Every year I see these advertised and promise myself I am going to buy one to help with the seasonal gift wrapping and this year I bought a pink dispenser and a set of refills from Tesco.
This is a very basic piece of kit. It has a piece of elastic that sits on the back of your hand with a plastic dispenser on the top. The elastic is just right and it doesn't bite in to your hand. You can totally remove the elastic as it just slots in to the dispenser and a couple of times this came loose for me. The actual tape sits inside the plastic bit, a stack around the size of a plaster and it comes off in a kind of 'z' pattern so each piece, around 2 cm pulls through half of the next piece and it sits there ready for you to pull off.
This worked pretty well for me and was easy to set up. Each block of tape has 75 pieces in it so you can wrap quite a few presents with it. I also used a roll for the longer sections I wanted to secure. The small pieces are great for 'holding' the major folds during gift wrapping. I found that a few times, the system failed on me and I had to pull it apart to get it working again, picking apart the stack of tape to try and separate the top piece. It was easy enough to fix but a bit maddening mid present wrapping!
I do quite like this but I have a few reservations about it too. Namely that the pieces are obviously a set length and usually OK but sometimes you want a longer piece than 5cm in length. Also, once you buy this kit you are tied in for life for buying the rather expensive refills which are specific to fitting the dispenser. Scotch is a great brand but not the cheapest after all.
If memory serves correct, I paid around £4 for the dispenser and a set of three refills from Tesco in some sort of 'two for...' deal. I think I paid a bit over the odds for what it is but I did want to try this piece of kit for a few years so it satisfied my curiosity!
A roll does the same job in the end but this avoids having to chop off a dozen lengths of tape before you begin and it saves pulling the varnish off the end of the table! It also saves the hunt for the roll of tape and scissors every time. Am I sold on this system? Not completely, I think a roll of tape is cheaper and it has its own merits but I will happily use this system until all the tape is used up! Whether I buy more refills is another matter... I will probably wait until the new year when they are heavily discounted!
I hate sticky tape with a passion, they're so annoying to use and even the ones with a dispenser are big and bulky and just a pain to store especially in my poky little house so when I was browsing my local Asda last year I came across the Scotch Pop Up Tape Dispenser and the refill packs for just 50p each down from the regular price of around £3, if it had been that price I probably wouldn't have bought it but for 50p I had to give it a try despite my scepticism as to whether it would work or not.
The dispenser itself comes within a plastic "bubble" which is attached to a piece of cardboard and is very easily opened. My dispenser is slightly different from the one pictured mine is pink in colour with a grey underneath and a grey elastic strap to hold it across you hand or on your wrist although I find it easier to use if it goes across the middle of my hand. The dispenser is slightly curved so it fits the shape of the hand comfortably and the elastic strap is not too tight yet neither too loose so I think it would be suitable for anyone to use despite the size of their hands. The dispenser has a strange look to it with a slit across the middle on the top which is where the sticky tape "pops" out of and one side is easily pulled with one thumb downwards which allows you to easily replace the small tape on the inside.
Onto using the product, it is extremely to use this dispenser, firstly the tape that is included is very uniformed and neat looking and does make a difference to the overall look of the product, as well as this they are very sticky and somehow despite leaving it out for months without use the tape remains sticky. The tape can be a little difficult to remove and it does require quite a bit of a tug to remove it from the dispenser however once you get a speed up and you're "in the zone" it can go very quickly and it becomes very simple to remove them. I have found that the tape is the perfect length to effectively stick paper together and yet at the same time not too long that it becomes stuck to the dispenser making it difficult to use.
After using this to wrap most of the presents last year for Christmas and using just one pack of refills I am kicking myself that I didn't stock up on them when they were 50p as they are incredibly simple to use, easy to put in the dispenser and they do make presents look better, as well as this they are tiny to store and are super handy. I would definitely recommend this dispenser I have used mine a fair few times and it still looks as good as new, chunky and durable and the strap hasn't become discoloured or grubby looking. To save your teeth or storage space most definitely give this a try!!
~~~ Scotch pop-up tape handband dispenser ~~~
I'm one of those annoying people who have already started not only my Christmas shopping, but also the wrapping too. I do it every year. I have so many birthdays during the run up to the festive period, and the January following, that I need to get organised and keep on top of things. Therefore, anything that helps me do this task quickly and with ease is more than welcome.
A couple of years ago, a new gadget came on the market, and I immediately bought one. It was called a Pop-Up Tape Handband Dispenser manufactured by the companies, 3M and Scotch. Both of these companies manufacture goods of the highest quality, in my opinion, and this fusion brings the best of best to fruition.
