How Do I Become a Hair and Nail Technician?

Hair and nail technician providing services for a client.

Hair and nail technicians are in high demand. But it takes more than desire to turn an obsession with style into a career, it takes quality education. The good news for beauty enthusiasts is that the road to becoming a hair and nail technician is clear. The key to success is completing a vocational school cosmetology program.

Why Become a Hair and Nail Technician?

The best careers are those that make people feel great about going to work in the morning. How can someone know if being a hair and nail technician is a good fit? A happy cosmetologist enjoys conversation, thrives on creativity, embraces the latest beauty trends, and wants to beautify the world around them.

Enjoys Conversation

Cosmetologists are called “thera-stylists” in the industry. They serve as sounding boards for whoever sits in their chairs. Surveys shows that of the millions of people who frequent salons, most of them would trust their hairdresser’s advice over their therapist’s for “serious” personal problems. It’s all about trust, the foundation of which is communication.

Thrives on Creativity

Styling hair and manicuring nails is a form of art. Expression through personal style is empowering for clients who want to look and feel their best. The best hairdressers sculpt hair with the same passion Michelangelo had for carving marble. Students who thrive on creativity can start a new masterpiece every day.

Embraces the Latest Beauty Trends

Style evolves. Classic designs rarely change, but trends morph every season, there’s always a new look to try. Tomorrow’s top cosmetologists are today’s YouTube beauty video enthusiasts. All new trends start somewhere, some in the most unexpected places.

Wants to Beautify the World Around Them

The activities people enjoy in their off time is a powerful predictor of job satisfaction. Passionate hair and nail technicians often begin their career by doing special occasion styles for friends and family, an updo for a wedding or braids for the kids. No good cosmetologist lets their world be gray when it can be filled with color.

How Does Someone Become a Hair and Nail Technician?

Hair and nail technicians must have a license to practice. Every state has different requirements, but all require at least some form of formal education. Being a whiz with the shears isn’t enough. The quickest path to a rewarding career as a hair and nail technician is to complete a vocational school cosmetology program.

What Does Someone Learn in a Cosmetology Program?

Cosmetology programs differ, but they offer the same core curriculum. Students learn hair care, and nail care, including basic spa manicures and pedicures.

Hair Care

Cosmetology programs emphasize hair care because it’s the most popular service in salons. Students learn the anatomy and physiology of the hair, skin and scalp, so they know how it grows and behaves. The practical focus is on doing styles, cuts and colors.

Nail Care

The cosmetology curriculum also covers nail care. Manicures and pedicures are now second only to haircuts as the most requested personal service, and clients expect graduates will be well-versed in the latest techniques, including:

  • Basic and spa manicures and pedicures
  • Nail Tips
  • Sculpted nails
  • UV gels
  • Nail art

Some cosmetology schools also offer extra training in special occasion make-up and enhancements such as hair and eyelash extensions.

Why Attend a Vocational School Program?

There are many reasons for students to attend a vocational school program in cosmetology. Vocational school students learn a valuable trade, get a quick start, learn in the real world, benefit from small classes, work with industry educated instructors, are prepared to be licensed and certified, and graduate with business opportunities.

Learn a Valuable Trade

Hair and nails grow regardless of social and economic circumstances. Like nurses and welders, cosmetologists have practical skills people need. Jobs for hair and nail technicians are projected to grow by 8 percent in the coming decade, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Beauty is a billion-dollar business and growing.

Get a Quick Start

A rewarding career doesn’t have to mean spending years in college. Hair and nail technicians can be out of the classroom and earning in just ten months if they attend full time. Few careers with this much potential require so little time training.

Learn in the Real World

There’s no substitute for learning how to serve people than by working with them. Mannequins are fine for practice, but cosmetology is a service industry. There’s so much more to it than cutting hair and painting nails.

Learning in context by working in a student-run salon or via externships with experienced professionals prepare students for their first job. Graduates enter the workforce feeling confident about their skills, and employers are grateful to know their clients will be in good hands.

Benefit from Small Classes

Adult students learn faster and retain more information in small classes. Instructors have fewer distractions to manage and more time to work with students one-on-one. Constructive feedback is immediate, making the most of students’ time and helping them reach their maximum potential.

Work with Industry-educated Instructors

Cosmetology instructors are among the most talented hair and nail technicians in the field. They’re licensed, certified and experienced. During a short ten-month program, students can take advantage of what these seasoned pros know, from styling tips to how to handle demanding clients.

Are Prepared for Licensing and Certification

For client safety, states require cosmetologists to pass a competency exam before they can work. Tests evaluate knowledge in a wide range of categories, from sanitation and infection control to hair and nail care techniques. Schools that “teach to the test” and help students with preparation have better first-time pass rates among their graduates.

Graduate with Business Opportunities

Today’s students can spend years in college and still not learn what they need to start a business. But vocational school cosmetology programs teach business skills that prepare entrepreneurs for success. From salesmanship to shop management, graduates learn how to operate a salon.

What Skills Will Someone Learn in a Cosmetology Program?

Hair and nail technicians need the right blend of practical and people skills to succeed in a competitive marketplace. Vocational school cosmetology programs teach hair care, hair cutting, hair styling, hair coloring, manicure and pedicure, skin care, communication skills, customer service skills, sales experience, business management, and time management skills.

Skill #1: Hair Care

Students learn about hair anatomy and how to wash and condition hair according to their different characteristics. Subjects include:

  • Hair physiology
  • Scalp disorders
  • Product chemistry
  • The pH Scale
  • Bacteriology

Skill #2: Hair Cutting

Many Americans get multiple haircuts annually, so proficiency with popular styles for both men and women is a must. Instructors teach the latest in:

  • Comb handling
  • Scissoring
  • Texturizing
  • Layering
  • Razoring
  • Clipper skills
  • Sanitation

Skill #3: Hair Styling

Styling instruction covers skills from blow-drying to setting rollers. Students learn how to use appliances and brushes to achieve a finished look. Other topics include:

  • Braiding
  • Waving
  • Curling
  • Straightening

Skill #4: Hair Coloring

Almost all women color their hair at one time or another, and it’s catching on with men. It’s the second most popular service in the cosmetology business, but it takes expertise to perform. The cosmetology school curriculum not only covers coloring techniques, but it also teaches proper handling of reactive chemicals and dyes. Students learn the fundamentals of color theory plus how to:

  • Perform patch tests
  • Apply temporary and permanent color
  • Recommend the best shades
  • Lighten dark hair
  • Correct color

Skill #5: Manicures and Pedicures

Americans spend billions of dollars on manicures and pedicures every year. It’s a service that requires little initial investment for salons to offer, as long as they employ a skilled nail technician. Cosmetology programs cover the basics of:

  • Nail disorders
  • Trimming and shaping
  • Polish chemistry
  • Artificial nails and tips
  • Hand and foot massage
  • Equipment disinfection

Skill #6: Skin Care

Most full-service salons offer skincare services, it’s a natural extension of doing hair and nails. Additional courses and certifications may be required in some states to provide some services, but cosmetology schools touch on the basics, including:

  • Facials
  • Moisturizing treatments
  • Toning

These skills can set the stage for hair and nail technicians to expand into personal aesthetics.

Skill #7: Communication Skills

Communication is the foundation of cosmetology. As the expert, it’s up to hair and nail technicians to take the lead when speaking with clients, clarifying expectations before making the first cut. But there’s a science to it, and for students who aren’t natural communicators, it’s a skill that can be learned.

Cosmetology schools teach students specific communication techniques designed to enhance the sharing of information, such as active listening and asking probing questions.

Skill #8: Customer Service Skills

Good customer service encourages client loyalty. How do customers define “good” service? Topping the list are prompt communication, a positive attitude, convenient hours, payment options and competitive prices.

In cosmetology school, students learn how to perform services efficiently and build rapport with clients. Practice makes perfect, and graduates begin their careers on the right foot.

Skill #9: Sales Experience

More than half of salon clients say they ask technicians for advice. From which products to buy to whether to try the latest Hollywood look, an expert’s opinion is valuable.

It’s also an opportunity to make sales and generate revenue. No one is better equipped to sell hair and skin products than a trusted hair and nail technician if they know how.

