Below is a transcribed version of The Nail Hub Podcast, Episode 101: My First Magazine Cover. To listen, click here.

Welcome to the Nail Hub podcast powered by NAILS Magazine. I'm Elizabeth Morris, your business obsessed nail guru here to share with you advice, motivation and everything nails to help you be successful. As Leonard Nimoy said, "The more we share, the more we have." So let's get sharing.   

So last episode I celebrated a hundred episodes of the Nail Hub podcast which still to me is unbelievable. But adding to that, I also have a very, very awesome announcement which is, I was just in Los Angeles last week and I went to NAILS Magazine because they asked me to come do a cover which I'm so excited about. I've actually been wanting to do this for a really long time and I finally got the opportunity to do it. So, big thanks to the NAILS Magazine team for having me out there. So the cover is going to be coming out in July.   

I can't tell you anything about it other than you'll see it in July, but I think you guys are really going to love it. It turned out really well and I wanted to kind of share, this is an experience because I feel like this is one of those experiences in our industry that I think a lot of people don't understand how it works or, you know, a lot of people have a dream of you know, doing a cover for one of the NAILS Magazines in our industry. Especially NAILS Magazine, I've always just loved their covers. And so I wanted to share this experience so you guys can kind of learn a little bit more about how doing a cover works, and also just how you can get yourself out there in the industry because I think that's something that always seems a mystery to people. they see people who have made it really far, they see people who have become you know "famous" in our industry and they're just unsure about how to do that.   

So first off, a little bit about the experience first. So, basically what I did is, you know, after I was done jumping up and down and screaming and being so excited, I actually flew out to Los Angeles and stayed in a really cool hotel called Miyako, it's in Torrance which is really nice, it's right next to NAILS Magazine headquarters. And I spent the night there, and then the next day I went to the offices at around like 9 o'clock in the morning, 8:30, 9 o'clock to help set up and get things going. And basically, what you do which is a little bit stressful is you have to go and you have to do NAILS on a model. And it depends, sometimes, they have multiple nail techs in one day doing different NAILS on different models so that they can film and shoot everything in one day. Sometimes, it's just one artist, it really just depends on the calendar for the content that NAILS is dealing with.   

So I had the pleasure of doing one hand on this model and the other hand was done by Chris Mans who I loved his salon. He owns Jeweled Nails in Orange County and Chris has also done a ton of competing, he's a really nice guy. So he did amazing, beautiful nails as well. His cover is going to be coming out in December. So you can be in a situation where I'm doing the cover for July, Chris is doing the cover for December, there can be other artists that are doing other nail, sorry, models with nails, you know, for different months of the year. So it's definitely up in the air depending on what the schedule is and what the magazine needs. So you basically take your time and obviously, the nails, you want them to be as perfect as humanly possible.   When we're in salons, you know, in the salon setting, we can kind of get away with you know little errors here and there, or maybe one nail is like slightly uneven or whatever it might be just because, you know, we're pressed for time, we only have maybe 45 minutes to an hour to work on a client, and clients at the end of the day probably don't notice 90% of the imperfections that we notice. So with the magazine, it is a lot more stressful because you do have to make sure the nails are perfect, perfect, perfect. And just as an example, Chris and I only did one hand and I think it took us about three hours to do the nails that we did. So it does take time, you're also trying to come up with something inventive, something new, something fresh, something that's really going to pop on the cover and you also have to kind of work with the creative team to make sure that the design that you come up with is something that hasn't been done before and is also in line with you know, what the magazine is wanting to promote.   

So that was really cool because I got the chance to come up with some ideas and pitch some concepts to NAILS Mag and they finally approved one of them and so I got to do some really, really cool stuff that I really enjoyed and really speaks to my style. But it definitely is more of a collaboration, it's not like you get to go in and do whatever you want. And understandably so because the magazine has to make sure that it fits the mold for what they're trying to promote in that given month, and also, they have to make sure that it works alongside of all the other NAILS that are scheduled for the next 12 to 18 months for the covers, as well as, you know, just making sure that things aren't repeats or, you know, something's already been kind of done and is now passe.  

