also be provided on an opaque strip 100' to guide the user.

The strip 100' is oversized with respect to nail 220 of a finger or toe 200, and extends over the nail folds 230 at the sides and front. The strip can be cut to shape to match an edge of the nail at the cuticle 210 or any other side, or it can be extended over all sides. The latter option is simpler in preparing the strip 100'. Prior to application, the nail surface can be cleaned of any oil or dirt, and then dried. This can be done with an alcohol wipe if desired. An applicator tool 250 of suitable shape, such as a 45-degree angled plastic, wood (e.g. birchwood), or metal stick, can be used to apply pressure to the backing layer 1 10 to have the adhesive layer 140 bond to the nail surface 220. The tool 250 can be pressed or rubbed particularly around the edge of the nail 220. The balance of the bonding force of the adhesive 140 to the nail 220 versus the bonding force of the base layer to the transfer coating or to the ink layer can be sufficient to have the transfer coating 120 pull away from the base layer 1 10 and also to tear layers 120,130,140 at tears 240. If the balance of adhesive force is insufficient, then layers 120,130,140 may not tear as they separate from the base layer or they may tear beyond the edges of the nail at the side folds, and possibly at the cuticle base. Any excess of the layers 120,130,140 on the skin extending beyond the nail can be easily cleaned after the application of the top coat 260. The top coat will cover and seal the ink layer. The application of the top coat to the nail surface is done to cover the nail without spilling over onto the side fold or surrounding skin. If the excess of the layers 120,130,140 extend onto the side folds, the top coat is applied on the nail up to the sides. Baby oil, alcohol, water or other cleaning solutions can then be used to remove the excess ink from the skin surrounding the nail.

Thus, after rubbing with applicator 250, the strip 100' is removed from the nail with the layers 120,130,140 over the nail 220 attached to the nail 220, while a remainder can be attached to the base layer 1 10. The base layer 110 has to be sufficiently tear- resistant to allow pressure to be applied to it to have the layers 140,130,120 bond and transfer to the nail at the edges.

In Figure 3, there is shown the portion of the layers 120,130,140 attached to the nail surface 220 with the application of a top coat 260 that protects and encapsulates the layers 120,130,140. The quality of the encapsulation is enhanced by the thinness of the layers 120,130,140. While it is possible that some of the layers 120,130,140 attach to the side folds of the finger or toe, the bonding is so weak that it can be easily wiped clean. This cleaning can be done after applying, drying and/or curing the top coat. The layers 120,130,140 essentially extend to the edge of the nail, however, it is possible that a gap between the edge of the nail and the layers 120,130,140 is created. Encapsulation of the layers 120,130,140 by the top coat 260 has the advantage that the edges are protected by the top coat. In the case of sticker nail strips, the edges are not well protected.

While a single application of layers 120,130,140 is illustrated, it will be appreciated that it is possible to apply a second set of layers 120,130,140 on top of a set already applied to the nail, so as to superpose two nail covers. In this case, compatible strips 100' can be used that are applied one on top of each other prior to the application of top coat 260, or alternatively a second strip 100' of a different or complementary design can be used over a first-applied set of layers 120,130,140 covered with top coat 260. It will be appreciated that the transfer coating 120 is essential to protect the ink layer 130 when a tattoo 100 is applied to the skin. In the case of strip 100', the transfer coating 120 can be optional, namely when the ink layer 130 is stable and not disturbed by the base layer 110 or by the application of the chosen top coat 260, then coating 120 can be omitted. The top coat 260 will provide the requisite protection of the ink layer 130.

The steps involved in applying the nail coating according to one embodiment are set out in Figure 4. With respect to known nail coating techniques, the method taught herein is significantly faster to apply the decorative ink layer to the nail, while the addition of applying the top coat, not done with conventional nail polish strips, provides for a more durable coating with a more vivid appearance.

The manufacturing of the strips 100' can be done using a variety of processes. An example of a manufacturing process is detailed in the above-mentioned US patent application publication 2006/0154031. The ink or pigment layer 130 can be printed or applied during manufacturing of the sheet material from which strips 100' are cut. Sheet material stock having printed thereon the desired color and/or patterns on layer 130 can be cut into individual strips or rolls or pre-cut sheets and suitably packaged for professional or consumer use.

