“My clients come to their appointments with stories that clerks in the surrounding areas recognize my work on their nails. They think they are wearing tips,” says Tess Walters, owner of Puttin’ On The Nails in Logansport, Ind., and U.S. distributor of the Art Pen. In actuality, Walters’ clients are wearing gel overlays that have allowed their natural nails to grow long. The fact that all her clients have their own nails is the direct result of a marketing decision Walters made a few years ago.

“In my area many people have had bad experiences with acrylic, so I took a new approach,” she says. “I started showing women how they could remove their acrylic and put gel overlays on, so they could keep their nails from breaking. Basically, I started a campaign to convert people from acrylic to gel overlays.” And it worked. “I can’t handle all the referrals,” she says. “I have turned enough people away in the past two years to equal four full clienteles!”

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