So Chris and I worked on the NAILS and then we took a little quick break for lunch which was really nice. The model was adorable and she had the most beautiful nail beds, I wish I could work on nail models all the time. Super fun, so we were just hanging out in the studio doing nails, we were rocking out to some music. Chris put on this amazing '90s playlist which we're both '90s kids so we loved that. And so we're hanging out and then we ate some lunch and our photographer was there. The photographer Vu, holy moly, this guy is amazing. The pictures he takes, I don't know how he does it but he makes… he literally brings out the best in anything that he shoots. It's so unbelievable and I just started getting more into photography and videography, and so hanging out with Vu in the studio was really cool. Vu is basically a freelance artist that NAILS hires to do cover shoots and different things.   

So while we were there actually, NAILS was doing some of their corporate headshots for the people that work at NAILS, and I just kind of peeked around the light box and was looking at the computer screen and looking at the pictures that Vu was taking of everyone, and I seriously cannot say enough good things about his photography skills. He just captures the essence of every human being that he took a picture of that day and also the nail pictures and the lighting and everything, it was just so gorgeous. So I'm so excited for the cover because in the past, NAILS had definitely like a more kind of glowy, natural lighting type of style and I would definitely say Vu is more of like a studio artist, his lighting is definitely more studio style, a little bit more bright and poppy and stuff like that. So, it was really fun to just be there for the experience of watching the actual photoshoot.   

And so, we started with Chris's nails first after lunch, taking pictures. And it does take a while, it's pretty crazy to actually watch the whole process. Basically, the nail model has to sit there and make minute changes in her hand position and we have to change the lighting, and we;d change props and we go through like all these different iterations of, you know, different things, how it looks, you know, taking test shots, you know, arranging things, trying this again, finding one that you like but it's not quite exactly right and having to tweak it. So it is a little bit of a process and actually, the longest part of it was taking the pictures and making sure that we all arrived at a point where we were all happy, right? Because again, you know, NAILS Magazine has its own position on what they like as the artist. You know, we have our own positions on what we like, the photographer is putting in their input, the models putting in their input, so it is a little bit crazy but so fun and so just amazing, like I said to watch the whole process and watch it unfold.   

And the coolest thing about it really is and I was telling this to Michelle and Beth from NAILS Magazine, that I always see nail artists on Instagram posting pictures and immediately their caption will be, "This picture doesn't do these nails justice," right? Like maybe it doesn't capture the sparkle or it doesn't capture the depths of the color. I mean, that's probably the number one challenge that we have as nail artists is we do these amazing nail sets and we're so proud of our work and then we go to take a picture of it to promote it and it just doesn't look like what it does in real life, and that's so challenging. And that's really why a lot of the artists that you see that are instafamous have become instafamous because they have nailed down that technique of how to make the nails look as gorgeous in a picture or even more gorgeous in a picture than they do in real life. And that's a really big challenge.  

So for me it was so gratifying, and I told Vu this as well, the photographer, it was so gratifying having him actually capture the beauty of the nails that I did, when my whole career almost, I've always been slightly dissatisfied or really dissatisfied in the beginning with the photos of my work and being like, "Dang, I wish people could see these in person because no one's gonna understand how awesome they are." And I know you guys can definitely relate to that because that is probably the number one biggest challenge we have when it comes to taking pictures. And no one teaches you photography classes as a nail tech. I mean, you know, there's a lot of artists out there that will share their tips and tricks and kind of share with you how it works, but at the end of the day it really is just a lot of experimentation.   

There's really no perfect setting, you know, and I thought this in the beginning as well, I thought that, "Oh, if I just knew the right aperture to set on my camera, if I knew the right lighting to do, or if I knew the right hand position, or if I knew the right Photoshop techniques like I'd be able to make beautiful photos." It's not as simple as that. It really is about experience, about understanding what small changes to make, how to get certain things to come forward, how to get certain things to go back. And, yeah, you can Photoshop things within an inch of your life but at the end of the day if you suck at taking photos in the beginning, no amount of editing is gonna make those pictures better and that's really the truth of it. Because watching Vu, just the raw photos without any editing just boom what came through from the camera and the lighting was gorgeous.   

