We are spotlighting the winners of Nailpro’s 30 Under 30 competition for 2023, featuring 30 nail artists under 30 years of age.
Get to know Hirsch “Hunty” (@nailsbyhirsch) Nguyen. They are a 24-year-old nail tech at Skye Salons in Charlotte, NC.
Nailpro (NP): What is a fun fact about you?
Hirsch Hunty (HH): I was awarded “Best Hair” in high school.
NP: How did you get your start as a nail tech?
HH: The start to my career came at 18, after graduating with a cosmetology license from a vocational high school. I went on to explore different avenues in the industry and came upon nails, something I’ve been familiar with from an early age as my mother was a nail technician. With a fundamental knowledge for the craft and little to no practical skills, I started working in a nail salon and quickly learned that nails were my form of artistic expression! From that moment forward, I dedicated myself to not only becoming a nail tech but becoming a nail ARTIST!
NP: What do you love about your job?
HH: As a nail tech, I’m able to express myself and showcase my personality through nails. Each set resembles a different emotion or mood I may be feeling in that very moment. My love for my craft also stems from the meaningful connections and unique relationships I build with each of my clients!
NP: Where do you find inspiration?
HH: In my artistry, inspiration comes to me from all over the place, from other nail artist’s creations to artwork, even the colors on my client’s shirt can inspire me! When I’m in dire need of inspiration, I look right in front of me to find my main source of inspiration: my client. I often look into their personality and see what colors their aura may give off, and use them as inspiration for my color palette and designs!
NP: What is a piece of advice you would give other nail technicians who are just getting started?
HH: My advice for up and coming nail artists who are struggling and want to become confident in their work is that practice makes perfect. Anything you want to become great at in life, especially in regards to nails, requires lots and lots of practice. You want to become great at nail art? Practice. You want to provide great customer service to your clients? Practice. You want to be able to execute the perfect shape every time? Practice. Practicing your craft and allowing yourself to go through trial and tribulation will pay off in the long run. You will see your flaws and learn to perfect your unique technique in achieving the best results.
NP: What is your favorite nail trend right now?
HH: One of my signature looks, and also a trend that is still very relevant today, is negative space nail art, which is a very versatile technique that is timeless and classic. Negative space can be achieved in nail art by leaving some of the neutral base exposed on the nail when creating a design, which will create negative space and bring attention to the main subject – your design!
NP: What is your favorite service to offer?
HH: My favorite service to offer is a “Freestyle Full Set," where the client gives full permission for me to be as creative as possible on their nails. This can range from any shape, length, color, design, etc. and allows me as the artist the ability to try a new design or new concept on their nails. This service allows my artistry to flow very naturally and is the product of some of my best work I’ve had throughout my career as a nail artist.
NP: What is one of your proudest achievements as a nail tech?
HH: I have achieved a lot throughout my career as a nail artist, but stepping out on my own and becoming an independent nail artist has been my greatest achievement and has to be one of my proudest moments. As an independent artist, I’ve acquired an abundance of knowledge from life lessons to business strategies and so on, but the most important lesson it’s taught me was to always believe in myself and that investing in yourself is the best investment you’ll ever make.
NP: What do you love about the nail community/industry?
HH: Our community of nail artists is a conglomerate of creatives and artists, and we all bring a unique interpretation of the artistry to the industry. The diversity of artists in our industry is my favorite part of the nail community, as each of us translate art onto nails in our own, unique way.
NP: What are your top goals as a nail tech?
HH: My top goal as a nail artist is to become an educator and mentor other artists in the industry who may be struggling or want to perfect their artistry. I intend on using my platform and my repertoire to further advance the industry and other nail artists with their practical skill and understanding of the craft.