Onward and Upward

Welcome back to Takemetotheheights.com! Before I delve deeper into this blog post, I just wanted to let you know how glad I am to be back to bring you another blog post! Y’all, I won’t even lie, I’ve gone back and forth about this particular blog post (grabs tissue)

nervous fresh prince of bel air GIF by Nick At Nite

Leaving September and feeling the uneasiness of the unknown (2020 in a nutshell) left my thoughts in overdrive. BRUH….I could do without it. The nights of being up into the wee hours of the morning….I felt as though the heaviness detered me at times from taking the next step towards my goals. I know I’m not the only one who has those nail biting moments. You know, those moments that just seem to loom over your head and casts a dark rain cloud.

Yet, even in those moments of all the overthinking, I can’t help but think how much more okay I felt with the idea of fully immersing myself into all that I’ve envisioned (I’ll eventually address this.)

With that being said, I am beyond elated to not only have kicked off October in full determination mode, but it’s officially my favorite time of the year. If you’re new here, this is the time where I am the most reflective as I await my birthday 🙏🏾🧿

This particular year has been filled with uncertainty and loss. Without a doubt, this year has been the biggest learning curve for me thus far. There were the the times (more times than I could count) where like many people, I also cancelled 2020. Having experienced the literal act of starting over in different aspects of my life (I could write a book on this y’all 😩) and relying on my faith and fully trusting myself throughout the process (and staying disciplined) has been challenging to say the least.

Aside from that, I am praying that October (and the months coming ahead) continue to open up more doors towards prosperity, more opportunities in tapping into my creativity, but above all else, relishing into my happiness no matter the circumstances. This year hasn’t been the easiest yet I walk in faith knowing that things will work out, no matter the challenges.

Before I close out, I just wanted to note that although this particular year hasn’t been what many of us were anticipating, I know deep down, this year will leave an indelible impression on us all. Let’s make the most of this last quarter by embarking on things/opportunities we never thought would be possible. Let’s challenge our views on what we thought wasn’t within our reach. Above all else, let’s continue to put one foot forward, keep our heads held high, honor whatever emotions we may feel along the way and keep going.

Let me know in the reply section what this last quarter means to you? What are your plans for the remainder of October? and what are you hoping to acheive this month or in the coming months?

If you made it towards the end, I thank you for reading this week’s blog post! I’ll catch you in the next one!

Signed,

Let’s Try this Again

“Doubting’s only made your vision blurry.” (Sza)

Hey and welcome back to Takemetotheheights.com. 

Coming into September, I honestly felt lackluster; pretty unmotivated. I knew deep down it stemmed from some personal fears I had as I continued to move forward in this new endeavor ( I will share more about this very soon 🙏🏾🧿)

These new prospects (my apologies in advance for how cryptic and ambiguous it sounds) left me feeling nervous. Yet, I found myself thinking back to a time when those feelings were all too familiar for me: Cues quick story time.

Prior to starting undergrad, I remember those same nervous feelings I had consequently due to me stepping into something that was for the most part unfamiliar. I remember feeling as if I didn’t have anyone who understood those woes per say(first generation college grads please rise) the weight of the pressure I put on myself was unimaginable.

Those same feelings sprang up once more when I tapped into unfamiliar territories yet again at the start of me entering a new space in my educational career. It happened once again when I dropped my first batch of merch for Takemetotheheights.com last year.

Despite those ever present familiar feelings and entering a state of uncertainty, I’m constantly reminded of how successful it turned out to be no matter the challenges that came along the way; how I chose to remain faithful and consistent in whatever I tapped into.

I’m saying all of this and then some as a reminder to myself and all those who frequent Takemetotheheights.com, and to essentially say: “keep going.” Easier said then done, trust me I get it. Yet, if it weren’t for those words my father kept drilling into my mind, I don’t even think I’d be writing this blog post to you right now. (Shout outs to the old man!) But in all seriousness, we are often reminded of the things that we haven’t done, want to do, or even wish we could do but never celebrate the things/moments we’ve achieved.

As we course through September, no matter what may come, let’s challenge our thoughts and the moment the negative starts to float into our minds. Let’s tap into what we are currently doing at the moment. Honor whatever feelings you may have but above all else acknowledge what you are doing (mindful meditation for the win!)

Relaxed Yoga GIF by Hannah Bronfman
Release all the negative and embrace all of the positive. Remain present no matter the circumstances.

Being present has allowed me to surrender and ultimately let go the things/negative thoughts that have no place in my heart or spirit (Gem alert!) Thus, it has enabled me to further embrace all the splendor and joy that is awaiting me but also pushes me to dig deeper into aligment (I’ll save that for another post! 🙏🏾🧿)

All in all, coming into this particular blog post, I wasn’t too sure how I was going to navigate through my thoughts and share with you after some time has past, yet I knew it was time to dig a little deeper and ultimately share with you here at Takemeotheheights.com what’s been on my mind these last few weeks. My hope for you with this post is it resonates with you in some way shape or form but above all else, serves as a reminder to ultimately and truly remain present and give yourself grace through it all no matter the circumstances.