So it is, you know, and people like that that's what they do for a living, it's just like us that we do nails for a living. If you've done, you know, what is it, 10,000 hours of anything, you're considered an expert. So obviously, we don't spend time learning about cameras and lighting and positioning and all of that stuff, we spend more time learning about how to do nails and how to do them amazingly and quickly, so obviously we're not going to be experts in the photography field. But anyway, really cool experience, very gratifying experience.   

And the whole experience actually, was a very smooth process. I was actually very nervous going into it. I thought I have no idea what to expect, "Oh, my God, like can I perform under pressure? Am I gonna start sweating? Am I gonna take forever?" Because you just think about all those things and I think, you know, anytime you're put up against a challenge like that, you immediately start doubting yourself. And so it was pretty nerve-wracking, but I have to say that the NAILS Mag team made it very, very painless, it was super fun. Everyone that was there was just good peeps and I really enjoyed just spending time with everyone on that day. It was a really, really fun experience. So you guys will see it in July, I'm very excited for that. I think the magazine starts shipping at the end of June so you guys might start seeing posts starting the end of June. But keep an eye out for that because I'm really, really excited about it. Can't wait to see what you guys think and I even made a cool thing to go along with my nails, so I'm really excited for that.   

Any who, so how do you get to the point where you're able to do a cover or how do you get more involved? How do you get your stuff featured in NAILS magazine okay to start? Well, I wanted to share with you guys a page that I don't know if a lot of people know about, but on NAILS magazine, so on they have a page called Meet The Team, and I shortened their link down so it's very easy for you guys to get to it. So, basically if you guys go to bitly/nailsmagteam, you guys will be able to see the page that they created, or if you go on you can search for Meet The Team, they have a page there. And what it does is, what's cool about this is it basically introduces you to all of the editorial team and all the different people that are on staff and what they do, and it also has little descriptions in italics underneath their name about what they do at the magazine and what you can send them.   

And a lot of people have a misconception that magazines don't need content from people, like they just magically find it somewhere. And I'm gonna tell you that magazines, honestly, people who work at magazines are always like their full-time job, is trying to find stuff to write about, put in the magazine, take pictures of whatever. I mean, their job is content and I can tell you from just the Nail Hub, how challenging it is to come up with content for the podcast, Instagram post, Facebook, emails, it's literally a full-time job, it's crazy. So imagine NAILS Mag who has millions of subscribers, how much pressure they have every month to come up with really cool stories and something that's new, something that hasn't been done before or a new spin on something. It's really challenging so one thing I'm going to tell you is that you can definitely send your content and your ideas and your stuff, your promotional stuff to NAILS Magazine, okay. Or any literally any media outlet you find, you can put yourself together and send it to the appropriate contacts at that media publication and they will definitely be happy that you're sending them stuff.   

Now a couple of caveats to that, okay? Number one, your stuff has to be post-worthy. And I know this is not gonna sound nice but there are a lot of people that send in content and it is not good. Okay, so it's the pictures are dark, it's unprofessional, the nails don't look clean, it's just, you know, it's novice level work and we all start out as novices so don't beat yourself up if you're in this position, because you will get there. When I first started doing nails, my nails sucked, okay? They were not magazine ready. So, it is one of those things where you do have to kind of… it would be very, very, unlikely that someone who just started doing nails gets to do a cover, okay, because your skill set just isn't there yet and so it's difficult for a magazine to use pictures unless it's like a novice article like it's about, you know, how you started it in nails or you know where you're out with your skill set. I mean, yeah, for stuff like that, absolutely.   

