Yes, I would continue to do nails in some capacity. I am realizing more and more that what I do is such a gift to other people, even though they pay for it. I will never forget the pedicure I gave a client’s dying husband — his first ever. It was so humbling and so fulfilling to give him the experience of someone taking care of his feet. Also, I often reflect on how many enduring, life-long friendships I’ve made through the nail tech/client relationship. If I had financial freedom, I would not work the extended hours that I do, but would still enjoy the service. - JENNIFER PERDUE, Details Nail Salon, Bloomington, Ill.
I do live in a rather economically deprived rural area and live very frugally, but I really enjoy this profession and would not plan a career change if things were different. I see lots of smiling faces and love having paint brushes and tools in my hand all day. - DEBBIE WILSON, Simply Debbie’s Nails, Cave Junction, Ore.
Yes, if I were financially independent, I would continue doing nails. My focus would change, probably, from servicing every client I can put in my book to a more leisurely pace that would allow me to do services for charity. I would most likely continue to service all of my fabulous regular clients, while taking on another nail tech or two to assist me in having a salon where we continue to provide quality nail services. You never know if financial independence will last, and since I love what I do, I could never completely walk away. - ADRIENNE SCHODTLER, Nails by Adrienne, Cary, N.C.
Yes, I would invest in a bigger facility. I love my job. It’s a wonderful profession where you meet some of the nicest people — some you even keep as lifelong friends. - GRETA LESH, The Nail Station, Huntington, Ind.
I would keep working. I really do love what I do, and honestly, I have so many clients who have become great friends over the 12 years that I have been doing nails that I would miss them. But there would definitely be a reduction of hours; no more 10-12 hour days. Plus, I would increase the little extras for my clients, like heated massage chairs, foot massager units under my nail station, fresh flowers and pastries delivered daily, and the finest equipment and education I could afford. - DEBBIE BREW, Jenniffer & Co., Mentor, Ohio
Yes, I’d continue to do nails, but only here in Mexico. The women here love every kind of design and it makes my job more creative and interesting. I wouldn’t change the way I do business; however, I might add more treats for my clients and change the look of my salon. - PATTY LOPEZ, Studio 24, Parral, Mexico
I would definitely still do some nails if I was financially independent. I love the interaction with my clients as I now consider them all my friends. The only thing I might do differently would be to not continue to build my business but focus on taking great care of the ones I have. - LORI STARNES, The Manicurean, Allentown, Pa.