Today we’d like to introduce you to Nicole Manuel.
Nicole, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I was unhappy with the current job I had. I felt that it was sucking all of the life out of me. I wanted to find something that made me happy with satisfying my creative side instead of being miserable building on someone else’s dream. One day I sat and thought about what things am I obsessed with and what I can I use as a creative outlet. I ran through a list of things with and honestly narrowed it down to two things which were shoes and nails. I always wanted to explore my creative side but wasn’t sure how to. All I knew was to go to college and get a degree. I ended up getting two degrees but still felt a void in my creative side. I decided to go to beauty school simply to receive a manicure license with the end goal to open up a shop. To also eliminate some stereotypes and barriers involving nail technicians. Of course, I got the whole “You have two degrees, why would you go to beauty school?” Everything isn’t meant for everyone. It never hurts to add to what you love.
Once I began my nail journey in school, I realized that it was my creative outlet. Once I received my license, I hit the ground running with landing my first fashion gig for Moschino X Jeremy Scott under the direction of Nails by Yoko. I then went on and did the BET Experience with beauty brand Tresse Noire. I have done training under celebrity nail stylist Custom T Nails and will be doing a fashion show with her soon. I currently have my own booth in a beauty/barber shop in Hawthorne and work part-time at Allbright in West Hollywood.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It has somewhat been a bumpy road due to not having a strong support system in the beginning. Or having people close to me not understanding the bigger picture to this career change. But it was only fuel to chase my dreams even more.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
I am a licensed nail technician (@NailCodeByNic). I specialize in Gel X, Acrylic, and Manicures (both regular and gel) and I am known for nail art. What I am most proud of as a company is being able to receive phone calls to do various shows and have clients who aren’t afraid to explore nail art. What sets me apart from others is my willingness to accept all challenges and go above and beyond to make sure my clients are satisfied.
What were you like growing up?
Growing up, I was definitely a Tomboy that was a nerd. My mother would put me in pageants to make me more girly, but it was temporary LOL. I was always that kid that knew everyone but hated to be confrontational. I would be consider as a “Popular Nobody.” I was outgoing and friendly and had an interest in basketball and shoes.
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