But if you're talking about covers or features, stuff like that, you're not going to see beginners doing that type of content, because they just don't have the skill set to be able to perform at a level that is worthy of a feature or a cover. So, it's kind of like, you know, chicken before the egg type of scenario. So you need to make sure that your stuff is top notch and what I mean top notch, is look at some of the instafamous profiles on Instagram for example, like Get Buff Nail, Selena Ride In, you know, who am I thinking of? Some of like the amazing Russian artists like Marie Ava Medina, I think is her Instagram, you know, there's a lot of artists that I just can't think of off the top of my head.   

But, oh, like, Home Of Diva or Deva, you know, those type of artists, the pictures they take are really amazing. And so, that's kind of what you want to look at, is like really clean, crisp, well-done nails, whether they're tips or on fingers, make sure that they just look as amazing as they possibly can. Because if you're gonna send something into NAILS Magazine, you want it to be something they can seriously consider using and so that is definitely step number one. Okay, so step number one to review, make sure your stuff is postable, make sure it's top-notch. And don't worry about if you're not there yet, you will get there so just keep working at it.   

Step two is more about your personal reputation or your business's reputation. So, you want to make sure that... and I've talked about this a million times. Make sure that you're consistent with your professionalism, okay? So if NAILS Magazine, if you send something into NAILS Magazine and you look professional on the email, you're like, "Hi, I'm so-and-so, here, you know, I wanted to send you guys some content or I wanted to send you some nail tips I just did. Here's a write-up that I did, blah, blah, blah," and basically put it on a silver platter. If it's amazing, they'll be like, "Yay, this is so awesome," but guarantee you, the next step they're gonna do is if they don't know who you are, they're gonna research you because they're not gonna just post anything from anyone. They want to see, "Okay. Well, what's tied to this person? Is there like drama tied to this person? Are they ghetto? Are they awesome? Like you know, just again, like you want to make sure that you are constantly emitting a professional image with everything that you do.   

This is really, really key to being successful in this industry. That's why people get selected to be, you know, employees of companies, or to be representatives of companies, or to be featured artists at shows, or to be magazine cover artists. The reason why is because whoever's hiring that person doesn't have to worry about the person showing up on time, being professional, killing it, you know, helping the company make money and that's really at the end of the day what you're doing, right? It's a win-win. If you send NAILS Mag stuff, you're hoping that you get more followers, more clients, more exposure from your stuff being in NAILS Mag. And NAILS mag is hoping that your stuff helps their readership improve and make sure that they continue to be seen as a high-quality publication that is constantly posting awesome stuff and constantly has you know, the latest and greatest. Okay, so it's definitely a symbiotic relationship.   

If it's not a symbiotic relationship, then they're still not going to use your content because they can't take a risk on aligning their reputation with yours if your reputation is lackluster. So, I highly recommend that if you are considering getting into that part of the industry which is either you have a goal of being an educator for a company or you want to be you know, an affiliate for a company like you want to be a rep for a company where, you know, like Selena writes in reps for Elegance. If you want a position like that or if you want to be a cover artist, or if you want to be an article writer for the magazine, any of those things you legit have to make sure that you take it seriously and that you are consistently professional even when you're not posting stuff for those companies.   

So you can't write an article for NAILS Magazine and then immediately turn around and start posting you know, half-naked pictures on your Instagram and being like, "I got so drunk last night, blah, blah, blah," because people are going to align your reputation with the media publication's reputation and that is a serious no, no. So step one, make sure your stuff is postable and awesome, step two, make sure that you and your reputation are postable and awesome. I mean that's really the key.  

And three is don't get discouraged. I mean honestly, believe it or not, I was in talks with NAILS Magazine about doing a cover, I think two years ago. I think it was two years ago when we first started talking about a cover, okay? So it took me two years from the first moment we talked about doing a cover to the point I actually got to do a cover. Why? Okay, well, because of the schedule. So believe it or not, NAILS Magazine has to actually coordinate all of these covers because it takes so much time to put the content together, to get the cover done, to get everything into the magazine. They're not doing the magazine in the month that it's coming out or the month before it's coming out, they're doing the magazine a few months before. So you can have literally a calendar of two years of covers that are already given to artists. So you can have stuff where like, let's say a company is going to come out with a new product and they know they're going to come out with this new product in six months. Well, NAILS magazine has to schedule around that. If an artist is going to be visiting for a specific show and they want to do something with that artist while they're in the United States, they have to schedule stuff around that artist.   

