From Blogger to Beauty Professional

It’s hard to ignore the presence of bloggers in the nail industry. They have taken the world of beauty by storm and some blogs are even a part of a daily diet of reading. These women post reviews, paint swatches, and create exquisite art that keeps their followers coming back for more. But I bet you didn’t know that a good number of these nail enthusiasts are actually professionals, and that many of them made the decision to go to nail school after establishing their blogs. Learn how a tiny corner of the Internet encouraged these nail lovers to become licensed nail techs.

<p>Chelsea King</p>

Label Me Lindsay Studio, Los Alamitos, Calif.

Blogging since: 2011

Chelsea King started her nail art blog during her senior year of high school. After getting laid off from her desk job she knew it was the perfect opportunity to attend nail school. King is ­especially inspired by fashion to create her original nail designs.

Blog mission: I don’t believe in posting and blogging without sharing the tricks of the trade. It’s important to share what tools you use and how to do the design.

Favorite nail trend and medium: My favorite nail trend would have to be geometric designs. I love really detailed and precise nail art. My favorite medium to work in is nail polish, but gel is beginning to grow on me.

What are the benefits to having a license as opposed to just doing nails for fun? ­Having a license opens up so many more doors than just doing it for fun. ­Obviously, having your license allows you to make money, which is a huge ­benefit. As much as I love being creative on myself doing nails for fun, it’s great to be able to spread my talent onto other people’s nails.

What is the most valuable thing you learned in nail school? The most valuable thing I learned in nail school was definitely about sanitation and the importance of properly cleaned implements. My focus was previously just on nail art, whereas now my focus is on the experience from beginning to end. Having the client feel confident in knowing they are getting top-of-the-line, clean tools, a great manicure, and fun nail art on top of it all.

How has getting licensed changed your life and your blog? My goal after getting my license was to find representation to do freelance work. I love the variety. One day you can be doing nails for an ad campaign, and the next you’re working on the red carpet with celebrities. Besides working with an agency, I do have an appointment only space in a hair and makeup studio! As for my blog, getting my license hasn’t changed anything. As much as I love doing nails for other people, I still love posting online and educating others.

Blogroll: Chalkboard Nails, Astrowifey, Stephanie Stone, The Illustrated Nail, and Nail Swag.

<p>Sarah Kane</p>

Sugarcoat Nails, Austin, Texas

Blogging since: 2012

Just because she has a journalism degree and writes for other websites didn’t mean blogging came naturally to Sarah Kane. It wasn’t until a friend coaxed her into blogging a year ago that ATX Lacquerista was founded. When a photographer approached Kane after recognizing her nails it all became clear. “She was like, ‘Are you ATX ­Lacquerista?’ I swear, I almost passed out, that was one of the best moments of my life. At that point, I knew that nails were what I was meant to do. My only New Year’s resolution for 2013 was to get my manicurist license.”

Blog mission: I treat my blog like the zines I made in middle school. It’s a visual representation of things that my hands have created. It’s uniquely mine, and not anyone else’s.

Favorite nail trend and medium: I love glitter and all 3-D embellishments. My favorite medium is gel-polish. It’s amazing how long my manicures can last, especially ­considering how much acetone I handle. I’ve recently spent a lot of time creating nail art with acrylic paint.

What are the benefits to having a license as opposed to just doing nails for fun? Well, for starters, having a license means that you’re legally allowed to touch people on their hands and feet, and you can actually get a job in a salon (at least, in the U.S.). I have  a lot more knowledge about nails in general, like what chemicals make up nail polish, the difference between the cuticle and the eponychium, how to build an acrylic nail, when to deny someone a service, etc. Having a license makes me legitimate. Plus, it’s really nice being able to go to those “license only” beauty supply stores to stock up on polish.

What is the most valuable thing you learned in nail school? When I first started school, I had to reteach myself most of my previously mastered techniques, because giving a manicure to a client is a lot different than doing my own nails. Every nail bed is different, so you have to cater to every client’s specific needs. I also got over my fear of feet, and now, I love giving pedicures.

How has getting licensed changed your life and your blog? I just started working at Sugarcoat Nails in Austin, Texas. The owners reached out to me on Instagram, and gave me the opportunity to intern while I was still in school. It was a great experience, and made getting through beauty school a lot easier. Getting my license has changed every aspect of my entire life. I get paid to do what I love, and I get to meet awesome people (both in Austin and online), and I get to express myself creatively. I still kind of can’t believe this all happened.

Blogroll: Chelsea Queen, The Illustrated Nail, Supa Nails, Nailside, Chalkboard Nails, Algae Veronica, Let Them Have Polish, Prima Creative, The Nailasaurus, and Work/Play/Polish.


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