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I used a bent-out paper clip to poke out the speaker holes in the skin, but it was a little troublesome to get those itty-bitty pieces out afterwards. That trouble, however, paled in comparison to applying the lower piece. There are holes cut out for the touchscreen, face buttons, directional pad, and start/select buttons. Lining up the buttons are hard enough. It certainly does help that the touchscreen is slightly raised, so you may find that getting every lined up perfectly is an exercise in frustration.

Interestingly, I also noticed that the skin is not perfectly smooth. There is a slight honeycomb-like texture to it. I’m not sure if this provides any additional protection, but it looks pretty neat. In the end, even if you invest in a Gelaskins protective skin for your Nintendo DS Lite, I still think that you might want to get a larger protective case of some kind to protect your precious portable gamer from drops, bumps, and bruises. You might also want to invest in some compressed air because based on the way the skins are cute, you could be looking at accumulations in the gaps where the skins don’t cover.

Final Thoughts

That’s the tagline at the top of a skin sheet is “Protection With Style. Not Bulk” and the Gelaskins certainly aren’t bulky while providing a reasonable amount of protection from scratches — the surface of the skin doesn’t scratch all that easily — but I certainly wouldn’t trust the skin to protect your DS from a drop of any height. There is no “cushion” to speak of. These aren’t the cheap stickers that you’d find from some eBay sellers, because Gelaskins sells nothing but 3M products. The variety of designs is equally impressive, but most of these are pretty “loud” in nature. If you’re looking for a subtle protective skin, one that is clear or with a single solid color, Gelaskins is probably not the company for you.

However, if you really want to stand out from the crowd, investing in a $20 protective skin from Gelaskins is a great way to do it. Last I heard, if you order three, you get the fourth one free. Sweet.


  • Great quality protective skins
  • Large number of interesting designs to choose from
  • Provides great scratch resistance for the DS Lite
  • Adds zero additional bulk


  • $20 sounds a little pricey for a sticker
  • Will not protect against drops and spills
  • Applying lower inside piece is frustrating

Overall Rating: 8.5/10

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