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Become A Nail Technician

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Working As A Nail Technician

  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others
  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $60,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Nail Technician Do

Manicurists and pedicurists clean, shape, and beautify fingernails and toenails.

Duties

Manicurists and pedicurists typically do the following:

  • Discuss nail treatments and services available
  • Remove nail polish
  • Clean, trim, and file nails
  • Reduce calluses and rough skin
  • Massage and moisturize hands (for a manicure) and feet (for a pedicure)
  • Polish or buff nails
  • Advise clients about nail and skin care for hands and feet
  • Promote and sell nail and skin care products
  • Clean and disinfect their work area and tools

Manicurists and pedicurists work exclusively on the hands and feet, providing treatments to groom fingernails and toenails. A typical treatment involves soaking the clients’ hands or feet to soften the skin in order to remove dead skin cells. Manicurists and pedicurists apply lotion to the hands and feet to moisturize the skin. They also may shape and apply polish to artificial fingernails.

Manicurists and pedicurists use a variety of tools, including nail clippers, nail files, and specialized cuticle tools. They must be focused while they perform their duties, because most of the tools they use are sharp. Keeping their tools clean and sanitary is important.

Some manicurists and pedicurists operate their own nail salon business. They manage the daily decision making tasks, such as keeping inventory records and ordering supplies. They also hire and supervise workers and sell nail care products, such as nail polish and hand or foot cream, to clients. A small, but growing, number of workers make house calls. Their mobile manicure and pedicure services are popular because clients consider them convenient.

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How To Become A Nail Technician

Manicurists and pedicurists must complete a state-approved cosmetology or nail technician program and then pass a state exam for licensure, which all states except Connecticut require.

Education

Manicurists and pedicurists must complete a state-approved cosmetology or nail technician program. Currently, there are hundreds of programs nationwide.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

State licensing requirements vary. However, applicants need to be at least 16 years old and have a high school diploma or the equivalent. After completing a state-approved cosmetology or nail technician program, manicurists and pedicurists must take a written exam and a practical exam to get a license through their state board. Mobile manicure and pedicure services require a separate license.

The National–Interstate Council of State Boards of Cosmetology provides information on state examinations for licensing, with sample questions. The Professional Beauty Association and the American Association of Cosmetology Schools also provide information on state examinations, as well as offering other professional links.

Important Qualities

Business skills. Manicurists and pedicurist who run their own nail salon must understand general business principles. For example, they should be skilled at administrative tasks, such as accounting and personnel management, and be able to manage a salon efficiently and profitably.

Creativity. The ability to neatly finish small, intricate designs is important, as is the ability to suggest nail designs and match them to individual tastes. 

Customer-service skills. Good listening and interpersonal skills are important in working with clients. Also, meeting the needs of clients, including interacting with them while doing a manicure or pedicure, encourages repeat business.

Dexterity. A steady hand is essential in achieving a creative and precise nail design. In addition, because manicurists and pedicurists often use sharp tools, they must have good finger dexterity.

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Do you work as a Nail Technician?

Average Yearly Salary
$60,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$30,000
Min 10%
$60,000
Median 50%
$60,000
Median 50%
$60,000
Median 50%
$60,000
Median 50%
$60,000
Median 50%
$60,000
Median 50%
$60,000
Median 50%
$119,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
MasterCuts
Highest Paying City
Minneapolis, MN
Highest Paying State
North Dakota
Avg Experience Level
3.7 years
How much does a Nail Technician make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Nail Technician in the United States is $60,782 per year or $29 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $30,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $119,000.

Real Nail Technician Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Nail Technician Nail & Spa-O Logan Square, Inc. Chicago, IL Jun 10, 2015 $31,595
Nail Technician HBL, Inc. DBA Spa O Chicago, IL Jun 04, 2015 $28,392
Nail Technician Pink Nail & Spa Chicago Inc. Chicago, IL Oct 15, 2014 $28,392
Nail Technician HBL, Inc. DBA Spa O Chicago, IL Jun 24, 2016 $27,643
Nail Technician Nail Fairy, Inc. Chicago, IL Nov 19, 2015 $27,414
Nail Technician BRC USA, Inc. Wheeling, IL Nov 01, 2010 $26,915
Nail Technician Susan's Nails Plus Shrewsbury, NJ Oct 22, 2015 $25,189
Nail Technician; Manicurists; Pedicurists Beauty Nails 2 Detroit, MI Aug 31, 2010 $24,522
Nail Technician Dream Sky LLC Arlington, VA Nov 17, 2015 $24,253
Nail Technician VIP Nails & Spa Inc. Lake Zurich, IL Apr 26, 2016 $23,878
Nail Technician Spa Sunny Days, Inc. Mundelein, IL May 13, 2016 $23,878
Nail Technician Nail Fairy, Inc. Chicago, IL Nov 22, 2016 $23,504
Nail Technician HBL, Inc. DBA Spa O Chicago, IL Jan 12, 2016 $23,504
Nail Technician Biotonic Miami Beach, FL Jan 09, 2008 $23,479
Nail Technician H2O Nail and Spa, Inc. Chicago, IL Dec 21, 2016 $21,819
Nail Technician J Nails & Beauty Spa, Inc. Arlington Heights, IL Sep 28, 2016 $21,819
Nail Technician A Place for You Brookfield, CT Apr 09, 2010 $21,726
Nail Technician Nails By Olivia, Inc. Marina del Rey, CA Aug 04, 2015 $21,382
Nail Technician Twinkle Toe Chicago Corporation Chicago, IL Feb 28, 2008 $21,300
Nail Technician Elegant Nail Salon, Inc. New York, NY May 26, 2010 $21,267
Nail Technician Rachel's Tlc Nails Sparta, NJ Jul 06, 2015 $21,237
Nail Technician Pinky Nail, Incorporated Chicago, IL May 13, 2010 $20,000 -
$20,500
Nail Technician New 4U Nail Inc. Oyster Bay, NY Jul 27, 2016 $19,989
Nail Technician Blooming Nail IV Inc. North Wales, PA Jun 09, 2016 $19,594
Nail Technician Bedford Nails & Spa Inc. Bedford, MA Nov 15, 2016 $19,365
Nail Technician Blooming Nail & Foot Spa Inc. White Plains, NY Jul 29, 2016 $19,115
Nail Technician Atlas Studio Inc. Costa Mesa, CA Oct 14, 2015 $18,970
Nail Technician Polaris Nail & Spa Inc. New York, NY Jan 23, 2015 $18,949
Nail Technician Moonlight Nails & Spa Lemont, IL Oct 22, 2015 $18,783
Nail Technician Creative Nail Inc. East Hampton, CT May 02, 2016 $18,595

