Today we hear from the one and only Robin Moses, nail technician and Youtube blogger. She is a veteran in the business, and what she has to share about her experience is moving. Read her wise words on the nail art business, making women feel beautiful, and our loss of Talia Castellano.
Nail It!: How long have you been doing nail art?
Robin: I have been doing nail art for about 25 years now, the time flies!
What about it first interested you?
Nails found me accidentally. I went to take a tour of a cosmetology school (having never worn nails) and saw a woman doing a nail art class in the back. I thought to myself: “I can do that!” I had been on a bad path and saw it as a way out. But I found that nail art was harder than it looked.
What was the hardest part about getting to where you are today?
People hating. Since starting in this business, there are few people who will give you insurance, a pension, medical leave for having a baby, etc. There are also the people that instantly dislike you when they think you are going to “steal” their clients. This has happened to me in every shop I worked at. They did this until they found out I was way too busy to steal anyone’s anything and then they started to hang out with me and learn. I have taught art in almost every shop I have worked at.
You’ve created over eight hundred nail art YouTube tutorials. What got you started using that media to promote yourself? Did you ever think you would take it as far as it did?
I have actually created over 25,000 in my personal databases. I upload my copyrighted designs to Youtube as a way of helping girls who cannot afford expensive “nail art systems,” DVDs, and books. In exchange, I ask them to say their art was “Inspired by Robin Moses” as a way to get my name out there so I can teach full time and reach my dreams while they reach theirs. I work tirelessly and use my viewers to help promote me. On the web it is very very hard to get any help from anyone. I believe I have only just begun and that I will need a few more years before I really am invested in what I want to achieve.
What is your favorite nail trend?
I like the mix-match trend right now because you can teach a lot in a small window of time. I can pull out 10 designs and then put them in the same colors and bam! 10 different designs up. It’s a great win/win for viewer and artist.
What is the best part of being in the beauty business?
I have never felt I have been in the beauty business. I feel I am in Customer Service. I feel that my job is to make people feel beautiful and make them want to come back because they enjoy the experience and have a good time. I realized early on in my career that a good portion of women who I have known do not feel beautiful. I learned over time that the women who felt most beautiful were the ones who were educated, gave to society, and had full lives. I have seen the most beautiful women cry to me and tell me how ugly they are and women who you would usually pass right over end up to be the most beautiful women you ever met. It’s fascinating. “Beauty” is a word that is very distorted in our culture.
Who inspires you?
Leonardo DaVinci, Rainier Maria Rilke, Goethe, Ramakrishna, Joseph Campbell, Marcel Duchamp, Walter Hopps, Carl Jung. Too many to name, really.
Which celebrity’s nails would you love the chance to do? What would you put on his or her nails?
That is another hard one. I have done celebrities nails before. They are just like us. I’d like to do the nails of a celebrity who is not afraid of anything or anyone and just sets my head on fire with tons of beautiful stories. Whoever would trust me enough to share a world that takes me out of this one and into theirs, where theirsis as wondrous as mine. I want that celebrity. If I got to meet such a celebrity, I believe I would keep them as a client forever!
What is your favorite original nail art you’ve done?
I don’t have pictures of my favorite nails because until the late 90’s, the cameras that could capture nail art were so expensive that no one really had pictures. I took very good notes of the designs I liked the most. I would say that I have really loved some of the Martin Luther King nails I have done in the past.
Also, I have done some really beautiful Egyptian designs. But I think right now my favorite tutorial is probably my portrait for taliajoy18. I have always equated my life to “swimming,” and told myself to “keep swimming” when I thought I was drowning. She was a very precious soul. I had known of her before, but when I heard of her passing, it just crushed me. I do not know why except that I know how hard it is to have a Youtube account and maintain it, and she really was a remarkable soul. She made me stronger. The day she passed, I got stronger, and that is all I can really say.
Anything else you’d like to share?
I would like to say thank you for the interview. I would like to say that nail art is hard to master and that through dedication and desire, you can do this. I would like to remind artists to always say who inspired you if you are sharing online. It is amazing how much everyone grows if everything is shared. I am sharing my collection of 25 years and I wish I could say what inspired some of them. I do when I can, but most know I am working from a database.
I think once I feel a little more comfortable, I will start working with other artists, collaborating again and doing “inspired by” other Youtube tutorials. I found that doing that and working on my own tutorials was too hard with also having a full time job doing nails! It’s a lot of work to put up even just one video. To do this all myself is a 16-hour a day job, but one I would never trade!
I’d also like to add that I read just about every comment on my videos and try to answer as many as I can. At least once a day someone’s story makes me cry, and to them I say thank you for making me humble and grateful to know such people are in my life and that I’m just getting started!
My love to you guys,
See her Youtube Channel: youtube.com/user/robinmosesnailart
See her Blog: robinmosesnailart.blogspot.com
Like her on Facebook: /RobinMosesNailArt
[Courtesy of Robin Moses]