Before I end today’s post, let me know what September has taught you so far, what lesson(s) have played a role for you coming into September and or what are you hoping to gain from this month?

Be sure to leave me your replies in the reply section. As always, thank you for checking out today’s post and stick around for more Takemetotheheights.com!

Nailed It!

Welcome back to Takemetotheheights.com!

For those of you who didn’t get a chance to check out our intro blog post all about nailsbe sure to do so, then head on back to this post to read on more!

Aside from that, we are back to give you more all things nail related.

This time around, we figured it was best to showcase a few nail techs that were recommended to us via our Instagram page (be sure to follow and be part of the Heights Tribe!) and/or those that felt compelled to share their stories as nail techs in this ever-growing field. Coming into this particular post, we didn’t want to give you a quick overview of talented nail techs. We ultimately wanted to showcase these particular nail techs/artists’ client work and delve a little deeper and give you, the readers, an opportunity to get to know them a little better.

So long and behold, we present: Nailed It! here Takemetotheheights.com. In this blog post, we decided to ask these nail techs a few questions each respectfully about their techniques/businesses, how they navigated through COVID-19 and more. Let’s read on more and meet one of the nail techs.

Let’s meet: Cephanie of Clawed by Ceph!

333F0798-F36C-41FE-8C12-A694A777FCB0My name is Cephanie and I am 19. Instead of going to college, last fall I took the year off so that I could go to beauty school. As a new nail technician, I (was) determined to make the cosmetic industry more diverse.”

Ever since I was young, I’ve only seen predominantly Asian owned nail salons and predominantly Asian and white-owned beauty supply stores. (My hope is) to one day open a Black-owned nail salon and a contributing beauty supply store in my hometown. From there, I want to open several salons in low and high-income areas.

Clawdxceph is a nail cosmetics business that specializes in an acrylic overlay. 

IMG_4390Upon the arrival of COVID-19, the global pandemic did not impact my business as severely as I thought it would.
I began doing nails in February 2020. We didn’t really see the effects of the pandemic until quarantine measures were taken in late March.
Before businesses were shut down, I (grew) a small clientele. However, my clientele wasn’t big enough where I suffered dramatically from the lack of work. There was a period during quarantine (where) I was unable to do nails.
When I was finally able to promote myself again, the level of support I received was very unexpected. Within months (of me) doing nails, my clientele (grew) considerably.
(Aside from my supportive clientele) I consider myself to be well educated on nail care and nail anatomy. My methods ensure proper nail health and nail maintenance. I start off by asking every single one of my clients to wash their hands. After that is done, we proceed to remove the nail’s natural shine, any excess cuticle, and hangnails, and then prepping the surface with a dehydrator and a nail primer. Next, is applying false tips and then acrylic application. Last but not least is shaping, filing, and finishing touches. All of my clients also get a complimentary hand massage, which not many nail technicians offer.
I developed my artistry for about 5 months. Although I was unable to do nails for (about a few months) due to COVID-19, I devoted my time to learn more without being hands-on. Quarantine gave me time to further educate myself.
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Despite (my beauty school’s closure) I was and still am only able to do online schoolwork. My education was no longer hands-on.
Instead, it consisted of textbook learning, reading, and taking online assessments about cosmetology. I took these past several months as an opportunity to really educate myself about nail care.
While I was doing my online work, I was also watching YouTube videos (dedicated to nail techniques and education)
Until I was able to secure a mannequin hand and more nails supplies, I was (consistently)  watching nail videos. I was watching (nail techs) work and (keeping) mental notes on what I needed to do to (enhance my nail techniques and artistry)
(Above all else) my advice to those who want to become a nail tech is to practice and trust yourself. Creativity is unlimited. You can do anything you put your mind to. Five months ago, I did not think I would have 1,000 followers (on Instagram) Five months ago, I did not think I would (receive this) much support.
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One thing I’ve learned is before you can get any of that support, you need to support yourself. Another useful piece of advice is to work in secrecy. Educate and build your craft first. You shouldn’t be too quick to show off your work until you are 100% sure that this is what you want to do. You shouldn’t be too quick to charge people either. Make sure your work looks presentable, otherwise your client might react negatively. One negative experience could jeopardize your entire image.

Thank you Cephanie for sharing your insights all things nail tech/artistry related.

 For any future clients looking to book Cephanie, click here: https://clawdbyceph.as.me/

Stay tuned to the next nail tech as we close out our nail tech series here at Takemetotheheights.com!

Nailed it again!

Welcome back to Takemetotheheights.com! 

As mentioned in our previous post (Nailed It), we have returned with our final talented nail tech who has been in this industry for three years. Upon receiving this recommedation from another follower on our Instagram page, we instantly had to follow-up and gain more insight about this noteworthy nail tech. Let’s keep reading and discover more about Amara!

Let’s Meet: Amara of Nailed it by Amara!

IMG_0012 2 Nailed it by Amara was created when I one day decided that I wanted to follow my almost life long dream of doing nails, while also giving amazing customer service because it was something I wasn’t used to experiencing when I went to the nail salon.

