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that is awful toesarewhereitsat, is there nothing you can do on the complaints side to avoid this recurring with every class. It seems to me that with every class they take there will be a percentage of "nail technicians" let loose of the general public. that is so scary.
I have to say Jackie, I for one have asked people that have done the creative course for an idea of the sort of questions that I may come up against in the test. This doesn`t mean I want to cheat, just to give me a better idea of what to study. I suffer so bad with test nerves that any support network available I am grateful. The only question I know that will be asked in "what is a chemical" and when that question is put in front of me I`ll still draw a blank for a while. I find this board so comforting knowing that support is out there and I have had loads in the short time I`ve been here.


Jan 11, 2003
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Daventry, Northants (UK)
I hope I can word this correctly. Before I start I want to make it clear that I no way am wishing to upset or offend anyone.

I chose to post this on here as there is a vast amount of valuable and respected technicians on here.

Over the three years I have been in the nail business there have been a vast amount of message boards springing up some obviously better than others.

I am now becoming concerned that some of the information being offered is almost in the form of - never mind training if you cant afford it, just get some product and it will come naturally - HELLO :evil:

I fought long and hard to get where I am today and it upsets me that a small number of new people coming through the ranks are going to put the industry back a few years.

I read all the message boards I know of and on a few occasions if I read something "awful", I have replied but then some have verbally attacked me for acting like a no it all - far from it.

I know at the end of the day this does not really affect me directly from my business but it affects the reputation of our industry.

I know this may be controversial but I again apologise if anyone takes offence.
I agree with you fiona 100% about the poor quality of information that is spouted 'out of the mouths of babes' on some of the message boards around ... the expression 'the blind leading the blind' springs to mind!!

But surely it is the fault of the companies who are prepared to supply products to anyone who wants to hand over the cash, and no questions asked and no training required!! We as professional nail technicians should not support the companies who follow this culture ... it is they and not the people buying the stuff who are irresponsible and at the heart of any negative feedback to the industry.

However, there is nothing new in this ... it has been going on for years ... and I think most discerning individuals and clients recognize quality as opposed to cowboys. The hair industry is no different. Anyone can go into a wholesale store and buy hair products and set up from home with no training ... a client might get dupped once, but she won't return for a second helping AND she won't blame the entire hair industry for her bad experience but simply be more careful in her choice next time.

I don't think the entire nail industry will be set back a few years or at all and I don't think that others' lack of training and expertise will affect the businesses of the good and conscientious nail technicians who are worjking successfully ... it will affect their own success and they won't last for long.
Well said both of you. There should be far better training schools out there and they should all follow creative and not sell to anyone untrained.
As a student, I also agree. However, may I also express my concern and disappointment in the whole educational process? I am going to a strictly nails school and there are about 12-15 students at any given time. Out of those students there are approximately 5 who make their payments and come to class on a regular basis. Several of them come to class and sit and talk, order dinner, take breaks....anything but study or practice. My instructors say this particular industry doesn't operate on a "pass-fail" basis and so they just have to bide their time until these students finish. When they finish, the state board is so easy, that they pass with flying colors and actually get out there with little or no practical or educational experience under their belts. I want so badly to be in this business and have since I was a teenager. I feel like these particular students give the whole industry a bad name also; especially considering that in 1 to 2 months they will be out in the 'real world' and providing a really bad service.
I think people are trying to abuse some of these message boards also. I read a message yesterday on one of the yahoo boards from someone asking for copies of the Creative exams as she was due to take hers soon and needed all the help she could get! I couldn't believe my eyes :shock:

I think it was this Fiona (above) who politely told her to study - I was about to post a rather less polite reply with the odd 'cheat' word thrown in. I'm so glad that nobody actually offered any untoward 'help'. I trained with Creative and, while exams aren't my strong point (stress = amnesia ;) ), the training was so thorough and my trainer (Jo Carlisle) so helpful, that I sailed through the exam and thoroughly enjoyed taking it. I found the studying interesting also and wanted to learn rather than just wanting to pass. Hopefully nobody will think of attemtping to 'cheat' (strong word but basically what they would be doing) once they realise that the answers aren't so easily come by.

Debs.... that's the only question I can remember too :D I didn't mean to include (or appear to include) anyone who is asking for genuine help, I have emailed one lady on this board recently who asked for help and I told her what areas I thought she should concentrate on studying. I don't see that as a problem at all - the person I was referring to was asking for the actual exam papers which (IMHO) defeats the object of the training and could end up giving Creative a bad name for 'turning out' slightly less than committed (where education is concerned) nail techs. :shock:
Hi there,

This was my first nail tech board that I came across. Loved it so much I thought I'd investigate to see what else was out there, and I can say I was pretty shocked! Lots of mis-information and flaming posts! I came straight back here where you know you are going to get good honest advice and not some twaddle made up the top of someone's head!