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Top Skills for A Nail Technician

  1. Customer Service
  2. Full Service Salon
  3. Spa Services
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Attended multiple educational seminars to build customer service skills and overall clientele.
  • Handle customer complaints as well as marketing and finance in a small but busy full service salon.
  • Provided nail spa services including natural nail care and artificial nail application
  • Provided professional nail care services to client with satisfactory quality.
  • Maintained a steady clientele by scheduling appointments and ensuring availability.

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Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Nail Technicians

  1. South Dakota
  2. New Mexico
  3. North Dakota
  4. Wisconsin
  5. Iowa
  6. Montana
  7. New Hampshire
  8. Minnesota
  9. Utah
  10. South Carolina
  • (49 jobs)
  • (94 jobs)
  • (74 jobs)
  • (316 jobs)
  • (234 jobs)
  • (48 jobs)
  • (76 jobs)
  • (297 jobs)
  • (127 jobs)
  • (144 jobs)

Nail Technician Resume Examples And Tips

The average resume reviewer spends between 5 to 7 seconds looking at a single resume, which leaves the average job applier with roughly six seconds to make a killer first impression. Thanks to this, a single typo or error on your resume can disqualify you right out of the gate. At Zippia, we went through over 11,865 Nail Technician resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Create A Top Notch Nail Technician Resume

View Resume Examples

Nail Technician Demographics

Gender

Female

72.4%

Male

14.7%

Unknown

12.9%
Ethnicity

White

57.9%

Hispanic or Latino

15.3%

Asian

13.6%

Black or African American

10.2%

Unknown

2.9%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

37.8%

Vietnamese

29.6%

Polish

9.3%

Chinese

4.2%

Korean

2.7%

Russian

2.2%

Mandarin

2.0%

Swedish

1.8%

French

1.8%

Cantonese

1.5%

Hmong

1.1%

Italian

1.1%

Japanese

1.1%

German

0.9%

Arabic

0.7%

Romanian

0.4%

Hindi

0.4%

Khmer

0.4%

Thai

0.4%

Bulgarian

0.4%
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Nail Technician Education

Schools

Empire Beauty School

16.2%

University of Phoenix

13.4%

The Beauty School

9.6%

Regency Beauty Institute

6.2%

The Academy

6.1%

All Beauty College

5.6%

Beauty Academy

4.5%

Georgia State University

4.2%

Ultimate Medical Academy - Clearwater

3.7%

Aveda Institute

3.2%

Palm Beach State College

3.0%

Broward College

2.9%

Valencia College

2.9%

Ashford University

2.9%

Northern Virginia Community College

2.9%

Salt Lake Community College

2.9%

American InterContinental University

2.6%

University of Illinois at Chicago

2.6%

University of Central Florida

2.4%

Academy of Hair Design

2.4%
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Majors

Cosmetology

31.4%

Business

15.6%

Nursing

7.2%

Health Care Administration

5.5%

Medical Assisting Services

5.0%

Accounting

4.2%

General Studies

3.9%

Psychology

3.6%

Criminal Justice

2.8%

Liberal Arts

2.2%

Management

2.1%

Graphic Design

2.1%

Medical Technician

2.0%

Nursing Assistants

1.9%

Dental Assisting

1.9%

Education

1.9%

Biology

1.8%

Pharmacy

1.7%

Elementary Education

1.6%

Marketing

1.5%
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Degrees

Other

41.7%

Bachelors

20.1%

Associate

16.3%

Certificate

8.1%

License

7.4%

Diploma

3.3%

Masters

2.8%

Doctorate

0.3%
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