I became a Nail Technician in March 2004 after taking voluntary redundancy from my office job of 15 years. When I first decided to leave my Telecoms and IT job I decided I would become a Beauty Therapist which was about as far removed from IT as you could possibly get! I needed a complete change of career direction having given every ounce of energy and commitment to my old job and feeling totally burned out and the end of it, I needed a new challenge to inspire me.
After discovering that Beauty Therapy was the new up and coming business to be in, and that all the college courses in my area were booked up for 2 years I had to reconsider. It followed a chance comment by a friend who said I was always doing things with my nails and complaining that I couldnít find a decent Nail Technician, that planted a seed of an idea, and over the next few months I started investigating the possibility of starting my own business as a Nail Technician.
During those months of investigation I was lucky enough to stumble across a website containing a wealth of information which would steer my new venture with a steady and wise hand. I discovered that Nail Technicians are not required to have a licence or any formal training to start up in business, that I could simply place an ad in my local paper tomorrow and start working on unsuspecting clients without any training at all. I also discovered that the quality of Nail Technician training varied widely along with the cost. Through reading about the unfortunate experiences of other Technicians I discovered that a 2 day course was never going to be enough to make me a competent and skilled technician, I needed to seriously invest in my training if I wanted to succeed.
I decided to do basic Manicure and Pedicure courses with Beauty Concepts based in Hurstpeirpoint, before embarking on my Nail Enhancements training with Creative Nail Design. The Manicure and Pedicure courses were a day long each, and the Foundation course with Creative would take 4 days in London at their Acton Training Academy. I loved the courses with Beauty Concepts, this type of learning didnít feel like work, I was so interested in all the information they were giving us it didnít feel like work at all, it felt like fun, despite my initial nervousness as being the oldest in the class at 35 years old!
Full of excitement and enthusiasm after my two days training I travelled to London to start my Four Day Foundation Course with CND. This too was a revelation, and I couldnít wait for each new day to start so I could learn something new. I passed the foundation course with flying colours and was now insured and ready to start working on some willing clients.
Whilst the Foundation course taught me the skills for applying Liquid & Powder enhancements, I realised I wanted to become a Ďfull service technicianí and be able to offer every type of enhancement available, so I took conversion courses in both fibreglass/silk and gel nails. This enabled me to offer a suitable system for every client.
With the support of my best friend Linda who has travelled to London to be my model of several occasions, my Husband Chris, and my Mentor Jacqui, who I met on my training course, Iíve gone from strength to strength and loved every moment of my new career and business.
After about a year my mentor decided I was ready to become a Creative Master Technician, which at the time I took it, was the highest level of recognition a CND trained technician could achieve without becoming an educator. This qualification day required several pre-assessment training days beforehand and on the actual big day, a written test and a practical assessment. Again, armed with the support of Linda as my model, and Chris on the end of the phone I took my Qualification day and passed with the highest marks in my class Ė it took quite a while to wipe the smile off my face I can tell you!
Since then I have been honing my skills and building my client base, working from my home salon. I have reduced my mobile commitment as I have discovered most of my clients actually prefer to come to me and enjoy a couple of hours out of their daily routine and getting away from their stresses and strains. I still offer my mobile services to my clients in emergency situations when they just canít get to me for that important repair or appointment, if they are ill or immobilised for any reason. I will also do mobile appointments for a client who is housebound or who has mobility issues.
In 2006 I am hoping to compete in one of the National Nail competitions, I would like to experience the thrill of competing and learn more about how to hone my skills.
To continue my nail education I will be completing my NVQ Levels 2 & 3 in Nail Services, having started them in October 2005.
I also plan to become a CND Master Technician in both Fibreglass and Gel sometime in the future.
Long term who knows, maybe one day I would like to go into teaching nail services, I enjoy sharing my skills and knowledge and teaching would be immensely satisfying, but for now Iím enjoying every moment!
Qualifications Achieved to Date:
LCN Basic Manicure Seminar - January 2004
LCN Basic Pedicure Seminar - January 2004
CND Four Day Foundation Course - March 2004
Fabric# Conversion Course - April 2004
Brisa Gel Conversion Course - April 2004
Make Over Magic - January 2005
Creative Illusions - January 2005
Real Rebalancing - February 2005
Master Technician Qualification - February 2005