Nicki Minaj’s Nail Artist Kandi Banks Dishes All The New Nail Trends

If you’re in love with nail art but aren’t sure how to make a career out of your passion, check out our interview with celebrity nail artist Kandi Banks. Kandi decorates nails with everything from matte tips in the trendiest of tones to 3D renderings of tacos and Thanksgiving turkeys, and her wacky designs have attracted high profile fans like Nicki Minaj and Demi Lovato. Her unique vision lead to opening her namesake nail salon, Kandiland on Melrose Avenue, at the age of 22. We talked to Kandi about how she spends her days as a celebrity nail artist, and asked her the one question on everyone’s mind: just how should we do our nails for NYE? The most in demand manicurist of the moment spilled it all.

How did you realize nail art was your passion and what do you love about it?

I realized nail art was my passion when everyone kept requesting me to do their nails, and doing it never felt like work.

What has been your biggest career hurdle so far? What about your proudest accomplishment?

Honestly? I don’t know. I think my biggest career hurdle might be trying to please clients everyday. There’s always that one person who’s never satisfied. My proudest accomplishment was opening my salon at 22, and branding my business and name so quickly.

If you didn’t own a nail salon, what would you be doing?

I have no idea — I CAN’T work for other people, and I suck at typing. I do, however, really love voice-over acting. I wish I could do it now. Most people don’t know I can sound just like Moaning Myrtle from Harry Potter. I can also do the voice of Dora the Explorer.

Your advice for girls looking to break into celeb nail art or makeup?

It’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Never give someone the opportunity to do a better job than you.

What is your greatest source of inspiration?

I love surrounding myself with people who have similar mindsets as me. Everyday I’m inspired by the things and people around me. I have some of the best employees in Southern California. They inspire me.

When it comes to nail art, what are some ways to innovate on what’s already out there?

Making it your own. You HAVE to make stuff your own. Everything is a copy of something, so when you add your own spin people go crazy.

Favorite nail art you’ve ever done?

Theres too many to decide. My 3D nachos are a huge hit.

Some cool nail trends to try over the holidays?

We started doing matte over shimmer polish (not glitter) and its been a HUGE hit! Clusters of different size and colored rhinestones are popular too. The most popular fall colors are a deep jade green and hunter green. Girls have been getting a lot of nude pedicures too.

Nail trends you predict for 2016?

I don’t predict trends I set them. Follow my nail page for ideas @kandilandnails.

Gimme More Beauty


Do You Like?

Some things are only found on Facebook. Don't miss out.