…By Alan Peterson for TDPel Media.
Maddox McCollough, a 27-year-old luxury nail artist, has established a flourishing career, earning an impressive £90,000 per year by selling customized press-on nails.
Despite her initial struggles and lack of experience, Maddox’s dedication and passion for the art form have allowed her to work with renowned brands like HBO, Burger King, and Fox.
Her attention to detail is evident as she spends up to 40 hours meticulously painting each set.
Discovering a Passion
During the 2020 lockdown, Maddox began her professional journey as a nail artist.
Initially, she admits to being “terrible” at painting nails, unable even to draw a straight line.
However, her determination and love for the craft motivated her to improve.
Maddox now offers her services commercially, creating sets that can cost as much as £6,000.
The requests she receives for unique nail art designs constantly surprise and delight her.
From Art School to Nail Salon
After completing her studies at the Rhode Island School of Design in 2018, Maddox moved to Berlin, Germany, and found employment at the Isla Berlin nail salon.
While she had explored various art forms in college, such as textiles and industrial knitting, painting nails was a new experience for her.
Starting from scratch, Maddox had to invest months in training to gain confidence in her nail art skills.
Mastering the basics and adjusting to the challenge of working on tiny canvases with intricate tools proved to be a significant learning curve.
Turning Adversity into Opportunity
The unexpected closure of the nail salon in March 2020 left Maddox without a job.
Determined to make the most of her newfound free time, she decided to practice her art on blank press-on nails.
Maddox dedicated herself to honing her skills, often watching nail art tutorials on TikTok and attempting to replicate them.
She eventually started sharing her own videos on the platform, attracting attention from brands.
Recognition and Success
Maddox’s early TikTok videos gained popularity, receiving up to 11,000 views.
Her progress and dedication led to brands approaching her for paid promotional designs, with fees ranging from £3,000 to £6,000 per project.
One of her favorite collaborations involved a Burger King set, where she painted a Whopper on each nail.
Maddox’s creative range expanded as she painted characters from Bob’s Burgers for Fox and even created Care Bear-inspired designs.
However, some clients requested niche designs, such as stained glass church windows on all ten fingers, complete with miniatures of Mother Mary and baby Jesus.
For this intricate design, Maddox charged around £1,000.
Launching a Business
With her reputation growing, Maddox is now preparing to launch her own nail supply business.
She aims to offer tools specifically designed for intricate nail art, catering to the needs of fellow artists and enthusiasts alike.
Maddox McCollough’s journey from a novice nail artist to a successful entrepreneur is a testament to her passion and commitment to the craft.
Overcoming initial challenges, she now enjoys a flourishing career, collaborating with renowned brands and earning a substantial income.
Maddox’s dedication and unique artistic vision have opened doors for her in the nail art industry, and she is poised to continue her success with the launch of her own business.
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