Although only one technician walked with the top honor, all nail care professionals had cause to celebrate the recognition they have gained at NAHA.
[left to right] Jody Seagers, Lacinda Headings, Jan Bragulla, and Marti Preuss celebrating after the Nail Makeover winner was announced.
Although there were only three nail technician finalist at the annual North American Hairstyling Awards (NAHA) banquet held January 23, it was an evening of celebration for all nail care professionals. For the first time in its six-year history, NAHA honored nail artist. Houston, Texas, nail technician Marti Preuss took home the award for best nail Makeover. The other two finalist honored were Jody Seagers of Nails by Jody in Camarillo, Calif. and LaCinda Headings of The Strand in Hutchinson, Kan.
NAHA is produced by the Beauty and Barber Supply Institute (BBSI) and enjoys the support of the top hair care companies in the professional industry. Creative Nail Design System was a sponsor this year (in fact, the only nail product manufacturer sponsor), and CNDS president Jan Bragulla was largely responsible for convincing the awards’ producers to create a nail category in the competition.
Marti Preuss won the award for Best Nail Makeover.
Nail makeover entrants were required to submit before and after photos of a model’s nails. The makeover were subjected to two rounds of judging: the first by the editors of the professional trade press (including NAILS editor Cyndy Drummey and NAILS Magazine Shows general manager Vicki Peters) and the final by consumer beauty editors. This year’s panel of included Kristina Hare of Elle, Paddy Caldistro of Allure, Cathy Harris of Shape, Hollywood hairstylist Serena Radaelli, celebrity photographer Harry Langdon, Helen Murray of Harper’s Bazaar, Michael Eisenhower of Los Angeles Times, Barbara Schroeder of Fox News in Los Angeles, and Stuart Gavert of the Beverly Hills’ salon Umberto.
The NAHA banquet is part awards banquet, part especial effects show. Team NAHA, which is a group of salon professionals representing the sponsors, styled and coiffed models on stage while music blared, lights flashed, and dancers boogied, Stacy Sloan, representing Creative Nail Design Systems, overcame the challenge of how to “do” her model by sprinkling “magic dust” on her model’s hands.
Although the show was emceed by comedian Jimmy Aleck, the awards themselves were announced and presented by well-known industry professionals. For the nail makeover category, Washington, D.C., salon owner Jackie Randolph and Vicki Peters did the honors.
Lacinda Headings was a finalist in the Makeover category with these nails.
In addition to the technical awards, NAHA and its sponsors honored Arnold M. Miller, cofounder of Matrix Essentials, with NAHA’s Lifetime Achievement Award, presented to individuals in honor of their talent, skill, experience, and contribution to the professional salon industry. Accepting the award for her husband, Matrix president Sydell Miller tearfully thanked the audience and reminded them of her husband’s motto: think, believe, dream, dare. All net proceeds from the evening were donated to Hair cares, a nonprofit association that provides assistance to salon professionals with AIDS.