Nail technicians care for and repair nails to enhance their overall appearance. They may also use their creativity to decorate nails using painted designs, transfers and stones.
Employers seek nail technicians with nationally recognised beauty qualifications, such as NVQs in Nail Services or BTEC National Awards, Certificates and Diplomas in Beauty Therapy Sciences. No set formal academic qualifications are required to study for these courses. However, GCSE passes are often helpful. It is possible to become a nail technician through an apprenticeship in nail services. These apprenticeships often lead to NVQs. Since nail art trends change with the seasons, nail technicians seeking employment must be able to demonstrate evidence of up-to-date skills.
Nail technicians require patience, creativity, good hand-to-eye coordination and an awareness of health and safety regulations.
Nail technician jobs can be found in beauty salons, hairdressing salons, nail salons, luxury hotels, department store beauty counters, and spas. There are opportunities for nail technicians to work on photo shoots with photographers and fashion stylists and to work in overseas hotels, cruise ships and spas. Full-time, part-time and freelance jobs are available, with vacancies being advertised by employers and recruitment agencies.
Starting salaries for nail technicians tend to be around £8,000 a year. Self-employed nail technicians may earn more than this. Experienced nail technicians may be able to take on higher paid staff management and teaching roles.