Owners Heather Brewer and Catherine Fain had no experience in the nail industry, but armed with legal, business, and marketing experience, plus an image of what a nail salon experience should include, they took the risk and opened this chic, modern salon in Raleigh, N.C.
> Open only two months when I visited, Paintbar Nails already had an impressive staff of 11 nail techs. They distinguish themselves from other salons in the area by offering what the owners believe to be the ideal salon experience: cleanliness, convenience, customer service, and competitive pricing.
> To ensure cleanliness, all implements are cleaned using a Clarisonic brush and then autoclaved. Files and buffers are disposable, and the tubs have no jets. To increase comfort and overall experience, clients are offered a drink and an iPad. To increase convenience, appointments can be booked online and the salon is open six days a week until 7 p.m. and 12-6 p.m. on Sundays. To keep pricing competitive, clients can choose from manicures at three different price points. Along with nail services, the salon offers lashes and facial waxing.
> The owners credit their immediate popularity to the support of local magazines and bloggers who were eager to spread the good news of two local girls opening a beauty hotspot. Instagram has proven to be another excellent marketing tool. Every post makes the salon look like a little oasis of luxury. Followers take advantage of daily deals or specials, such as 10% off mother/daughter services.
> Looking ahead at their goals for their first year in business, Brewer and Fain intend to focus on educating clients on salon sanitation, maintaining their high standards of customer service, and expanding their demographic into the male market.