Cosmetology programs teach sales technique in the classroom while externships with professionals in the community offer practical opportunities to work with clients directly. When clients are happy with their purchases, repeat sales become effortless.

Skill #10: Business Management Skills

Cosmetologists with an entrepreneurial spirit can work for themselves, it’s an excellent business opportunity. But more than a quarter of all new salons fail within the first two years, typically due to poor money management.

While most cosmetology schools don’t include in-depth business courses in their curricula, they cover the basics of salon management and marketing. There’s always more to learn.

Skill #11: Time Management Skills

Taking a full-time cosmetology program is the fastest route to a new career, but it’s challenging. Between attending classes, studying and working at externships, it’s a full load. But as most hair and nail technicians soon learn, the greater the number of clients they serve per day, the higher their earnings will be. A ten-month condensed program plus practical experience prepares graduates for a fast-paced work environment in which efficiency and time management are critical.

Final Thoughts

Cosmetology is the ultimate career for students with a passion for beauty. Whether the goal is to open a nail salon or be a hairstylist to the stars, choosing a cosmetology school with a comprehensive curriculum and a good reputation is the best way to start.

Do you have a passion for hair and nails? Interested in becoming a cosmetologist? At Minnesota School of Cosmetology, we are dedicated to helping our Cosmetology program students develop a solid foundation and a flair for style through hands-on training in basic and advanced industry techniques. You will learn how to cut, color and style hair, give manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and perform various skin care techniques from industry-experienced instructors in a professional salon setting. We keep our class sizes small to make sure you get the individualized instruction you need and attention you deserve. You will graduate with everything you need to be a versatile artist in an exciting industry, including a cosmetology diploma from a respected college.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a cosmetologist and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

What is Included in a Manicure & Pedicure?

Student practicing giving a manicure.

Interested in becoming a nail specialist or nail technician? Want to learn more about the reasons clients get a manicure or pedicure? There are many natural and mental benefits for clients from manicures and pedicures. These benefits make getting manicures and pedicures relaxing, while keeping an eye on health. In our Cosmetology program you’ll learn the skills you need to work  as a nail technician, and learn the benefits of working in the beauty industry.

What is a Manicure and Pedicure?

A manicure refers to the curation and care of a client’s hands and a pedicure refers to the curation and care of a client’s feet. This includes skincare, nail care, and artificial nail enhancements that can be customized to a variety of preferences. Let’s take a deeper look at the two main reasons for getting a manicure or a pedicure.

Reason #1: Aesthetics

The central reason for booking a manicures and pedicures appointment with a professional manicurist is to change, enhance, or maintain the look of your nails. There are many different options when it comes to personalizing the aesthetic of your fingernails and/or toenails. Here are some of the aesthetic aspects of your manicure or pedicure you can customize to your exact specifications.

Color – The color(s) of nail polish you choose to polish your nails plays a huge part in how your manicure or pedicure ends up looking. The shades and colors of nail polish available are virtually infinite, so you can feel free to pick how bright, dark, shiny, or shimmery you want your nail color choices to be.

Length – This aesthetic aspect of the manicure or pedicure varies quite a bit for both natural and artificial nails. How long you choose to wear your nails depends on several things, such as the size of your hands/feet, the length of your fingers/toes, and the health and size of your natural nail beds. The most important factor in nail length, however, is your own personal preference.

Shape – Unique or varied nail shape is primarily a characteristic of manicures more so than pedicures. There are several different choices when it comes to how you choose to shape your nails. Rounded tips, pointed tips, and blunted or squared tips are among the most common nail shapes requested. Natural nails can be shaped if they are healthy and strong enough to grow, cut and file. However, artificial nails are usually better for dramatic shaping options.

Designed Nails.

Art/Design – The sky is the limit when it comes to customizing your nail art with manicures and pedicures. It all comes down to how broad your imagination is and the talent of your nail technician. You may be someone who prefers subtle accent dots or classic stripe designs. You may dream of looking down at your nails and seeing miniature works of art.

Accessories: – Gemstones, crystal, beads, and other tiny 3-dimensional nail accessories can take the look of your nails from basic to breath-taking. These accents come in a variety of shapes and colors and can be clustered or spaced out. Even just a little bit of sparkle can go a long way in terms of elevating your manicure or pedicure.

Reason #2: Wellness

Health and wellness are also considered and addressed during a manicure or pedicure appointment. Getting your nails done certainly isn’t the same thing as seeing a medical professional for severe hand and foot issues. However, there are a number of physical and mental benefits to seeing a manicurist.

Skin – Any serious skin issues should always be addressed by a medically certified dermatologist, but a nail technician can address and advise you on many of the minor skin conditions you may be struggling with. Chronic dryness and rough patches such as callouses are just a couple of examples of skin conditions that can be addressed by a nail professional during a manicure and pedicure.

Nails – Having healthy nails is easier said than done for a lot of people. Fungus and infections must always be medically treated, but a manicurist can help you strengthen, grow, and repair your natural nails. Even if you prefer the look of artificial nails you still need to make sure that artificial nails have healthy natural nails to anchor to. This will help avoid excessive and frequent breaking.

What are the Mental Benefits of Getting a Manicure or Pedicure?

There is more to manicures and pedicures than the physical condition and the visual look of your nails. Sometimes going to the spa or salon is about taking some time out to focus on yourself. Let’s take a closer look at the internal benefits of manicures and pedicures.

Benefit #1: Self Care

Getting your nails done is all about self-care. Your mental health may not be the first thing you think of when you make your nail appointment, but there is something to be said for taking a timeout from the everyday grind to reset yourself. Manicures and pedicures are a great way to give yourself some time away from stress and pressure. Having a regularly scheduled break from your demanding life is healthy. Prioritizing yourself in an indulgent way can do wonders for your personal wellness. A manicure and pedicure can help keep you relaxed, give you a boost in confidence, and allow you to express your style and attitude in greater detail.

Benefit #2: Relaxation

A fragrant soak and a relaxing hand or foot massage can help you feel more relaxed. Indulging your extremities with this extra attention is particularly helpful if you are on your feet for long periods of time, or if your career requires a large amount of typing, handwriting, or other handwork. Pampering your hands and feet, with a manicure and pedicure, can relax your internal tension and help you relieve stress from the outside in.

Benefit #3: Confidence

Looking good is part of feeling good. When you are comfortable and happy with your overall look it can help you feel more confident as a whole. Your nails are an important part of your style and can make a difference in boosting your confidence. Make sure you know what you want and figure out your own personal nail style.

Benefit #4: Expression

Your nails make a statement to the people around you. What they say to the world depends on how you choose to have them done. Do they say that you are clean and classic? Do they convey an attitude of rebellion and edginess? Are you Avant grade and out of the ordinary? Do your nails purposefully contradict your personality? It’s all about what you want your nails to say.

What are the Benefits of Becoming a Nail Technician?

If you are someone who is naturally drawn to manicures and pedicures, you may have already considered making your interest in nail care a career. Do you want to academically and financially invest in your passion for nail care and nail design? There are a lot of positive aspects to becoming a fully trained and nail technician.

Reason #1: Interesting and Challenging Work

Being a nail technician leaves little room for boredom. The work itself may share fundamental qualities and similarities, however the specifics will vary from client to client. Here are some of the ways your professional nail work will keep you motivated and on your toes.

Lady showing off nail design.

Variety of Client Tastes and Preferences

Styles and preferences vary widely from person to person. You may have one client who wants to focus on conditioning their natural nails to maintain a more natural look and then another who wants 10-inch artificial nails with elaborately different designs on each one. Be ready to tackle any nail challenge that sits down at your station.

Different Anatomy

Nail shape, nail texture, finger/to length, nail strength and overall hand or foot size will all be factors to consider on an individual client-by-client basis. You will want to make your clients’ hands, feet and nails look, feel, and function the best that you possibly can. That means paying attention to the details of each individual customer during a manicure and pedicure.

Reason #2: Diverse Opportunities for Income

Another benefit to becoming a nail technician is the many career options you have to choose from. Where you work and how you manifest your career will all depend on the demands of your life and your level of commitment. Becoming a manicurist can give you the flexibility to create your own schedule or it can give you the stability of a predictable work environment. These are some of the most common career options for professional nail techs.

