Episode 21 - Beauty, Business, and Social Media with Valerie Nah | BeautyValGal
This episode features Valerie Nah on the Ready.Set.Glo! Podcast
Valerie is a Lash Artist, Educator, and Licensed Esthetician from Fresno, California. Valerie is here to help you on your lash journey and to share with you all her own experiences. She offers a safe space in the lashing community where you can ask her all the questions you are wondering.
She's a 26-year-old businesswoman who started as a solo entrepreneur and is building her brand for herself and her clients. As she talks about things she's done to reclaim the balance in her life, what she's doing as far as offering training in person and online, and her big goals for the future. Not only is Val an expert in Mega Volume but she also makes cute, funny, trendy, and relatable reels, which has really helped her to grow her following!
Tune in as we talk about:
Valerie's big girl dreams
Being true to yourself and showing up on social media
Beauty, Business, and Social Media with Valerie Nah | BeautyValGal
Mary Harcourt 0:05 Hi and welcome to Ready Set glow, a podcast where I interview entrepreneurs, brands and idealist, people and the stories behind it all. Discover what it took to get started, lessons learned along the way, and the advice they have for you starting on your own journey. So join me and my guests as we talk about all things business, beauty and brands. I'm your host, Mary Harcourt of Cosmo glow, as we discover the stories behind the names. Today I am chatting to Valerie, you may know her better as beauty gal Val on Instagram, she puts out some really cute, funny, trendy and relatable reels, which has really helped her to grow her following. And we're gonna dive into what it takes to do that some advice for everyone else that doesn't feel comfortable yet making these little reels that Instagram is favoring, and her journey. She's a 26 year old businesswoman who started as a solo entrepreneur and is building her brand for herself and her clients. As she talks about things she's done to reclaim the balance in her life, and what she's doing as far as offering trainings in person and online and her big goals for the future. I think it's really cool to talk about people who maybe haven't made it to the peak in their career yet, but they are definitely going places. She has big dreams and I am fully confident she is going to accomplish those. So let's talk to her today about what it's like so far being on the entrepreneurial journey. Valerie, welcome to the show, tell everyone who you are and what you're all about.
Valerie Nah 1:46 And you miss Valerie, I'm 26 I'm a lash artist for last three years. People know me more as you go about Instagram, I make funny relatable reels geared towards other lash artists in my community. I actually do it because I wanted to do lashes, I decided to get my aesthetician license back in 2019. And I wanted to do skincare release. That's what I thought. And then when my friends can have me a pair of tweezers and was like, Hey, let's try that. Instead. I was like, no, and then I did it and not to my own horn. I was like, you know, I could actually kind of do this. So I like became obsessed with the idea of just trying to get my sets to be better. And ever since then I just did not stop. So I just love it.
Mary Harcourt 2:32 Did you ever pursue skincare or lashes just took over? I did pursue skincare
Valerie Nah 2:37 I didn't do skincare for a little bit. But then I just never had the time in my schedule to do any more facials because lashing was just it. It was just all with lashes. So I decided that I was not going to do that anymore. But I still do like brows and waxing and stuff like that. But no, I don't really talk about that too much. Because lashing just kind of took over my entire life. So
Mary Harcourt 2:57 I have a very similar journey. I started I think I opened up my studio with like lash wax and brows. And it became lashes. Because there was everyone just read books. It's such a lucrative business as far as once you have a customer that loves their lashes, they come back every two to three weeks and your schedule gets filled up, which is awesome. Let's talk about your career. So did you always work for yourself? Did you work for someone else? How did you decide to become kind of somebody that is your own boss?
Valerie Nah 3:25 Yes, I've always worked for myself, I've never worked in anybody else. I kind of just never really wanted to work underneath anybody else. My mom was more of like, Hey, you should get a little studio. And she really kind of just pushed me to do it on my own. So I worked at a tanning salon. In the meantime, half and half until I built my clientele. And I always did it all the way out.
Mary Harcourt 3:48 That's awesome. So it takes a lot of courage to open up your own place and kind of work on your own. Do you feel like you've got that from your parents from them kind of helping you and pushing you in? Not to get all
Valerie Nah 3:59 weird and sappy. I grew up really, really poor. So my parents were very much like, if this is what you want to do go full force a bit. And I did. And so it was a lot of motivation for myself to just do what I want to do you like ABS absolutely love it and like do it. And so I did I guess they didn't motivate me how I grew up. No, I love
Mary Harcourt 4:20 that. I mean, it's so true. I feel like you either kind of are pushed in the same direction or you go against it. But if your parents saw that there's opportunity for you to find something that you truly enjoy doing, which it seems like you do. And you can make a great career out of it than they wanted to push you into pursuing that and it sounds like you found the right fit. And so you actually have a small salon and then you rent out your studios. How many treatment rooms do you have?