So you can imagine with all the different moving parts that it's very easy for things to get drawn out and where they're like, "Okay, we want to do a cover with you but we need to find a spot for us to be able to squeeze you in." And it's not something to take personally, it's just that's the way it works. So, you know, I definitely didn't shut down and I was always positive, and over the last two years, I've done nothing but work hard, continue to show them that I am worthy of a cover and continue to keep my relationship fresh with them. And that's really the key is that a lot of people the first time they hear, "No or sorry, it's not going to happen," they immediately shut down and they're like, "Screw this, I'm not going to try anymore." That is not the attitude to have. You want to make sure that whether or not you're getting solicited for any type of exposure, you want to make sure that you're continuing to just put your best foot forward.   

And what that's going to show people is that even when there is no incentive or there's no kind of like carrot at the end of a stick dangling to keep you moving in the right direction, that you do that on your own. That is the biggest thing that people look for when they go to collaborate with people. They don't want to have to constantly be enticing you to do what you're supposed to be doing, they want someone who's already enticing themselves, they want someone who's already kicking their own butt and then they can collaborate with you and both teams win because if one team has to babysit the other, or if one teams always like, "Oh, my God, I don't know if Liz is gonna show up on time." I mean imagine if NAILS Mag asked me to come to LA and they were like, "Okay, Liz does awesome nails, she's awesome at the Nail Hub but the chick randomly like shows up late or cancels last-minute." No, they'd probably be like, "We can't risk that, we can't risk Liz not showing up to do the cover," because that would screw up their whole entire schedule.  

So that's the key is that you constantly need to show people that you're dependable, consistent professional, always on point, always, you know, putting the best stuff out there, and if you do that even when you're not being incentivized to do it, people are gonna notice that. They're gonna be like, "Dang, this girl really does amazing stuff even when no one's paying her or no one's, you know, asking her, or no one's, you know, dangling some incentive in her face." They want to see that you're able to do it on your own and that's really the secret to it, okay? But no, it's not something that's super-duper duper exclusive and something that only, you know, a certain percentage of the nail industry gets to do, it's not really like that. It's kind of like it's a self-selecting group, honestly.   

The reason why it's a very small group is because there aren't very many nail techs that keep it consistent and keep it professional unfortunately. I mean, that's really the nature of it, and then the ones that are keeping it professional and keeping it consistent are either fully booked and don't have time to actually do anything but do nails all day, or they're humble enough that they're like, "Oh, I would never ask for that, you know, I would never put myself out there and ask for that. That's just not what I do." It's usually like those type of personalities that they just keep their head down and work, work, work, and they end up being amazing nail technicians and like their stuff just, you know, becomes popular as a result of that. But I've seen artists that I know do way better nails than a lot of people I know that don't even have that many followers on social media, and the reason why is because they probably don't have the time or they're just not interested in focusing on that or that's just not their personality type.   

They're not one of those people that wants to be like, "Look at me, look at me," and you do have to have a little bit of that element where you're kind of pushing yourself on people, but you have to do it in a professional where people are like, "Oh, this chick's legit. She's not, you know, pushing crap down my throat. She's actually like, 'Hey, I'm professional, I do this, this and this. Here's my elevator speech, you know, please consider me for an opportunity.'" And you do have to put yourself out there a little bit and I think it is a self-selecting group because it has to be that perfect storm, it has to be someone who's willing to promote themselves and put themselves out there. It has to be someone who's also a professional and has a good skill set, and it has to be someone who also has the time to do something like that or is willing to make the time. And I think that's why we ultimately end up seeing a very small group of people doing covers and stuff like that because the rest of them either fall into a category of, "No, we're not going to use your work," or, two, "They're amazing but they're focused on other stuff."   

