Three years ago, when we interviewed Tom Bachik for his first NAILS cover, he was a nail technician, a part-time educator, and a globe-trotting competitor. Today, his career — and focus — has changed dramatically.
Three years ago, when we interviewed Tom Bachik for his first NAILS cover, he was a nail technician, a part-time educator, and a globe-trotting competitor. Today, his career — and focus — has changed dramatically. Bachik has left the salon to devote all of his time to Creative Nail Design (Vista, Calif.).
“I wanted to make a difference in the industry and help influence new products, techniques, and nail styles around the world,” says Bachik.
When he first joined Creative in February 1997, Bachik was still working in the salon and actively competing. Months later, he was offered a full-time position with the company. He welcomed the opportunity because it had become increasingly difficult for him to take time off from the salon to educate and compete without neglecting his clientele. “I couldn’t be both a part-time nail technician and educator because I felt I couldn’t be successful without giving 100% to one or the other,” he explains.
Like many educators before him, Bachik’s foray into teaching came about because, quite simply, he loves helping people. “A lot of nail technicians see their work as a daily job instead of a career,” he says. “I help them think of it differently. When you know how to do something and you know it works, you have the opportunity to help others see it too. I love to see the light come on above someone’s head.”
Bachik attributes his expertise in the nail arena to his time spent in the competition ring. “It wasn’t about competing against anyone else, but as a challenge to myself to see what I could do,” he explains.
Presently, Bachik hasn’t competed for more than a year. “As a nail technician, my goal was to be the number-one competitor in NAILS’ Top 25 ranking and to win grand champion at W.I.N.B.A.,” he says. Not surprisingly, he has accomplished both. Now, he’s setting his sights even higher, and wants to help others win.
“Competing was a great way to build my reputation in the industry, which was important because I originally wanted to start my own company,” says Bachik. “But then it dawned on me, how could I say my product is the best if I have the same chemist as everyone else? In joining Creative, I now have the resources to turn my ideas into reality.”