Ever thought about working with an agency? How about one that specifically represents nail artists?
If you’ve been a salon-based nail technician for a while, you might be looking for some sort of change, wondering what else is possible in your career or seeking out other opportunities to use your skills.
We know you love your clients, and creating art for a living is a dream come true. But what if spending all day every day in a salon is starting to bore you? What if you want to travel, make more money, or have more variety in your work? What if you want a challenge and to push your creativity to new heights? Good news: you have plenty of options, and you don’t have to completely quit your day job.
Here are some of the things you can do as a knowledgeable, talented nail tech outside of simply working in a salon:
- brand ambassador
- runway and fashion week
- editorial projects
- advertising campaigns
- celebrities and red carpets
- movies and TV
Some of these prospects may be overwhelming to think about at first. How do you get your work noticed by the right people? Where do you even apply to jobs like that? How do you wedge your foot in the door? The number of job opportunities available in these categories is really endless, and better yet, there are people willing to help you get there.
Advocating for Change
Nailing Hollywood is an agency that exclusively represents nail artists and was the very first to do so. Founder Jenna Hipp saw a gap in the industry, and in 2012, decided to fill it by helping talented nail artists cultivate their careers. Since then, celebrity manicurist and inventor of the renowned Crystal Healing Manicure, Mazz Hanna, has taken over the agency as CEO with a passion for advocating for the wellbeing of on-set nail technicians. The agency also offers in-house brand consultation and creative services, utilizing Hanna’s background in advertising and creating her own namesake brand. Having worked in the nail industry herself for so long, she knows the concerns of artists working in those kinds of environments all too well.
“Our main focus is to make the nail industry more of an inclusive, safe space for women,” says Hanna, “because traditionally, they’ve always been on the bottom rung of the ladder. There are several ways in which we make sure they’re treated fairly when going on jobs.”
Traditionally on sets, nail artists deal with less-than-favorable conditions. Tiny or nonexistent workspaces, bad experiences, and lack of preparation are all common issues they face when working on these types of projects. Not only does Nailing Hollywood find their artists exciting opportunities, they also combat these common issues by making sure they have clear direction on the project ahead of time, adequate financial compensation, answers to any questions, and general respect. These artists enjoy countless advantages being represented by a nail-specific agency—and they don’t ever have to feel forgotten about or under-appreciated.
Attracting the Talent
The artists represented by Nailing Hollywood are all considered independent contractors. The agency currently represents six incredible manicurists, including superstar celebrity nail artists Hang Nguyen, Rachel Joseph, and San Sung Kim. These masters of their craft are the heart of the agency for their top-notch creativity and professionalism. They’ve worked on the hands of stars for prominent magazine covers like Vogue, Marie Claire, Elle, and countless more. Some of the artists work on content creation for brands from the comfort of their own homes. They also work on ad campaigns for hundreds of top companies, editorial, runway, house calls, and they’re especially busy during award season.
Hanna has a rigorous process for finding just the right artists to represent, which is an important part of maintaining the high quality of Nailing Hollywood as an agency. When Nailing Hollywood looks for a manicurist, it’s about quality, not quantity. It always helps to be showcasing your very best work first and foremost.
The onboarding process starts with a nail artist either being approached by the agency, the artist taking the initiative in contacting the agency, or a third party recommending an artist. The agency researches the artist on social media, and then makes an introduction call. If that goes well, then some zoom interviews are conducted to gain different perspectives.
Hanna then gets a manicure in person from the artist to test their skills. If the artist then successfully assists an established manicurist on set for a few months while developing their problem-solving skills, the agency is inclined to take them on.
Each artist has their specialty and certain companies they enjoy working with. Nailing Hollywood typically facilitates them working with companies they’ve had fun working with in the past. It’s all about the artists feeling comfortable in their work so that they can do the best job possible.
Committing to Education
This year, says Mazz Hanna, Nailing Hollywood is taking on education in a couple different ways. One is by educating the manicurists on how to grow their experience beyond the salon through the Nailing Hollywood Academy.
“We really want to coach them in building their careers,” Hanna explains. She plans to do this partially by offering one-on-one coaching sessions with nail artists who are interested in exploring more of the industry.
Nailing Hollywood is also committed to representing nail educators starting in 2023 and offering courses. The company sees a need for talented instructors to have a secure and supportive path to consistent work. In turn, more artists in the industry will be trained to a higher standard, opening the door for them to have more creative opportunities.
Education is just one of the initiatives Nailing Hollywood has in store for this year. Exciting prospects are in the agency’s future, including taking on new talent and fostering even stronger relationships with brands both big and small.
If you’re a talented, hardworking nail artist who is interested in experiencing different facets of the industry and taking your career to new heights, you could be a good fit for Nailing Hollywood.
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