Nail Shops – Storefront nail shops are a fantastic way to get exposure to a high volume of clients for manicures and pedicures. These establishments typically have a lot of call-in and walk-in traffic which will give you a lot of practice and experience. It will also give you the chance to work with and learn from other seasoned industry professionals.

Salons/Spas – Spas and salons will often feature an area for manicures and pedicures as part of the services they offer to their clients. People who go to spas and salons are typically looking for a pampering experience, so you will likely be indulging your clients in more high-end treatments and detailed design work if this is the professional avenue you choose.

Retail – Shopping centers, certain flea markets, and fashion malls commonly feature manicure and pedicure services. These establishments usually rely on heavy foot traffic, so scheduling and preparation can be more hectic and fast-paced than it is with other nail care establishments.

Resorts/Casinos – Getaways and vacations are the perfect excuse for a little extra indulgence. Lots of people will seek out nail services and special treatments to spoil themselves while they’re on holiday. Manicures and pedicures are included in these indulgences. If you decide that a resort or casino is the right place to start your career, you will probably want to prepare for a lot of nail care first-timers and frequently changing faces.

Final Thoughts

The accessibility of celebrity and recognition through social media platforms has transformed the beauty industry across the board. Nail care is no exception. You can transform your passion and talent into a career through online tutorials, endorsements, and even entertainment. It all depends on your vision and your ambition.

Did this discussion about manicures and pedicures interest you in becoming a nail technician? Your search for a nail technician program ends at Minnesota School of Cosmetology, where you learn all the tricks of the trade to provide the look and TLC clients are looking for as part of our Cosmetology Program. Our campus locations are convenient, if you are looking for beauty schools that can train you to become a nail technician. You will graduate with a firm understanding of the anatomy of the nails and the skills to perform a variety of nail services, including manicures, pedicures, gel polish applications and nail art.

Both campuses feature salon-grade pedicure chairs and manicure stations where you will get to perfect your skills in a professional salon setting. If you are looking to become a nail technician, you can gain valuable, real-world experience you graduate working with products used in many salons across the country.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a nail technician and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

Is a Cosmetologist a Good Career?

Cosmetologist working on hair and makeup

When you think of what a cosmetologist is, a lot of different things may come to mind. You may immediately think of a makeup artist. Perhaps you think of a hairstylist or a nail technician. You might even first associate cosmetology with skincare and things like hair removal. In fact, those are actually all correct answers.

A cosmetologist is the name for any career that involves beautifying a client’s hair, skin, face, or nails. Some of these jobs also concern the health and wellness of the client, as well as products and treatments. Likewise, a cosmetologist’s main focus is making people look and feel their best. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of pursuing a career in cosmetology, regardless of your passions in beauty and wellness.

Benefits of a Career in Cosmetology

First and foremost, success as a cosmetologist includes many factors. For example, these factors include determination, the quality and depth of your education and work ethic. Even more, the kind of marketing you choose and your location plays a significant role in the success of your cosmetology career.

However, you will be happy to know that there is no shortage of opportunities and advantages in the cosmetology industry. There are a lot of choices to make when it comes to expanding your career. Here are some of the benefits that can come with being a cosmetologist.

Variety of Job Fields to Choose From

In fact, there are actually several different fields that qualify as cosmetology. However, within each of those fields there are many different opportunities and career paths for you to choose from. Your career path ultimately depends on your lifestyle and personal goals.

If your passion is hair, for example, you could be a stylist, colorist, shampooist, braider, wig stylist, or even a salon manager. There are also cosmetic jobs available in product development, brand representation, and technique innovation. It all depends on what you are looking for and your goals. You will want to consider the balance of effort/investment and return on all the financial decisions you make, no matter what cosmetology field you pursue.

Entrepreneurship Opportunities

Never has independent employment been so readily available, particularly in cosmetology. If you want to work for yourself, cosmetology has a lot of opportunities for you to do just that. This has never been more true, especially in the age of digital development and advertisement. There are a lot of related consulting jobs that allow you to work with salons but remain independent.

If you would like to see clients in their homes or consult clients remotely, there are plenty of ways for you to advertise your services and products digitally.

Digital and Social Media Careers

Career paths have recently opened up that were not available just a few short decades ago thanks to the ever-evolving Internet. As more aspects of our lives have become digitally dependent there has been a growing need for the presence of cosmetologists in those spaces. Particularly when it comes to innovation, creativity, and diversity.

Careers for online beauty influencers, product or procedure endorsement, and online video and blog tutorials have created opportunities to cultivate more of an audience than a client base. It is in these fields, however, that education has become crucially important. You don’t want to be someone representing a harmful product or be forever associated with a bad business relationship. Being certified in your field will give your audience greater security in your credibility and will also allow you to more readily spot bad actors in the industry.

Personal Benefits of a Career in Cosmetology

There are a lot of reasons to be excited about beginning a journey in cosmetology aside from the monetary aspects of becoming a cosmetologist. Cosmetology fields are full of opportunities to celebrate and explore creativity, ingenuity, community, culture, and innovation. Diving into these parts of the job can leave you more inspired and motivated toward your goals than you ever were before. Here are just a few of the ways that a career in cosmetology is about more than just the bottom line.

Working with People

Almost every single kind of cosmetology career has some sort of social aspect to it. The kind of socialization you will participate in largely depends on the kind of cosmetology career you want. If your goals have you set toward more of a digital presence in the industry, you will still likely be interacting with people daily, whether it be through social media audience or an online vendor/supplier. If you are looking for a more hands-on career that involves a salon then you will likely get to socialize with a wide variety of clients and co-workers. Regardless of what you decide to do you will probably have more than your fair share of opportunities for both social interaction and professional networking.

Opportunities to Get Creative as a Cosmetologist

We use fashion and personal style to express ourselves in unique and interesting ways, both to ourselves and to the world around us. Your job as a cosmetologist allows you to help clients achieve their artistic visions. This kind of creative expression certainly comes with challenges, however they can inspire new trends in the industry. Cosmetology gives you the opportunity to get involved in artwork that is deeply personal and truly one-of-a-kind.

Skills Practice and Technique Development

Another personal benefits of your cosmetology career will be experience and confidence. There are plenty of people with good ideas in the industry who don’t have the skills or the confidence to be taken seriously. Inexperienced cosmetologists may also be unable to recognize or be ready for opportunities that may spontaneously arise.

A career in cosmetology, even an entry-level position, allows you the time and opportunities you will need to perfect your techniques and hone your skills. Hands-on experience makes your peers see and respect your commitment to your work, as well as the results. Your education and experiences will give you confidence in your abilities. Additionally, practice provides you with the skills to show the world your abilities and ideas.

Final Thoughts

Cosmetology careers are widely diverse and include many different jobs. However, it is highly likely that you will find something that ignites your passion and inspire you. No matter what specific cosmetology industry has piqued your interests there are opportunities for you to showcase your strengths as well as ways for you to strengthen any weaknesses you may have. It’s time to start capitalizing on your passions and ideas with a career that captures your curiosities. Your cosmetology education is the first step in attaining a job doing something you actually enjoy rather than something you have to suffer through. Your style and your insights are valuable. It is time you invested in them.

Career Services

One of the biggest advantages of attending Minnesota School of Cosmetology is the support you’ll get throughout your cosmetology career. We have a dedicated career services department here to help you with your job search once you graduate and throughout your career. We are committed to our graduates and their dreams. Our dedication to career assistance begins in our program. It is woven into our curriculum to ensure our students are educated on professionalism, familiar with job search tools and resources and armed with career planning strategies.

Want to Learn More?

Did learning about what attending a cosmetology program is all about interest you? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology? At Minnesota School of Cosmetology, we are dedicated to helping our Cosmetology program students develop a solid foundation and a flair for style through hands-on training in basic and advanced industry techniques. You will learn how to cut, color and style hair, give manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and perform various skin care techniques from industry-experienced instructors in a professional salon setting. We keep our class sizes small to make sure you get the individualized instruction you need and attention you deserve. You will graduate with everything you need to be a versatile artist in an exciting industry, including a cosmetology diploma from a respected college.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a cosmetologist and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

The Definitive Guide to Manicures & Pedicures

Woman receiving manicures and pedicures

Interested in becoming a nail technician? Here is some advice on how to take care of hands and feet with the help of manicures and pedicures.

