Nail salon polishes up at new location
There’s a bit of a fishbowl effect going on at Polished Nail Salon’s new location on Reid Street. The walls are glass, so passers-by are constantly peering in.
This was exactly what Glen Wilks had in mind when he moved the nail side of his beauty business from the inner Washington Mall to its entrance in mid-January.
“Having it be visible draws people in,” he said. “It is human nature to be either be pushed or pulled by things. So I think this is aiming for that pull, even if it is just curiosity.”
The new space also has double the square footage of the last shop.
He wanted the place to be multisensory. All the surfaces are shiny white; there’s local photography on the walls, and there’s a chic smell to everything, down to the books in the waiting area.
“It’s a cleaner, more contemporary look, but comfortable,” Mr Wilks said. “It has a warm, authentic and sensory feel. We want not only our clients to look beautiful, but also the service and the entire experience.”
Mr Wilks calls the style of the shop “contemporary”, like most of their clients.
“The typical customers we serve are a very cosmopolitan body of people, primarily working professionals but we get clients as young as tweens,” he said. “It runs the gamut.”
The nail salon offers manicures, pedicures, eyelash extensions and microblading — a technique where individual eyebrow hairs are meticulously tattooed on semi-permanently with a small hand-held tool.
“The microblading is a new service,” he said. “We have been doing eyelash extensions for some time. It is all individually applied so it looks quite natural.”
The salon also hopes to offer make-up services in the coming weeks.
When asked if the beauty business in Bermuda is cut-throat, Mr Wilks said: “I am an eternal optimist. I am a believer in that everything happens for a reason, and it is up to you how you want to navigate, and what sort of principles you want to live by, or do business by.”
He is firm on what he thinks his business and his team stands for.
“We give love, man, and hopefully we will get love in return,” he said. “It’s about compassion and professionalism, it is as simple as that. We try to provide excellence on all levels.”
As if on cue, a customer, Tanecia Barnett Burgess, appeared to buy a gift certificate. She said she’d driven all the way from St David’s to make the purchase.
Unwittingly echoing Mr Wilks’s comments she said: “I find it very peaceful and the people are kind.”
Mr Wilks has been in the beauty business for three decades.
“I have seen numerous changes,” he said. “I think we are on the cusp of another major change economically and lifestyle wise, with the way that technology has changed people’s lifestyle.”
He said there has always been change, but now it seems to be happening more rapidly.
“So whatever we do, we have to be reflective of that, and how you integrate technology and how you can make it as seamless as possible, which is crucial,” he said.
He has a selfie wall in one corner of Polished, so clients can post photos as soon as their nails are done or their eyelashes extended.
“The way people live now, a day if there is no record of what you have done — it never occurred,” he said.
The wall helps the clients and Polished catch a little attention from the outside world.
“Social media is an integral part of the business,” Mr Wilks said. “If you have a beautiful experience at Polished, then you want to talk about the experience, and share what you have seen or discovered.”
But he said Bermuda’s business infrastructure doesn’t encourage much risk taking.
“There is talk of support, but there is no real tangible support,” he said.
In addition, he wanted to see all sectors of the community more dedicated towards service.
“If everyone is committed to service, regardless of what sector you’re in, we raise the bar, and raise everyone as a consequence to that.”