Thing is, with Alaska Piks (and I have a set of plastic ones), they are NOT a substitute for fingernails. You need to have fingernails to begin with, in order for the piks to be anchored, and it is the fingernail which holds it in place. If you have weak, or soft fingernails, they're a great substitute, and take about 15 minutes to get used to. But without fingernails, they'll move around and fly off of your fingertips when playing. If you just fingerpick normal travis style they work well, but if you are into single string runs, or two-fingered flat-picking runs, you'd best stick with metal Nationals.