So I definitely want you guys to think about that and take a look at that page I referenced. So go to bitly... hold on, let me get you the link again, sorry, bitly/nailsmagteam or you can go on and search for the Meet The Team page. But a really good information, you guys can see who's in charge of what. Everyone is super-duper nice, like really, really, really nice. Kim Pham is awesome, she's their video content manager, there's Shannon there, and actually I don't even know Shannon's on this page. Oh, yeah, she is. Shannon and then Beth, obviously. So take a look at their profiles and their contact info and, like I said, there's little italic descriptions below their names as to like what they're in charge of so you can send appropriate content to the correct person.   

And don't be afraid to share stuff if you're working on a cool project or if you got cool nails you did or you want to do a little write-up on something, you know, take your time, make it really amazing and Google is a great place to research stuff. I mean I was not born a writer. I actually got a D in writing when I was younger. I had to go to like parent-teacher meetings because my teacher thought I sucked at writing. And it's funny because, now, people tell me I'm a really good writer and I've gotten asked to do articles for all kinds of things. So it's just about learning. It's just about learning and trying and failing and trying again and researching and working on it and if you really have the gumption to work on it, I mean, the sky's the limit for all of you.   

So I want you guys to realize that, yes, this is definitely an elite accomplishment and it's not something to be you know, taken lightly but I definitely think it's an opportunity that's open to anyone. It just depends on how much work you're willing to put towards it and that really goes for anything in this industry. There really is no limit to anything. The only limit is what you place on yourself which is your attitude, how much work you're willing to put towards something and, you know, your ability to promote yourself and get yourself out there. And that's the whole long and short of it, I guess it's a good way to put it. So I hope this helps you guys. I had so much fun doing it. I would really encourage any of you who are interested in getting into doing covers to pursue this because it was super fun, totally surreal.  

And the other surreal part about it is that like I just did the whole actual physical process, but it's gonna be awesome when I see that cover come out because it's so weird. It's something that I remember seeing like way back when I first started in nails and going, "That's so cool," you know, like, "Oh, my gosh, if only I could do that one day," and here it is. So that's how it goes and it's just nothing more than working hard, working smart, being professional, putting yourself out there and, you know, making yourself known to people. That's… I mean, people might not know who you are. I know there's millions of people across the globe who have no idea who I am. So, it's my job to keep promoting myself if I want more people to take note of what I'm doing and that's how it goes.   

So, check it out. I know NAILS Mag is always looking for awesome pictures, awesome articles, stories, videos. I mean, if you're someone who you think you could put together some good work and send it in, do it. Why not? The worst that can happen is they're gonna say, "Thank you so much. You know, we'll see if we can use this somehow." Then, you just try again and if they don't use it, send them more stuff and send them more stuff and pretty soon, they're gonna find something that they're like, "Yes, this works. This works for our calendar, this works because it's professional, it's something that we can actually use." And as soon as you get that going and as soon as you start to build that relationship, it becomes much easier to continue to do things, okay? So I want to encourage you guys to do that with whatever media outlet you want.   

And I mean again this experience I had was with NAILS Magazine. I think they're a great team. But we also have other media outlets in our industry and there's also media outlets outside of our industry, I mean Vanity Fair, Cosmopolitan, you know, all of those different magazines, I mean anything you can think of honestly, even news channels. They are looking for content so if you're in your local community, news channels are a great way to actually get customers because me doing a cover for NAILS Magazine isn't really going to get me nail clients, right, because clients don't read NAILS Mag. Only industry people read NAILS Mag.   

So if you're also looking for exposure in other ways, like if you're looking for exposure to get more clients at your salon, news channels are a great place to go for that and they're the same thing. They usually have a page on their website that has contact information. Magazines, usually within the first like three pages of the magazine, they have the editorial information about the team, they usually have email addresses in the magazine that you can send content. And the reason why they publicly post all of that information is because news channels, TV shows, magazines, they're all looking for content, that's their full-time job. So don't be afraid to put yourself out there, send stuff to whatever outlets you want to try, and the worst thing that can happen is that they just say thanks but no thanks. And who cares? Just keep trying.   

