The Whiz Kid of Nails

Bryan Vu comes from a family of more than 40 nail professionals and has been doing nails since he was 11 years old. Get to know this hard-working, talented Hand & Nail Harmony Doctorate Professor.

NailStyle: What inspired you to start doing nails?
Bryan Vu: I believe that sometimes the occupation chooses you. I have been doing nails for more than 13 years. I am Vietnamese, and I come from a family in which 40 family members also do nails. Between the ages of 11 and 17, I went to my parents' salon every day after school to help out. I was surrounded by nails, but it wasn't until I went to my first Harmony educator training and studied with MaeLing Parrish and Sandy Borges that I became passionate. They guided me through everything, took time to help me and believed in me from the beginning. After seeing each demo nail I was so mesmerized that it ignited a fire inside me that I had never felt before. I knew I had developed a passion for something for the first time in my life.

NS: What is it like to be a part of the Nail Alliance education team?
BV: It's like being part of a family that really understands me. Before joining the team, I felt lonely at times when I just wanted to talk about nails and do nails all day long. Now I am able to be around others like myself who eat, breathe, and sleep nail art and have a dedicated passion for the nail industry as well.

NS: What was your first educator training like?
BV: I came knowing only what I was taught in a salon all my life. To be learning sculptured nails and hard gel extensions and being tested was nerve-wracking. I still remember the late nights after class with all the homework we had to do and turn in the next day. I felt as if it was much harder for me because I had not done any of the techniques before or dealt with what actual professional products felt like. Instead of going to dinner with everyone, I knew that if I really wanted this I would have to go above and beyond, and that's exactly what I did. I practiced the techniques and used the products for the first time in my life, staying up till 5 a.m., forcing it into my brain. I was so determined that my want and need for it burned through being sleepy or hungry. After the training and testing I waited for the results and I was shocked that I had made it as Hand & Nail Harmony's Bachelor Educator. One year after that, I tested again and received the role of Valedictorian of the training and Master Educator.

NS: How do you find inspiration for different nail art designs?
BV: I believe that art is all around us; we're surrounded by art every single day. I get inspiration from wallpaper, carpet patterns, and nature. Something that I learned through Harmony's education was how to transfer my inspiration from my head to my nails. A well-composed design will show organization. This is especially important for the extra-long nails I make.

NS: If you weren't in this industry, what else would you be doing for a living?
BV: If I wasn't doing nails I would definitely be a chef. I love food! That's why I can lose weight and gain it all back super fast! And I love the artistic presentation of food as well. I would say I am someone who eats with their eyes first.

NS: What is your favorite Gelish color and/or collection?
BV: One of my favorite Gelish colors has to be Champagne. Even the name sounds fancy! That color is always in my educator kit because I can always find a way to use it. It's a very, very fine white iridescent shimmer that is almost like fairy dust. It can be mixed or layered with any color to enhance its look and you can never go wrong with a bit of bling!