Manicurist Jin Soon Choi Explains Her Fashion Week Prep

Posted by February 07, 2011 10:41 pm

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For us beauty girls, a large part of the excitement of Fashion Week is watching the creation of the hairstyles and makeup looks backstage – most of the time never actually seeing the models walk the runway in their full outfits (who has that kind of time?). But, we all know full well that a look wouldn’t be complete without the proper manicure. One of the leading nail ladies behind many of the shows is Jin Soon Choi, owner of Jin Soon Hand and Foot Spa in NYC, and she spoke with us a bit about the prep work that goes into fashion week, and her own personal nail care routine.

How do you prepare for fashion week?

The first step is to prepare nail samples and colors to show to designers at the makeup/hair/nail test. Once the design and color is decided sometimes its necessary to prep the actual nail tips with designs prior to the show. Then I organize my fashion show kits and schedule assistants to make the perfect team for each show, depending on what the designer has chosen to do.

What do you like most about working the fashion shows?
I love the high energy of doing shows and collaborating with lots of creative people to make the designer’s vision come to life. Its nice to get a sneak preview of fashion trends before the general public. Besides that, it’s like going to a week-long party!

Can you tell us about the process from ideation to collaboration with designers to pulling off the look backstage at the show?
The whole process is definitely a collaborative work between the designers, hairstylists, make-up artists, stylists, and me. First, I review the collection, from colors to themes, and listen to the designer’s ideas and desires so I can get inspiration on creating nail designs or recommending nail colors. Some designers already have a clear idea of what they want in terms of nails, while others want your creative input and are willing to be a bit more risky with color and design. Once I get the thumbs up, I practice painting the look so I can perfect it for the day of the show.

What is your personal nail care regime?
My personal nail care regime involves primarily moisturizing; most problems with nails stem from dryness. When your nails are dry, they get brittle. So your nails, cuticles and hands need extra care since we expose and use our hands so much. As far as painting my own nails, I have to keep that to a minimum because of the potential interference that might occur while working on a client’s nails, especially when removing nail polish. I also like to leave my nails neutral so I can more readily try out a nail color. When that time comes, my nails are already clean and ready for a fresh application of paint.

What are your must-have products?
Nail file, cuticle oil, hand lotion, and two or three favorite timeless nail colors.

Are you thinking of collaborating on another nail polish collection in the near future?
Yes! It’s one of my favorite aspects of this industry – creating new nail colors. I am obsessed with color!

Aside from all of this Fashion Week talk – what spring nail trends are you excited about this season?
I’m very excited to see a revival of the sophisticated colors from the 70′s such as opium red, bright oranges, magenta, and emerald green.

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