Valerie Nah 4:44 We have four total rooms or five rooms with my and then I have an outside areas. I have a nail girl in my front room. And then we have 123 girls in the back and then one girl here so yeah, I have five other girls here with me. That's awesome.
Mary Harcourt 4:59 I mean, you're so young, you're 26. And to be able to get your own salon and have multiple rooms and rent them out to create another stream of income for you is really impressive. I'm so proud of you. What has been some of the hardest lessons that you've learned since having your own place?
Valerie Nah 5:17 One of the hardest things is definitely understanding that I used to take care of me, it takes a huge toll on your personal life, your mental health, your, your physical health, food is the hardest thing for me to understand that I have to take a break. And if I don't, then I'm absolutely not going to be loving what I do. That was really hard. Because in the beginning, when you first open your business, it's like your baby, you want it to grow, you want it to be successful. And you kind of just throw lunches out the window. You get people in whenever you can, because you're just trying to grow so bad. And then I hit a wall of burnout. And I had to stop then. So that was our lesson to learn that I can't take care of everybody unless take care of me.
Mary Harcourt 5:59 That is so relatable. I think everyone goes through that. I know I did. Because you love your clients so much. And you want to fit them all in and lunches go out the window, you're staying later, you're coming in earlier, how did you learn how to balance yourself a little bit better? What you do raise your prices, just stick to your schedule? How did you arrange that?
Valerie Nah 6:19 I did raise my prices, I got to where I was super competent. And I was like, You know what I do good work, I believe in myself. So I raised my prices. Honestly, I think that I wanted to think that it helped bring my clientele down when people say they're scared of raising their prices, don't be scared to tell you right now they're not going. I thought that that was gonna like help. But I did a little bit there did raise it braces. So that kind of cut down. But I made myself a priority. That made sense. I have to get up at 530 every day to be at the gym. And it was more of a mindset thing. And so I also mandatorily like everyday have scheduled lunches. And so I do not go past them like I do not. And so it's in your mind, you have to do it. So what's
Mary Harcourt 7:01 your mindset when your alarm goes off at 530, and you're like, I don't want to,
Valerie Nah 7:06 I started becoming a morning person, because I realized that I was not going to work out in the evening that just goes out the window. And so I also decided that I would get a lot more done if I did wake up earlier, like going to walk my dog girl get a light load of laundry and started dance with the use of like that in the morning. So I just like woke up in the morning, and then I go to the gym can lo eat my breakfast really fast and come to work around the clock, and then have lunch at 12. And then yeah,
Mary Harcourt 7:32 I need to take lessons from you. I'm not a morning person and I can not eat in the morning. But I guess it's my own problem. Because listening to me say I cannot is my own. I am saying that. So I'll change that to all be a morning person. So what's some things that you have started so young, you're doing really well, you're in your mid 20s, you have a bright future ahead of you. What is something that you thought would be so simple about running your own business, but it ended up being way more complicated?
Valerie Nah 8:00 Managing your clay tell? For sure. I thought they would just be what to use, like banking app and just look through there and stuff like that. But honestly, a lot of them have questions and getting to all of them in a good amount of time is hard sometimes because you're here all day, some people would be like, Are you ignoring me? I'm not ignoring you. It's literally working and I'll get into it. I'll respond in my head. That's organization, finding good ways to organize myself was really hard. So what are some of those ways
Mary Harcourt 8:27 because I can relate like there has been totally times where you feel like I'm lashing 12 hours a day. I'll get to as soon as I can. And that person is going I've text her three times and she hasn't responded yet. Well, how did you learn how to get more organized
Valerie Nah 8:41 on my Instagram? I used to answer a lot of my DMs do they're like appointment damn sitting there. And there was quick replies. So someone would ask prices, I had the quick reply for my prices, or someone had asked me what's the bogey link and I had that there were like, just things like that. It made it super easy. And then there was a quick reply for Oh, thanks for your message. I will get back to you as soon as I can. So that we didn't feel I was ignoring them. And they were clients who weren't my clients were really long time had my number. And at that point, they already know she's just working. She'll get back to me.
Mary Harcourt 9:10 I love it. So let's talk about building a clientele because obviously you started you open a new place you grew a clientele. Did you feel like it was Instagram? Or was it a compilation of everything?
