Education or EduKashun if you're The Geek


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Well-Known Member
Mar 5, 2003
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The response for my last article (on liquid and powder) was quite enlightening so I am returning here to pose another ponderer. I am writing an article on training for the May issue of Professional Nails and can see that continuing education has got you all in a lather.

But, what do you think of day or two day courses over more extended training courses (NVQ Unit 19 etc)? What attracts to you certain courses and if you had to give advice to a beginner unsure of what training to follow, what advice would you give?

All comments gratefully received and if you add your name, salon and location, I'll gladly credit your comments.

Happy St Paddy's Day by the way to any Irish geeks out there...


PS: I hope The Master Geek doesn't mind me using his board in this way...I owe you a Guinness or two...


I' m new to nails & although I passed my courses(2 day, 1 mani & pedi,2 gel extensions) a while ago, I'm still having huge probs, with confidence & actual techniques.

I choose an intensive 2 day course in a 'private school', one that doesn't tie you to a specfic product line, because I was in a job I hated & was desperate to leave. I definitly made the wrong choice! I find it really difficult to overcome any probs I have as I can't just go back to my teacher the following week & show them the issue.
I sorely wish I'd had been able to find out more about the industry before I paid for my course. That's the main problem though, if you're a complete novice like I was & you just know you want to get into nails it was a major task, just trying to find info. For example, theres no genral sale professional beauty magazine, you can only subscribe to them. Sams site was'nt around then, but even if it had been, I'm not sure I would have found it! I used soooo many different internet search engines & just got obscure schools that I've never heard of since.
The main problem in my opinion, is that as the industy isn't licensed, you don't really have a starting point, unless you have some sort of a beauty background.
My advice to any person starting out would be to go with a major product company I mean like, Creative, or NSI, or OPI, etc. not a private school. They know their techniques & systems better than anyone else & if you do change the system you use, you can do a conversion course. simple. I would also go with a company whos training course & trainer are local to you. If you do have any probs, you can pop in for some help.
I am trying to work as a mobile tech, so I don't have a salon, but I do work under the name of 'The Nail Spa' I work in Salisbury & the New Forest area.

Sorry I got on my soap box a bit there! :rolleyes:
I truly believe that there is no way on this earth that you can learn nails in 1 to 2 days, it is totally impossible.

Any person asking my advice on training would be solely directed to Creative Nail Design. Firstly you have to do a 4 day Foundation course, you are then encouraged (although not harrassed) to attend 3 Master classes and finally you can become a certified Master technician buy attending and completing their Master Qualification day. At the end of this you are not then cast away into the depths of the universe, in my experience there has always been somebody their to come to my aide and if it cannot be resolved over the phone, I can either attend another Master class or have a 1-1.

I have read alot of emails and spoken to various other techs, and how many times have they said their training was sooooo inadequate. The sad thing is, is that this is not restricted to private companies and brand companies but also colleges where you would think that the training should be top notch. In alot of these cases aswell, the rookie nail tech has felt that they cannot go back for further advice when things are going wrong!

I have attended a couple of other 'big' named company courses and spent rather alot of money in the process, but at the end of the day only one gets my vote. Lets hear it for CND, yeah :salute:

Regards, Adele Cutler of Peppercorn Nails, Ipswich
I agree with Peppercorm Nails it is so important to have a foundation before embarking on a nail career. CND do offer a very comprehensive course. Seven years ago I personally took the route of an ITEC dipolma in Ant. & Phys and then went on to do a creative course five years ago, after that I did not carry on and so early last year did a home learn course in gel. The home learn courses are good if you want to take your time but the drawback is you do not actually have anyone to point out where you are going wrong there and then. Late last year I grasped the nettle and did a CND conversion course which was the turning point for me and I now own my own salon and feel that I am really going forward. I intend to do my masters with CND this year and never get fed up with learning, learning and more learning.

Lynda Rogan, Executive Nails, Greetland, West Yorkshire.
My first course was only two days which I feel gave me the basics but wasn't really enough. I feel that these courses attract people due to the fact that they can be 'qualified' in a couple of days.

A lot of problems also arise when companies that do their own training don't give you the back up and support once the course has finished. I have been very lucky but others aren't.

Also, continuing education is a huge factor. There was a recent topic on here regarding how many times a year we felt was appropriate to go on courses. The vast majority said between 1 and 2 courses per year depending on individual circumstances.

I have been doing nails for 3 years and I have been on 2 courses but would've gone on more but couldn't as I've recently had a baby. But now he's 4 months I have signed up for a Creative Conversion class in April and hope to go on and do my Masters later on in the year.

Sorry for waffling!!!
In this profession you never stop learning. Whether you've been doing nails for one or twenty years there's always room for improvement. There are good and bad training courses offered here in the UK, running from between one and four days. My course was over four days and my head spun with the amount of information I received, how it's possible to train someone in one day I've no idea. Some places teach all three systems in two days, these courses I feel are totally inadeqaute and barely brush the surface. Unfortunately there is no governing body to monitor the quality of training/education on offer. As things stand anyone can set themselves up as a trainer/educator. This can result in poor quality training and "nailtechs" performimg services that are of a very low standard which ultimately reflect badly on the nail industry as a whole. Some companies do not offer nailtechs further education beyond the initial beginners course. Creative is one of the few, if not the only, companies to do this with their Master Classes. For the more experienced tech that has perhaps completed all of the courses available there is little on offer. It is not a requirement that we attend courses yearly to brush up on our skills such as it is in the US. It is up to us as individuals to make the effort to improve ourselves.
Jane Goddard
The Nail Bar
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