How to become a nail technician

Becoming a nail technician can be a rewarding career choice, as you help people go into the world with confidence.

If you are the creative type who loves everything nails, then why not make it your job for life? This guide will explore what it takes to become a nail technician and start to build that client list.

What is a nail technician?

As a nail technician, you are part of the beauty and wellbeing sector, involved in the grooming and treating of finger and toenails. You might end up giving manicures, pedicures, shaping or polishing nails, and doing extensions and decorations. You will also be a specialist in the health of nails.

You will be suited to being a nail technician if you are a social person with something of an artistic flair.

What will you do as a nail technician?

While we hinted at the treatments you will be doing, you will also have other responsibilities. You might be expected to apply or remove nail polish or extensions, recommend the colour, design or style of the nail for a client, tidy up nails by cutting and cleaning them, hand and feet massages, treatments, advice, and more. You will also be expected to help with hygiene, sterilise your equipment, and maintain your station between clients.

Most importantly, you will be talking with the clients and making them feel at ease in your presence. Part of your role is that of a salesperson. You want the client to keep coming back, and you may even be responsible for upselling products and services.

How much do you get paid?

Australia’s pay scale suggests you could earn anywhere between $16 and $27 per hour, which is anywhere up to $56k for the most talented and sought-after nail technicians. Your salary as a trainee will be much lower and rise with experience and your popularity with clients.

You can also choose to work for yourself as a mobile nail technician, which means you can set your own rates. Before you do this, consider your costs. You will need to account for your time and the price of the products you use, including the disposable equipment. You will need to look at what other nail technicians and salons are charging, as well as your cost for travelling to a client.

While you have a lot of freedom when you run your business, you need to be sure you can earn a living too.

What are the benefits of being a nail technician?

If your personality suits being a nail technician, then there are many reasons why you will enjoy this role. You get the opportunity to meet lots of new people, and some of your clients will become good friends over the years. You also get the satisfaction of knowing you are making people feel better about themselves because of how you make them look. A pleased client will become a huge sense of accomplishment.

A nail technician’s job is also creative, and you get to flex that artistic flair to good effect. While many jobs can be tedious and repetitive, being a nail technician gives you the chance to try new designs. It is also a job that rewards you if you are talented, and there is a significant level of progression to be earned in this business. And, if you run your own business, you can work flexible hours and build a life you love as well as a career.

How can I become a nail technician?

So, you have been persuaded that being a nail technician is for you. Then, it is time to consider your route into this career. You can attend a local college that offers beauty courses or take an online course. There are also options to undertake an apprenticeship, where you can earn as you learn.

When thinking about your route into being a nail technician, you need to consider the costs—for instance, the cost of the course and the equipment as you train. If you are starting your business, you will need to buy all the kit, including buffers, clippers, files, acetone, and much more. You will also need to consider the insurances and other legalities of working with clients, and you will likely need a first aid qualification.

Is it for me?

You need the proper skillset and character to do well as a nail technician. You need to friendly and communicative, as well as having a good eye for detail. Remember that much of your work is in customer service, so make sure you are ready for this part of the job too.