Nail technician training involves learning manicuring and nail polishing techniques. While many schools offer programs in the area, it is important to consider multiple factors when making a selection.
10 Nail Technician Schools
Several schools have certificate programs focused solely on nail technology, and some schools also offer broader associate's programs in cosmetology. Here are a few of these schools.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degree Types||Tuition (2015-2016)|
|Johnston Community College||Smithfield, NC||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,401 in-state; $8,545 out-of-state|
|Edgecombe Community College||Tarboro, NC||2-year, Public||Certificate||$2,736 in-state; $8,520 out-of-state|
|Brunswick Community College||Bolivia, NC||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,404 in-state; $8,548 out-of-state|
|Nash Community College||Rocky Mount, NC||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,504 in-state; $8,648 out-of-state|
|Ashville-Buncombe Technical Community College||Ashville, NC||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,419 in-state; $8,563 out-of-state|
|Everett Community College||Everett, WA||2-year, Public||Associate's||$3,643 in-state; $8,981 out-of-state|
|Riverside City College||Riverside, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$1,426 in-state; $7,366 out-of-state|
|El Paso Community College||El Paso, TX||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,386 in-state; $4,042 out-of-state|
|Wake Technical Community College||Raleigh, NC||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,768 in-state; $8,912 out-of-state|
|Spokane Community College||Spokane, WA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$3,388 in-state; $8,726 out-of-state|
School Selection Criteria
Aspiring nail technicians may want to keep the following considerations in mind when selecting a school:
- Graduation from an accredited school is usually required for licensure.
- Students seeking short-term training in nail technology may want to consider certificate programs. 2-year associate degree programs in cosmetology would be better suited to students interested in not only nail care, but also hair, make-up and skin care.
- Individuals interested in running their own salons may consider enrolling in programs that include marketing or sales coursework.
- Visiting prospective schools to observe the classroom and working conditions could help ensure that sanitation and hygiene are part of the program.
Nail Technician Program Overviews
Certificate in Nail Technology
A certificate in nail technology ensures that a student is trained in the process of applying, maintaining and designing nails, as well as proper manicure and pedicure procedures. Training consists of both classroom and laboratory experiences. Completing such a program is typically mandatory for licensure in all states. Coursework commonly includes:
- Manicure and pedicure techniques
- Acrylics and gel applications
- Nail painting
- Cuticle care
- Sanitation and hygiene
Associate Degree in Cosmetology
These programs introduce aspiring cosmetologists to a much broader range of skills than a certificate program in nail technology does. These programs could lead to work in a salon, salon manager positions, or work in a performance-based setting, like hair and make-up roles for movies and theaters. Associate degree students can study:
- Hair coloring
- Hair cutting and styling
- Make-up application
- Skin care
- Manicuring and pedicuring
When choosing a training program for nail technicians, potential students must take into account factors such as location and intended work environment. Unlike certificate programs, associate degree programs usually involve additional training beyond that of just nails through both classroom and hands-on experience.