Half of the reason to get a manicure is for the experience. And you wouldn't want to kill that relaxing vibe, would you? Professionally painted nails are honestly not a necessity in life, but I am the first to admit nothing makes me feel more like a #girlboss than a gel set. It's definitely the perfect cure for a bad work day or horrendous work week. And let us never forget how a good mani-pedi brought so many friends together on classic TV shows like The Hills, Laguna Beach, or any of the Real Housewives of (insert basically any city name here).
And although getting your nails done should generally be a relaxing experience, there are certain things to be mindful about when interacting with your manicurist if you want your tips to come out looking as fresh as possible. I spoke to Elissa Schell, an assistant education manager at Paint-Box in New York City; Gina Edwards, a celebrity manicurist for KISS Products; and Nadine Abramcyk, co-founder of tenoverten, a salon franchise with a mission to create not only a great experience for customers, but promote best nail care in their practices and polishes. Each shared a few of their pet peeves as manicurists and a why avoiding these mistakes could help your, and their, experience.
1. "What do you think would look best?"
Before getting down to the nitty gritty of filing your nail beds off, Edwards sets up a consultation with her clients (read: Demi Lovato, Rita Ora) to discuss what he or she wants. Schell also has a personal consultation with each one of her clients before service begins. During that time, Edwards recommends avoiding vague descriptions or telling the manicurist to "do whatever they want." Sure, she's an expert. But she wants to give you the nails you're looking for.
2. "Sorry about my bleeding nailbuds. Can you fix it?"
Not only is this unsanitary, but manicurists are not doctors. They cannot make your finger stop bleeding and it's likely some of their products or fast process will hurt your nails even more. Edwards said a client coming in for service if their nails are cut or bleeding is her pet peeve. If you already had an appointment scheduled, however, tell the manicurist what happened and ask how to avoid the problem next time or if they have any tips for stopping the pain sooner rather than later.
3. "Sorry if this is a stupid question, but..."
To Edwards, there are no such things as stupid questions. "There are no questions that should be ignored or refused by a client. It all comes down to educating your clients and leaving with an awareness and comfort level," she says. So go ahead and ask!
4. "Nope! No concerns!" (even if you have a question or idea of what you want.)
Having a manicure can alter your mood, according to Abramcyk. That's why when she asks her clients if they have any concerns about their nails or the process before starting the service, she wants them to be honest.
5. "I'm sorry!"
Not only is the phrase basically void of meaning these days, Abramcyk says she's seen it all when it comes to nails, so there's no need to apologize for the current state of your own cuticles. Plus, it's her job to make them look even better.
6. "Can I go to the bathroom?"
Nail polishing is time consuming, so Abramcyk asks her clients to think ahead in terms of bathroom breaks. Not only is this considerate of her time, but also of the people who are waiting for the same experience.
7. "Can I try all 10 colors?"
Of course it's important to get the color you want, but it's Abramcyk says it also takes a lot of time to try on 10 colors on all 10 nails. Instead, have an idea of the color genre you want before coming to the salon, or test them on a piece of tissue paper or paper towel.
8. "Here, let me do it."
"Please do not ask to take the tools from a manicurist to start cutting at your own cuticles or filing your own nails. If you have something that is bothering you in service then speak up and give feedback to either the manicurist herself or the manager on hand," said Abramcyk. She's the expert, so let her go about her nail cutting process as she's used to.
9. "Can you cut my cuticles off?"
Though they're annoying to deal with, Schell explains that you need your cuticles. "It protects your nail from infection," she says. Instead, ask the manicurist to push them back and cut off the hangnails.
Ultimately, the three manicurists agreed it's their job to make the manicure a pleasant experience for you, as the client. Avoiding these nine remarks will help your time and their job creating your nails into an art form much easier.
Images: Getty; Giphy (9)