The first episode of “Nail’d It!” started off with a bang, pitting veteran nail competitors Classic Mully and Jamie Melchor and expert salon manicurist LaToya Parker against each other. (It also featured a brief cameo of yours truly!) The first Quick Dry Challenge asked competitors to create a set of salon-worthy nails using a statement accessory from their client’s wardrobe. I thought LaToya’s take on her client’s bold necklace was the most interesting and wearable design, but Classic’s nails—inspired by her client’s sequin blazer—took the prize, awarding her a leg up in the 3-D Challenge.
For the more complex, time-consuming 3-D Challenge, the nail artists were asked to take one of their fellow competitors previous designs and improve upon it. This is where Classic and Jamie’s experience in professional nail competitions really helped them out. They were able to create designs that showcased their more advance technical ability, working with acrylic and pigments to create over-the-top three-dimensional designs, while LaToya was limited to using premade beads and bows as well as molds to create her designs (rather than sculpting the hearts by hand, which is more difficult). Ultimately, Classic’s avant garde take on LaToya’s lace, glitter and beaded nails won her the $10,000 prize and a spot in the semi-finals.
While the two competitions this week made for an exciting episode, they’re also quite common in the salon. After all, if you want a great nail design, unless you really trust your manicurist to come up with something on her own, your best bet is to come prepared with a source of inspiration: maybe a dress or a new pair of shoes or even a picture of a set of nails that you really like. Part of making the most of your nail appointment is being prepared in advance with the type of nails that you want. Whether that means simply choosing a color or knowing what kind of design you want ahead of time will allow your nail technician to spend her time giving you the nails that you want. When you hem and haw over a color or design, you eat into the precious time allotted for your appointment—which can result in a speedy manicure or a design that isn’t quite what you wanted.
So come prepared to the salon with an item or an image to present to your nail tech. Also, if you know that you want nail art, be sure to let your manicurist know that when you’re booking your appointment so enough time is blocked off. If you bring an image of nail art, let your nail artist know if you want the exact same design—color choice and all—or if you’re willing to personalize it a bit. While a good manicurist will automatically copy the design exactly, a great nail artist will take your inspiration and improve upon it to make the nails uniquely yours.
For more tips on how to prepare for your next nail appointment, check out the January/February 2015 issue of Nail It! magazine on newsstands December 16 or subscribe at http://nailitmag.com/subscribe/.
Editor-in-Chief, Nail It!