We get manicures and pedicures for many different reasons. Fashion and design are two of the most common reasons people go to a salon or spa to have their nails done. This can come in the form of shaping and painting your own nails or having artificial ones applied. Sometimes you have a nail style idea or artistic concept that you need professional help to execute the way you want. We also frequently seek out professional manicures and pedicures when we need help fixing or repairing something about our hands or feet. It could be anything from a broken fingernail to a calloused spot on your heel that needs attention. It is not uncommon for people to need nail or skin help from a trained pro.

You may also be the kind of person who books a manicure or pedicure as part of a self-care routine or relaxation ritual. There are times you book an emergency appointment for last-minute assistance and there are times you book an emergency appointment because you desperately need a break. No matter what the reason is, taking care of your hands and feet by booking a manicure or pedicure appointment can be a great self-investment. Whether the reason is a physical or mental one, manicures and pedicures can be a terrific way to refresh, repair, and rejuvenate. Let’s take a look at the different ways to show your hands and feet a little more love.

Healthy Manicures and Pedicures Start at Home

There is no question that the luxury of being professionally pampered at a nice nail salon can be precisely what you need after a rough week. However, you don’t need a high-end spa experience to feel indulgent and you don’t have to wait for permission to take care of your own body in the best ways possible. There are many things to think about and re-evaluate when it comes to your daily routine. Here are some areas to consider that will help you maintain the health of your hands and feet. We will also take a quick look at helpful questions for you to ask your spa and salon professionals at your next appointment that will help you maximize your manicures and pedicures.

Sanitation and Hygiene

Clean hands and feet are significant priorities that can too often go overlooked. Sure, we shower and wash our hands frequently. But how often do we carefully and thoroughly clean under our nails? Do we keep hand sanitizer handy for unexpected run-ins with dirty surfaces and substances? Keeping your nails and skin clean can reduce irritation, minimize breaking and even help improve your health in general.

Moisture Balancing

The moisture level of your skin can vary based on environmental and genetic factors. Dry, cracked skin on your hands and feet can lead to infections and irritations. Particularly around the cuticles. Dry climates and extreme weather make this worse. Likewise, overly moist conditions created by certain shoes, gloves or work equipment can throw the moisture balance of your hands and feet off. Warm, humid conditions can create a ripe breeding ground for bacteria to flourish and blemishes or rashes to appear. So, it is about creating a balance.

Hydration

Drinking enough water is good for your entire body. Your skin and nails are no exception. Make sure your water is clean and properly filtered for minerals and contaminants that may be harmful.

Diet

As with water, other substances that you consume effect the balance and appearance of your body. Your internal issues can manifest externally in a number of ways. When your body is suffering from an imbalance on the inside it is difficult for you to look your best on the outside. This includes the look and health of your hands and feet.

Proper nutrition is vital for healthy skin and strong nails. If you are having trouble with a particular nail or skin issue you may want to consider getting professional advice about supplements or dietary changes. Don’t make any major changes to what you eat without consulting a physician. You should also be responsible about any allergies or pre-existing conditions that may be affected by such suggestions.

Reduce/Manage Environmental Impacts

There are certain things that we can’t avoid. For example, you may work with certain cleaning agents or chemicals that require protective gear. Dealing with children is another unavoidable impact on our hands and feet that can quickly and easily take a toll. Our lives aren’t centered around our manicures, our manicures should fit into our lives. However, we should make the changes we can to be easier on our hands and feet whenever the opportunity arises.

Professional Skincare, Repair and Relaxation

The professionals who provide you with manicures and pedicures offer a lot more than an opportunity to unwind. They have been certified to help you truly take care of your extremities. Here are some of the things going to a spa or salon offers.

Initial Manicure and Pedicure Assessments

The initial assessment is what happens at the very beginning of your manicure or pedicure appointment. This is the point in which you will divulge any issues you need addressed or may have questions about.

It is important to know that nail technicians and estheticians are not physicians. So, if you have any serious concerns about your skin or nail health you should seek medical attention as soon as possible. However, your spa and salon professionals have been trained to identify and address problems such as minor irritations, blemishes, callouses, nail weakness, and other common nail and skin challenges you might be facing.

Hand and Foot Massages

Including a massage as part of your manicure and/or pedicure experience is a great way to take your relaxation to the next level. There are a lot of spas and salons that offer a full range of massage options. Even salons that cater exclusively to nails will often have hand and foot massage options available.

The relaxation a massage can provide is fantastic, but a hand or foot massage has benefits beyond helping you relax. Massage can help improve your circulation, decrease your stress, relieve pressure or tension, and alleviate pain. So, the next time you get a manicure, or a pedicure don’t be afraid to go for a more indulgent, all-inclusive experience.

Manicures and Pedicures: Soothing Soaks and Smoothing Treatments

Softening and smoothing rough skin is part of maintaining the integrity, health, and the youthful appearance of your hands and feet. One of the ways you might go about softening skin that is particularly rough or calloused is to soak it in warm water. You may also help to further smooth the skin of your hands and feet by exfoliating and conditioning them using various products, tools and techniques.

Cuticle and Nail Care

There is some maintenance in this area that can be done on your own as part of your daily hygiene routine. But there are some things that require professional training, a special product, or a specific piece of equipment to deal with. These issues can easily and readily be addressed by a trained pro during a manicure or pedicure. They are certified to ensure that your hands and feet are in capable hands no matter what the situation may be.

Works of Art Directly at Your Fingertips

Being expressive may not initially seem like an important priority, but it is. The health of your hands and feet are undeniably important. How you feel about yourself and the way you look is also important. Being expressive through the artistic elements of your manicure and pedicure choices can help you feel more confident and help you look the way you want. There are a couple of significant style benefits to expressing your individuality through nail art.

Manicures and Pedicures Allow You to Express Your Individuality Through Design

There are many options when it comes to the design elements of your nail art. You can choose to center your nails around a trending style. Or perhaps you would want to coordinate your nails with a specific outfit for a special occasion. You may want to keep things minimalistic and simple, or you may choose to go extravagantly elaborate with your artistic choices. There are endless options in nail color, length, accessory, cut and overall style design. These choices allow you to be as creative or trendy as your heart desires.

Fun Fashion That is Temporary

Nail color and artificial nails have come a long way in terms of durability. New developments in formulas and technologies have made manicures and pedicures much stronger than they use to be. But even though they are durable doesn’t mean they are permanent. Which is a good thing. Sure, you want your manicure and/or pedicure to last a reasonable amount of time, but it is also nice that you can switch it whenever you’re ready. Retouching and redoing your nails periodically is a great way to ensure frequent self-care while providing sufficient opportunities for renewing or replacing your nail art to fit your changing moods and styles.

Feeling the Glow from Your Fingers to Your Toes

Our hands and feet play a significant role in our everyday lives and take quite a bit of abuse from all the impact and exposures they suffer. Treating your extremities to some extra attention can help keep you feeling and looking the way you deserve. That may include going for a foot soak and a hand massage. It might include having your nails done. Looking and feeling good go hand in hand, and both should be a priority. Being good to yourself with a manicure and pedicure is a great way to stay fabulous, refreshed, and feeling your best.

Want to Learn More?

Did learning about manicures and pedicures interest you? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology? At Minnesota School of Cosmetology, we are dedicated to helping our Cosmetology program students develop a solid foundation and a flair for style through hands-on training in basic and advanced industry techniques. You will learn how to cut, color and style hair, give manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and perform various skin care techniques from industry-experienced instructors in a professional salon setting.

We keep our class sizes small to make sure you get the individualized instruction you need and attention you deserve. You will graduate with everything you need to be a versatile artist in an exciting industry, including a cosmetology diploma from a respected college.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a cosmetologist and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

What is Beauty and Wellness?

Nail technician providing services in beauty and wellness

Interested in a career in cosmetology? Helping others with beauty also helps with their overall wellness. But what is beauty and wellness?

