With every iPhone I have the same dilemma- should I use a case or not? The first one that I thought I really did need to use one was the 6 model, it's pretty slippery and with the larger size makes one handed use much more difficult. The S model improved this a little with more of a grippy texture (not much but noticeable) but the increased size and curved edges still make it feel pretty fragile. I think no matter what material the phone is made of once you get above 4" it becomes a device that you have to be more careful with them walking and trying to use it as I have in the past with the smaller devices.
If like me you don't like the bulk of a case thankfully we have other options in the guise of skins. These are usually made of a tough 3M material and act like a sticker that covers your entire iPhone making it easier to hold, provide some protection from scratches and give you some more colour and texture options. It's not going to stop you getting a broken screen if you drop your phone at the right angle but in my experience cases aren't great in these situations either.
I've known about DBRAND for a while but living in the UK they are difficult to get hold of without having to wait for international delivery or use a sketchy eBay seller where you cannot guarantee that the product is official or not.
Well a few weeks ago I decided to go all in and order a skin for both my iPhone and iPad Pro (review upcoming...), I paid no shipping costs due to my total order being over $35 from Canada to the UK and waited for the 15 days or so it took to get to me. I decided to go all in and go for yellow, a colour I loved on my iPhone 5c.
First off the packaging was well done and it arrived damage free, always a great start when ordering something from another country. If you are in the UK it will be delivered via Royal Mail and you will need to be in to sign for it. You get good DHL tracking from DBRAND and I used this to keep an eye on when it would be arriving. It was more luck than judgement to be honest as I happened to be at home when it was delivered, for me if I had missed it wouldn't t have been much of a problem as the local Royal Mail office is only a couple of miles away from me.
Once you get into the packaging each skin was within it's own plastic cover keeping everything protected and in great order, nothing bent so another plus point for the buying experience.
What do you get?
For this review I'm concentrating on the iPhone 6S skin, for this I got
- Both the Yellow and White skins in their own packaging
- Cleaning cloth
$8.95 for the back skin
How was the installation process?
I installed following the DBRAND installation video - HERE
Given that I struggled with most skins I've used this one was the best I've installed. The 3M material used is nice and thick and with the addition of using a hairdryer you can easily take off to reapply. I did this a few times to get the Apple Logo to line up but it caused me no problems taking it off and on, be patient.
I'm not 100% happy with the corners (the most tricky part to install) but overall I'm pleased with how it turned out.
It took about 20 minutes to apply one skin so make sure you have some peace and quiet to get the best results, don't rush it.
I'm really pleased with the results (especially on the iPad Pro, more on this soon). It's still a little slippery with the skin that I chose (wondering what the leather or wood ones would be like) so I'm still careful when I'm using it whilst walking but overall better than naked.
In terms of protection, thankfully I haven't tested it against a drop but I'd say that you will be ok with a short drop but (even with a case) it's hard to stop a screen popping if dropped at the right angle. I'm comfortable using it with the skin only going forward rather than putting a case on top.
I've tried several skins and DBRAND are the only ones that I would recommend to people
- The colours are great
- It's the easiest to apply
- Come on, Yellow looks cool
I'd love for Apple to start offering the iPhone and iPad in more colours but if you are set on having something different then I'd recommend checking DBRAND out.
The only downside that I've found is finding the buttons without looking is a bit more difficult as the skin is pretty much the same width as the buttons. This isn't a deal breaker however and I'm more than happy with my new setup.