Courtesy of sundays
Every March is an opportunity to honor the legacies and generations of vital women in history. To help celebrate, Nailpro will be sharing interviews with notable women in the industry for the entire month. Gain their key learnings, insights and inspirations to inspire you in your career as a nail tech, salon owner or whatever you choose to be.
Today, we are starting with Amy Ling Lin, the founder of sundays, a nail care brand focused on wellness, and a member of our 2022 advisory board.
- What inspired you to join the professional nail industry?
“My friend who was a specialist informed me of the problems in the nail industry. She was an immigrant and complained about the poor working conditions, wages and toxic environment. As an immigrant myself, I wanted to help other immigrants. After hearing the story, it made me think I could improve the industry by making it better for the people who worked in it, so I went to nail school and learned more about it.”
- When and how did you get started in your career?
“In 2011, I went to nail school on the weekend while I was working in my marketing job. Then I asked for a loan as well as a loan from friends and family and started my first nail salon.”
- As a female leader/professional, what are some obstacles you experienced, and how did you overcome them? Have you confronted gender-related roadblocks in your career?
“Being likable is one of the big obstacles I have to overcome. To be liked by everyone, you often put yourself in a box and try to fit into everyone else’s expectations. You may even make your career choices based on other people’s expectations of you. You minimize your voice so you can fit in. If you believe the nail industry is your passion, you should go for it, even if others might not get it.”
- How can women support other women in this industry?
“Be a cheerleader for others. If someone did a better nail art job than you, be happy for them; you might be better at hand massage. We all have our strengths and weaknesses. At the end of the day, you want to go to work feel happy and supported.”
- Tell me about another woman who has inspired you.
My grandma. She learned how to dance at age 68, and she is still dancing now at age 85. She shows me anything is possible if you put your mind to it. Age is just a number, no matter how old or young you are; do not let it define you."
- What is one thing you know now that you wish you would have known when you started in this business?
“Trust yourself more. I was in constant self-doubt, ‘Why me?’ and ‘Can I do this?.’ I think we are all students of life—learning how to do nails, learning how to run the business—you just have to ask questions, and learn. It might take someone longer to learn, but believe in yourself that you will get there.”
- What other key learnings and practices do you wish you to share with other professionals?
“One thing I truly want to share is we deserve better: a healthy working environment [that is] nontoxic and good for your well-being. We have choices to choose what is better for our health and well-being, and working conditions are truly important. How much time do we spend each day at work?
“We, the nail industry, deserve a lot more recognition and respect. Nail art is an art, and our job is to make people’s lives better and happier. I hope nail professionals and salon owners will get more recognition and better working conditions.”