Alternatively, layer 130 can be printed, using for example an ink jet or laser printer, onto strips 100' on a more personalized basis, for example at a nail salon, in the home or at a pharmacy. Computer generated images allow for considerable customization of designs or colors.

Using a printer to print strips 100' also allows consumers and professionals to select the color and/or design of the printed material on the strips 100'. For example, one could take a photo image using a smartphone camera of a dress pattern, and edit the image to create a desired nail strip appearance to have a same or complementary look. Images from the user can be sent, for example, to a web server or loaded into a kiosk located at a retail store, pharmacy or point of sale where the user can adjust the scale and/or appearance of the nail strips to be printed. A bank of selectable and/or editable designs can also be provided to the user, along with image editing software that can allow, for example, scaling and cropping of images, as well as making any adjustments for individual nails, if desired. Delivery of the printed nail strips 100' can be done by mail or delivery service, or picked up in-store, for example at a beauty counter in a pharmacy or drug store, or at a printer associated with a kiosk device or a point of sale. It will also be appreciated that nail strip designs can be tailored to the dimensions of an individual's finger or toe nails. Measurements can be specified to the web server or kiosk device by taking measurements using a ruler, taking a camera image or by trial and error by providing the user with a size on a scale or other measurement parameters, or by remembering the user's last used dimensions, and allowing the user to adjust the dimensions with subsequent print orders. It will also be appreciated that distinctive or innovative nail strip designs made by one person can be shared with friends, with consumers or with other professionals for free or for a fee. Designs can be shared or advertized using Facebook® pages or websites, for example. As will be appreciated, the ink layer can provide a pattern with a blank or transparent background that can also be combined with any suitable base coat of nail polish color. The ink layer 130 can alternatively be sufficiently opaque so as to avoid the need to apply a base coat of nail polish prior to applying the strip 100'. As with conventional nail polish strips, the strips 100' can replace conventional nail polish and have a solid color. In addition to or in place of ink, metallic films or other suitable materials can be used to provide the covering design or color.

While in the embodiment of Figures 2 and 3, the nail strip 100' is sized to be larger than the nail 220, it is also possible to prepare strips 100' that are made to fit within the nail 220. This alternative can provide an interesting inset image or design on a nail, however, it cannot fully cover the nail 220. The waterless application of the layers 140,130,120 is still an advantage over water decals and water-based temporary tattoos, since there is no water to interfere with the application of the top coat polish and no adhesive is needed prior to application.

A UV cured or an air cured top coat 260 can be applied, as desired. In some cases, better compatibility with the layers 130 and 120 may be obtained by choosing a gel- based top coat. Suitable top coats are:

Air-cured regular top coat (by Sally Hanson or Essie among others)

Air-cured quick dry top coat (by Sally Hanson or Essie among others)

Air-cured high gloss top coat (by Sally Hanson or Essie among others)

Air-cured matte top coat by (Sally Hanson or Essie among others) UV-cured soft gel polish (by Shellac or OPI among others)

UV-cured hard gel polish (by BrisaLite or CND among others)

Acrylates polymers used as a top coat (by CND among others)

Acrylates olygomers used as a top coat (by CND among others)

Removal of the nail coating can be done using a suitable remover product for the top coat 260. The layers 120,130 are typically removed with the top coat material.

A kit can be provided as a single package or as a set of items. The kit can comprise pre-cut nail strips 100', an application tool 250 and suitable instructions based, such as instructions based on Figure 4. The tool 250 can be of any suitable shape or size to apply the requisite pressure to have the adhesive layer 140 attach to the nail. The tool 250 can be omitted, and the strip 100' can be applied using pressure from the nail technician's thumb or finger or make-up pad. The kit may also comprise the top coat product 260, particularly where there can be concern for compatibility between the top coat and layers 120,130. The strips 100' can also be provided as a roll that the user can cut to the desired length. The kit can in this case include a dispenser and/or a cutting device for this purpose.

The kit can also comprise a UV lamp or UV LED source for curing the top coat. When a top coat has cured, the fingers or toes can be cleaned using baby oil or isopropyl alcohol, and so the kit can include a quantity of baby oil or other post-application cleaning or toning product.