Beauty and Wellness: Two Sides of The Same Coin

To begin, the realms of beauty and wellness have a lot of overlap. Being well can help you look beautiful and feeling beautiful can increase your overall wellness. So, it can be kind of difficult to draw a firm line between what is classified as a ‘beauty treatment’ and what is classified as a ‘wellness treatment’.

However, a good general rule to remember is that beauty has more to do with how you visually present yourself and wellness has more to do with how you feel or aspects of your health. Beauty services will usually be more cosmetic in nature where wellness services usually have more to do with your health. Let’s take a look at how both sides of beauty and wellness affect various areas of the beauty industry.

The Beauty and Wellness of Manicures

Your hands are both a useful and expressive part of your body. They can be both fierce and functional.

Expression Through Nail Art

Getting your nails done can be an exciting part of your personal expression. A manicure can help give your hands a personal touch. The shape of the cut and length of your client’s nails can give them very different looks. Hundreds of techniques, designs and color combinations give them seemingly endless possibilities to choose from when it comes to crafting a signature look for their nails. How they choose to wear their nails can say as much or as little about they as they want it to.

Manual Care and Hand Health

The way your client’s hands look can be a great way to boost their mood and confidence. However, taking care of their hands goes far beyond making sure their nails look the way they want them to.

Your client’s hands come in contact with a lot of different things throughout the course of a day. They touch different people, different objects and different substances all the time. Your client also washes or sanitizes their hands on a regular basis.

Activities and environmental exposures can make their hands vulnerable to tears, blemishes and even infections. Even over sterilizing can compromise the healthy balance of their dermal layers. Balancing the moisture and exfoliation of their hands is just as important as making sure they look fantastic. Make sure you are as concerned with their health as with their appearance.

Head to Toe

Don’t forget the pedicure. Your client’s feet may not get as much time in the visual spotlight, but that doesn’t mean they need to be neglected. Getting a pedicure along with a manicure can help amplify the confidence of your client’s nail art while also helping take care of their feet at the same time.

Beauty, Wellness and Hair Care

The presentation and health of your client’s hair says something. It can offer insights into their health while also offering insights into their personality.

Getting the World Out of Your Hair So That You Can Do You

Hairstyle inspiration is all around your client but that doesn’t mean they need to follow the pack. Their hairstyle is a significant part of their outer presentation.

The color, cut and style of your client’s hair says something visually to those around them. The style of your client’s hair can also help them say something to themselves. They should say what they want to say. Pick a color that feels good. Give a cut that makes them happy when they look in the mirror. Style it to reflect their attitude. How they choose to wear their hair should be about their confidence and personal style, not anyone else’s.

Be Happier with Healthy Hair

The foundation of any hairstyle is healthy hair and a healthy scalp. Maintaining a proper moisture balance and repairing damage are crucial if your client wants to keep their hair looking and feeling its best. The impact of the environment around your client along with styling damage can really take a toll on the health of their hair.

Furthermore, chemical treatments and damage done by styling with heat are among the greatest dangers to the strength and growth capacity of your client’s hair. Combating this damage with restorative and conditioning treatments can also help your client look their best no matter what cut or style they end up choosing. Your client should also be aware that their nutritional balance and vitamin intake can have a tremendous effect on hair growth and hair health along with external factors that contribute to hair damage.

Skin That Feels and Looks Fantastic

The way your client chooses to present their skin is entirely personal. Exposing or revealing their body can be both vulnerable and intimate.

Silky, Smooth and Soft to the Touch

Loving the skin you live in is undeniably important. Feeling good about the way you look has a lot to do with your skin, for obvious reasons. This means your client needs to feel good about how their skin looks and feels. They are the ones who should make the decisions about what skin treatments are right for them and which ones they would rather not try.

Most importantly, your client should be the one to make the choice about their body hair. Your client should decide if they want to even out their skin tone or leave it beautifully asymmetrical. If they like their freckles, their beauty mark or their leg hair they shouldn’t let anyone talk them out of showing them off.

Likewise, if they want smooth, hairless legs or a spray tan they shouldn’t let anyone tell them not to look how they want to look. So long as your client is being safe, they should present their body however they want to.

Your Client’s First Line of Defense

Getting rid of blemishes might seem purely cosmetic at first, but it is also connected to the health of your skin. The impact of your hygiene and cosmetic habits can also have enormous effects on your dermatological health. Your skin’s moisture balance is a very significant part of keeping you healthy. Keeping skin moisturized keeps it soft, but it also keeps it strong.

Your client can also do this by minimizing their skin’s exposure to harsh chemicals and avoiding things that may cut or perforate the skin. If your client lets their skin dry out, small cracks can form that break down their dermal barrier. Because of this, the skin is compromised by tears and cracks from exposure or dryness. As a result, it leaves your client open to all kinds of infections, and potentially diseases. 

Skin is the first line of defense against germs and various other contaminants. Make sure the health of your client’s skin is a priority when you are making cosmetic choices for them.

The Beautiful Healing Potential of Makeup

Makeup should be the mask that reveals you instead of the mask that conceals you. Your face, your mood and your individual style should be the foundation.

Fabulous First Impressions

Makeup can be transformative and bold. It can also be understated and subtle. Unlike hair, skin, and nails, the way your client does your makeup can change drastically from day to day. One day your client might want to pick colors that make them stand out. Another day they may feel like highlighting and accentuating their natural facial features.

You may also find an occasion to do their makeup in completely extravagant and totally outrageous ways. Makeup should be used as a way to make them feel good, not a way to make other people feel good. Be daring, but whatever you do, make sure your client wears their makeup in a way that helps them show the world what they want them to see.

Saving Face with A Healthy Face

It is important that you carefully consider each of your makeup related products that are offered to clients. That also means the kind of facial cleansers and moisturizers they use, the brand of makeup you recommend, the beauty application tools they use and the kind of makeup removal method your client uses to take their makeup off.

All of these things can affect the health, as well as the beauty and wellness and appearance of your client’s skin in different ways. Be sure that you have considered any sensitivities their skin might have, as well as the ingredients in your products. No one likes breakouts and blemishes.

Getting Assistance with Your Beauty and Wellness Goals

When your client books an appointment with you, it can make a very big difference. There is certainly a lot you can do at home to keep yourself looking and feeling your best. However, there is a lot that is offered in a professional setting that can be dangerous to try and replicate at home on their own. Cosmetic treatments such as waxing can be unsafe when your client tries them as an amateur. There are also certain things that are incredibly challenging to accomplish without someone to help. Massage therapy, complicated nail art, and intricate hair coloration are just a few examples.

Cosmetic treatments such as waxing can be unsafe when your client tries them as an amateur. There are also certain things that are incredibly challenging to accomplish without someone to help. Massage therapy, complicated nail art, and intricate hair coloration are just a few examples.

Final Thoughts

What is beauty to you? How you feel and how you look can have a lot to do with one another. Taking care of one area can often lead to benefits in the other. Beauty and wellness may not have clearly defined lines that divide them, but they both have pretty clearly defined benefits that connect them.

Want to Learn More?

Did learning about what beauty and wellness are interest you? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology? At Minnesota School of Cosmetology, we are dedicated to helping our Cosmetology program students develop a solid foundation and a flair for style through hands-on training in basic and advanced industry techniques.

You will learn how to cut, color and style hair, give manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and perform various skin care techniques from industry-experienced instructors in a professional salon setting. We keep our class sizes small to make sure you get the individualized instruction you need and attention you deserve. You will graduate with everything you need to be a versatile artist in an exciting industry, including a cosmetology diploma from a respected college.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a cosmetologist and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Nail Care

Woman receiving manicure to promote nail care and nail health

Interested in nail care? Keeping your nails clean and healthy is important to overall appearance and health. When your nails are healthy-looking, you are more apt to use your hands when talking and interacting with people. Whether it comes to your fingernails or toenails, make a routine to care for your nails so that they look their absolute best.

Why It’s Important to Take Care of The Nails

The way that your nails look is directly related to their health. For example, if you have an infection of one or more nails, it can create inflammation and health problems throughout the rest of the body. Certain nail conditions can also be embarrassing, like fungus, causing a person to avoid showing off their hands or feet.

