Inside Manicurist Careers

Things you need to know, but nobody tells you

Biggest Surprises

"I Enjoy Working With My Hands And Being Very Creative...
I was surprised on how nice my clients usually are. I work in a very upscale spa so the clientele is usually very wealthy and friendly. Eccentric but usually very nice." (Cosmetologist; 2014)

Career: 3 years of experience, currently based in Texas, female
School: Studied Cosmetology at Baldwin Beauty School in Texas in 2010

"Communication Is Everything...
Most people are surprised of the hours I work in a day. If you are renting a booth, you have to be there a lot to make decent money. You have to do well to get people to tell their friends to come to your booth." (Nail Technician; 2014)

Career: 5 years of experience, currently based in South Dakota, female
School: Studied Nail Specialist at Beauty Schools Of America in Florida; completed Certificate degree in 2008

"I was surprised that being an Aesthetician can be very rewarding, financially and personally. A good Aesthetician is always in demand here in Virginia. You can build a pretty good size clientele by being dedicated and devoted to your career." (Aesthetics-Cosmetology; 2013)

Career: 12 years of experience, currently based in Virginia, female
School: Studied Aesthetician / Cosmetologist at Yvonne De Vilar Scientific Skin Care in Virginia; completed Certificate degree in 2000

"What surprises me most is the amount of clients that come in to have me work on their acrylic nails that were previously done in what we call "chop shops". These acrylic nails are slapped on so thick and wide with dips and scratches all over them. In my business, you definitely get what you pay for. It is not worth saving a few bucks on acrylic nails to risk getting a fungus under your acrylic nail and possibly losing your own nail in the long run." (Manicurist; 2013)

Career: 30 years of experience, currently based in California, female
School: Studied Manicurist at Marinello's Beauty College in California; completed Certificate degree in 1981

"Schedule Flexibility...
I have loved my career as a cosmetologist because it has allowed me the freedom to schedule my appointments around my personal life. I have done very well in the profession and have bought a house and raised a child on my commission income. I have met many very interesting people and have loved my career as a cosmetologist." (Cosmetologist; 2012)

Career: 25 years of experience, currently based in Virginia, female
School: Studied Hair, Nails, Facials, And Body Waxing at Art Academy Of Hair Fashion in Virginia; completed Certificate degree in 1998

Career Background


  Job Tasks
  Work Environment
  How to Prepare for the Job
  Job Outlook

Career Video

Career Tips

"How To Be Successful As A Manicurist...
Work your way up to an upscale firm. Strip mall nail salons will only take you so far." (Cosmetologist; 2014)

"Building Up Clients...
If you want to be a successful nail technician, you should start out working in someone's shop for commission instead of renting a booth. Once you build up customers and you are satisfied that you can make enough for rent, then you can rent a booth. The customers that like you will follow you to the new area." (Nail Technician; 2014)