For techs who live and work in populations under 55,000, the challenges of finding and retaining a full clientele can be balanced by the personal relationships formed and small-town kindness shown by area residents.
Philippi, W. Va.
Established in 1843, Philippi is best known for its rolling green hills that held the first land battle of the Civil War and for its historic covered bridge. For nail tech Susan Jones, Philippi is an example of small-town values at their best. “My greatest experience of working in a small town comes from the love my clients have shown me,” says Jones. “In the last few years, I have had major surgery and lost my mother-inlaw and my brother. My clients have taken turns bringing food to my house and calling me to make sure I have everything I need. And for me this comes from the fact that I know all my clients and they know me — beyond just a name. I don’t think if I lived in a large city I would be able to have the relationships I have with my clients.”
Jones has lived in Philippi for 25 years, and she started her nail career only seven years ago. She attended the closest beauty academy in Clarksburg, W. Va., (one of the state’s larger cities) and felt like she received a good education even though the nail enrollment was small with only four in her graduating class.
Jones keeps current on nail trends through industry trade magazines and talks frequently about products with the local beauty suppliers. West Virginia has recently mandated all techs receive at least four hours of annual continuing education, which Jones feels is a great opportunity to keep educating herself and learning more for her clients.