Keeping your nails clean, trimmed and healthy can also prevent future problems from developing. For example, keeping nails cleaned and well-groomed can prevent fungal infections and bacterial infections that may develop underneath the nail bed. Seek help from a doctor, dermatologist or podiatrist who can help prescribe anti-fungal medication or antibiotics as needed if a problem arises.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Nail Care

Taking care of your nails is important, and there are certain things that you should do and shouldn’t do to keep up with the health and appearance of the nails. In many cases, bad nail habits can be reversed. You should devote some time each week to clipping, trimming, filing and polishing your nails and checking out each nail for signs of infection, inflammation or fungal infections.

Nail Care Do’s

Use a Glass File and File in the Same Direction

Glass files are incredibly gentle on the nails and meant to prevent breaking and cracking. When using a glass file, file in one specific direction to prevent further damage to the nail bed. This may take some getting used to, but the nails break far less often because of this habit.

Keep Nails Trimmed and Healthy

Keeping your nails trimmed and polished is vital to how they look, feel and overall health. Many nail polishes aren’t just pretty, but they are good for your nails. Some polishes even contain strengthening ingredients that prevent cracking and breakage. Other types of nail polish are even ideal for maximizing growth. Remember to treat the fungus rather than just covering it up with nail polish.

Purchase New Tools Every Few Months

Nail care tools should be replaced every few months. Not only does this prevent the use of tools that have signs of wear, tear and rust, but will also help hygiene. They are less likely to contaminate client’s nails with fungus and bacteria.

Clean Nail Care Tools After Each Use

Sterilizing nail care tools is crucial for preventing contamination. Sterilize nail care tools by soaking them in alcohol for several hours or use an alcohol-soaked cotton ball to carefully wipe down tools. Remember to not allow the tools to sit in any disinfecting solution for longer than a few hours, as this can cause rusting. Also, be sure to thoroughly dry the tools after they have been cleaned.

Use a Moisturizing Cuticle Oil

Cuticle oil can help to dissolve the cuticles as well as moisturize the area. This makes it easier to push the cuticles back to create a uniform nail bed for polishes and treatments. Cuticle oil should be used before pushing back the cuticles unless otherwise specified. Cuticle oil keeps your nails looking clean, healthy and moisturized.

Wear Gloves When Working

Whether washing dishes regularly or gardening, wearing gloves will protect your nails and keep them from breaking and cracking. Gloves will also prevent nail polish from wearing away. It is also important to wear gloves when working with corrosive products such as furniture polish, bathroom cleaner and bleach. Keep gloves where they’re easy to find and grab when they need to be worn.

Nail Care Don’ts

File Nails in a Back and Forth Motion

Filing nails in a back and forth motion causes nails to split, crack, and break. The delicate nail bed is being ripped every single time it gets filed back and forth. Traditional emery boards can cause ripping and tearing of the nail bed, especially if the file is older and hasn’t been replaced in a while.

Push the Cuticles Back Too Far

While the look of cuticles can be unsightly, it is not healthy to push them back too far. Avoid using electric nail trimmers to push back and remove cuticles, as they can compromise the nail bed and create cross-contamination of bacteria and fungus.

Share Nail Care Tools

Sharing nail care tools can cause cross-contamination. For example, sharing nail clippers with a person who has toenail fungus can transfer nail fungus to everyone’s nails that uses the contaminated nail clippers. One of the most common skin-related conditions to catch from sharing nail care tools are warts.

Ignore Signs of Fungus or Infection

Signs of fungus and infection often start out minimally and continue to get worse. Nail fungus often looks like white, milky spots on the surface of the nail. These are often mistaken for signs of excess calcium and keratin. White spots eventually begin to create a thickened nail that splits and bends. Infections can cause inflammation around the nail bed, causing pain, swelling and blood blisters. If your nail looks different than normal, seek the help of a nail technician or doctor.

Use Your Nails as Tools

In a bind, you may be tempted to use their nails as tools. People use their nails regularly to open cans, rip paper or scrape food off a pan or pot. Using your nails as tools can cause breakage and cracking, not to mention the bacteria that is introduced underneath the nails and into the nail bed.

Don’t Bite the Nails

Biting your nails not only prevents them from growing out, but it can also cause inflammation and infection. The mouth is the dirtiest part of the human body, and there are millions of bacteria that thrive on the teeth, gums and tongue. Unfortunately, every time someone bites their nails, the bacteria from the mouth gets on and underneath the nail, which can be a catalyst for a nail infection.

When to Get Help from a Nail Technician

It can often be difficult to get into a solid nail care routine if you are used to caring for their nails a certain way. A certified and trained nail technician helps to care for the nails and nail-related problems. Nail technicians go through training to handle all types of nail care and polishing techniques. They work with clients of varying needs and can recognize common nail-related conditions that might go unnoticed. The nail technician can also help advise clients on how to properly care for their nails and keep them looking their best.

Recommendations

The nail technician also recommends variety of different products if a client is confused as to which product will work best for them.  A nail technician should inquire about a client’s nail condition and infections of any kind before they begin working on the client’s nails. This helps the nail technician to use specialized tools specific to the condition.

Did this discussion interest you in becoming a nail technician? Your search for a nail technician program ends at Minnesota School of Cosmetology, where you learn all the tricks of the trade to provide the look and TLC clients are looking for. Our campus locations are convenient, if you are looking for beauty schools that can train you to become a licensed nail technician. You will graduate with a firm understanding of the anatomy of the nails and the skills to perform a variety of nail services, including manicures, pedicures, gel polish applications and nail art.

Both campuses feature salon-grade pedicure chairs and manicure stations where you will get to perfect your skills in a professional salon setting. If you are looking to become a licensed nail technician, you can gain valuable, real-world experience you graduate working with products used in many salons across the country.

Contact us today to learn more about starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

8 Tips on Nail Care: A Nail Technician’s Guide

Nail technician providing nail care for children

Are you interested in becoming an expert in nail care? Always painting your fingernails to match your outfit? Learning about the newest nail styles and sharing these tips with your friends? If you are interested in nail care, you may also be interested in becoming a nail technician. As a nail technician, you can help clients care for their nails. Here are some tips that a nail technician would offer to clients to best care for their nails.

Tip #1: Keep Your Nails and Hands Clean

Dirty hands are just asking for trouble, both from a health and an aesthetic point of view. Not only are dirty nails unhygienic, they are unattractive. Fingernails are a part of the hand washing process and general cleaning process. Throughout the day your nails can pick up dirt and particles from different places. That dirt build-up can weaken the integrity of your nails and cause them to become brittle. Even small amounts of debris and dirt under your nails can spread illness, so it’s important to keep in mind that washing your hands and nails more carefully isn’t just for you.

Tip #2: Massage Lotion Into Your Cuticles and Nails

Maintaining a proper balance of hydration is important for your skin and that includes the skin around your fingernails. Keeping your hand skin and cuticles strong will help keep you from easily getting infections or irritations around your nails. We all touch a lot of things throughout the course of a day. It would be wise to make sure your skin is a strong barrier against the germs you encounter. Dry skin can lead to cracks that are invitations to bacterial infections, so make your hands and nails part of your skincare routine.

Tip #3: Avoid Harsh Chemicals When You Can

It is important to be careful and informed about all the beauty and wellness products you choose. The more chemicals a product has, the more damage it can do to your nails and skin. Pick natural product options when possible and try to avoid frequent run-ins with polish remover. If you work with or have household cleaning products you come into frequent contact that contain harsh chemicals, gloves and tools (such as brushes and sponges) can act as a barrier. They can also reduce the severity of any chemical contact you do end up having with cleaners.

Tip #4: Keep Your Nails Dry

Yes, there are plenty of examples when your nails will have to get wet. You must take showers, clean your home and wash your hands. Incidental hand contact with water is inevitable throughout the day. However, if you can avoid soaking them in water for prolonged periods of time you are a lot more likely to have healthy strong nails. Soaking nails can lead to splitting, tearing and infections from moisture and bacteria build up under and around the nails. Try to use cloth lined rubber gloves for protection against extensive water exposure while dish washing or tub cleaning. You can also make sure to thoroughly dry your hands and nails after unavoidable, routine daily contact.