As a child, my mother had the quintessential 90’s girl super long nails. The (nails) curved, and they were all hers. We went to the nail salon every 2 weeks like clockwork for a fill-in. (From there) that’s (where) I found my love for nails. I was 6 years old when I told my mother that I would own a nail salon. It took me a while to commit to the dream. But I’m here now.

Nailed It By Amara is my small little escape from reality where I get to attempt perfection on tiny canvases the same way I grew up watching it be done for my mother at the nail salon. 

IMG_4367(With) COVID-19, (it) made me change the ways in which I think as far as owning my own business. It made me figure out a way to express myself and make money, all while quarantined in the house.

(As a result of quarantine measures) I decided to make press on nails. I could do nails without ever having to touch a single client and I could make money while doing it. I had quite a bit of orders (to fulfill) and it most definitely helped me keep my sanity as well as stay afloat. 

(With regard to specialization) it’s weird to say that I specialize in something because in my eyes I never feel like I perfected something. But,  I specialize in acrylic nail enhancements as well as gel polish and enhancements. 

Interestingly enough, I’m just getting comfortable with considering myself as an artist. But I feel that I developed my artistry thanks to the good ‘ole YouTube University and Instagram. I often search for things that I want to try and watch tons of videos and tutorials on how to achieve the look, and then I go sit at my nail table for hours and recreate until I like the finished product.

IMG_4365I’ve attended a few classes that have helped me learn more as a nail technician. But I must honestly say that my clients play a huge role in my development. They more often than not will show me something that they want to do that I’ve never done, and we’ll keep trying until we get it right. Many of the things that they’ve brought to me to recreate or to achieve have been things that I’ve been able to add to my arsenal of nail techniques. 

I started doing my own nails for fun and taking it seriously in 2016. I became a licensed nail technician in 2017, and I’ve been fully submerged in all things nails since then. 

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(As far as advice goes) my one piece of advice that I have for anyone just starting out is do not underestimate how much of an undertaking doing nails actually is. We tend to watch people do a job for so long, to the point that we think it’s no big deal and that we can easily do what they’ve trained themselves to do overtime.

This leads to new nail techs getting discouraged when they try to recreate a look and it doesn’t come out as perfect as the original art. It’s okay. This job isn’t easy, and you most likely won’t be perfect on the first try. Don’t let that stop you. 

For future clients looking to achieve any of these nail looks and then some be sure to visit Amara’s website: NaileditbyAmara.com and book your appointment.

 

 

Sunday Vibes

Hey and welcome back to takemetotheheights.com!!!!

Feels incredibly amazing to be back to give you another blog post. Coming into the last week of July, (let’s keep in mind that we’ve also entered the MIDDLE OF 2020, activate Mr. Krabs Meme)

confused mr krabs GIFIt’s been quite the whirlwind, to say the least. Despite all that has occurred and keeps surprising us, I humbly believe in the power behind what this particular year has meant. For me, it FINALLY meant (the struggle has been real for your girl at times) to not only honor the space I’m in but heavily step into all that I am and all that I will be. 

I remember in the past where I used to yearn for time to be able to truly tap into all that I enjoy doing. Although we can do without the current circumstances of COVID-19, (please continue to practice social distancing and wear your mask.) I honestly have a deeper appreciation for the things I once took for granted. 

I can recall back to last year in the moments where I felt extremely tired from my day-to-day; not having the desire to do much of anything but just sleep after commuting home from work.

Now, the time spent in basking in my relaxation, my personal journey (I’ll eventually get to that) really honing in the time in talking to my loved ones has taught me a valuable lesson throughout all of this: “no matter what may be going on, continue to honor yourself in all of your glory and pour into yourself in all that you are and all that you are striving to become.”

Aside from that, (and this sizzling summer we’ve been experiencing -____-) I wanted to also check-in and see how you’ve been doing. Yes, you reading this blog post. I truly meant what I said in my last post where I hope we’ve all been taking the necessary energy (heavy on the ENERGY) to pour into our own cups and take care of our well- being. I won’t lie and say I didn’t succumb to the woes of being glued to my phone (more now than ever, Instagram and Facebook on heavy rotation) and not taking the necessary space to UNPLUG and unwind.

I unplugged for a bit coming into that last Sunday of July and I am eternally grateful that I was able to do so. My unplugging this time around involved me heading to the park submerging myself into nature’s splendor. The moment my feet touched the grass and felt that cool sensation, I literally felt like I was in heaven.

Coming into that last Sunday, I vowed to continue to not only pouring into myself (glass is ALWAYS full!) but striving to make it a conscientious habit of mine moving forward. Sundays reminder to myself into placing a deeper and richer priority to my well-being is my way of letting you know to continue to do the same for yourselves no matter what the circumstances.

As we course towards the end of the month, let’s be more congnizant of how we are practing self-care and what that ideally looks like for us. Is it beneficial to your well-being? Does it bring you joy? What other feelings come up as you tap deeply into your self-care practices?

Above all else, let’s allow July to bring us more joy as we prepare for August. Let me know in the reply section what your self-care practices look like and what you’re looking forward to in August.

Until next blog post,

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