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Beyond the Salon: How Nail Pros Branched Out During COVID Closures

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With COVID-19 outbreaks causing salon shutdowns across the country, nail professionals have had to get creative when it comes to doing business. For many, that means marketing nail care for at-home use. And for others, that means branching out into the broader world of beauty to better serve new and potential clients. 

I asked members of the nail community all about how they’ve supplemented their income while their salon has been closed. These female business owners have mastered the art of adapting. Check out their stories below: 

Angela Taylor, Lunula Nail Lab, Charleston, S.C. @lunulanaillab

Nail pros love expressing their love for nails, so Taylor took advantage of the first shutdown to launch her line of comfy T-shirts, complete with nail sayings. Cheeky phrases such as “Break boundaries, not nails” and “You say nail technician like it’s a bad thing” in on-trend fonts and cool colors make these pieces a soon-to-be staple in any nail lover’s wardrobe. Nail techs can wear these tops to show their love for their craft, whether working or not. Shop here to score your own!

Jessica Warzyniak, Ooh Nice Nails, Crown Point, Ind. @oohnicenails

Jewelry-making is not a far leap for many nail artists, as many of the same products can be used in both crafts. Warzyniak, who is known for her quirky nail style, took her love of bugs to the next level by encasing them in delicate jewelry and selling them through Instagram. Don’t miss her story highlight showcasing her penchant for ultra sparkly, sequin masks, also available for sale through IG here.

Alexandra Goodson, The Cured Nail, Jacksonville, Fla. @alexandragoodson

Perhaps the biggest trend in nails since salon closures in March has been the popularity of press-on nails. A scroll through Instagram reveals many top nail artists taking to creating customized sets and selling them to clients who still need their nail fix. Prior to COVID, a customized set of nail tips was the celebrity and runway-preferred method of wearing nails, which Goodson is now bringing to the masses. She was getting so many orders for press-ons during the shutdown of her salon that she decided to launch Always Pressed Nails – a monthly subscription box featuring handcrafted full cover nails. Always Pressed Nails goes live on February 1. Shop here!

Dana Cecil, Nail Junkie, New Philadelphia, Ohio @dana_nailjunkie

Handmade items such as scrubs, lotions, and bath bombs have gained popularity in the salon retail space. With clients concerned more and more about ingredients and wanting to focus on natural beauty, Cecil decided to make and sell cuticle oil under her Nail Junkie brand. Cuticle oil is recommended for daily use to maintain the skin around the nails, so clients always have a reason to stock up. Cecil’s mix contains vitamin E and wisteria, making it extra moisturizing. Shop here.

Priscilla Quezada, Nailme & Co., Fresno, Calif. @nailmeandco

At-home nail kits have been another popular offering throughout the pandemic. Quezada includes scrubs, lotion, polish, a file, toe separators, masque, and a disposable kit, so her clients have everything they need to maintain their nails during a shutdown. In addition, Quezada also offers pedi slippers, pedi socks, cuticle oil, and press-ons for those who want to pamper their hands and feet. Shop here!

Mami Griffin, Nails By Mami, Whistler, Canada @mamiandseika

Nail competition judge and creator Mami Griffin decided to branch out into skin and body products with a focus on clean beauty. She collaborated with a local soap manufacturer to create ethical skincare products such as cleanser, face and body oil, lotion, and cuticle softener. Upgrade your skincare and shop here.

Melanie Lewendon, Melanie Lewendon Nail Artist, Derby, U.K. @melanielewendon_nail_artist_

Lewendon wanted to focus more on education when contemplating a new product offering during her salon shutdown. She decided on EduMats, a complete education package, course, support, workbook, and mat to learn the fundamentals of art and application. The mat is a practice mat that can be wiped down and allows nail pros to perfect acrylic application and brush strokes on a reusable surface. Shop here to get started!

Give these awesome nail artists a follow and be sure to show them some love on the ‘gram! While this pandemic has hit nail pros hard, these new business ventures show just how resilient and revolutionary salon pros can be.

Beth Livesay
Beth Livesay
Pro Beauty, Nails & Fashion Publisher
With more than 12 years of publishing experience, Beth Livesay is an expert in the beauty and fashion industry. Most recently, she served as the Director of Brand Content Strategy at nailsmag.com and has overseen Nail Art Gallery Magazine, Salon Fanatic, NAILS Next Top Nail Artist, and NTNA All Stars.