Beauty Hub Magazine speaks with the Beauty in Motion Awards winner of the Nail Art category.

Cathy Torres

What country are you from, and where do you reside?

I was born and raised in Canada – born in Ontario and now reside in Kelowna, BC.

Title of what you do and/or what company. 

I became a full-licensed Esthetician over 30 years ago but specialize in nails. Some clients have called me their brow angel as I am busy doing threading, tinting, and nails at Amicis Salon & Spa. 

Education background (school, salons, self-taught)? 

Thirty-two years ago, I graduated from the Esthetician program at Sheridan College. A few years after graduating, I became more interested in becoming a nail technician. I’ve taken many courses while learning new product lines, as I was introduced to them through employment, products such as CND, OPI, En Vogue, and Bio Sculpture. 

As new trends constantly change, I am thankful for the social media platforms and Influencers who put out tutorials for people like me to learn from. We are constantly learning from each other! 

What is your signature style/artistic expression of your work? 

I don’t have a specific style/artistic expression. Being a nail technician, I have many different clients with different opinions on what they want on their nails. I need to be versatile in all artistic styles. I love how the nail art industry is constantly evolving! I love to challenge myself with a new trend! 

What is the most fulfilling job you’ve worked on or someone you have worked with? 

For ten years of my career, I worked for The Absolute Spa in Vancouver, BC. We often worked on celebrities. It was a Saturday evening (the night before Canada Day, July 1st) in 2001. I was asked to go on set to work on a celebrity who was concerned about having someone professionally work on them (who wouldn’t get nervous!). I think I stopped three times to use the bathroom before I got on set. This celebrity was an idol for me growing up as a dancer/ performer. 

She was so lovely in person and made me feel so comfortable! She kept complimenting my work and couldn’t believe I didn’t cut her with my implements as nail techs would in the past from shaking cause they were too nervous working on her! She was filming a promotional video while in town performing. I did her manicure and pedicure for the video while her makeup artist was working on her. When we were done, her makeup artist said, “Turn around and give us a look) …she held up her nails by her face and posed….that was a WOW! Moment I’ll never forget!!! 

Do you have a career turning point, big break, or person that has helped your career?

It was during COVID, and I had a lot of time on my hands. It made me realize how much I missed painting art (I used to be an oil painter). My kids got me going on Instagram and showed me how I could connect with other nail artists, get inspired, and enter nail competitions. I entered Bio Sculptures #BioskillsArtChallenge2 in July 2021, which was a turning point for me. My passion for nail art was fired up!

What was the scariest and proudest moment in your career? 

The Scariest and proudest moment was at the same time. I was attending the gala for Salon Magazine’s Contessa Awards for 2023. I was one of three finalists for the Nail Art Category. I had Erica Nieuwenhuis, CEO of Bio Sculpture, Doug Dean, COO for Bio Sculpture, Coni Grande owner and Senior Stylist from Amicis, my daughter (my hand model), my two sisters and mom all there supporting me. When I was announced as the winner, I was never so proud and so scared as I headed to the mic for an acceptance speech in front of a thousand people! 

What is next for your career goals?

As an oil painter, I mastered wildlife realism. Now, as a nail artist, I want to master portrait realism—the nail trend known as Character Nail Art.

What advice would you give to someone starting out in your business? 

It’s a saying we all have heard that holds so much water. And that’s “practice makes perfect.” Make mistakes, learn from them, find your passion and keep going for it. When you’re passionate about your career, you will be successful! 

Instagram: @topnailtech