I too have asked what we should be studying for our Creative exam. In fact, I had loads of questions about all sorts of things and Mrs Geek and Debs posted very nice replies - but asking for the exam paper!!!??? :shock: If I done that I wouldn't feel confident enough to go out and 'do nails' after the exam. How could you answer all your client's questions if you'd just learnt one exam paper parrot fashion!?

I think we should all be very pleased that we've found the Geek's board. I for one am very honoured to be here and can't wait for my Creative training in July, then I'll be Creative through and through!!!

Good luck with your exam, Debs!

What is a chemical? What is a chemical? What is a chemical???

Kx :D :D :D
I don't think there's anything that I, personally, can do. I'm frustrated with the lack of control a school has over a student. This is college, as far as I'm concerned and my university wouldn't let me get away with not paying or studying or doing my work. I was told that nothing could be done. Frankly, it brings down the morale of those who are there taking it seriously. Guess I'm just venting, not really looking for answers...since I don't seem to be any.
Hi all,
Fiona wrote:
I read all the message boards I know of and on a few occasions if I read something "awful", I have replied but then some have verbally attacked me for acting like a no it all - far from it.
Well Hun all I can say is, shame on them for not listening to a true professional, but then thats their loss not yours. Stupid is as stupid does........

I have to agree with Geeg, an educated Technician is a good Technician with the scope to become a great Technician.

If a person just goes and buys the stuff and then calls themself a trained Technician, they will soon run into problems. That doesn't reflect upon us but on them personally. They will look a right Lemon if something goes wrong and Lemons are only good for making Lemonade not great nails....
The Sales Industry needs to have tighter ruling there. Creative have got it right and hopefully others will follow.
As for the Wholesalers, when I went to buy stuff from Salon Services in Leytonstone I had to show my certificate, otherwise no goods and that was in the early 90's.
The same for Capital and Beauty in Dagenham.......but cant speak for others..........
So some do make an effort. but it doesn't stop a hairdresser playing at being a Nail Tech and visa versa.

As for the so called cheaters, well they won't know Jack Doodoo's, when it comes to great Techie work and hopefully for them the questions wont be changed lol that would be funny..................

Asking the board for area's that will be covered in an exam is not asking for the answers, but asking for the area that need to be studied, thats not cheating that asking for a little signpost to show the way.
Then it's up to them to find out the answers for themself's.
That will still involve studying, researching and making notes and revising, sleepless night, where questions go round and round in your head and the answer comes to you at 3 am. (Why does that always happen?)

Even when you have qualified and been a Techie for years , you still need to learn and study and broaden you horizon knowledge wise, this industry doesn't stand still and advances more and more each coming season.

So take heart all you Techie's out there, educated, trained Techs will outshine the cowboys any day. At leat we wont have to ride into the salon on a horse and hang up our spurs and they next victim please ............

Love Ruth (getting of my high horse now) :D
Thats where this board outshines the rest........when the wrong advice is given out, someone jumps in to put it right unlike the others where the wrong advice is just left there for all to see.
I should know this as I posted something on here (due to being misinformed myself) and mr geek slapped my wrist for it.
Its really good to know that although we each have individual personalities and opinions we are all striving for the same thing, to be the best in our profession. THANK YOU BOARD MEMBERS
Hi all,
I'm half way through my training with Creative nails course and yes I asked about the exam (not looking for a copy). A very kind lady (who knows who she is) pointed me in the right way. Gave me advice on what to study and very kindley offered any help she could give me. All I can say is that I'm so greatful to this person and can't thank her enough and of course for telling me about this board. I have learned alot from this board, the help and advice given is just great and couraging.
I was sick with worry over my exam but since I asked about them, I have relaxed a great deal. I hope that one day I can post advice and help to all who ask questions, but untill that day comes I will be the one asking.

