At Home Fixated we’re not afraid to review things long-term. Many years ago, we had our very ugly bathtub refinished to make it somewhat less ugly. Then we had it refinished again following an unfortunate suction cups incident. Note to anyone with refinished baths or showers: do NOT use any floor or bath mats that use suction cups to stay in place. Don’t ask me how I know this. This review isn’t about refinished tubs though, it’s about helping prevent near-to-full-death experiences on slippery surfaces like bathtubs. In my quest to kid and adult-proof our tub, I decided to try Slip-X Non-Slip Bath Treads after sifting through many other options. They seemed mostly well-reviewed on Amazon, but did they work?
I evaluated several non-slip adhesive treads solutions to alleviate our slip-n-slide bathtub situation, including some spendy German-made variants that sell for about 3X the Slip-x price. Despite my normal bias to most things German, the existing reviews were not confidence-inspiring enough to warrant a 3X price. Instead, I opted to try the clear Slip-X anti-slip bath sticker. Believe it or not, they’re made right here in the USA!
My assumption with just about anything adhesive is that the adhesive is likely to fail. Usually far sooner than expected. That assumption is made even more firmly when you’re talking about a sticker that will be completely and partially submerged underwater, often more than once a day. We’ve tested our Slip-X Non-Slip bath treads for over two years now. More on how they’ve held up shortly.
How to Install Slip-X Bath and Shower Stickers
Given my very low expectations for adhesive longevity, I intended to follow the installation instructions to a T. The instructions go something like this: 1) Clean the surface well 2) Rinse the surface well 3) Dry the surface well 4) Wipe the surface with rubbing alcohol 5) Let that dry 6) Press treads on firmly 7) Let dry for a minimum of 4 hours, with a 24 hour dry time preferred.
Many users, particularly those with scary, unidentified blooms of funk on their baths or showers might be tempted to skip all but step 6. I suspect those that skimp on cleaning and prep also probably account for a few of the less positive reviews on Slip-X. I wanted to maximize our shot at success, so I made sure to follow those instructions fully.
You can be as mild or as wild as you want with your sticker layout. The trick is that you’ll want enough treads that there aren’t large gaps in between that someone can still slip on. Depending on the size of the area you are trying to de-slipify, you may need to buy more than one package of Slip-X.
Slip-X Effectiveness and Function
Overall, we have found Slip-X to be very effective. We have had zero bath-related ER visits since installation. Our refinished tub was so slick prior to Slip-X that our time to first bath injury ER visit would probably have been measured in days rather than years (or, hopefully, never). Will Slip-X guarantee that no one will slip on it? Of course not. However, I say they dramatically reduce the risk of slips and falls.
The only real potential downsides I see with them come down to aesthetics and bath comfort. Some people may simply not like the look of “stickers” in their shower or tub. I can relate. Which is why we opted for the clear version of Slip-X. Particularly on the white tub finish, clear does a nice job of disappearing into the background.
On the comfort side, if you plan to take a bath and like to adjust your bathing position by sliding around, be prepared to exfoliate. The same grippy treads that keep your feet from sliding around also have a similar effect on your rear end. If this particular issue is going to be a problem for you, sitting on a wash cloth can be more comfortable.
Slip-X Durability and Longevity
I would describe our household as an ideal test case for Slip-X durability and longevity. There are four members of our household and we all tend to use this same bath/shower. This amounts to numerous “tests” per day. My wife showers in water so hot I would it expect it to vaporize almost anything it comes in contact with. All but one member of our household (I’ll leave you to guess who) also use copious, dare I say INSANE quantities of shampoos, conditioners, soaps, bubble bath, etc. All these things should surely spell doom for stickers, but not so for Slip-X.
All the Slip-X stickers I applied are still in place, right where I installed them. They also all continue to be fully adhered to the surface of the tub. At this point, they have survived over two years of abuse without showing any signs of impending failure. Bottom line, if you’re looking to increase traction and reduce slippage in your bath or shower, Slip-X makes an inexpensive, easy-to-install and highly effective product.
The Slip-X engineers have been busy since the time of our last purchase. Instead of just boring strips, you can now get Slip-X stickers in designs like rounded squares, frogs, a school of Nemos, or creepy-yet-cute sea horses. I personally still like the simplicity of the straight treads. Kits include about 5 to 21 stickers and will set you back about $6-$7 per package.