Valerie Nah 9:21 I think it's a combination of everything that started lashing in school. And so from there, I started watching my sister, my friend. And then in school we were allowed to take walk ins people would walk in, and eventually I started doing those and some of those girls are still at clients now. And then I worked at a tanning salon and I think that this really helps me the most. My manager she was so sweet. And she got her lashes done by me. She was our old time. So I think word of mouth really helped and everybody who came in would ask her so I have a lot of clients often there to think COVID it and people say COVID was really hard on them. I have the opposite of that. I feel like because during COVID, obviously you weren't allowed to work but I was laughing my sister are practicing resets for I'm seeing on my on my family, my mom. And then once we were able to open people were just like looking for new lash artist. And it really helped. And I had a wait list because I was just when I get back into the salon and so I missed all of them. And then that really helped to
Mary Harcourt 10:21 that's awesome. You weren't by yourself, do you think that you ever will have a staff? Are you interested in that at all? Are you do like a one man show one woman show,
Valerie Nah 10:29 I am interested in having a staff one day, my biggest big girl dream is to have a product line. And I would like to own a warehouse. I'd like to employ employees, I think that'd be amazing. I am wanting to open the lash studio and have girls underneath me, which would be phenomenal. Those are all big girl dreams.
Mary Harcourt 10:48 I love it. And I'm here for you. Let's do it. I mean, you're 26 years old, and you're already doing your own thing. You're building this up and learning all the ways his business can be complicated. And I think you're going about it the right way starting small until you master kind of just how things work. And you're super confident and then you build but I would love to see you have a product line and a training center and have a full staff. Well, social media has been a huge play in you grow in a client's house. I know us from your cute little videos that you put up, what are some tips that you have for someone who just really maybe doesn't understand how to use Instagram or social media in general rather be tick tock to build themselves, help their clientele discover them through a social media platform.
Valerie Nah 11:30 So social media obviously plays a huge role. Whenever I ask somebody how they found me, a lot of them say that they find me through their hashtags people, when you say that hashtags don't work, I have the opposite opinion. A lot of my clients will search they said, Oh, I just searched up our area code and like fiberglass latches, for example. And that's what a lot of people do not actually how I found my nail girl was here, I just looked at BiPAC nails and went through pages. And actually that does really, really help. Also showing up on your Instagram is huge. The more consistent you are with showing who you are, people are more like they feel like they know you and they feel like they're maybe able to relate to you more. So I think that's super important to always consistently show up, always post your work. I know it can be kind of scary to go on your stories, people want to see somebody they can relate to and that totally helps. So just show up more on there.
Mary Harcourt 12:26 I'll go back to the hashtags. I found my esthetician that way I searched I don't know what it was like Hermoza beach HydraFacial. And she popped up. And it was only two people that use those hashtags. And one had two pictures. And she had like 15. And that was it. I clicked I called and it was such a freak incident where I was like, Is there any chance you can fit me in in the next three days. And she's like, I am booked solid. But I'll stay for you tonight. And it was already like 630. So I, I drove over we met and we have been friends ever since. And it was literally from a hashtag. And I referred her so many people I've religiously gone to her. And it's all over that one hash tag, which I never thought to use the zip code. That's smart.
Valerie Nah 13:08 There's another way to but it's kind of like I don't know if people have mixed opinions on this. But in the beginning, I will say that I did this, if you go on to someone else's page, their last page, and if you follow their followers, it's so weird, but it'll grow your clientele. Like for example, if someone goes on maternity leave, and they just need to go to you or go to someone did you find it that way?
Mary Harcourt 13:30 When I had my salon I did that I didn't do other lash artists. But I did do yoga studios, I did Equinox gyms, I did the juice bar in the area, anything that I felt like my client was going to go to I would go on their page, and there happened to be a yoga studio and follow their followers and interact with them and just kind of put the word out there. At one point I started going into the studio and doing hot yoga every morning. And it was the connection where it's like, oh my god, I think I follow you, I think and then they started coming and that led to they have a bunch of friends. And then I started doing all of the trainers in the yoga studio. And it was such a huge outlet for me to get glean and gain a clientele over literally doing exactly what you said is going to a different page, finding out where your ideal audience lives essentially and following where they're at. So you already talked about what's in the future. You have big dreams. I think you should do all of it. And I'm pretty confident that you will if somebody's just starting out either in cosmetology school or esthetician school, we're learning lashes right now but they are about to go into business for themselves. What advice do you have to help them thrill?
Valerie Nah 14:38 First of all believe in yourself and believe in your work and understand that things do take time? Some people sometimes especially with lashings, you want to see it overnight success growth, it'll take time and as long as you're consistent and focus on yourself and that was a huge thing for me not comparing yourself to others is huge because comparing yourself to someone who's been watching three years you know like why does my workout look good? like that, why am I nervous? But understand that there was a lot of work behind that. And just focus on you don't worry about outside factors literally focus on you and your business. And trust me, you're gonna go really really far. Wow, that's such good advice. I
Mary Harcourt 15:13 love that. So you offer trainings online and in person, where are you located First off, because that's going to help with your in person trainings. And then what kind of trainings Do you offer?
