I know that it has been awhile since the last time I wrote an update but life has not stood still since I graduated from The Academy of Nail Technology and Esthetics and because of that I’m grateful. But I couldn’t possibly leave everyone without saying goodbye; besides you started on this journey with me when I first walked into the classroom and you were there when it seemed like I would never get the ratio mix to create the perfect acrylic ball. You were there when it seemed like I would never figure out which brush would fit perfectly in my hand; and you were there when I first started doing gels. Many of you sent encouraging words to me that got me through and others lent advice on how I could better my techniques. It’s fellow nail technicians like yourselves that make this career as rewarding as it is.
I met some wonderful people in school (and some not so wonderful). Only being able to attend class part-time meant that I was there to watch plenty come in and graduate and I had a chance to become really good friends with a few of them. I learned that it’s better to help each other and compare notes, because something so simple that you didn’t think of and someone else did could mean the difference in you perfecting a technique and cutting your time in half, resulting in a loyal client and constant revenue. But I also learned that in order to really make it you have got to take the initiative and put yourself out there to always be learning, always be prepared to teach yourself, and to always make positive connections.
I was recently asked to interview a salon or spa in the Charlotte area to be included in NAILS’ “On The Road” article in the January 2014 issue. I looked up new spas that had recently opened and came across one call Jon Ric Medical Spa and Wellness Center. The name intrigued me — “medical spa” — what does that consist of? I called and the owner (Dr. Matt Jones) was more than happy to be interviewed. I admit that when I first arrived I was super excited and a little nervous and had to remind myself that I was interviewing him to write an editorial piece not for a job interview (it still didn’t calm me down).
He was a great guy and he gave me a tour of the spa; showing me all the services they offered. When we made our way to the manicure and pedicure stations he admitted to me that this is the area that he kind of fell a little short on because he doesn’t know a lot about what a nail technician really needs. Now cue the lights and the background music because this is where I come in and share with him the wide beautiful world of nails! Afterwards, he looked at me and said, “I’m speechless…would you like a job here?”
Then it was my turn to be speechless. I could hardly speak because I was giggling like a school girl but I managed to say, “Well... yes I would!” Business has been a little slow since this is a new establishment, but it has taught me the key value of marketing and advertising, how to think outside of the box when promoting and building yourself into a brand, and the importance of rebooking!
I want to personally thank everyone who was with me on this road to discovering myself and for those who continue to be with me as I began to truly start my career. I now have new obstacles: building a loyal clientele, not underestimating myself and resulting in me undercharging for my services, and something that I never really worried too much about — taxes. I wish all upcoming nail students much success in every aspect of this profession and to tell you that it might get hard, but push through it because once your graduation date is here, you’ll realize that it wall all worth it!