Recently, I got the chance to interview Maria Salandra, who is one of the top celebrity manicurists. Maria is one of the most sought after manicurists in Hollywood. She has been in the nail industry for over 25 years! At 21, Maria opened Finger Fitness nail salon in Cliffside Park, NJ. After that, she broke into the nail competition circuit where she won many awards for acrylic enhancements and nail art. She became an educator for various nail companies as well. Shortly after becoming an educator is when she got into the TV and film industry. She started off working on the Soprano’s as the manicurist for the cast but has since gone on to working with many other big names such as Sarah Jessica Parker, Kelly Ripa, and Rachel McAdams.
Maria also told us about a great new product called Gel Perfect. It’s the first gel manicure that sets in 5 minutes and without UV/LED light! She was very excited to share her thoughts on the product and her experience using it. I was so intrigued by this product just after speaking with Maria that I had to buy Gel Perfect for myself! The product really is as amazing as it sounds and gave me a great gel manicure for half the cost! I definitely recommend it! For more information about Maria and to check out some of her amazing nail designs visit her site, here. It was a lot of fun speaking with Maria and learning about her job as a celebrity manicurist!
SCBD: What are the latest celebrity mani-pedi trends for the summer?
Maria Salandra: Anything glitter. Anything rhinestones. Anything that speaks “Hey I’m here!”
SCBD: We’ve seen your amazing designs, where do you get your inspiration?
MS: I look for inspiration all around me. I look at clothing, wallpaper, bags that just came from the store. I love trends and patterns, all kinds of fun things that just trigger something in my mind.
SCBD: You’ve worked with a lot of celebrities, including big names like Sarah Jessica Parker, Rachel McAdams, and Christina Aguilera. Who is one of your favorites you’ve worked with?
MS: I love working with Christina Aguilera. I love working with Nicki Minaj. I love working with these people because their lives are so colorful so they’re open to everything.
SCBD: What movies and TV shows have you worked on?
MS: It started with the Soprano’s. That’s where I became the “celebrity manicurist”. I worked on the Soprano’s for a long time. I’ve worked with a lot of celebrities. I’ve been involved in so many different shows that it’s really hard to count. It’s given me this status of the “celebrity nail goddess” that I’m able to come to you and introduce new products! I found something new,it’s my new hot fav!
SCBD: Gel Perfect is a new product out on the market. It’s the first gel manicure that sets in 5 minutes and doesn’t require UV/LED. How is it different from a standard nail polish?
MS: It’s different from the standard nail polish because it dries. Standard nail polish takes hours You sit and do your nails on a humid day, you could be there until the next morning and your nail polish isn’t dry. This goes on like a standard nail polish. It dries in 5 minutes. Five minutes, rock solid, and brillant shine. Amazing shines. And it’s available to people! Usually when you see products like this it’s only for me, for my kind, the celebrity manicurist, the professional behind the scenes. This is for the consumer out on the street that wants to get something that looks like red carpet, can appear to be red carpet, but the cost is so much more affordable.
SCBD: Does the Gel Perfect polish really set in 5 minutes and without smudging?
MS: No smudging. This product is the only thing that promises to dry in five minutes. No UV lights. No LED lights. It’s unbelievable! Everyone will question that, I know. I couldn’t stand here and tell you something that wasn’t true. It wouldn’t be right. I believe in this product. I know it works. I use it. I’ve used it on my clients in the salon. I use it outside of the salon as well. To introduce something amazing like this, some people are like it’s summer. People go on vacation. If they come to me they get a pedicure and then they go to an island let’s say and they don’t have their polish, what happens? They go “Oh my god, i just got a pedicure and look it chipped,”. You have it with you. You can fix it in two seconds! You can fix your whole polish. You can change it if you want and step right into the sand again.
SCBD: Is using the Gel Perfect nail polish on your toes something that you can do at home, or should you go to a salon?
MS: You could do both if you like. If you don’t have the time to go to the salon or you don’t have the money this week to go to the salon, you could totally do this at home in your living room, the kitchen, the kids running around you,people calling you. You could talk on the phone and actually have your nails be dried. Or you could take it to the salon. I love when people come to me and they give me something new and exciting to try. When I give something to them, it’s like golden. They love that. So here I am, not only am I giving them something that looks good but it does something that no other product does. It dries and they’re out the door.
SCBD: I really can’t wait to try out the Gel Perfect nail polish and it was so great learning about the product today!
MS: Don’t forget, you can buy this at any of the big box retailers and if you don’t have any in your area, just go to Nutranail.com and they’ll show you. They’ll let you know where to buy the product.