So I hope you guys are encouraged by this. Can't wait to show you guys what the cover looks like, I'm so excited. And I hope you guys are doing amazingly well. I've also got a couple quick updates that I wanted to talk about. So NAILS Mag, I'm just gonna briefly go over this because I'm going to do a more deep dive episode on this at a later date. But NAILS Mag has some pretty cool events coming up. So one is they're going to be doing a Foot Forward Summit in Atlanta, Georgia. This is August 12th through the 14th, you're gonna start to see them post about this. But basically, what this is is they're gonna do some serious interviews and specialists and different demonstrations just about feet. And I think this is really cool because feet has definitely become a hotspot for, you know, our industry. There's a lot of people that are getting into the medical pedicure field, we've got a whole generation of baby boomers, you know, as far as clients go, they're needing foot care.   

And so, if you like working on feet, this might be a really good event for you to try out because they're literally going to be focusing on nothing but foot care, they've got all the top brands in the country going to this event. And it's gonna be really the first NAILS Magazine event that's just NAILS Magazine putting it on, which is really cool. So, keep an eye out for the Foot Forward Summit, August 12th through the 14th. They're gonna be doing all kinds of serious foot care talks, they're gonna have specialists come, they're gonna have podiatrists come, they've got some different specialty artists coming like Nellie, so Nailed by Nellie. He focuses on feet and he's built a whole successful business around it. He loves working on feet and he's really good at it.   

They've also got this guy called Toe Bro which is going to be coming which I love that name. I think, that's hilarious. They've got Dr. Good Foot coming, and then they've also got some other nail artists coming and I think it's gonna be pretty cool, with all the panelists, the brands the education, the talks about foot care, best practices, all the different tools and techniques and products that are out there to work on feet. So if you guys are interested in, you know, taking advantage of that niche, I definitely recommend you guys check it out. So Foot Forward Summit, August 12th through the 14th, NAILS Mag is going to be putting it on in Atlanta, Georgia, I think that's gonna be really cool and hopefully I will get a chance to go there, that's actually during my birthday.   

Also, I'm super excited about Orlando. Orlando is coming up faster than you can absolutely believe. I will be in Orlando, I'm going to be working with Erica's ATM. I'm going to be doing some e-file demonstrations and working at the booth and I'm also going to be just at the trade show floor hanging out with everyone. I'm also going to be doing some interviews with the NTNA finalists and doing some cool stuff with NAILS Mag. And I will be also going to the NTNA networking event. So that is the cocktail event that they put on the night before the show starts. And I think a lot of nail techs don't know about this event or they think it's like invite only. The networking event is open to anyone who wants to buy a ticket and it's actually really fun. So basically, what it is is they usually host it in a big kind of, you know, gala room. At this at this Orlando Show, I believe it's actually going to be at the convention center instead of at the hotel. There they're getting a separate room, that's actually going to be in the same general area so that's cool. And it's a really fun night to just go hang out with fellow nail techs, meet other people.   

You know, our industry can be very segmented and I think events like this are really fun because you can meet people that you never anticipated meeting. So like last year, I met Robin Moses which if you guys have ever checked out her YouTube channel, she's an amazing artist and I used to follow her when I first started doing nails. And I went to the NTNA networking event and I was like, "Oh, my God, Robin Moses," so I got to meet Robin Moses by going to the event, really cool. There's nail techs of all skill levels, there's, you know, all the nail celebrities are there, all the, you know, big companies are there, I will be there so you guys should come just because I'm going. No, I'm just kidding. But, no, seriously, I want to see you guys if you're going to be there. So check out the NTNA networking event.  

