Although she had never competed before, Iryna Gross entered every single 2016 Glossies category and walked away with the grand prize. Here, we talk with the international master educator for Crystal Nails and owner of SkyDance Nails & Creations in Las Vegas about how life has been since her big win.
What impact did participating
in—and winning—the Glossies have on your career?
The biggest thing it did for my career was boost my confidence level. I’m more willing to try things I’ve never done before and push myself to learn more techniques.
You’ve already won first place in several NAILPRO competitions since taking the Glossies grand prize. How have those experiences been?
Winning first place at the NAILPRO competitions was absolutely amazing and not expected. It was stressful to participate on site for the first time but, at the same time, it was a great experience and helped me to learn a lot about being a competitor. Participating in the most recent competition at ISSE Long Beach, I was less stressed because I am more experienced, and I enjoyed being with my friends and other nail enthusiasts from all over the world.
What have been some of the highlights of your mentorship with 2015 NAILPRO Cup winner Shiori Durham?
I’ve asked her tons of questions! For example, when I was preparing for my last competition, I had some specific questions about nail length that she helped clarify. I also periodically tap into her expertise as I learn about different categories. She has vast experience in nail competitions and I’m really thankful to her for all of her help.
What are your competition plans going to be in the months ahead?
I’m taking it one step at a time, but I’m going to try to compete in more categories—even the ones I’m not good at! I’m still learning category tips and tricks; there’s so much I don’t know yet. But the process I go through and the people I meet all help me get better in a fun way. My main goal is to improve every day, and competitions are an opportunity to push myself.
Ready to enter the Glossies? Let us know in the comments below, and read more about our 2017 Glossies!
This article was originally published in the April 2017 issue of NAILPRO.
[Images: Courtesy of Iryna Gross]