It always started out the same with any new phone. First, I would settle with regular cases which, every once in a while, I will remove to marvel at the design and slimness. Eventually, it will come to a point that I said to myself, “enough of the case already. I want it slim again!” Yet, there is a sense of apprehension because, the phone will look like any other person’s and if it doesn’t get scratched, the fingerprints are going to get to me eventually. Then, you know what happens next. I set out in search for a skin and search I did for my daily driver, the Huawei P20 Pro.
I have tried various skins for various devices over the years, ranging from iPhone 4 to iPhone 6 Plus to Google Pixel. And I had skin on my MacBook, present and past, and even on my very ancient click wheel iPod Classic. I had tried Gelaskins, DBrand, and more recently, Colorware. And I can tell you this: Slickwraps Matrix Skin is hands down the best skin I have ever come across. Hell, I am not even being paid to say this; I paid for it through my nose. Well, not exactly ‘through my nose’ because it costs just $24.95 before any discount. So, it is fairly affordable.
Before I go on, one has to understand that “fitment” and “precise cut” are dependent on the skill level of the applicator/installer, i.e. the user. You see, most skins/wraps are bit of stretchy and what appeared not be aligned, can actually solved by a little tug at the right position. Now that we have get that out of the way, lets have a quick review (more like a verdict, really) of this little guy. The package took forever to arrive because of the holiday season. Speaking of which… here’s a pro tip: try not place an order (for anything) when (1) the country is suffering from severe winter conditions and (2) do not order when there’s a Federal government shut-down.
The package came in a nondescript hard envelope and in it, was two sets of Matrix for Huawei P20 Pro and a Slickwraps sticker in a no frill clear plastic bag. Two! Yes. I was as surprised too. I am not sure is this a standard or not. That’s that. No instruction or any word on the company. The two sets are both for P20 Pro, but differs a little. One set has the back, sides, top and bottom as a single piece, plus a tiny little guy for the dual cameras. The other set has the back, sides, top and bottom as separate pieces, plus a tiny piece for the dual cameras.
Obviously, the one-piece set posed a more challenging application, while the separated version is more easy to apply. I chose to apply the former because, I prefer a more uniform, no-break look (not that I love the challenge). It is easy enough to get it installed, BUT it is NOT easy to get it perfectly done. Lets face it, everyone knows how to slap a sticker on, but to perfectly align with the sides and openings, is not everyone’s ball game. It takes a bit of experience and readjustment. Thankfully, Slickwraps allows the latter even after you are done, albeit not major adjustments. Just a little tuck here and there to make it fit as perfectly as possible.
So, with regard to the question whether or not the skin is perfectly cut, I will say ‘almost’. And believe me. From my experience with skins, this is by far the most closest fit brand I have tried. I won’t go as far as to say it is perfect. It is not perfect, but mostly owing to my less-than-professional application skin. What you see in the photos (taken by a Huawei Mate 10 with composition, btw) was the result of a few subsequent tweaks like peeling off a little at the corners, using a hairdryer to soften the skin and tucking it to align. So, yeah, it will fit perfectly, or close-to-perfect, if I have more patience and skill (which clearly, I have none to speak of).
I am not going to lie. I am suitably pleased with the result. To me, the important thing is, it managed to have all corners and sides covered smoothly – thanks to the skin’s flexibility and robust adhesive. With the skin, I can finally handle my P20 Pro in its slim form. And while I am marveling over its slim form factor, I wonder how the hell did I managed to put with the thickness a case brought about. What was I thinking! Anywho… as for handling, the Matrix texture is not as pronounced and thus, it does feel a little slippery in the hand, but definitely not as slippery when it was naked.
Now for the golden question. What’s my verdict of the Slickwraps Matrix skin for Huawei P20 Pro? Two words: well made. And is it worth the dole? IMHO, hell yes.
Skin, wrap or whatever you prefer to call it, is not for everyone. It is only a thin layer of sticker (technically, also adhesive) separating the device and any danger, and as such, there are risks. Like, it will most definitely not stand up to drops and impacts. So, use it with cautious. However, if your phone’s condition and well-being are not of a concern to you, then forget what I have just said.
Here are few more looks (click for larger view):