Tip #5: Vitamins and Nutritional Supplements

A good tip for strengthening your nails is to get the nutrition necessary for the nails to grow strong. There are supplements specifically created with things like healthy fingernails and hair in mind. Research has even suggested that biotin (a vitamin that is part of the vitamin B family) may be helpful to promote the strength and growth of fingernails. Consult your physician before making any decisions about your health and nutrition.

Tip #6: Cut and File Your Nails

No more biting, picking or tearing at your nails. Aside from the obvious contamination factor of biting into your fingers, it weakens your actual nails. Filing and cutting your nails is the best way to keep from having jagged nail edges that may snag and tear, which can cause cuts. Using strong files, clean clippers and sharp nail scissors will help keep you from getting an uncomfortable nail infection or painful injury. Clean edges don’t snag or break as easily and they help promote stronger, more even growth. So, when you are cutting, trimming or filing down your nails make sure you take the time to do it the right way with the proper nail care tools.

The way you care for natural and fake nails is essentially the same. Artificial nails need strong, healthy nails to adhere to that will be sturdy and supportive bases for whatever artificial style you prefer. There are, however, a few practical tips you will want to keep in mind about the salon services and manicurists you choose to use.

Tip #7: Only Visit Licensed Nail Technicians

When you first walk into a salon, it shouldn’t be hard to spot any business and health licenses. You’ll also want to insist on a qualified nail technician when first booking your appointment. Make sure you see the certification before your manicure or pedicure services begin. A helpful tip for the salon experts includes taking some time to look into the salon establishments you already frequent. Do you remember seeing any certifications hanging on the wall of the salon, or around the nail technician station. If not, you may want to ask if they have them or to see them. The licenses salons are required to ensure your safety when it comes to the business practices and the building itself. A nail technician needs certifications to show that they are trained to do a quality job without endangering or injuring you. If a salon or nail technician can’t meet basic industry qualification standards, it’s time to go somewhere else for nail care.

Tip #8: Find a Nail Technician That Listens

Disagreements and disappointments happen in customer service from time to time. Styles turn out differently than we thought they would, and misunderstandings happen. But if something is hurting, uncomfortable, off or against your wishes then it’s time to move on to someone and somewhere else for your manicures. If you make someone aware of a sensitivity or issue and it is disregarded, that is much different than the general frustration that occasionally happens in any customer service field.

You have your own style. That includes the way you wear, shape and paint your nails. Whatever your personal nail fashion preferences are, a tip that benefits your nail health is important, even from an aesthetic point of view. Taking proper care of your nails keeps them from looking discolored, flaky, and breaking off unexpectedly. Don’t neglect your nails, take care of them. Your nails will never look better no matter how you prefer to wear them.

Did learning about these nail care tips interest you? Do you want to learn more about becoming a nail technician? Your search for a nail technician program ends at Minnesota School of Cosmetology, where you learn all the tricks of the trade to provide the look and TLC clients are looking for. Our campus locations are convenient, if you are looking for beauty schools that can train you to become a licensed nail technician. You will graduate with a firm understanding of the anatomy of the nails and the skills to perform a variety of nail services, including manicures, pedicures, gel polish applications and nail art.

Both campuses feature salon-grade pedicure chairs and manicure stations where you will get to perfect your skills in a professional salon setting. If you are looking to become a licensed nail technician, you can gain valuable, real-world experience you graduate working with products used in many salons across the country.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a licensed nail technician!

Becoming a Nail Technician: The Artistic Skills of the Trade

Successful nail technicians performing servicesInterested in becoming a nail technician? Nail art is growing thanks to social media and magazines full of inspirational images of nail styles and colors. Nail art ranges from understated designs to the extravagantly elaborate. This means that becoming a successful nail technician requires varying qualities and skills. This is especially true if a nail technician has goals of celebrity clients and high-paying jobs. Interpersonal skills nail technicians need to succeed include communication, reliability, and leadership. A nail technician will also need technical skills to succeed. These skills include the ability to spot trends, be precise, and great concentration. With these skills and the foundation built from a cosmetology program, nail technicians will be set up to become successful.

Interpersonal Skills for Nail Technicians

Getting a manicure is about more than just the finished look. For a client, having their nails done can also be about the experience. Passionate technicians create and elevate experiences so that their clients have the best experience while receiving manicure or pedicure services.

Skill #1: Communication and Conversation

Not all clients will want to chat while they get their nails done, but most will appreciate this. It may come in the form small talk, pleasantries, or a full emotional unload. Clients sometimes use the indulgence of a manicure as a way to treat themselves. That experience can often be enhanced by conversation. Let clients open up, but be sure not to pry. Being warm and inviting will let the client steer the conversation, even if that means a quiet service.

Skill #2: Reliability

A nail technician’s personal time is crucial to their mental health and should be respected by both clients and employers. There are, however, times where adjusting your schedule can strengthen a nail technician’s relationship with a client. Being forgiving of the occasional last minute reschedule can go a long way. A nail technician should know when a client needs more understanding and when someone is exploiting them. Likewise, respecting clients’ time is crucial to maintaining a long-lasting relationship. Be on time and do the very best to keep appointments.

Skill #3: Leadership

There will be times when clients may not know what they want. Often times they will want their nail technician’s input and advice. This may feel like a lot of pressure. Nail technicians should want their client to be happy and feel good about their work. This is your time to shine as a nail technician! This allows nail technicians the opportunity to show off skill and imagination. Nail technicians should come up with ideas that will excite clients, rather than ho-hum ideas the client will accept.

Technical Skills for Nail Technicians

A nail technician’s personality might be great, but without any practical knowledge there is no way for them to achieve their goals in nail art. It takes dedication to the practical aspects of nail technology to become a nail technicians on the cutting edge in their field. While formal training and certification will give them the knowledge they will need as a nail technician, their learning does not end there.

Skill #4: Trendspotting

As with most beauty trends, nail styles are rapidly shift and change. Becoming knowledgeable of the latest trends can help nail technicians to anticipate requests and make suggestions. It will also give nail technicians opportunities for professional development. Keeping an eye on new products can also give nail technicians an edge. Changes to products happen quickly and there is a lot of variety to choose from. It can be fun for both nail technician and client to try new things. Nail technicians should thoroughly research all of the products they use or recommend.

Skill #5: Precision

It is not uncommon for nail technicians to feel like they’ve fallen into a rut. Building a steady client base is a fantastic achievement for any nail technician, but it can sometimes mean falling into a predictable routine. This doesn’t mean nail technicians should settle in for the long haul. You never know when a new client or opportunity might come along! They may also have a client who will surprise them with a request for something new. When these moments arise, nail technicians don’t want to be caught looking rusty! Nail technicians must keep their creative skills sharp by practicing new styles and trends.

Skill #6: Concentration

Maintaining high-quality work is vital to creating and keeping a client base. This means nail technicians must focus on their work, even when the request is not exciting. Small slip-ups and flaws add up after a while. This may be what causes one of a client to find a new nail technician. Being a nail technician can be an amazingly creative job, but don’t forget that discipline is necessary if you hope to stand out. Dedication to your craft will also help you to work efficiently. Don’t hurry through an appointment, but also don’t waste a client’s time by being unprepared. Revisit the basics often to avoid making mistakes.

Final Thoughts

Your formal training as a nail technician gives you a foundation for your career. You may have goals of cultivating a reliable business with customer loyalty. It could be that you are hoping to be a nail artist for celebrities. Or you could be working toward revolutionizing nail fashion all together. An education in nail technology is required regardless of what your goals may be. If you are good to your clients and good at what you do, success won’t have a hard time finding you.

Still interested in becoming a nail technician? Your search for a Nail Technician program ends at Minnesota School of Cosmetology. You will learn all the tricks of the trade to provide the services clients want. We offer two campus locations in Woodbury and Plymouth where you will get an education to become a nail technician. You will graduate with an understanding of the anatomy of the nails. You will also graduate with the skills to perform a variety of nail services including manicures, pedicures, gel applications and nail art.

Both campuses feature salon-grade pedicure chairs and manicure stations where you will perfect your skills in a professional salon setting. If you are looking to become a licensed nail technician, you can gain valuable, real-world experience working with products used in many salons across the country.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a nail technician and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

Manicures & Pedicures: Tools of the Trade

Women receiving manicures and pedicuresAre you interested in becoming a nail technician? If so, you will want to buff up on the tools and products nail technicians use to perform a manicures and pedicures.

