MEET OLIVIA, UNIQUE NAIL ARTIST
"My name is Olivia and I am a homegrown Delawarean. I’m known for the abstract ideas, concepts and emotions that I bring to life through my nail art. I’ve been doing nails, honestly since I came out the womb. From a very young age I can remember doing my dads manicures and he’d give me like a dollar or two. Back then a dollar was like big bucks hahah. When I was about 16, that’s when I got started to dive into nail art. I would practice designing on tips and paint my nails every other day. After high school I went to college for a little bit for Physical Therapy and figured it just wasn’t for me. Soon after I left I started working for a bank.
You know working for a bank sounded so cool and prestige at age 19, but boy did I HATE IT. It was not for me at all. Every day I said “the next job I have I’m going to be doing nails”. And BOOM... just like that I was terminated for not meeting quota and started my journey on becoming a Nail Technician.
Just like that I started my nail career in 2013 and I haven’t turned back since. I’ve been doing nails for eight years and have been licensed for seven.
I’ve struggled over the years figuring out what kind of artist I was. I could do just about anything designing wise, but figuring what I loved and was good at, took awhile. I kind of just decided at one point to just focus on what brings me joy. From there I believe it brought me to the artist I am today."
Connect with her here:
What habits have you developed that help you with mindset? (In terms of staying motivated, positive, and being the best entrepreneur you can be)
That’s a good question. I feel as being an entrepreneur you have your constant ups and downs of feeling motivated. You know we’re all human, some days may be better than others. I like to keep it simple when it comes to my mindset. I take it easy on myself and stay realistic. I used to compare myself to others in the beginning of my career. Now I don’t. I only worry about the things that I can control. Everything else I leave it to God.
Tell us about how you got into nail art, and what helped shape the art and style you've developed over time?
When I was 16 my friend was in her garage painting her nails. She had a thin liner brush to do designs. So I just sat down tried to do a design on my own nails... it was really good! My friend was like, "What?! You did that? Do that on mine." From that point on I was hooked. I was really drawn to Japanese Nail Art. So a lot of my art has influence from the Japanese style. The more I really dug deep, let go and stopped “trying” and just let my brush do the work I found my groove.
Tell us about your journey as an entrepreneur so far. What led to you being a full-time nail artist? What obstacles have you overcome as a result?
So when I began nail journey I started out in a Nail Salon. When I was ready to branch out I wanted to see what else the Nail World had in store. 'Cause all I knew was the nail salon lifestyle.
So I got my first job at a Hair Salon doing nails. I was definitely seeing the nail world in a new perspective. So this is where I began to have clients come to me because of “me” not cause of the salon. I started to grow my clientele there. After a while I felt like I couldn’t grow anymore being there and I needed to branch out. I always knew I wanted to be an independent artist, it was just finding the right time to make that move. So in 2016 LIVFORNAILS, LLC was brought to life.
Having children and being a entrepreneur makes things a little challenging. I'm not saying things are not able to be achieved, it's just that my time is divided between working on my dream and being a mother. After my second child was born, I decided to give up doing nails and become a stay-at-home mom until my oldest started kindergarten, which lasted about a year. I would still take a couple clients a week at my house that didn’t mind the shenanigans of the kids and didn’t mind me taking forever to do their nails. At times I would nurse my son and paint my clients nails at the same time. I did what I had to do.
I learned to take things as they come and not to give up on my dreams. Where I am today I am glad I was able and decided to be a stay-at-home mom. I got to spend much more time with my children, then going right back to work right away.
Coming back into the nail industry after taking a break for a year was also pretty challenging, but I made it work. I make it a point that what ever I want I will get it. I don’t worry about time. I find a way to make things work.
What are your biggest inspirations? When you're in a rut, where do you turn?
I would say my biggest inspirations come from the art of fashion. Runway fashion is by far my biggest. When I have creative blocks I tend to look more towards nature to spring on ideas. As well as pottery and graphic patterns.
Being an entrepreneur definitely has its ups and downs. How do you stay motivated in the tougher times, and how do you keep momentum in the better times?
During the tougher times I stay motivated by making small lists of no more than three tasks to accomplish. Just to keep it simple and go easy on myself. After each task I cross it off, and it slowly builds the motivation up. The same when I feel on top of the world, I stick to my list but add more of course, and It makes me feel more accomplished.
If you could do anything with your business and not fail- sky's the limit type ideas- what would you do?
If I could do anything with my business it would be to travel to different fashion shows and do the nails for the runaway and styled shoots. I would lean more towards advertisements for brands that need nail art.
How do you define success? By your definition are you successful in your business? If not, what is it that you want to do to make that happen?
To me success is defined on how well I achieve my goals. I would say I am successful. I am constantly setting goals and reanalyzing them. Also tweaking them as I go.
What has been your most satisfying moment with your business?
The most satisfying moment of my business has been, that clients come to me to let me do what ever to their nails. Clients come to me for my specific art and that has been the biggest goal. I love that.
If you could tell your pre-entrepreneur self anything, what would it be?
I would tell my pre-entrepreneur to don’t take things personal.