Customer Service

Mobile Manicurist Rescues a Star

Ever since Sharon Lavicott was called on to come to an actress’s aid in a pinch, she has considered becoming a mobile manicurist. “This idea, of being a mobile manicurist, has stayed with me,” says Lavicott, who has worked for the past two years as a nail technician and reflexologist at Merle Norman Cosmetics in Baltimore, Md. “People are very busy these days and like the idea of a manicurist coming to their home, especially those who can’t got out. It’s more personalized, yon can dross more casually because you’re going to the person’s house, and you can work around a person’s schedule. Dogs are groomed by mobile groomers. Why not people?”

Very early one morning in the spring of 1991, Lavicott’s phone rang. It was one of her clients saying that a friend of a friend had called late the night before saying she needed her nails done “yesterday.” The one needing a manicure was an actress who had to be back on the set in New York the next day: It was none other than TV soap opera star Tonja Walker, who plays the villainess Alexandra Olanov Hesser on “One Life to Live.”

Lavicott says that despite the excitement she felt in anticipation of manicuring a celebrity, she managed to be calm and practical. “When I arrived at the house where Tonja was staying it was only 7:00 a.m.,” says Lavicott. “Tonja had just awakened, and without a hair out of place and her big, cornflower-blue eyes shining, she was beautiful even without make-up. Tonja was totally opposite of the sassy, sinister Alex she portrays. She was down-to-earth and easy to talk to.”

Lavicott feels there is a special bond between the client and the nail technician when you do a client’s nails in her home. “She’s more relaxed and open,” Lavicott notes. “And people tell me that it’s cheaper to come to me than to go to a shrink. It’s better to spend $12 for a manicure than $150 for a psychologist, for three years I did home care for the elderly. I like that personal touch.”

Lavicott says she spent about an hour doing Walker’s nails and that Walker asked for Jessica’s #157 red. “I managed to do her nails without one mistake,” says Lavicott. “The state boards would be proud!” She gave Walker the bottle of polish as a present. “I couldn’t bear the thought of chipped nails on national TV!”

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