And the cool thing about it this year is that they're actually going to be doing the NAILS Next Top Nail Artists announcement at the Orlando show. So previously they've always done it in Chicago and this year they're going to be doing it at Orlando which I'm really excited because Orlando is a huge show and I think it definitely makes sense to have the NTNA Show in Orlando because that's where everyone is. So they're going to be doing the announcement of the NTNA winner and then also this networking event at the same time. So this is gonna be a big event. I highly recommend you guys check it out. And it also is a little bit of a fancier event so don't be, you know, shy about dressing up a little bit, have fun with it. Usually it's themed but this is a little bit of like more of like a cocktail evening. You know, they have like drinks and apps and stuff like that and so I usually recommend, since you are going to be meeting people, bring business cards, share your Instagram with everyone that you meet there and ask them to follow you. So follow each other.   

Dress nicely, look really cute, you know, do your hair, do your makeup, wear jewelry, you know, wear a cute outfit and whatever your style is, is great but put your best foot forward because these are those types of events where you can meet, you know, the editor of NAILS Magazine, or you can meet Jan Arnold from C&D, or you can meet the winners of, you know, the finalists of NTNA, you can meet famous you know, YouTube stars like Susie from Nail Career Education or Robin Moses, you know, stuff like that. So those are those events that you definitely want to put your best foot forward. and remember, consistent and professional, this is one of those opportunities to do that.   

So, check it out. They're gonna have the social going on which is the party before the NTNA announcement, it's really fun. They're gonna have goodie bags, they're gonna have apps and cocktails, they're also going to have photo opportunities. You can buy your ticket now and just so you know, the week before the event, the prices do go up. So you can buy a ticket at the door but the prices do go up quite a bit. They're gonna have a prize for Best Dressed Nails, so they're I think they're going to be doing a thing where you match your nails to your outfit. And they're going to be doing a price for Best Dressed Nails, Best Salon Representation and dress in your best. So I think it's gonna be really fun.   

So I'm gonna be there. Really recommend you guys check it out. Buy your ticket online early so that you know you have a spot. And going to Orlando, I went by myself. So I don't know if you guys are listening to this and you're like, "Oh, I would love to go to Orlando but like I don't know how to go to Orlando. I don't know what to do with it." I'm gonna be doing a little bit of a deep dive on Orlando in one of my next episodes, but I want to encourage you guys to go because Orlando literally is so fun, and the first year I went, I was really overwhelmed. I went by myself. I had only been in the industry I think for a year, so I had no clue what the heck was happening. It was the first trade show I had ever been to, it was ginormous and I had no idea like where to say, what to do. I ended up staying in a hotel really far away from the Convention Center which was a big mistake.   

So I wanted to give you guys a little bit of insight into how you can go to Orlando and I do think, honestly, it is the one show you guys should try to go to every single year. Going to trade shows is not only fun, but it definitely gets your excitement level going again, gets you re-motivated so you can survive another year of doing nails with just clients who are, you know, maybe beating you down. I know a lot of nail techs who get kind of discouraged when they're working in the salon day in, day out because maybe they have clients they don't like that they're working on or maybe they're not happy with the specific niche that they're in.   

So trade shows are really great kind of reset for nail technicians, it's a great place to meet people and you also have access to all the companies, all the magazine contacts, all of the people that you've loved on YouTube and Instagram and Facebook and all that stuff. And believe it or not, there are a ton of people who also go by themselves. So if you go to Orlando by yourself, it's a very safe place to go. You can Uber anywhere, you can find a hotel... I mean, I think the first year I went, my hotel is like 70 bucks a night, I mean there's nothing. And, you know, get your ticket early for the show so it's not it's not full price. And then you can go to the NTNA social and the networking event and go to the party and see people that you've always wanted to meet, and meet people and make friends and it's just a really, really cool experience, so I highly recommend it. But I will definitely do a deep dive on that later. I just wanted you guys to be aware that that's happening and if you guys want to buy your tickets, definitely do it now. They have all that information on All right? That's it for now. I will be in touch with you guys next week with another amazing episode. And I hope all is well. Have a great week. Bye.   

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