How Nail Artist and Mom of Three Builds Her American Dream

At the age of eighteen, Jade Tang arrived in the United States and barely spoke English. Seventeen years later, she becomes the "Nail Queen", creates a successful luxury nail brand, and empowers others to live their own American Dream. The young Vietnamese-American entrepreneur does all this while nailing motherhood.

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Jade Tang is a master nail artist and founder of The Imperial Room, a professional nail supply boutique and academy, with 15 years of experience performing in upscale salons and teaching new and experienced nail techs with her specialized workshops. Her clients include celebrities and influencers throughout California. With over 100,000 followers on Instagram and as an influencer herself in the nail industry, Jade has been published, and recently titled “Nail Queen” in industry magazine.

We were delighted to discuss how Jade became a master nail artist and industry influencer and her strategies to distinguish herself in a highly saturated market.

YN: How and why did you get into the nail business?

I didn’t come from a wealthy family background. When I immigrated to Minnesota, my aunt introduced me to nail art and the nail industry. My childhood was full of joy as sewing, art and crafting, drawing, painting, and music were my hobbies. I was an astute student and even won multiple art project awards. As an adult, my love of art and for creativity transferred seamlessly into a career as a nail artist. My focus on designs and intricate attention to details help me create beautiful artwork while making a living. Clients’ nails are treated as tiny canvases of art and I pour everything into each pieces.

YN: What made you stand out as a nail artist? 

Many enter the nail industry as a way to earn a living. It’s understandable. Fortunately for me, nail art became a passion. I vowed to never stop learning. Throughout my 15-year career, I’ve had the pleasure to work in very selective communities and upscale salons. 

Even now, I am still learning and expanding my skills and knowledge. Each set of nails is a work of art for me that reflects my clients. Nail artistry isn’t just a term. I aim to deliver it with every client I’m lucky enough to work with. 

YN: Why did you start The Imperial Room?

When I started my nail career, I was scared and didn’t speak English very well but immediately dreamt of becoming an entrepreneur one day. I’d like to continue to provide quality nail artistry to loyal clients but also want to establish a place to provide continuing education and quality tools and products to peers because I understand the challenges and hope to encourage them to not only aim to make a living, but dare to dream bigger.

Professionally, I hope that using my business as a platform can inspire unique perspectives and empower nail techs to realize their full potential so we can collectively raise the bar across the board and to elevate the nail industry. Besides teaching skills and techniques, we also share tools and trusted products that we believe will help salon owners and independent professionals maximize their business. These products have been personally curated by me and met quality standards and expert expectations.

The goal is that The Imperial Room serves as an example to anyone in the nail industry that anything is possible. You can live your dream with this career. 

YN: What does your schedule look like as a mom-of-three, nail artist, and business owner?

At this moment, multitasking is the name of the game. I usually wake up at 6:00am to prepare and feed the baby. The morning routines include diaper change, pumping, feeding, and hanging out with him until 9:30am. I also try to respond to email and hop on social media to post and coordinate content at this time while waiting for the older kids to wake up and get them ready for their sitter. 

I’m at the salon from 11:00am to 6:00 or 7:00pm working with appointments-only clients. Afterwards, my husband and I release our sitter, clean up, enjoy dinner, and spend family time with the kids. 

As soon as the older kids go to bed around 10:00pm, I’ll hop back on the computer working on the backend of the business, communicating with distributors, designing new products, packaging and shipping, and managing the books. Oftentimes I would work past midnight with the baby on my arm because he still wakes up here and there throughout the night.

YN: Would you say you are living your American Dream? 

The day I left Vietnam to come to America, my American Dream has always been having a family with a loving husband and beautiful children, and finding a career that supports us. 

Like many parents, I want the best for my children and to be their role model. I hope my children will grow up to become independent, patient, humble, and kind adults while I am working on leaving them a legacy that they can be proud of. I am definitely living my American Dream and will never take it for granted. 

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