EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH NAIL INDUSTRY ENTREPRENEUR PETER LYKISSAS
Get expert insight into the nail industry from the man behind the success of CND and Artistic Nail Design in Australia.
With his award-winning career spanning the beauty industry and his passion for developing product lines of innovation and quality, makes Peter Lykissas the hottest trend in nails!
Peter Lykissas’ career in the nail industry started more than 25 years ago in Sydney, Australia with Sydney Nail Supply, one of the original nail import and supply businesses to service the Australian professional nail business. Over the past quarter century Peter, originally as the founder and CEO of Pacific Nail and Beauty, spearheaded the market development and distribution of many of today’s leading professional nail brands in Australia including CND (Creative Nail Design). He has now partnered with Nail Alliance with the distribution of Artistic Nail Design and several other major beauty and hair brands.
Coming from an IT distribution background in the 80’s Peter founded Pacific Nail and Beauty in 1990, which were at that time, exclusive distributors of Backscratchers Nail Care and IBD in Australia. In 1993 Pacific Nail was appointed as the exclusive distributor partner for CND (then Creative Nail Design) for Australia and for the next 15 years had an amazing partnership growing the Professional network of distributors in Australia which lead to many awards including Best international marketing, Best Education programs and International Distributor of the year for best overall performance globally on two separate occasions.
Peter has also been involved as a business partner in the successful development of many other leading Australian Professional nail brands including IBD, Ezflow and Seche Vite.
Q1: WHAT AN AMAZING CAREER! HOW DID YOU GET INTO THE NAIL INDUSTRY?
PETER: I was involved in the IT industry originally and my partner at the time was training as a nail technician. I became interested in the products she was using and soon after made the decision to form Sydney Nail Supply in the late 80’s to source better products than what she was using at the time.
Q2: WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO SEEK OUT THE AMAZING BRANDS YOU HAVE BROUGHT TO OZ AND DRIVE THEM ONTO OUR MENUS?
PETER: I discovered most products nail technicians were using at that time, were very basic and in fact in many cases dangerous. Local companies were also making outrageous and untrue claims about the products they offered on the market. This inspired me to span the globe and seek healthier alternatives that would provide a better end result. The technology was available and originally, we started with Backscratchers, a fibreglass alternative to acrylic. However, as time and technologies progressed, I found myself discovering new ways to enhance the nail professional experience. This drove me to form partnerships with many of the biggest names in the professional industry today.
Q3: HOW FAR HAS THE NAIL INDUSTRY COME OVER THE YEARS AND HOW HAS IT CHANGED?
PETER: Interestingly it’s a dual narrative here. On one hand the technology available to create nails and to colour them has improved significantly throughout the years. However, the regulation of the industry has remained fairly unchanged with little progress on ensuring nail professionals uphold any standard. There are a huge number of products available to nail professionals and consumers, and with online services allowing companies to project any image they like, it’s more important than ever for salons to be vigilant and do their homework when selecting the nail ranges they introduce into their business.
Q4: HOW DO YOU SEE THE NAIL WORLD EVOLVING?
PETER: The products available to nail professionals when creating the nail will continue to improve. There have been significant advancements made in the past 12 months with the introduction of Artistic Putty Polygel, and I can see room for further development in the removal and re-balance areas. There will be a return to traditional services and a stronger focus on natural nail preservation and natural growth under nail services.
Q5: WHAT DEFINES A NAIL TREND AND WHAT SHOULD WE LOOK TO EXPLORE THIS YEAR?
PETER: Trends in nails are often based on broader consumer trends and change with seasonal fashion. When it comes to colour, look for Soft Mauves and Copper during colder months and gorgeous Soft Nudes covered in Sheer Pearls for later in the year. Nail Art will be important but with a more Bohemian twist moving away from harsh lines, crystals and glitter. To add, any significant development in the methods used to enhance or protect the natural nail is also a great focus in the nail world.
Q6: WHEN CHOOSING A BRAND OR PRODUCT TO INTRODUCE TO THE MARKET, WHAT KEY ASPECTS PLAY A ROLE IN THIS?
PETER: I look specifically for brands that have true potential to be category leaders. The science has to be right to begin with. We only support brands where the range adds value to the salon and it’s not just about price option. We select brands created around a solid understanding of the professional nail business and what is required to make an impact in the local market. In addition, we seek natural points of difference, respect for environmentally friendly manufacturing and a top shelf education system - these are all critical when selecting a partner and a brand.
Q7: WHAT WOULD YOU SUGGEST NAIL TECHNICIANS LOOK FOR WHEN SELECTING A NAIL RANGE OF PRODUCTS?
PETER: I would suggest they seek a complete range of nail products from a small number of reliable nail manufacturers. A nail technician should ensure that the products complement each other and work together to create a fully supported nail enhancement service. Having a range that allows clients to choose a colour and then select from either a Gel Polish, Dip or Long Wear Traditional Enamel Service is a huge advantage in salon. Our brand Artistic Nail Design offers this across more than 100 high fashion colours, and is backed by environmentally aware manufacturing that meets the FDA standards for products sold in the USA as a minimum. This is a great example of a brand who’s marketing stands out and is shareable across all platforms. It’s a great idea to select ranges that allow access to their marketing resources so you can use these in your salon. Also look out for comprehensive education programs available across the selected nail range and most importantly the range should only be sold to professional nail technicians only and not the general public. Look at the history of the company behind the range and its local distributors and educators, so you know your investment with them is backed by technical excellence and knowledge, and is secured into the future.
Q8: WHAT SETS YOUR BRANDS APART FROM THE REST AND HOW DO PEOPLE LEARN MORE ABOUT THESE?
PETER: Our brands are unique and truly customisable to the salon experience. All our brands are anchored with unique points of difference and offer a true value-add proposition for the salon, whether it be repair and protection of the natural nail, advanced application in low odour environments, funky artwork or the latest colour palette.
Q9: WHEN PERFORMING A NAIL SERVICE, WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECTS TO CONSIDER?
PETER: Hygiene and safety are paramount, correct application techniques, time of service and client satisfaction. Ensuring your salon environment in clean, modern and purposeful and some of the most mentioned important items by Nail Salon clients.
Q10: ANY NEW PRODUCTS BEING LAUNCHED WE SHOULD ALL KEEP OUR OUT EYE FOR?
PETER: We have an exciting list of launches for 2019 from most of our manufacturers but in particular, Artistic Nail Design. Kicking off in March with Colour Gloss Repack, we are introducing a new bottle, brush and cap repacking the entire range. This will make the new streamlined range easy to identify with full bottle wrap in true colour, new wider brush and on point enhanced colour range. Also expect new shades of our best-selling Correction Gel, Gel Art Paints and a new Artistic Pro Brush collection all in 2019.
Want to find out more about Colour Gloss or Artistic Nail Design? Contact Barneys Salon Supplies on 1800 676 522.