Most helpful positive review
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
Works like Clay, but Easier to Use
on April 13, 2014
After a recommendation from a friend, I decided to give nanoskin a try. Most of the reviews seem helpful, but several commented about scratches and marring that I'd like to address.
First off, you need to wash the car before doing any kind of clay work.
Second, the car needs to be wet with a lubricant before claying a car. Water is not a lubricant, and you will scratch/mar you car if you only use water. There are special lubes on the market, but I find that a fresh batch of soapy water works just as well. Make sure the soapy water is fresh though, as this ensures enough lubricant (soap) is present.
Working in small sections, lube the section and work the nanoskin sponge in short side to side motions (avoid circles, which will lead to swirls). Dunk the sponge in the soapy water to clean and continue working over the area until the surface feel smooth and you don't hear any more noise. If you've worked with clay, this is the same, except that you would fold the clay every so often.
Rinse the area, and dry. Check your work. If the surface is still rough, re-lube and repeat.
I would suggest using only fine grade clay/nanoskin sponges for most paints. Unless your car is very dirty and being prepped for paint, you don't need the medium grit version. The fine grade is safe for black cars.
I like this product for several reasons. I can reuse this sponge numerous times (I've cleaned 6 cars already on one sponge and the sponge looks and works fine). Also, dropping the sponge (unlike clay) isn't a catastrophe. Just wash off and keep working. Finally, the ergonomics of holding the sponge is nicer than using a piece of clay with your fingers.
I do have a few gripes. This works well if your car isn't caked in dirt. By that, I mean your car looks clean but feels slightly rough. If your car is really gritty, this may not solve your problems and you may need to polish before hand. Also, depending on your paint hardness, this may not work well. I used this on a BMW X5 and apparently the paint is really hard on that car. I went over the X5 with a clay bar and still picked up stuff. For my civic, I had no issues though. One last issue I have is that you don't see your work, you only feel your work. By that, I mean that on clay, you see the dirt and other crud build up on the clay. The nanoskin gives no indication of what you have done, other than by feeling the paint before and after. It takes getting used to.
Overall, a great improvement over clay for several reasons. I still intend to use clay on my car, but this is much faster and can be used more often after washing your car. A true clay job will be a once in a long while ritual when I want to super detail my car. Otherwise, this works very well. The best part is the grip of the sponge in my opinion.
If you are on the fence, give it a shot, but make sure you use proper technique. Just like anything, follow the directions.
To store the sponge, completely dry out (not in the sun, but in a garage or dark area) and wrap in a napkin or tissue. The nanoskin material tends to stick to the plastic bag otherwise and may tear off. The napkin may also stick, but a quick rinse in water will remove the napkin easily. This should save the hassle of bag sticking issues.