It was me that replied to the girl who was asking for the exam paper - suggesting she just study :) . I got completely stressed out about the exam - my boyfriend had to endure the brunt of this panic (God know how he put up with it (me) for those 3 weeks - but he did, bless'im!!!!) :puke: :fire: :arg: :freak: - i think you get the message !!! (but I'm glad to say, my lowest marking out of the 3 was 97% - but i did study, study, study for them).
Anyway to add my tuppence worth in to this point....
Training in this industry NEEDS to be regulated, and made more available.
When I started out I initially went to my local college, but they wouldn't take me as I had no basic manicure training, so I went & found a 2 day manicure course, went back to the college & asked if this would meet the criteria, I was told "no" it had to be the NC mani course within the beauty therapy NVQ. Well, I wasn't interested in the rest of beauty therapy, I worked full time and could not afford to give up my job to go back to college full -time, so that was the end of that plan.
From there, I looked into private courses, but they were SO expensive. I just didn't have the disposable cash, so I became self taught. Went to Sally's/Salon Services bought the products, read A LOT - documents on the internet, books, wherever I could find info on health & safety, product info, mix ratios etc, and I played around. I learned from my own mistakes.
No - my first sets weren't the best, they took ages to do, lifted etc - but hey, aren't everyones 1st sets like that?
But I always wanted professional training......
In the end I had to take out a bank loan to facilitate this. I looked into all my options, Star, NSI, CND (the only ones close to home) - even to the point of coming down to England to train with the likes of K-sa-ra (to get the NVQ). the prices ranged from £450 - £1'900 - and this is just for ONE SYSTEM!!!! :rolleyes: (at college they do all 3).
So I went with CND. For an bit extra ££££ I was getting a longer course, going from basic main thru to l&p, overlays & sculpt.
The course was good - I enjoyed it, and despite my fears, it wasn't a glorified ad campaign! - HOWEVER, there were girls on the course who had a lot to improve on. Did they fail? - No. Were they given extra time to go away & practice before resitting the exam? - No. They passed just like me. So this begs the question - does anyone on a private/company run course ever fail?
And so I return to regulation & availability....
I would much rather attend training at an independent school. Yes, they will have to decide which company's products to use - but they shouldn't be directly employed by that company. And they SHOULD NOT be making commission on the products they sell! (for therein lies a conflict in interest for the less discerning).
Availability - or rather, should I say, price. Some companies are making in the region of £100 per day, per student, but in a class of say 10 - that's quite a nice little earner - again posing a conflict on interest on the organizers (how many students are too many).
Maybe, if the price of private training reduced, and the regulation of the objectiveness of the "school"'s increased, it would bring an end to the self -taught. - just a little food for thought...
Oh, and to finish (thank God I hear you all cry !!! :D ) I now have to find out how I go about obtaining my NVQ ;)

Soz 4 rambling on

Fi ;)
It is definitely not the policy at the Creative Nail Academy to Pass every student and your unsubstantiated remarks just prove to be inflammatory.

Many students have failed first time around and we let them re-take the questions they failed at a later date. This happens all the time.

BUT it is not how many questions one gets right ... it is more about which questions they get wrong.

For example if a student didn't know the difference between the processes of sanitation, disinfection and sterilization. If they didn't know which was most appropriate in the salon environment and WHY, that would be a serious question to fail on. But ... if they couldn't name say all the tips in the product range and tell me the differences between them, that would not be a reason to fail.

The questions that appertain to safety MUST be answered correctly and the information must be proved to be understood by the student. Even nail skills are not assessed at this point (Foundation Level) as a pass or fail because we understand that it will take many months of practice before a good standard is reached. THAT is why the courses at the Creative Nail Academy take a year to complete to Master Level.

I have to comment that it would be more appropriate to send me a private message if you think there are things we need to address at any of our academies - than to make a blanket unsubstantiated statement on the message board - and we will make sure it is put right if we find a genuine problem exists.

We do regulate our standard of education constantly and are very aware that this needs to be done to avoid comments such as yours, Fiona. We are only too cognisant of the fact that the eyes of the whole industry have always been upon us and what we do.

I think we have proved time and again our willingness to help anyone on this board, or not, if they have a problem or complaint . I suggest if you or anyone have such a problem, you take it up with me privately and in a respectful manner.
You appear to have taken my comments/opinions very personally Gigi.

My comments were in relation to private training schools as a whole (maybe I did not stress this enough) not only CNA's - in fact, the point was actually raised not by me, but by a co-student on my course. I therefore included it in my post as a point of interest - for discussion. In generalis I did not think it suitable to PM you with it as it was not intended to be "inflammatory" or slanderous toward CND. Trust me, IF I had a problem with my training EVERYONE concerned would know about it :D .

As such, I stand my ground on the matter. Our training does need to be regulated. By an affordable, independent body, with no financial affiliations to any one company. There should be an open and achievable grading system, with the same curriculum nationwide, for which we attain a general nationally recognized qualification.

