From the Bottom Up

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A strong interest in a career path is certainly necessary to begin your schooling in a particular subject. Particular knowledge, however, is not always necessary.

As I recently sat to get my nails done, my nail technician worked diligently to give me the best manicure. She asked me if I wanted my cuticles pushed back and I responded that I would rather have them cut. I told her that I always liked to get cleaned up the best I could. To this, she responded that she didn’t think I needed them cut and that it was actually not the best to always have that done. This is when I thought about how beauty school and work experience really shapes the professional you can become. I’m fairly certain that before my nail technician started her nail career that she didn’t know that little fact. It was through time and learning that she was able to learn such things.

So is this case with most people. You start your career out with some knowledge and then eventually learn more as you go along. You work your way to the top by working diligently and persevering. That doesn’t mean that it isn’t tough at the bottom, but you have to start somewhere. There are lots of different career path stories. Start your own today and read up on a hair stylist, a celebrity makeup artist, and a foundation expert.

-Amanda Fornecker

A Reasonable Manicure

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New York City is one of the best places to get a mani/pedi. On almost every street corner, you’ll find an opportunity to get a good deal on the pair and feel extremely pampered. This is not the case in many other cities. And I wonder why that is.

Since moving down to Washington, DC, it has been impossible for me to find a good place to get a mani/pedi. I ran into a mall one day to get just a quick manicure and $20+ later, I was broke and unhappy with the way it even turned out. I did not feel pampered and I felt as if my nail tech was rushing through my manicure. And for 20 bucks, I expect a rather exceptional job.

As I sat with my nails drying and not looking the best they’ve ever looked, I wondered why manicures are so expensive in other cities. Is it just that I’m a spoiled New Yorker who expects that the differences in other cities should be only within pizza, bagels, and accents? Or were these nail technicians trained differently? I don’t believe it’s the latter, as nail technician training has accreditation for a reason. Is it just that I was unlucky with the girl that did my manicure? Could be. But I think proper training is key.

In Top 10 Reasons to Go to Nail School, we share with you some ideas to get you thinking about a career as a nail tech. Some people just naturally have the talent to do nails, while others are really ambitious and know that they’d be good and happy at a nail tech job. No matter what your reason, if you’re interested in a nail tech career, I’d strongly urge you to look into one. After all, you can always come down to DC and open your very own salon with reasonable manicures and fabulous nail techs. I’d certainly be a patron! Until then, I’ll have to wait until I get to NY for a great mani/pedi.

-Amanda Fornecker

Tennis Star Turned Nail Tech

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Just because you’re a celebrity, doesn’t mean you don’t need to go to school. That’s what Serena Williams is proving right now. After returning from the Australian Open, the tennis star decided she wanted to become a nail technician, writing in her blog, “No one likes getting their nails done more than I do. As a matter of fact I go every four days to get a manicure and every seven days for a pedicure.”

Williams found that she wanted to really prepare for her new nail line with HairTech and felt that becoming a nail technician would help her develop her love for nails further. She found a school in her state of Florida and checked out how many hours she needed to complete in order to obtain her license to practice. For Florida, it’s 240 hours of nail technician school practice. Williams hopes to finish the nail technician school program within the next year, even though she notes that most people can finish the program in just six weeks. Hey, she’s a busy girl with a grueling tennis schedule. But it just goes to show you that even if you don’t have as much time as you’d like, you can still pursue one of your interests.

Williams prepared the night before for her big first day at nail technician school by getting some cute blue clothes (that’s the color she had to wear) and some accessories to reflect her personality from the Hello Kitty store. She wrote in her blog: “If I’m not the best, I sure do want to look like it. Not only do I plan on being the top student to graduate from my nail school, but I also intend on being the most fashionable!”

On her first day, Williams had to do a pedicure on another student and got quite a few compliments on her work. She was quite thrilled with her whole experience and is excited at the prospect of becoming a licensed nail technician. She says, “Don’t be surprised if you hear about a part time job I’ve picked up at a local nail salon.” Wouldn’t you be surprised?!

Researching schools is just the first step in the process. And if a celebrity can do it, so can you. Start your search today.

-Amanda Fornecker

Colors for a Nail Technician

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I couldn’t help but notice all the great compliments I got this week on my nail polish. It’s a great conversation starter and an excellent way to stand out in the crowd. From darks to neutrals, which colors would be best on you? I’m sure your nail technician is sure to give you the best answer. Until then, here are some of my favorites for this time of year.

The color that has been keeping my nails warm and the compliments flowing all week long is Essie’s Chinchilly. This dark gray is a perfect combination of neutral and dark to match any outfit no matter where you’re going.

Neutrals are certainly in for any season. Limo-scene by Essie is a light pink that keeps your nails neat and clean, while giving them the shine they deserve to keep you out for a night out on the town or for a quiet day at the office.

I love Mr. Right Now by Sephora by OPI. It’s a deep red that is great for the holidays, Valentine’s Day, and winter in general. For your next party, get your nail technician to spice up your life with some bold color.

By talking with your licensed nail technician, you’ll be able to find out what’s hot and in for the current season and what might go best with your skin tone. After all, professionals know best and they are on the very pulse of every fashion trend.

-Amanda Fornecker

Holiday Gifts for the Beauty Lovers

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What do you get for a beauty professional who seems to have all the right miracle beauty products this holiday season? Check out some of these products below that will kickstart your favorite beauty professional’s new year in just the right way…

Hair Stylist
If smooth, straight hair is what you’re after, then Living proof’s frizz straight making no frizz styling cream is just what you need. Attempting to beat the evil known as humidity, to keep split ends down to a minimum, and help cut down on drying time, this no frizz styling cream is seriously a no-brainer. For the professional and amateur hair stylist alike, you’ll love to have this in your repertoire of secret weapons.

Buy the 4 oz. bottle of frizz straight making no frizz styling cream at Sephora for $24.

Esthetician
Even those with flawless skin can get a blemish on their face from time to time. Don’t let it get you down. That’s what CoverFX’s Camouflage Concealer is for. This concealer really camouflages anything from a pimple to redness to signs of a sleepless night. It’s high-definition ready and helps to even out skin tone. It even comes in six different shades. What more could an esthetician ask for?

Buy the 0.5 oz. bottle of Camouflage Concealer at Sephora for $25.

Nail Technician
We’re always looking for the longest-lasting manicure that will help keep nails at their strongest. Perfect Formula’s Nail Guard System does just that with some gel and crystals. The gel coat, also known as a “Suit of Armor” helps to thicken and strengthen the weakest of nails as a base coat. The crystal nail file helps to shape and seal nails to keep them looking fabulous even longer.

Buy the kit on http://www.perfectformulas.com for $33.50.

Makeup Artist
Most girls long for longer, fuller lashes and that’s usually what mascara is supposed to do for us. CARGO goes one step farther by helping grow your lashes with LashActivator. By using products like Marine Algae extracts, citrus-derived Flavonoids, and Peptide-biotin, LashActivator helps promote better looking lashes with a slow lash loss rate. Perfect for everyday use, you can expect to see a difference within 30 days.

Buy LashActivator at Sephora for $35.

-Amanda Fornecker