Before I even get into this review I feel that there is something that I must put out there. I ABSOLUTELY hate skins. I also am not a huge fan of screen protectors and cases, well, they have their place but get taken off often. Now that you know how I generally feel, read on to see how The Surface Collection changed my overall hatred.
The Surface Collection of skins is produced by Colors. They are a Japanese company with a fairly impressive collection of wood designed cases, desks and various other naturally crafted items. All of which look stunning. The collection offers you 6 various choices depending on your style. In the Wood collection you can get your hands on Cedar, Walnut and Teak. They also have a Leather skin collection that comes in 3 colors, black, brown and green. This review will be based on the Walnut wood skin that I have received.
Unlike what you might be thinking, these are REAL slices of wood infused with silicon. Not the usual pathetic fake wood looking ‘stickers’. The wood slices are just 0.07mm thick. Or thin, however you want to interpret it. The skin you choose comes with a front and back skin cover for your Xperia Z. They also offer a collection for the iPhone, but that really isn’t our thing.
The rear skin offers your normal cut outs for what is important on the rear of your Z, like camera, flash and sensor. It is expertly cut around the edges to fit perfectly over the glass on the rear.
The front skin is the same, all the usual cut outs for what is important. The front skin also has a built-in screen protector as well.
Installation is pretty straightforward, as it should be. Clean off your device and make it as dust free and streak free as possible. Carefully, and I do mean carefully, peel the skin off its protective cover. If you decide to be the Flash or Hulk, you will potentially crack the wood. Then you would be out some cash for no reason.
Once you have it installed, you will instantly feel like a million bucks. Well, probably not, but it certainly does add a touch of class to your devices look and makes you stand out in a crowd.
What I liked about the The Surface Collection
The simple fact that this skin is real wood is probably the most pleasing aspect of it. Also the thinness of the cut neatly tucks it in under the small edges that stick up from around the glass on the front and back. In the end giving you a near seamless transition from the skin to the phone. It absolutely feels great in your hand. The wood gives your hands something to touch and want to keep touching. Dirty sounding I know, but I can’t keep my hands of it. It really is an excellently crafted product and nothing that I was expecting. The silicon adhesive that is used to attach the skin to your device allows you to put it on and take it off and reuse it again and again.
What I don’t like about the The Surface Collection
Of course there are things that a person can find to complain about. My only complaint isn’t even really their fault at all. During application I could never seem to keep the front, with the screen protector in it, clear of dust or debris. I cleaned and scrubbed, but there was always something that would pop under it while I was applying it. I am about to just pull off the front and cut out the screen section with a razor blade. You can see what I mean in the images below.
Depending on why you bought he Xperia Z, I got mine because of the water-resistant protection, these skins might be more trouble than they are worth. Yes, you are getting an exceptional look for your device. However, these are made to look great and feel incredible. They are not made to be taken underwater or out in the rain. This particular one is wood, if it gets wet, it changes to wet wood look. Over time, it will cause the skin issues and mess up the look. Same goes with the leather. The list of “Cautions” that come with the skin are pretty long. Here are a few of the major ones -
Avoid exposure to direct sunlight for extended periods of time. It may cause color shift, deformations or cracks.
This product will wear off with daily use.
Wipe off immediately with dry, soft, clean cloth when liquid is delivered over the product. Stain will remain.
Beyond the fact that there is apparently a lot of crap floating around in the air at my house, the Surface Collect, particularly the wood line, are exquisite. With all the cautions I would probably prefer the leather line a bit more and spray it down with a water proofer of sorts to ease my fears of it getting wet or ruined.
The product is definitely high quality and worth every penny if you are looking for style in a skin and something true to life vs the typical vinyl fake appearance solution. The company has just recently started getting their products into the U.S. I was able to find them on Amazon, but the stock is limited, very limited. As in, there are only 10 in the Cedar and 8 in the Walnut. All the rest are out of stock. I would imagine that the process to create one takes a great deal of time. If you are considering picking one up from Amazon for $30, I suggest you hurry. Other wise you can place an order through Colors themselves for $35 with free shipping.