I had seen the account ‘malishka702_nails’ years ago on Instagram… I just loved how this salon consists of so many talented nail techs who all have skills in various areas. From super detailed intricate art, to perfectly shaped, flawless, nude sets, the technicians in this salon can do it all! I couldn’t wait to ask Ana to be involved in our positive nail movement and luckily she said yes!! So here is a little bit more about the nail queen behind this incredible business and her team of talented ladies and gents…
Q. How long have you been in the nail industry and where about are you located?
I’m based in Las Vegas, Nevada and have been in the industry for 5 years.
Q. What or who made you want to get into the nail industry and how did you start?
Most people don’t know that I served in the US army for 4 years – yup, I’m pretty much a badass! Just kidding! 🙂
Well… at the end of my enlistment I suffered a knee injury that required surgery and a tedious 3 months of bed rest. I was absolutely bored out of my brain with nothing to do! My best friend and roommate Audrey (love her! miss her!) … she was obsessed with nail polish. When I say obsessed – I mean, bins and bins of different nail brands and colors and she would change her nails all the time! I definitely didn’t share her passion, but the boredom took hold and I began to watch YouTube videos and started to paint my own nails. Long story short, within a few weeks I had ordered acrylic and was sculpting my own nails. At the time I thought I was awesome, but if we compare those nails to my work now? I think we will all agree that my confidence may have been a little misplaced! Regardless, 3 months later and I had dropped out of school and signed up to nail school! I definitely credit my passion and motivation to Audrey and the YouTube tutorials!
Q. Where did you learn to do nails?
In 2011 I signed up to Nail School in Las Vegas and became a licensed nail technician in the summer of 2012. However – I believe that I TRULY learnt how to do nails through taking additional classes once I was qualified and of course, lots and lots of practice! I worked really hard when I was out of school, 7 days a week often taking up to 7 or 8 clients a day! I was absolutely determined to make progress! I invested in nail supplies before I spent money on groceries. I made nails my number one priority!
Q. What treatments do you offer?
At Malishka we offer acrylic and hard gel sculpting – both overlays and extensions. We also provide gel manicures and pedicures and all kinds of nail art! We’re also obsessed with cuticles! OBSESSED.
I’m equally proud and ashamed to admit that I am a little bit (a lot a bit!) of a product addict –Swarovski, foils, nail charms, chrome and all kinds of magic are hidden in the crevices of the salon! If you want it? We probably have it! @Daily_Charm, @oceannailsupply, & @glitter_heaven_australia are my top 3 recommendations for your accessory needs! I love these companies!
NAILS BY GABY
Q. What are your favorite treatments and nail art techniques to do and why?
I really enjoy creating abstract types of nail design but I really admire the kawaii nail art style like @kawaii_nails_oc_ca
Cuticles and shaping are my passion!
When I am in the salon working, my favorite part of the service however, is connecting with the person in front of me! I think it’s really important to focus on your people skills as well as your technical skills!
Q. We can see you have a 7 person team please tell us a little bit about how you guys met! And a little about them! It must be so lovely having such a talented team around you!
How we met differs from person to person; from instagram connections, friendships and Malishka clients. I want to say how lucky I am to be around such amazing nail artists – it’s a pleasure! We learn from one another, we better each other, we are truly a team. In fact sometimes (with the bickering and ups and downs) we are more like a family! I wouldn’t have it any other way!
NAILS BY RICHARD
Q.What advice would you give to any start up nail technicians?
To be kind to each other. You never know who might be sitting next to you in a professional setting. Share information and knowledge, be respectful and be genuine. I think during the past 6 years the most important lesson I have learnt is to be authentic.
Q. Who are your biggest nail inspirations and why?
I have so many! I can’t possibly name them all but here’s a couple who have made a huge impact on me! @sarahnailsecrets (I know her as Sarahp898) & @natashaharton – they were both huge inspirations at the beginning of my journey…. Colors, nail art, shape, everything! I was hooked!
More recently I have gravitated towards @getbuffednails, @helennails_yeg, @naild_by_nina and Japense and Russian nail art and style. The people who have inspired me know who they are, because I make a point of sharing this personally!
Q.Do you have any favorite sets from you and your team?
This was a really hard question to answer! Everyone in the team is so talented and we collectively service so many clients that it was really hard for me to pick! I have chosen designs that demonstrate their skills and cleanliness and attention to detail. A flawless nude set can look as stunning to me as hand painted designs that are intricate and delicate – I focus on the details!
NAILS BY LIZ
NAILS BY GABY
NAILS BY GLADYS
NAILS BY RICHARD
NAILS BY ANYA
NAILS BY ANA (founder of Maliska702_nails)
NAILS BY THALYA
Q.What is your favorite thing about being a nail tech?
Giving clients confidence! For those of you who know the movie “Bed of Roses” from the 90’s (the premise is that a florist brightens people’s day with stunning floral arrangements)… That’s how I feel when a customer walks out with gorgeous nails! Their mood is lifted and they feel elegant, sassy, cute and most importantly, confident! I think sometimes we underestimate the power of a manicure!
Q.What products do you use and which ones would you recommend?
Young Nails for acrylic – I have been using it since day one and even if I leave it to try something else, I always come right back. It’s consistently awesome!
Presto & Gelly Fit for gel polish – they are the most pigmented colors in my opinion and we love the huge selection these two brands collectively provide.
BioSeaWeed & Light Elegance for hard gel – I have found they are the easiest to work with and glitter for days!!!!
NAILS BY THALYA
Q. What is your favorite nail shape and why?
Coffin/tapered square/ballerina (whatever your chosen term is!) – they continue to evolve and improve and I love them more and more because they make everyone’s hands look gorgeous! They are also MUCH easier to shorten compared to stilettos! 😉
Q. If you had to pick one nail color to wear for the rest of your life what would it be and why?
This is a tricky question! If it was for me to wear personally? I would choose black! I am constantly messing my nails up and I’m a pretty bad customer, so black is probably the best choice! (I’m roughly zero percent girly myself, but I love creating feminine nail art for others!)
Q.What are your goals for the future?
I want the nail industry to be lifted! I guess what I mean is that I want nail artists to be valued by society and the beauty community. Nail artists work hard! I would like them to be recognized for this and for nails to be on the same level as hair and make up!
NAILS BY GLADYS
Q. What is you biggest accomplishment so far in your nail career?
If you had asked me this 6 years ago I think I would have focused on the goal of opening my own salon – a dedicated space that was mine and I was the boss! (Me? Bossy? JK) But when I reflect on this question now? What I am most proud of is the growth of the Malishka team! Every single one of the members (whether they are with us today or not) I cherish them and I am thankful for them!
Q. What is your top application tip?
Prep! I can’t stress it enough. If you skimp on the prep, it will show later. Beautiful nails need a beautiful foundation!
Q. You have been mentioned as such a huge inspiration multiple times since we have started our clawgasmic blog! How does that make you feel?
Honestly I feel humble and proud. Anyone who knows me will tell you that I am a bit of a hardass and at times come across abrasive. I don’t know if that’s just my personality or my Russian heritage, but once you get past that – you will see that when it comes down to it…. I care. I care about my team. I care about my clients and I care about the nail industry. I feel incredibly thankful for all the support and love that we get daily, and hope to give it back ten fold! Thank You!
Huge thank you to Ana and her team for taking part in this interview we wish you nothing but the very best for the future and if any of you dont follow @malishka702_nails on instgram yet then you MUST! Its an account jam packed full of inspo and talent…