Having been in the professional nail industry for over thirty years, I have learned so much, met so many interesting people and observed many changes take place in our industry. When I co-founded Creative Nail Design in 1979, there was no “professional” nail industry. However, the pioneering nail techs at the time were using dental products and trying to offer nail extensions to affluent clients. The average woman could not afford professional nail services as the average price for a full set of nails extensions was $40-50. That price in today’s dollars (meaning adjusted for inflation) would equate to $126!
I would like to touch on two major influences that have shaped our industry’s success over the last thirty years. The first is the level of knowledge the average nail professional enjoys today. In 1979 there was no resource that existed for a nail tech in the US to learn how to become a “Nail Professional”…you really need to give the early nail techs credit for recognizing the opportunity and giving it their best without anyone’s help. While over time, Creative Nail Design was a products company, in the early days, we were teachers as much as we were sellers of products. The wonderful thing is, as companies came into being offering educational classes, those nail techs begin the process of becoming Nail Professionals. Today, there is NO EXCUSE for a Nail Professional not to continuously improve their craft. The number of resources now available are amazing…there is no end to the opportunity to improve your game. So, advice #1: Never (and I mean NEVER) be happy with the level of skill you have today…you must make yourself better each and every year than you were twelve months ago and the best way to achieve this is through the many educational programs that are now offered that fit into any size budget.
The other influence I would like to comment on is the state of the Professional Nail Industry today. As with any industry, ours has undergone major change over the last 10-15 years. I want to share a very simple concept: you as the Nail Professional have a powerful influence on the future direction of our industry, a “vote” on where our industry goes in the future. Advice #2: Buy products from the manufacturers and distributors that support you, The Professional. When Linda and I started Famous Names LLC, we made a firm commitment to be “Professional Only” (read below). That is not an easy commitment to make…any product that becomes popular in the Professional Industry draws a lot of attention from the Retail giants. Once a manufacturer “crosses over” to the retail side, you need to “vote” with your money on a company that is dedicated to you and your success. I can’t understate the importance of this: By supporting companies who support you, they will have the resources to bring new breakthrough products and techniques to the market, which will bring you even more success.
On behalf of Linda and myself, I wish you great future success and happiness and thank you for this opportunity.