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I am Michelle Brookes, Brillbird north east distributor & managing director of Beauty Lounge in Doncaster, which has won Professional Beauty’s Nail Salon of the Year 2017 Award, on the benefits of adding nail art to your treatment menu and the best techniques to use. 

As an educator, salon owner and nail tech, I quite often get asked the question: “How much profit does nail art add to your business?” My answer is always that, on paper, it’s one of the least profitable treatments in the salon, however, if you look at the bigger picture, you can make a lot of money by adding nail art on to your other nail services. 

Nail art is time consuming and unfortunately it doesn't hold the same value as a full set of nails – the going rate for nail art is between £10 and £15, depending on the area. However, nail art will get you and your salon noticed, therefore you’ll gain more bookings. It’s also a way to set yourself apart from the competition because clients will want to visit you because of the attention to detail in your amazing designs.

I don't look at nail art as an individual treatment, instead I build it into the nail service as a whole so I can justify that my staff are covering the targets I’ve set for that allocated time. At Beauty Lounge, around 50% of our nail clients request nail art, and of my own personal nail clients, around 90%. 

Where to start:
Training – When deciding to introduce nail art to your treatment menu, the first thing I'd suggest doing is training in the latest techniques. My most popular courses in salon are: one stroke, gel designs, aquarelle and fine detailing painting.

An educator will be able to advise you on the correct brushes needed for the job, as well as what nail art products are used for each technique. For example, the hand painted nail art techniques can take from five to 40 minutes to do, depending on the detail the client requires.  

Invest in glitter – A nail art medium that’s cheap to purchase with maximum profit is loose glitter. However, go to a glitter supplier or nail company to purchase them as it needs to be cosmetic grade.

I absolutely love pushing loose glitter into the tacky layer of gel polish for a quick and easy nail art technique. At the moment, I’m using the Brillbird dual hollow glitters as different grades of glitter and it's super sparkly.

Look into powders, flakes and foils – Chrome powders, chrome flakes, vivid ice foil and magic powders are all quick and easy, profitable techniques that take no time, generating maximum profits. 

Stamping – Another technique not to dismiss is stamping. It’s ideal if you or your team aren't artists because anyone can stamp. Providing you get a good quality kit and stamp polish, you’re good to go. Plus, stamping is eye catching, easy to do and clients love it.