Off to My First Day of Nail School!

I’m off to my first day of nail school! I’m thinking about going on the nail art competition circuit, but first I need to polish up my skills (hey-YO!).

Bad puns aside, I do want to take my skills to another level, so we’ll how that goes.  At least this time around I can study in English! Nail school in Japan was great, but sometimes I had to figure out what the heck was going on before I could even practice the technique. Luckily, the teachers were very patient, but it still added another level of difficulty to be learning in a non-native language.

Wish me luck, everyone! 🙂


About nevertoomuchglitter

Nail artist. Wanderer. I'm a color-holic, in fact, it was my love of color that brought me to the nail art world. Well, that, and the fact I was too cheap to pay crazy Japanese prices for nail polish while living in Tokyo, so I had to start mixing my own. That's how NTMG began.
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16 Responses to Off to My First Day of Nail School!

  1. Good luck to you! You are going to do great!

  2. lacqueredpaintedpolished says:

    Good luck! I know you’ll do great and I can’t wait to see what you come up with. I’m in awe of your talent!

  3. nevertoomuchglitter says:

    Thanks everyone- you guys are too kind! We did mostly sanitation, etc. and nothing hands-on, but I did get a plastic “training hand” which makes me want to giggle, for some reason.

  4. Good luck, can’t wait to read about your adventures in a new nail school!

  5. beachgal12 says:

    Best of luck! I am envious of your adventure in nail training you are embarking on. Only part I would not like is the horrible smell of the time you will need to spend on acrylic nails.

    • nevertoomuchglitter says:

      I’m not looking forward to that either.- it’s even more stinky when there’s 15 of us doing it at the same time. I do wear an industrial chemical filter mask (looks like a gas mask!), which makes me look kind of like Darth Vadar and unable to talk, but it cuts down on the smell.

  6. g_teng says:

    where is your nail school?

  7. Cathy Boardman says:

    Good luck Jen! Just so you know, I read your blog archives whenever I need a cheery sight. You’re very talented and you seem like a lovely person. I am thrilled to have found such a fun site. All the very best to you xo

  8. Danielle says:

    Good luck! I just finished nail school yesterday… congratulations on starting a new and exciting journey! Sorry you have to deal with acrylic… I\’m extra-sensitive to the smell so I actually managed to avoid using it during my time at school. 🙂

    • nevertoomuchglitter says:

      Thanks for the good wishes! I do hate the smell, but acrylic sculpting and 3-D art are pretty big in Asia, so I do want to learn. I’ve invested in a really good but scary-looking chemical mask. I may look like Darth Vadar in it, but it really cuts down on the smell a whole lot. I wish someone could invent a real odorless monomer!

  9. K says:

    Hi! I was wondering if I could ask you a couple questions about your nail program. I am currently in San Francisco, CA and I’ve been very interested in going to Nail school in Japan. But I feel like I have no IDEA where to start. lol I have found tons of nail schools in Tokyo but I since I don’t live there at the moment I have no idea the ranking of each. ( I have no problem going to the cheapest one available even if it’s the crappiest tho. lol) And then there’s the whole $ thing. Did you find a scholarship or did you just save up everything before you went? I hope this isn’t too much of an inconvenience!

    Thank you for your time and good luck!


    • nevertoomuchglitter says:

      Hi K!
      Sure, I’d be happy to help you out!
      The first and probably most important question is…are you fairly fluent in Japanese? If not, you will find almost all nail schools closed to you. They will do an intake interview and determine if they will take you as a student. It sounds discriminatory, but most Japanese are not confident in English and have no experience with foreigners and will not want to take on someone who does not speak/read Japanese at a fairly fluent level.

      There is one school that does classes in English and Chinese in the Ikebukuro area of Tokyo. called LeVernis Nail School. That may be your only choice if you are not fluent in Japanese.

      I took part-time classes while I was working in Tokyo. I don’t think attending nail school will give you eligibility for a student visa in Japan, but I could be wrong. For a nail diploma, the course runs about 6 months and the testing times vary. A typical tourist visa to Japan is 3 months, so you need to make sure you can be eligible to stay for your entire course. The school did look at my visa and my alien registration card to ensure I was legally able to stay in Japan.

      Scholarships are pretty unheard of, as far as I know. If you have some really top-level connections and/or can legally work for the school (translator?), you might be able to work at the school to offset the cost of the course.

      I’m not saying this to discourage you at all, though I know it sounds discouraging! Just keep in the back of your mind that 1) it is legal in Japan to discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, nationality, etc.; and 2) Japan can be a very closed country and the English level/comfort with foreigners even in Tokyo tends to be low. If you’re already pretty fluent in Japanese, familiar with the customs, etc. then approach some schools directly. Call first, then make an appointment to visit the representative. Bring a business card and some photos of your work if you have any and be ready to talk about why you want to go to nail school there, etc. It is not easy but it can be very rewarding! They will want the cash for the course in 1 or 2 installments, generally.

      Hope that helps and that you have a great journey!

  10. Auja Finley says:

    I’m REALLY interested in your experience. I would love to go to school in Japan.

    • nevertoomuchglitter says:

      Most schools in Japan are *very* hesitant to take foreigners, but if you speak fluent Japanese, they may be willing to open their doors for a part-time course. By fluent, I mean reading, writing and being able to comfortably chat up the school manager. For a full-time course, many schools will want to see a student visa. If that sounds like a bit too much, I know of one school in Ikebukuro, Tokyo, that does classes in English. It’s called LVNS Nail. This info is a couple years old, since I’ve been gone a while, but I believe they are still out there. They mostly do short-term classes in gel, acrylic, etc. There may be some more schools in other places like Osaka, but you may unfortunately find Japan schooling is rather closed-off to the non-Japanese. I don’t mean to discourage you at all, just trying to give a picture of what it’s like. But if you persevere, there’s always a way!

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