Working Healthy

How Nails Changed My Life

The beauty business is more a calling than a job for most nail techs. For many it provides the freedom to make your own schedule and be your own boss. For others it enables you to raise others’ spirits through your care and your artistry. We asked readers to tell us: How has the beauty industry changed your life?

I was very insecure before I got into this industry. I didn’t believe people when they complimented me on anything. I gained confidence and self-worth from dealing with my clients. I have been truly blessed by them. I became an educator for Star Nail 10 years ago, and I am so much more confident and can speak in front of crowds. I feel “important” in my industry. Not only that, it has provided me with a great living.

Brenda Gibson
Brenda Gibson Center for Nails, Perrysburg, Ohio


It has changed my life for the better because I have been my own boss for more than 10 years. It has given me a freedom to not have to answer to anyone, except my clients. I love it!

Marsee Essington
NAILS by Marsee, Mount Pleasant, Pa.


I’ve been licensed since 1989, in four different states. The beauty industry has always made it easy to relocate, work, and build an amazing clientele. Through the years I have seen many changes, including sculptured nails, tips, wraps, glue, no glue, MMA, no MMA, pink-and-whites, colored acrylic, hand painted art, airbrush art, gels, gel polish, round, square, oval, squoval, C-curve, and stilettos. This industry always continues to move forward. You can choose your own destiny.

Lisa Anderson
Avanti Salon, Sparks, Nev.


I was a private investigator and did bounty hunting for 12 years prior to being a nail tech. My husband died and I was left with three children who needed a mother around. I decided to find something where I could be there for them. I had always enjoyed getting my nails done and thought, I can do that. So I did. It changed my life — I went from catching criminals for a living to really enjoying people and giving them great care. I am so rewarded every time someone sits in my chair and walks away feeling really good. I have been blessed many times over through my losses in life.

Stella Joy Kimble
The Magnolia Salon, Cleveland, Texas


I entered the beauty industry thinking I was just going to do this for a while until I could figure out what I really wanted to make my career. I knew I enjoyed being creative and making people happy so it seemed like the perfect idea. Lo and behold I fell in love with the industry and what it does to people and have never left the school I attended. I am now the spa/nails teacher. I feel like this industry really pushes you to take control of your future. You can truly be as successful as your mind will let you imagine. Without this industry, I truly don’t know where I might be, but I’m sure glad I don’t have to worry about that!

Lindsey Sauerbrei
LaJames International College, Iowa City, Iowa


Where to begin describing the many ways this awesome industry has changed my life? I think it has been the women I meet daily who change me the most. I never realized how much I truly admired and respected other women until I had the honor of helping them feel great about themselves. I have met countless kind, thoughtful, selfless, strong, driven, professional, dynamic women, especially the special women I work beside, and most of all my always inspiring students. I wouldn’t trade my experiences for anything. As I learned from each of them, I learned about myself.

Jessica Marie Ellison
Jolie Beauty Bar, Toronto


Going from working in a pretzel shop and odd jobs all my life to being a nail tech has been nothing short of life changing. From my attitude to my wardrobe, it’s been nothing but fun! Knowing that people actually will pay for me to do their nails and crave my nail art makes me feel so good. Being a nail tech really keeps you on your toes — what with moving onto new trends, coming up with new designs, keeping up a great conversation with someone you see on a bi-weekly basis, and keeping yourself presentable. It’s a great experience and I wish I had done this 20 years ago.

Dianna Medeiros
The Make-Up Bar, Cherry Hill, N.J.


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