1. Push your creative boundaries

Entering NTNA was a game changer for me. Even though I had dabbled in 3-D in my salon work, I  never created a complete 3-D piece or even entered a mixed-media competition. It was through the challenges from NTNA that I was able to push myself out of my comfort zone and start creating wild and exciting things that I had never even dreamt of.

2.Understand product like never before

Through the NTNA challenges and through experimentation, I have been able to understand the properties and the characteristics of nail enhancement products even better. Each and every nail enhancement product has its traditional usage, however when you start experimenting with it, a nail lacquer can turn into a piece of wrapping paper, or an LED gel can form the basis of your champagne glass. You will never look at your products in the same way again!

Our #NAILSNTNA Top 3 with @janarnoldcnd for #americasbeautyshow

A post shared by #NAILSMAGAZINE (@nailsmagazine) on


3. Get feedback from Industry Gurus

In this competition you have the opportunity to put your best creations forward and have them critiqued by some of the gurus in the industry. The judges include top nail technicians and educators from some of the top brands. This may seem very daunting, however it is the perfect opportunity to find out if you are on the right track and get advice from serious players on how to improve. How cool is that?!

4. International Exposure

The most amazing thing about this competition is that no matter where you are in the world, you are able to compete. The competition is supported by the sponsors of the competition and is run by Nails Magazine. Through their unrivalled social media presence, this competition and its competitors are brought under the spotlight worldwide. This is a fabulous opportunity to find new friends, inspire other international technicians and make connections across the globe.

5. You are at that stage where you just want more

Whether you are a nail technician, a session manicurist, or an educator, you may just have that feeling that you just want more. You may have that feeling that you can do more and achieve more and you are just not sure how to do that. Then this is a must do for you. NTNA filled that void for me. I love doing what I was doing, I was just missing the challenge. NTNA took me right out of my comfort zone, shook me around, and put me back, stronger, more determined, and more inspired than ever. I can't wait for you to experience it for yourself.

Follow our guest editor, NTNA judge, and season 4 champion, Tracey Lee on Instagram (@traceyleenails). 

Apply for Season 5 of NAILS Next Top Nail Artist here. 

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, Click here.