Well What the Heck Am I Supposed to Do With It Then?
  • Maggie Franklin
  • August 27, 2013
Once again, I find myself revisiting this. I just don’t quite understand why so many professionals have such a problem with professional products falling into the hands of non-pros?
Seriously? You never did your own nails with professional products before you went to school? You didn’t grow up surrounded by people who used “professional” gardening equipment? Or “professional” camera equipment? Or “professional” mechanics’ tools? Or “professional” cookware?
I just don’t understand why it’s such a big deal to us when we see gel polishes show up at the local drug store. Like there weren’t already 17 gazillion types of nail polish being sold there to be used by everyone and their 5-year-old daughter. And people had access to those 17 gazillion nail polishes long before I went to nail school and got a license and went into business ... so why should I get bent if those same people can now get their hands on another gazillion polishes? Only these polishes are even harder to get on right and way harder to fix once they are on! Yeah, you’re so right, a bunch of people who go out and spend $70 for a DIY gel polish kit and then make a huge mess of their nails that they can’t fix — that is so threatening to my business.
Nooooo. That is so AWESOME for my business! That’s right, Ms. Consumer! It’s not as easy as it looks! It is so much easier to just come have a professional do it for you!
But as for watching Amazon and eBay and seeing professional products showing up all the time? Yeah, sure, some of it is diversion. But some of it is ME (and actual professionals like me) who just have a bunch of product we aren’t going to use laying around and trying to make back a little of our investment.
My distributor won’t take back that extra bottle of Strawberry Margarita OPI Gelcolor that I bought AGAIN, thinking I didn’t already have it. It’s gonna take a year before I need another bottle of that and my fellow professionalsdon’t want to buy it off of me, so up for sale it goes! As do those two kits of OPI Axxium that I accidently bought at a show when I thought I was grabbing the Gelcolor through the three-person-deep feeding frenzy I had to elbow through to get them. Nope, didn’t even realize it was the wrong product till I got home. Yup, called OPI. Yup, called the distributor from the show. Yup, got told I could exchange it; wait for an e-mail from the supply store owner that would contain shipping information ... Nope. Never actually heard back from them. So now I’m out the money and stuck with product I won’t use. My fault, totally. But why do I have to leave it in the cabinet forever? On eBay it goes. I don’t think I’m betraying my industry.
What are techs who go out of businesssupposedto do with their product? Change product lines? Develop allergies? Move to a salon that supplies your products? Find a job in another industry? What would you like them to do with their leftover product?
Landfill? Sink drain? Hermetically sealed in double-walled barrels marked “for professional use only” and buried not less than 100 feet deep in a desert canyon? Shot into space?
I’m glad professionals from other industries aren’t as threatened by public access to their tools and products — restaurants would tell me I could just make my own dinner, gardeners would tell me I could just mow my own lawn, and Starbucks would tell me I could just make my own latte. And that would seriously impact my ability to be available to fix all those nails that someone thought they could do themselves just because they got their hands on some professional products.

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