Nail artists you need to know

To succeed in fashion, you need to know the greats who’ve helped shaped it before you. Not only will the industry expect it, but this knowledge will inspire your own creative process and help inform your own career path too. This is not a definitive list, so we encourage you to do your own research and discover more.

Marian Newman

Marian Newman has been a nail professional since 1987. During that time she has worked as a salon owner, teacher and author, but for the last two decades she has worked predominantly as a session technician; one of the first session nail technicians in the world. She has worked on a vast array of high-end advertising campaigns and created editorials for magazines including Vogue, Allure and 10. She has worked with countless celebrities and designers including Alexander McQueen, Givenchy, Vivienne Westwood, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, Gareth Pugh and Maison Martin Margiela. Marian has also had a long working relationship with MAC Cosmetics, creating the nails for many of their advertising and marketing campaigns and providing the nail designs and teams for MAC sponsored fashion shows.

Best known for: Pioneering session work for nail professionals in the fashion industry, and her groundbreaking work within nail education; most notably her book, The Complete Nail Technician.

See more: Marian Newman on Instagram

Adam Slee

Adam Slee is Marian Newman's former assistant, and has since gone on to create a successful career for himself. He has created nail designs for brands including Hugo Boss, H&M and Valentino and has contributed to cover shoots for publications including Love, Vogue, Hunger and ELLE UK. He is also the global nail ambassador and spokesperson for Rimmel London and is represented by London's leading creative agency, Streeters.

Best known for: His expertise as Rimmel London's global nail ambassador, along with his classic, luxurious approach to nails and experience with celebrities and runway. 

See more: Adam Slee on Instagram

Ama Quashie 

Ama Quashie is a celebrity and session manicurist represented by leading fashion agency, CLM. Ama has worked for a wealth of leading fashion publications including Cosmopolitan, Dazed, Hunger, i-D, W and international editions of Vogue. She has collaborated with some of the fashion industry's leading photographers including Craig McDean, Harley Weir and Nick Knight. Her work often includes bright colours and a playful aesthetic.

Best known for: Pushing boundaries within editorial, runway, celebrity and the music industry.

See more: Ama Quashie on Instagram

Julie Kandalec

Julie Kandalec has been Essie’s lead nail artist for multiple fashion week shows and is also the creative director at the Paintbox Nail Studio in New York. She has worked with photographers including Patrick Demarchelier and Ben Hassett, with work published in fashion magazines such as 10, Allure, Harper’s Bazaar, Interview, Vogue and W Magazine. She has worked with countless celebrities and commercial clients including Bloomingdale’s, Laura Mercier, L’Oreal, Swarovski and Victoria’s Secret.

Best known for: Launching Paintbox Nail Studio in NYC; a directional, high-end salon renowned for its trend-led but ultra-wearable nail art. 

See more: Julie Kandalec on Instagram

Jenny Longworth

Jenny Longworth is the UK nail ambassador for Revlon and a session nail artist who has built a strong career working with multiple celebrities and brands within the fashion industry. She has work published in magazines including  10, AnOther, AnOther Man, Dazed, Beauty Papers, i-D, LOVE, L’Officiel, POP, international editions of Vogue and Wonderland. Previous clients and celebrities include Anya Hindmarch, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Harvey Nichols, Adele, Alexa Chung, and Katy Perry. She has also led nail teams for shows including KTZ, Michael Van Der Ham, ON/OFF and Simon Rocha.

Best known for: Her close working relationship with directional fashion icons including Rihanna, Jessie J and Kate Moss. 

See more: Jenny Longworth's agency portfolio

Kate Cutler

Kate Cutler is a freelance nail artist and session manicurist with a background in graphic design. Her work has been published in art-led fashion titles including Dazed, King Kong and Wonderland. She has also worked on music videos for Frank Ocean and FKA Twigs, as well as leading the nail teams at fashion week for cutting-edge designers including  Ashley Williams, Caitlin Price and Natasha Zinko. Kate regularly works alongside some of the fashion industry's most respected photographers including Nick Knight, David Lachapelle, Mert & Marcus, David Sims and Rankin. In 2017 she was named Session Stylist of the Year at the nail industry's prestigious Scratch Stars Awards.

Best known for: A darker aesthetic and her collaborations with niche publications and designers.

See more: Kate Cutler's website.

Sophie Harris-Greenslade

Sophie Harris-Greenslade is a session manicurist and nail artist who has also launched her own celebrated brand, The Illustrated Nail. Sophie has a number of celebrity clients and has worked on photoshoots and catwalk shows for a range of global brands, designers and media, with work published in magazines including Tatler, Stylist and W. Sophie is best known for her intricate, detailed prints and patterns and has won the Scratch Stars Session Nail Stylist of the Year award for two years running.

Best known for: Her award winning blog The Illustrated Nail and book, Nail It, along with her approach to nail art, which is heavily influenced by her background in art and illustration.

See more: Sophie Harris -Greenslade on Instagram

More nail artists to explore:

  • Jenny Longworth
  • Miss Pop
  • Ama Quashie
  • Lyndsay Mcintosh
  • Robbie Tomkins

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