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Audrey Siu of Veque didn’t initially plan a red carpet collaboration for her nail lacquer brand, but when the opportunity arose to sponsor a manicurist to do Oscar nominated director Greta Gerwig’s nails for the weekend of the Academy Awards and Independent Spirit Awards, she jumped at the chance, according to a story on www.beautyindependent.com. As the daughter of Vietnamese immigrants, Siu valued the chance to be part of the diversity Gerwig represented on the red carpet.

After a conversation with Nailing Hollywood brought up the idea, Siu sponsored nail tech Mazz Hanna to manicure Gerwig’s nails. After using Veque’s products, Hanna became a fan of the brand’s color quality and easy application.

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For Siu, sponsoring a red carpet manicure was better value than buying sponsored posts from micro-influencers, since she’d have to pay many influencers to get the full impact. “I weighed my value and cost against the quotes that I’ve received from micro-influencers and decided that it was worth the sponsorship because it is also the relationships that I’m investing in — with the agency, manicurist, and Greta’s team,” Siu told NAILS. “My mom may have been a Vietnamese refugee and she did business with a broken English accent, but one of the many things she taught me is that the salon business is built on the relationships that you create over time with your clients.”

As someone who grew up around the nail industry, Siu’s moment with the Oscars was an important place to stop and look back on how far she’s come. “Veque was worn by a woman nominated in categories dominated by men,” says Siu. “She is talented, polished, and wore Rodarte! I didn’t actually do her nails, but I felt like I did. I felt like my team, my family of nail artists; we’re all in the same boat and we all did her nails that night (and the night before).”