My name is Ria and I’m the owner of Talon Nail Bar. I graduated from the Nail Technician Program at Delmar College in 2015. I was, and still am, completely obsessed with all things beauty and fashion. It was no surprise to anyone that I got into the beauty biz. When I was 16 I became a makeup artist, when I was 18 I entered the fashion industry, at 19 I ran a makeup school, and became a Nail Tech when I was 30. Here’s my guide to surviving the beauty biz and nail industry after graduation.
I always knew that I wanted to be a business owner. But I’ve seen many salon owners and beauty professionals open businesses thinking they can provide great beauty services. But it ain’t that easy and they often end up with really poor businesses– this is why I am choosing to do things a little bit differently.
I opened Talon Nail Bar in November of 2015 and worked as a sub-contractor. Unfortunately, I made my first big business mistake. I worked for a young woman that had no idea how to run a business. She had no business plan, no marketing plan, absolutely nothing. I wasn’t given the opportunity to build any clientele and I quickly wasted 8 months. It was time to move on.
Let me tell ya, there is a huge learning curve when it comes to running a business and providing services at the same time. I learnt that you need to do your research, trust no one, be bold, ask questions and always have your own back.
I was given an amazing opportunity to move Talon Nail Bar to a cooperative beauty boutique in Inglewood. I did my research, asked a lot of questions, and before I knew it my luck had changed. Now that I had found a great location for my business it was time to grow my clientele. This is by far the most exhausting and challenging part of the beauty business. With an industry that is full of competition it’s so important to stay on top of the game. So, how am I doing this? Social media, social media, social media.
Learning and educating yourself about hashtags, posts that keep your audience’s attention, taking amazing pictures of your work and keeping things original. Reposting other people’s work and tagging others is also a fantastic way to draw attention to your posts. Advertising on social media is another great way to gain followers and clientele, it’s also an affordable way to get the word out about your business. But social media fatigue is a real thing and it can become overwhelming, so limit yourself and don’t obsess over it too much!
Okay, so you’ve got an amazing location, you’re getting the word out about your business, clients are walking through the door and now it’s all about staying on top, keeping up with trends, and staying skilled. In the nail industry, this is huge. There are new nail trends almost monthly and while only some of these trends stay around, a lot don’t. But you need to be offering the latest and greatest! This can get expensive so my best advice is to spend money on education instead of always following trends. Take as many courses as you can and learn as much as you can. Knowledge is power. I would also recommend focusing on basic skills and becoming confident with that, as the nail industry can become really overwhelming. I’ve also learnt that beauty professionals love being asked questions and educating others, so ask as many questions as possible and learn from others in your industry. This can also give you an edge on your competition and ultimately give you more confidence.
If I could offer any piece of advice for people fresh out of beauty school it would be to be yourself, stay true to who you are and never let anyone tell you that being you isn’t good enough. Trust me, this will happen. Stay authentic and do things differently. In the end it all comes down to originality.
Ria Parsbey is the owner of Talon Nail Bar and is a Delmar College alumni. We are proud to showcase the successes (and the challenges) of our graduates. You can see Ria’s work and learn more about her business by checking out her webpage, www.talonnailbar.com
Follow her on Instagram @talonnailbaryyc
Follow her on Facebook @talonnailbar
Are you a Delmar alumni? We would love to feature you in our weekly blog. Leave a comment and we will be in touch with you.
no gimmicks. just great education