This handy gadget is a plastic ergonomically shaped dispenser in which to place pre-cut tabs of sticky tape. As you pull one strip out, another takes its place, this means you don't have to awkwardly juggle scissors and tape, or get the tape caught on your lips as you try and bite it with your teeth.
It was when I was getting ready for this year's mammoth wrapping session that I couldn't find my trusty dispenser, and had to resort to getting my daughter to pass me cut lengths of tape by hand. It wasn't a very good idea to tell the truth, because even though she's not a child anymore, there was she peeping at all the gifts to see what she'd got. She was also getting bored and wasn't keeping with the speed I was wrapping, she was forever losing the end of the tape, and we were both getting fractious, at this point we gave up, and I told her I'd do it myself.
The first thing I did when contemplating more wrapping was immediately rush to WHSmith to purchase a replacement. At the moment they are one third off and will cost only £1.99 instead of £2.99; Bargain! I immediately noticed that the design (from the photo above) has now changed. It seems a little larger, yet the tabs of tape that are inserted are the same size. There are now no little viewing holes to see when the tape is getting low, which is a bit of a hindrance. On the positive side though, the elastic through which you slip your hand, is thicker and more substantial to my previous model; so some changes have been for the better, but some for the worse.
Despite the dispensers faults (sometimes pulling up one tape would bring two or three), and the lack of viewing window so you have to guesstimate how soon you are going to run out; I still firmly believe that this nifty little item is worth its weight in gold; especially at this time of year, when you are expecting to do some heavy duty wrapping stints. Having a browse around the store yesterday, I noticed that they now also do desk versions. How useful are they going to be? I'm going to get one of those next.
Despite the faults listed previously, the major downfall to this dispenser is the high cost of the replacement tape strips, once the one included in the pack has run out. A pack of three refills, each containing 75 strips of tape, have a cost of £3.29 at WHS which is rather a lot more expensive than the 50pence rolls of sticky tape you can buy elsewhere. Looking online, I have found that Amazon are selling the initial starter kit (with the handband and one refill) plus two packets of refills, for only £7.47 delivered. This is a brilliant buy in my honest opinion. Not only will that many refills last a very long time, but what price can you put on your sanity?
This little gadget takes away all the hassle, however small it may be, and makes parcel wrapping, Christmas or otherwise an absolute breeze.
I most highly recommend it - Buy one, (or two, just in case).....
I never actually bought this item to begin with I stole it from my Mam, well what are parents for! I had ran out of sellotape and since my parents live just next door I nipped in to borrow some and my Mam lent me this never to be returned.
The dispenser is made by Scotch and comes on a cardboard backing with a plastic covering at the front, apparently they only cost a couple of quid or at least that was what she told me when she was attempting to get it back off me! Having a look on the internet I have found that the dispensers are about £2.50 and a pack of three refills are about £2.
The dispenser is made of hard plastic and the one I acquired is red in colour, the dispensers has a thick brightly coloured elastic band which fits on your wrist to make it easy to use and of course it means you don't lose it under presents and wrapping paper. One side of the top of the holder slides off for you to put the tape strips inside and then it you have to pull up the tab on the top piece of tape as you slide the top of the holder back on. When you pull the tab of the tape it pulls the top piece out and at the same time pulls up the next piece of tape, this continues through all 75 strips of tape which if you wrap like me equates to about 25 small to medium presents.
I simply refuse to give this back to my Mam and I think she has since bought herself a new one, I think this product is simply fantastic. You have both your hands free to wrap your presents and you no longer need to spend ages finding the end of the tape or killing your teeth biting pieces of tape off. This product makes the task of wrapping much easier in my opinion and is well worth the price tag even better when you don't pay.
Well one of my least favourite tasks in the whole world is wrapping presents, be they birthday gifts, or the thousands that seem to need doing at Christmas time. I inevitably leave the task until the last possible minute, (I am a male after all!) and then just get really annoyed as pieces of selotape start sticking to my hand, to the table, to themselves and any other darn thing except the place in which I want them to. Just when you think it can't get much worse, you lose the end of the tape and end up scratching away for ages to retrieve it. However a chance discovery in a high street stationary shop just over a year ago was about to change my life - I just didn't know it yet! That item was the Pop-up Tape Dispenser from Scotch.
