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While veteran nail techs remain invaluable resources because of their experience, there’s a new crop of talented young artists who are turning the nail industry upside down. So, we decided to scout some of the best 20-something nail pros for our first-ever 30 Under 30 awards. Get to know one of our winners, freelance celebrity nail artist Chelsea King!

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Chelsea King
Age: 26
Salon: Freelance

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Like many, King began creating nail art on herself as a hobby, posting her designs on Instagram, which was still fairly new at the time. Two weeks after a photographer contacted her about collaborating, King found herself working with an agency and enrolled in nail school. Today, you can find her mastering her favorite technique—gradients. “It looks simple, but takes practice to perfect,” says King. “I love it, because it looks great on its own, but I think it’s a fundamental technique to use as background for nail art.” King gravitates towards OPI and China Glaze polishes because their quality and color variety. “OPI constantly comes up with innovative polishes like crackle polish, sheer tints and the suede collection,” says King. “When I first started doing nails, I bought China Glaze polishes like crazy and remember searching everywhere for the coveted For Audrey Tiffany blue—and I still have it!” Although this nail artist’s career is set in the nail industry, she could see herself working in a bakery. “I bake sourdough bread weekly and find it so relaxing and better tasting than any store-bought bread,” says King.

 

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—by Angelina Lewis

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