Profiles

Carrying on a Family Tradition

“Doing nails saved me,” says Jenny Hansen, owner of Apply’ed Beautiful in Salt Lake City. And she owes that feeling of salvation to her grandmother, Jean Fitzgerald, her nail instructor.

 

“Doing nails saved me,” says Jenny Hansen, owner of Apply’ed Beautiful in Salt Lake City. And she owes that feeling of salvation to her grandmother, Jean Fitzgerald, her nail instructor. The owner of Jean’s Nails Etc. in Provo, Utah, Fitzgerald has been doing nails for 28 years and teaching for 27 of those years.

“I always loved to watch my grandmother (and aunt) do nails,” says Hansen. “I played doing nails and would sneak into my aunt’s polishes and supplies when she wasn’t home. I wanted to do nails when I grew up, but as I got older, the desire faded.”

Eventually Hansen enrolled in a college close to her grandmother’s school. Hansen turned down several invitations from her grandmother to learn nails, but after three semesters of college, she began to rethink it. “My creative and entrepreneurial nature craved an outlet,” she says. “I accepted my grandmother’s offer and shortly after beginning nail classes, I was hooked. It was like my creativity woke up! And I felt like I had found something I loved, that I could make a career out of.”
Her grandmother was a hands-on instructor, and a tough one at that. “She was particularly strict and picky with me and my work. She wanted me to be perfect, and carry on nails in our family.

“She taught us how to create a nail enhancement, not a nail replacement. She also made us do our own nails 80% of the time, which we hated, but I am thankful for it now. If you can do your own nails on the opposite hand perfectly, you can do your client’s nail perfectly.”

“She is an amazing teacher,” says Hansen.

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