No we all know Scotch as the producer of various adhesive tape products, and many a good minute has been spent cursing the day I ever bought one of them. However when I saw this product on the shelf I must say that I was intrigued, after all I love a good gimmicky gadget and that is what I thought this was. My wife was also interested, and we decided to purchase it for around £3, which we thought wouldn't be a big loss if it turned out to be rubbish. It came filled with 75 tape strips, but extra refills can also be bought from most high street stationary shops and also from most supermarkets now too, and these cost about the same £3ish for 3 packets of 75 strips. It's a little steep in price for the refills but at the end of the day you are paying for the simplicity and convenience. It is also available in several different colours, including pink, blue and black.
So how does this little device work then I hear you ask. Well simply put it is designed as a little bracelet type thing. The main body of it is of rigid plastic and is approximately 2cm wide and about the width of your hand long. The top slides off for you to place the packet of tape strips into, and a 1cm wide piece of elastic is attached to the underside of it, which does have a fair bit of give in it. To don the apparatus you simply place the elastic strap around your wrist and hey presto you are ready to wrap. I should point out that I've found that the elastic does work itself loose from time to time resulting in the thing falling off your wrist, however it doesn't happen often, its simple to reattach the elastic, and it's a far easier problem to overcome compared to the alternative of sticky tape all over the place or the dreaded lost end! Now to wrap presents you have both hands free to wrap it properly, and then you simply hold the paper in one hand, collect one of the sticky strips with the other and place it onto your paper providing a simple way to stick the wrapping paper together.
I personally cannot speak highly enough of this little device, and I have now found after using it for two Christmases that it has cut the time taken for me to wrap presents by at least three quarters. There are no more audible obscenities heard echoing around the house, no more ducking for cover as the selotape roll is launched across the room and no more picking tape off my teeth for the next few hours. Forgetting the nightmare of using selotape for a minute, just the sheer ease of wrapping presents having two hands free also makes a big difference, and neither my wife nor I can believe just how impressed we have become with our silly little gimmicky impulse buy!
So to sum up this little hands free tape dispenser, I would say that it has revolutionised present wrapping in my household. It is very comfortable to wear, you know you have it on, but its got no real protruding edges, just a couple of ridges on the back where the elastic attaches, and it isn't heavy at all. Each packet of strips contains approximately 75 pieces, and depending on how economical you are with tape when wrapping presents will ultimately determine how much this product will cost you in the long run. I've found that as I now have both of my hands free to wrap that I am ultra neat and only use 3 or 4 pieces per present, so each packet lasts around 20 or so presents, which for us is really good value. I wouldn't now dream of attempting to tackle a wrapping task without first arming myself with the Scotch Pop-up Tape Dispenser and would recommend it to everyone out there.
Thanks for reading this review and it may also appear on Ciao under my same username.
Well here we are - 19 days until christmas and I am as organised as ever with the majority of my presents purchased and the christmas decorations in full swing. I bought my wrapping paper, bows and ribbons etc etc on Saturday and am currently in the process of getting the presents wrapped and under the tree - would it be too cheesy if I said something along the lines of "it's beginning to look a lot like christmas" - hehe. Wrapping presents is one of those things that I think people either love or hate and one of the most frustrating parts of wrapping is organising the tape to seal your gift. I don't know about you but I certainly have found myself in some frustrating situations with sticky tape - as you desperately try your best to keep the wrapping paper in the intended end position while you try to find the end of the sticky tape chomping at it with your teeth only to find that one end has stuck to the other and you have to start all over again, or worse still you end up sticking the tape to the wrong part of the wrapping paper ruining the entire process.
I have in the past used a weighted tape dispenser that allows me to use both my hands when wrapping but even that has it's challenges, like when the little teeth that cut the tape stop working because they are too blunt to be effective anymore, or you end up with more tape that you needed for the part of the present you need to tape up.
***Such a simple idea***
Enter the new handband dispenser from Scotch which is quite simply a refillable one handed tape dispenser. I discovered this when I was shopping in Tesco who are currently promoting this product as part of a buy 2 for £3 offer, and I simply couldn't resist. My initial thoughts were what a clever idea - a tape dispenser that allows your hands the freedom required to neatly and efficiently wrap your presents but as with every product, while good in theory is it really that good in practice and that's what I set about finding out.
***Scotch pop up tape handband dispenser***
It really is as simple as it sounds. Scotch tape have come up with a great new idea that allows you to keep your tape exactly where you need it - on the back of your hand - leaving both hands free to get on with the wrapping. With pre cut strips of tape you no longer need to have pre-prepared strips lined up along the table, and you no longer have to worry about using your teeth for scissors. The dispenser itself is a simple plastic design with a door on one side that slides open to allow you to insert the tape pad that fits neatly inside the dispenser. On the underside of the plastic dispenser is an elasticated handband which stretches to fit neatly over the back of your hand, or wherever you find it most comfortable, perhaps your wrist?
