Orlando, Fla.-based nail tech Mai Truong maintains a full clientele at YOU Nails Salon Spa and still finds time to travel the world, thanks to a flexible schedule and loyal clients. “That flexibility came only after I was able to build up a clientele that was understanding about my travel schedule,” she explains. Finding a salon that was willing to work with her schedule was the first step. “I didn’t want the responsibility of having my own studio, so luckily for me I found a salon and a boss who was willing to work with me and my wanderlusting (Thanks, Paige!)” she says.
Truong plans ahead to make sure her clients are taken care of before she leaves on a trip, expanding her work hours so that she can fit them all in. “I always tell them ahead of time when I will be out of town and we work on penciling them in right before I leave,” she explains. “This includes working late nights and early in the morning before I fly out to get everyone in. If they’re not able to make it in, I recommend another nail tech who can take care of them.”
Far from losing clients, Truong’s adventures can be a point of connection for them. Many of her clients travel themselves and like to exchange stories and recommendations during appointments, while other clients are tourists visiting Florida. “My recent trip to Iceland was fueled by a client’s recent winter vacation to the island,” she says. “I’ve met many clients from around the world, and their stories of home and travel inspire me to travel even more.” Truong uses her background in graphic design and photography to pick up extra work, but would eventually like to do nail art while on her travels. “I would love doing pop-up and editorial stints as a nail artist,” she says. “To travel, see the world, and do what you love all at the same time would be awesome.”