Saturday, September 10, 2011

Hey Kids, Remember Me? + Nails Magazine is run by a really unhappy individual

Well, the rush of Back to School is finally over (thank God! I thought I was going to die at a few points), but that means that I have also started school again, and I also have this monster of a cold trying to pull my lungs inside out.

I have a bunch of new things to show you guys, (mainly Kleancolor Metallics. Hot DAMN! They are shiny!). I'll have a huge announcement coming up soon, hopefully, and with any luck, you'll be seeing more of me (cuz you miss me. You know you do.).

In the meantime... Let's take a look at a recent article from NAILS Magazine Editor Hannah Lee....

On My Mind: Move Over, Bloggers!

First of all, wut?

I’m getting kind of tired of all these consumer bloggers online who are just infatuated with nail polish and post endlessly about polish and doing their own nails. I mean, sure, they probably help increase the awareness of nail care and new products (mostly polish), but I think it’s time for those of us on the professional side of the nail world to take back our place in the pecking order.

Let me stop you right there. First of all, rude. Yeah, I understand that those individuals who do their own nails and encourage others to do the same may be taking business away from you, but let's face it. There are a LOT of nail salons that overcharge for sub par work.

They’re even starting to infiltrate my side of the nail world as well — I see as many bloggers taking meetings with manufacturers and hanging out in the press room at trade shows as I do actual journalists.

Infiltrate?? I wasn't aware that the nail care business was some kind of top secret outfit. Besides, its not like they're sneaking in or crashing the party, they were obviously invited and welcomed in. Manufacturers aren't stupid. They realize that the bloggers create more buzz for their brand than any nail tech.

As nail technicians, YOU have the influence over your clients to share the latest color trends and nail styles. Who knows better than YOU about the differences in hybrid gels and what the right treatment for peeling nails is. Don’t cede your powerful professional influence to a bunch of polish junkies who are looking for free handouts of the latest collections from manufacturers. OK, that’s a little harsh. But seriously, the professional side of our industry needs to stay at the forefront and the DIY-ers need to take a small step back.

The rudeness in the paragraph overflows. First of all, many nail techs are not adventurous, trendy people. I'm not saying that none are, but there are quite a few who have been doing this since the 80s and earlier, who couldn't give less of a crap about the new trends. What do you expect from people who have all of 15 bottles of OPI classics? I swear, right in the absolute height of black nails coming into vogue, every salon I went into/near/past had either no black polish or just one of those little stripey things. Don't assume, Ms Lee, that just because people are professionals, that they either know or care about trends.

Polish junkies? I'm sorry, should I be more like the acrylic junkie techs? Should I be sporting glitter-soaked DUCK NAILS because that's what the nail tech thinks is hot? I have around 350 bottles of nail polish, more than most techs have seen in their lives. I have NEVER received a free handout. I am an artist, I express myself everyday through color, and if that makes me a junkie, so be it, but don't you dare assume that we're just greedy little things looking for handouts. We certainly don't have any stores that refuse service to others and offer polish (among other things) at lower prices. We (most of us) don't get incentives from companies.

Thank you, but I believe that the nail techs should step UP and align themselves with the bloggers, because its not the fault of BLOGGERS that nail techs are falling into the shadows. Don't point the finger into cyber space because you are all left blinking in confusion at the light.

The bloggers are the new kids on the block and everyone is fascinated with them. So how do you get your voice heard, you ask?

Easy, you're a professional? Act like one. Know your business. Know your products. For God's sake, know more than three brands of polish. Climb out of your own black hole salons and workstations and listen to the people. We aren't impressed with the gel and crackle polish.

As an educated and licensed nail technician you can speak to clients on a level that the polish enthusiasts can’t. You know what services to recommend. You know what nail shape and length looks best on each of your clients. You know how the products work and why. You know the latest colors, the coolest appliques, and the interesting new techniques (because you read and go to shows and follow professional bloggers). I’ve got a couple ideas to help you reclaim your position as the nail expert.

What services will a nail tech recommend? Acrylics or gel enhancements. That's what keeps clients coming back repeatedly because of the upkeep. I once heard from a girl that the nail tech she went to insulted her for having long, natural nails. Of course they don't want to tell us how to keep our natural nails long and strong, they want us to give up and get tips! Never mind the fact the enhancements destroy your natural nails, your having natural nails doesn't make them any MONEY. And yeah, how many nail techs have you seen with a full set of Konad plates, doing sponge work, gradients, or hell, even Minx? I can name one salon that (unofficially) does minx nails in the area, with the actual Minx website telling me that no one within 50 miles does it. This 50 mile span incorporates three rather large cities.

> Start your own blog.
> Use your web page and Facebook page as a place where you can talk to your clients about what’s hot.
> If you’re a nail artist, create a profile on Nail Art Gallery ( and share it with your clients.
> Get in touch with the consumer press and offer your expertise for nail style stories.
> Put your own “Hot Off the Presses” book together with color swatches, nail styles, and trends you’re seeing from your fellow nail techs or in your trade magazines. Heck, put stuff you find on blogs and in consumer magazines in there too, but present it to your clients as you being their go-to source for all things nail-related.

First of all, how many of you want to go home after a long day of work and then blog for an hour or two about your job? I sure as hell wouldn't! I don't consider a Facebook page a source for professional information. I can't believe that was a serious recommendation.
Not many local papers are keen on publishing "nail style stories", you know, with all the actual news they have to keep up with.
I also would not recommend stealing images and techniques from blogs. Especially after this particular article, many bloggers are going to be on the defense and they will NOT allow someone to use their images in a "Hot of the Presses" style book. Besides, isn't that the tech's job to be the "source" of what's hot? Not a regurgitator of another person's work, but the actual SOURCE.

If your clients are getting the information from you, they won’t have a reason to get it elsewhere. I don’t think consumer bloggers are bad, and I certainly don’t think they’re bad for our industry. I’ve just been thinking that they’re taking the nail care spotlight from those who rightly deserve it — YOU.

Yeah, this last paragraph doesn't make up for the cattiness of your previous thoughts.