The pre-cut strips of tape measure 2 inches by 0.75 inches and in my opinion are the perfect size for all kinds of presents. Each tape pad contains 75 strips so if my calculations are correct using the average of 3 strips of tape per present you can easily wrap 25 individual presents before having to re-fill. If you're like me you'll need a couple of tape pads to get you through your Christmas wrapping.
***My personal experience and recommendation***
Scotch tape have described this product as attractive and sleek - I'm sorry I have to disagree, it is neither attractive nor is it sleek, it is a good sized dispenser which is slightly longer in length than the width of my hand but does it really need to be attractive and sleek for the purposes of dispensing tape - absolutely not!!. The product has also been described as comfortable....now it does slip onto the hand very easily and the elastic is very effective at keeping the dispenser in place, but on the underside holding the elastic on are raised plastic areas which personally i find a little uncomfortable and I have little hands so I can only imagine that it would be even more uncomfortable for someone with larger hands....if 3M had designed the product with a little foam backing or something of that nature over the raised plastic areas I think this product would be a lot more comfortable on the back of your hand.
In it's simplest form this is a tape dispenser and a very effective one. While it may not be comfortable on the back of your hand it certainly is convenient and a simple tug upwards of the tape releases the pre-cut strip pulling the beginning of the next one with it - kind of like a box of tissues I suppose. I can use both of my hands freely with this tape and find the product very easy to use and it comes highly recommended for those of you who are getting into the spirit of christmas and preparing yourselves for those nights of wrapping presents.
***Price and availability***
As stated earlier I purchased this product from Tesco as part of a 2 for £3 offer so effectively bought the product for £1.50 which I think is a great price. The product is available online from various retailers such as Amazon who are offering this product with 2 refill packs for £5.99 - but beware of the shipping costs. I'm sure this could easily be picked up in your local supermarket. A pack of refills will cost you a little over £3 which I think is a little expensive but then you are paying for convenience at the end of the day.
A great little product from 3M to help you out with christmas.
My other half and I have finally done what we have planned on doing for years! We do what everyone else does and do the mad Christmas rush and say that the following year we will be more organised! Well we've done it ... over the past year we have kept a list going of gift ides for people and it is now October and this week I went out and got everything and it's all wrapped and put away! Amazing I know and jealous you no doubt are!
Of course when it came to wrapping the gifts my other half conveniently said he wouldn't be able to help as Liverpool were playing ... hmmm. I guess to be honest he can't wrap to save his life and I'd rather do it myself. The baby bounced between the rooms and seemed rather happy to play on his own so I grabbed all the gear and got started. I had bought a tape dispenser to make things a bit easier. After years of holding the wrapping paper down with one elbow and trying to get a bit of tape or putting bits of tape on the chair and having them curl under and get stuck I had found something to help.
The Scotch tape dispenser has an elastic handband which goes along your knuckles or on your wrist. On the front you slide open the dispenser and pop the tape pad into place. The first bit of tape has a plaid design on it and makes finding the first piece simple. Slide the dispenser closed again and pull off the first piece. As you pull a piece of tape the next one will then pull into place ready for use. Both hands free to wrap and no need to use my teeth on the tape roll.
The tape pieces are a very handy pre-cut size. I did have to use two on one gift but that was because this present was an odd shape. The dispenser comes with one pad of tape (75 strips). I probably should have gotten some refills but thankfully I didn't run out. You can choose between aqua, pink, purple, red and blue dispensers. The tape is called Satin and is invisible on most gift wrap or so they say because I can still see it.
Any negatives? Well yes ... I was wrapping a gift for my mum and suddenly I went to grab a piece of tape and there was nothing there. The tape hadn't come up after the previous piece was used. I opened up the dispenser and pulled out the pad. I had to use my nails to get a new bit up and even then no matter how hard I tried I couldn't just get one! I ended up pulling about 5 up and had to just sacrifice them and move on. This happened twice. I also got a piece stuck to the baby! He came over demanding cuddles and I forgot the dispenser was on my hand and picked him up.
The dispenser and refills are easy to order off of places like Amazon, but I found them hard to find in the shops. I ended up in Hobby Craft the other week and they had a display of them which was lucky for me as I now need the refills.
Tape dispenser with one pad of tape £2.33
Pack of three refill pads £2.86
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