Valerie Nah 15:24 I'm located in Clovis, California. Right now, I just started offering layer two chin course where I teach everything about retention, I teach that virtually and in person, but mostly, I think this class will be more virtual because it is, it's very theory based. And then I also teach beginners a two to three day beginner class because I think that you need more than one day to learn laughing. Well,
Mary Harcourt 15:43 I mean, retention, let's just start there. Retention is everyone's biggest fear, and you have to conquer it. And it is so multifaceted. It's not just one thing. It's a multitude of things. And I think it's just, it's a little bit of trial and error. I know where I started. And where I ended up, I had completely different perceptions about retention. So I love that you offer a retention class, because it's something that every single artist at some point in their journey goes through, what kind of topics do you cover in your attention course.
Valerie Nah 16:14 We cover everything about adhesive literally everything that I've ever learned from other trainings that I've learned myself, all the research I've done by myself, I teach my personal attachment style, I post our attention all the time on my Instagram. And people always want to know, so I teach them exactly like my attachment style, because I've biggest thing with retention is, I feel like it's never your glue. It's really your attachment style. Attachment is what I would say like your main thing. Of course, there's other factors in there. But I teach that in there. And he talks about allergies, and irritations and pretty much how to take care and your glue and how to set your climate correctly to help you. I love it. Those are all such helpful things.
Mary Harcourt 16:54 You mentioned, you're on Instagram, where can people find you? And where can they find you how to register for your course.
Valerie Nah 17:00 So on my Instagram has a book now tab, everything is run through my booking site is book now tab. It's under Magaro. And it's under classes, and I usually will always put on the story or I'll posted on my Instagram what the next class will be. And then you can purchase the course through the book now tap.
Mary Harcourt 17:16 Awesome. So Instagram algorithm is always, always changing. And right now it's really hyper focused on reels which you do great. You'd amazing reels. What do you feel like? Are some of the important things in a reel? Is it just to have them be so short? Is it to have them be funny,
Valerie Nah 17:32 it depends on your audience, you have to understand who your audience is. And for me, for example, I understand that my audience loves to see relatable things for me, I feel like a lot of people do see me or know me as the funny lash real girl. And so you find there's other lash artists who they're real stupidly Well, if they are doing more educational things, because that's what their following is all in them for. For me, it's definitely relatable funny things. I feel like I'm the girl who says things and not everybody wants to say but I say that when I put them out there anyway. So also, being super genuine in your reels is huge. I think that a lot of people think oh, if I just like hop on the strength, the new release things, it'll just like blow up. No. So you have to be super genuine. A lot of people telling them can't make a really silly four hours like editing, and I don't I record that being maybe once or twice, I pick the ones that I like, and then I have learned in posts that it just has to be genuine. And honestly, it'll, it'll do really well for you. And also maybe don't really focus on having so many views or outside perspective. So there's this thing that I saw, I forget his name, but I follow him. He's so good at social media. But he was talking about how you don't really want to go viral too much with your reels, but you want to go viral for you viral in your community, and have that outreach. So that's like more important and that'll grow your page that way,
Mary Harcourt 18:52 what was the insight on not wanting to go viral as a single video,
Valerie Nah 18:57 mostly because sometimes your video goes to like the wrong side of Instagram. So you want it to be viral with the link to community and the go around me in your own community because if it goes viral too much, sometimes we'll be able trolls and people who don't know anything about lapsing or anything like that. So having them it'd be very known in your community is that good? Because that's obviously how I've avoided a lot of hate and stuff is that they're just very relatable but my audience I love it
Mary Harcourt 19:21 and you feel like your audience has grown both like in clients that when it comes to you as well as other lash artists or it is one favor more than the other. I feel
Valerie Nah 19:31 like my rows or my page has grown by lash artists. Definitely other lash artists follow me and my clients do find me through there as well. But it's mostly a lot of other lash works, which is cool because you
Mary Harcourt 19:43 have a great page so everyone should follow you. What is your Instagram handle?
Valerie Nah 19:48 Its beauty dal bow.
Mary Harcourt 19:50 Perfect. Well thank you so much and you've been a great guest and I hope that you accomplish everything you want to those are great dreams and very achievable especially when you're already on the right road.
Valerie Nah 20:01 Thank you yours okay very roll on with your with your light. We all love it. Everybody has to have like a thank you. I really appreciate that.
Mary Harcourt 20:09 That wraps up today's episode. For more information on our guests. You can find them at Mary harcourt.com under the episodes tab. You can always find me on Instagram at Mary Harcourt underscore and at the cosmic low light. I hope you enjoyed today's episode and many more to come
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