OPI Pro Spotlight: @karlasoriginailkolors
Inspired to become a nail artist during thyroid cancer treatment, nail technician Karla Sorto aka @karlasoriginailkolors is one inspiring woman. A self-taught artist who specializes in hand-drawn nail art, discover everything from her favorite nail trends to the secret to her success.
OPI: What inspired you to become a nail artist?
Karla: In 2010 I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. I started my nail journey as a hobby to help me with my depression. A friend gifted me an entire box of opi nail polishes. I would polish my nails every-night and just create random designs as a means of distraction. It helped me so much. It was what motivated me to get my license.
OPI: We just launched our Malibu Summer collection. What shade is your favorite and why?
Karla: I absolutely love anything OPI comes out with! The new Malibu collection is stunning. My top 3 favorite shades from this collection are (Mali-Blue Shore, Marigolden Hour & From Dusk til Dune). I love these 3 shades the most. They’re vibrant yet subtle. I can see myself using them to create fun versatile looks.
OPI: Your nail art designs are stunning! How did you learn to create nail art for clients? What nail art trends are your favorite this summer?
Karla: I learned to create designs on my clients by listening to their ideas and getting to know what they like. I combine their ideas with what I envision. Our final product is usually a perfect combination of both concepts. This summer my favorite trends are the colorful swirls, French-tip, and multi-color nails.
OPI: Any advice you’d like to share with other aspiring nail artists?
Karla: My advice for aspiring nail artists would be to never give up. We all start from the bottom. Make sure to always practice, practice, practice. Always use quality products and continue learning new techniques, it’ll make a world of a difference.
OPI: How do you take care of your nails at work and home?
Karla: I try to maintain my mani every 3 to 4 weeks. I wear gloves all the time. I moisturize my cuticles with oil an insane amount of times. I make sure to not pick my gels off. I gently soak them off. I like to re-shape my nails every 5 days so the shape doesn’t dull out. To keep my busy hands feeling and looking soft, I use paraffin treatments and lotion.
OPI: We see that you sell press-on kits. Can you give other techs advice on how to sell to their clients?
Karla: Press-on sets have been so fun to create! I started selling press-on kits during the mandated lockdown. It was a great way to keep my business afloat while creating some sets for my clients. A few tips I’d suggest would be to measure your clients' nails when they’re with you. Offer them a discounted set the first time so they can try them on for a trip or a day out. Educate your clients on how to use press-on’s. They are a great way to have fabulous nails without damaging your natural nails.
OPI: Clients are so important! How do you make sure your clients always leave satisfied?
Karla: My business is successful because of my clients. They are extremely important to me. I have found the key to retaining clients is honesty and complete transparency. Create rules and set boundaries. Clients will respect you and establish healthy long-lasting relationships with you.
Be sure to follow Karla @karlasoriginailkolors on Instagram for tons of nail art and inspiration! Follow us @OPI_Professionals and subscribe to our YouTube channel to stay up to date with the latest nail inspo and OPI Pro Tips. Sign-up for our newsletter to be the first to know about the latest collection launches, exclusive events, and more.