A manicure or pedicure is a service that keeps the nails and skin of the hands and feet in healthy condition. This may mean smoothing calloused skin on your feet, as well as maintaining the cuticles of your hands. Adding proper oils and shaping nails helps keep them strong. Services also include a light massage or gentle muscle stretching that accompanies manicures and pedicures.

Manicures and pedicures are a great way to keep your nails and skin healthy. Our hands and feet take the brunt of daily work, so keeping them healthy is important. Smoothing rough areas, trimming hangnails and filing your nails to keep the manicure and pedicure fresh is important.

There are many types of tools and products used in manicures and pedicures. Clear coat polish is the last step in most services, which prevents the nail from damage. A top coat polish can help protect the nail and prevent damage from chemicals, soaps and water damage. Plus, the addition of a bright layer of colored polish is pleasing to many people.

Benefits of Manicures & Pedicures

People from different walks of life get manicures and pedicures. Dealing with professionals that have well-manicured nails conveys confidence and cleanliness.

Regular pedicures can help promote healthy circulation in hands and feet. Another added benefit of the manicures and pedicures is to prevent nail diseases. Professional nail technicians can spot potential nail and skin problems before they become big problems.

Manicures and pedicures also help to alleviate stress. Relieving stress can promote good mental and physical health. There are many studies that suggest that lowering stress may help aid in memory, digestive and heart health. Manicure and pedicure services can be quite affordable. Regular maintenance of your hands and feet is well worth the cost.

There are specific tools used in manicure and pedicure services. These are the basic tools a professional will need, use, and sanitize for nail services. Some tools are disposable including Emery boards, bamboo sticks and toe separators. Many nail tools are sanitized after every use.

Manicure Tools

In addition to comfortable chairs for clients to sit in, there are many unique tools that help nail technicians perform manicures. These manicure tools include:

  • Acetone/polish remover to remove polish and debris.
  • Cuticle cream for the bottom of the nail.
  • Lotion to moisturize.
  • Nail brush tool for nail hygiene.
  • Cuticle pusher to push back skin around the nail.
  • Cuticle scissors tool to trim cuticles.
  • Nippers to trim hangnails.
  • Nail files/Emery boards to shape the nail.
  • Nail buffer block to add shine to the nail.
  • Bamboo sticks to clean up excess cuticle.
  • Cotton balls to apply products.
  • Tweezers tool to grab small items.
  • Cuticle oil to moisten and add vitamins to the skin.
  • Polish to add protection and shine or color to the nail.
  • Small paintbrush to create nail art.

Pedicure Tools

There are many unique tools that help nail technicians perform pedicures. These pedicure tools include:

  • Foot spa soaker to soak the feet.
  • Acetone/polish remover to remove polish and debris.
  • Astringent foot soak to sanitize feet.
  • Cooling foot soak to open the pores and soothe feet.
  • Exfoliating foot scrub to remove excess skin and callouses.
  • Nail brush tool for nail hygiene.
  • Foot file to file down callouses and remove old loose skin.
  • Toe separators to make sure toes don’t touch each other.
  • Cuticle remover to loosen hardened cuticle on the nail.
  • Cuticle oil to moisten and add vitamins to the skin.
  • Cotton balls to apply products.
  • Cuticle pusher to push back skin around the nail.
  • Cuticle scissors tool to trim cuticles.
  • Nippers to trim hangnails.
  • Nail files/Emery boards to shape the nail.
  • Nail buffer block to add shine to the nail.
  • Bamboo sticks to clean up excess cuticle.
  • Polish to add a protective layer and shine or color to the nail.
  • Small paintbrush to create nail art.

Nail Art and Extras

Performing manicures or pedicures is an artistic outlet. Many clients ask for nail art in addition to their polish. Nail art includes the adding little gems, patterns, glitter, and even different colors on the nails. Added revenue is always a welcome bonus.

Life-long learning is important in a nail technician’s career. There are always new techniques to learn and new styles to try. There are always new beauty trends to explore.

Working with clients in a clean and friendly environment ensures repeat customers. One satisfied client can turn into hundreds of happy clients. This is an upbeat profession that allows for creativity and client interaction. Now you have the tools to become a successful manicurist and/or pedicurist.

Did learning about manicure and pedicure tools interest you? Your search for a Nail Technician program ends at Minnesota School of Cosmetology. You will learn all the tricks of the trade to provide the services clients want. We offer two campus locations in Woodbury and Plymouth where you will get an education to become a nail technician. You will graduate with an understanding of the anatomy of the nails. You will also graduate with the skills to perform a variety of nail services including manicures, pedicures, gel applications and nail art.

Both campuses feature salon-grade pedicure chairs and manicure stations where you will perfect your skills in a professional salon setting. If you are looking to become a licensed nail technician, you can gain valuable, real-world experience working with products used in many salons across the country.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a nail technician and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

5 Reasons You Should Get a Cosmetology Diploma

From personal to professional, there are many reasons to get a cosmetology diploma

If you want to work in a fun environment, love staying current on the latest trends in beauty, and have a passion for helping people look and feel their best, getting a cosmetology diploma is a great first step.

Still worried that it may not be right for you? Fear not! Read on to find out why getting a cosmetology diploma is an awesome pathway toward a fulfilling career.

You love it!

The old saying is true: If you love what you do, you never have to work.

Salon time can be super fun: hanging with your girlfriends, getting ready for prom or a wedding, or just relaxing and receiving a skin treatment. If you enjoy your time at the salon, why not be a part of it?

But you can’t go from cutting your niece’s hair to raking in tips at your own chair in a salon. You need training. And that’s where the cosmetology diploma comes in.

A good cosmetology school will teach you how to cut, color and style hair, provide spa treatments and apply facials, and give manicures and pedicures. Those in the beauty industry can find enjoyment in their work as they help people feel good inside and out, but they need proper schooling first.

You’ll learn things beyond beauty

Sure, going to cosmetology school will help you learn the latest industry trends and how to translate those looks to your customers.

However, you’ll also learn about the business side of the industry: tracking your sales and productivity, how many guests you retain, interpersonal relations, customer service and other behind-the-scenes aspects of the field. These are the kinds of skills you’ll be able to apply to nearly any industry.

Some schools also utilize technology, such as iPads, in the classroom, giving you the chance to use the latest programs and applications as you learn cosmetology.

It’s a growing industry

You don’t want to be stuck with a diploma and find yourself without any job prospects after you graduate.

That’s what makes the field so intriguing. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 10 percent growth rate for barbers, hairdressers and cosmetologists from 2014 to 2024. The demand for special hair services has increased in recent years, a trend that is expected to continue over the next decade, according to the BLS.

There will be future openings as people retire or leave the profession for other gigs, and you can find salons in every area of the country. Many in the profession are also self-employed, which would let you set your own schedule.

There are many other career options

If you’re fascinated by the beauty industry but don’t see yourself working at a chair all day, there are other options you might not even be aware of. With the right education and experience, there are unique paths you can take in your career as a cosmetologist.

Writer/blogger

Industry publications and the companies that make beauty products need people who know about cosmetology and can write in an entertaining and informative way.

Sales rep

If you like meeting new people and are passionate about a particular line, being a sales rep might make sense. You’ll showcase products at trade shows and events, or going to salons and spas and demonstrate their benefits.

Sales consultant

In this role, you work for companies that want their lines sold at salons and spas. With your schooling and expertise, you’ll know what beauticians are looking for and be able to tell people why they should sell a certain product at their location.

Brand ambassador

At conferences and other events, you’ll be interacting directly with potential customers, giving out samples and generating excitement about beauty products.

These are just of the few opportunities you can find outside the traditional salon setting.

Do you want to own a salon?

If so, you’ll want an education in cosmetology. Many of those with experience in the beauty profession go on to open up their own salons.

If you’ve been working at a salon for a few years, you may come up with ideas for you own unique location. It can be thrilling and rewarding to be in charge and make the big decisions.

In this case, you should also consider whether getting a degree in business makes sense. There are schools that have specialized management programs related to the salon/spa industry.

As you can see, no matter what you want to do with your career, there are plenty of reasons to get that cosmetology diploma.