I was under the impression that this was an open board, where we were free to post our own opinions/experiences. The remarks you seem to have taken such offence to are MY opinions, gained through MY life experiences within this industry. How can one hope to have an open board if one is going to be "shot down in flames" when a comment or opinion does not conform to what you think/feel?

I know emotions are not best perceived though the medium of e-mail so I am willing to accept that I have perhaps misconceived your reply, but it seems to have the tone of a scolding mother/teacher/superior. I am not a naughty child/student/inferior I merely posted my feelings. Sure, not everyone will agree with them, I do not expect them to. I just posted them openly to be used as "food for thought".

Let me put it another way, say a new member has a view on a particular topic, that they know may be controversal, or not conform to your opinions, after reading a response like I received, do you think they'll post - I think perhaps not. This does not promote an open board.

You seem to become very defensive anytime there is the slightest negativity towards CND (be it intentionally, or, like in this instance not). I am aware of your position in this industry, and can understand why you are so proud to be affiliated with CND and it's numerous awards (that's a compliment by the way ;) ) but surely you cannot expect everyone to give 100% positive feedback all the time. My opinions were not intended to slate CND. I love the products, the training, this board. So please, accept my appolosies for any misunderstanding caused by my post, but also appreciate my individuality and right of opinion.

And finally, before you go off on one at me (again) for posting my response, remember this. Your comments were made, PERSONALLY, to me on the board, therefore I feel it is appropriate to post my retort openly on the board. Not to embarrass or offend - only to defend :D


Fi (ona)
As I read your original post, your criticism was based on your experience of the CND course and was not a general comment on industry training as a whole. That came before and after.

Now you say it was a co-student who made the criticism ... and not you. So the remarks that I took offence to were not your opinions as you state, but the secondhand opinion of someone else!

Of course, when we try SO hard to achieve a standard in our schools I take what I consider to be unfair comments personally (on behalf of all of our educators throughout the UK).

What you suggest as to regulating the industry might be the best option in a perfect world, but no other country has achieved it so far in ANY field related to ours. Neither hair, Beauty nor Nails.

The NVQ is supposed to bring about exactly what you say you want ... It is run by an independent body - no company affiliation - an open and achievable grading system and with the same curriculum nationwide and a nationally recognized qualification!! Is it working?? You tell me? It seems to be handled differently in every college and even the Assessors have different perceptions of what is and isn't an acceptable standard of work, DESPITE the so called regulations that are in place.

So we try to regulate ourselves. It is the absolute best we can do as a group of training academies.

As a matter of fact, I have received several pm's since my post and have answered them promptly and I hope to the satisfaction of the writers.

An open board does not mean that a forum for slanging is invited or wanted (not that I'm saying that is what you intended - I know it was not).
It is not productive to hear of everyones horror stories regarding ANY company or their training. It is not positive and it serves no purpose.

I do not feel it is fair for anyone to make comments that will color anothers perception of a company or an individual on the basis of one person's experience. As you say, not everyone is going to be satisfied all of the time ... we are all individuals after all, but it is our goal that everyone should be sucessful - even though it is not totally realistic.

If one has a problem, it is only fair to take it up with the company concerned. .. give them a chance to correct any errors or make explanations. I know that as a company we view productive criticism positively and try to oblige whenever we can ... I think there are many individuals on this board who will attest to that fact.
I sincerely apologize to feebeast for over-reacting to a comment on her recent post on this topic.

I wrote in anger and in defense and it would have been much more appropriate for me to have had a word with her privately on the subject.

I also apologize to anyone who has been made to feel uncomfortable because of my reaction to her comments.

I hope you will accept my apology and charitably see it as a 'one off' moment of indiscretion.
To be honest Geeg - there's no need for you to apologize (but thank you anyway) - Like I said, I wrote my post as "food for thought".

I think it succeeded in that.

I admit, I maybe didn't word it as well as i could of - maybe that's why I'm not in a journalist ;)

I know how passionate you are about CND, and wouldn't go out of my way to offend you - or put the company down. I will however air my views when I feel I have a valid point or topic for discussion.

Anyhoo, all's said & done now - no hard feelings :cool:
A-men and thank the Lord - all is now well with the world!!! :rolleyes: ;) :thumbsup:
It's nice to see this is all sorted now, as we say here in East London.
A professional ending to a professional difference of opinion.

Nice one
Love Ruth xxxxxxxxxxx
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