Week 1: An Exciting Introduction!

My first day began with an orientation and introduction to the Hollywood Institute of Beauty Careers, the distribution of our salon fundamentals, nails textbook, study guide, and the school shirts that we would wear as a part of our uniform while in the program. We were told our actual nail kits were on back order and we’d receive them soon.Three other nail tech students besides me also started the program, so I didn’t feel alone. After the short school introduction, we were guided to our classes where we would begin the theory portion of our day. The program is set up where students have theory for an hour, then hands-on, practical sessions for the remainder of the day. The class was up to Chapter 5, which was on chemistry. It was great for me to begin with the actual chemical makeup of these products I will be using for the rest of my career. In just a short hour, I learned what happens during the chemical reaction of acrylics, wraps, and gel nails, and I had a crash course in how to apply these different enhancements and the steps to take for maximum adhesion.

At the start of our practical portion, the class moved over to the salon area where we would use what was learned in theory, and put it into action. My instructor started with a demonstration of fiberglass wraps using the OPI Micro Wrap system.

Shortly after, while watching the other students practice wraps, we were called over because our nail kits were just delivered. Yes! This was the moment I’d been waiting for, the reason I’ve avoided buying anything nail related; I wanted to get my hands on my CND student kit. The other new students and I shared the same excitement. We all could not wait to rummage through our kits. We all received the products and implements to perform acrylic overlays, sculptured nails, spa manicures, CND Shellac, and a CND 340-page textbook and study guide, which I think I was most excited about.

Later on in the week I had the chance to use the Essie UV Gel-Polish system and the OPI Micro Wrap system. I created sculpted, encapsulated nails, completed a few nail art services on my classmates, and performed a manicure (which I had dreaded, by the way). We were given a test in chemistry on Thursday, and surprisingly I received a 97%! I also had the opportunity to attend an evening session; the instructor was simply amazing, and with 20 years of experience under her belt, I’d love to just pick her brain about nails. She showed us one time how to complete pink-and-whites, so I attempted it, and it came out OK. The evening teacher showed me the traditional method, and the following day my other instructor, who was very helpful as well, showed me the reverse method where you build the pink acrylic first, then the white tip. I really could go on and on because I had so much fun doing what I love: nails! I encourage any nail enthusiast to really consider attending a nail tech program. Do your research, choose an accredited program, and find a place that’s clean and has instructors with experience who can really teach you and are also passionate about their craft.

Until next week,

— Tisha

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