Manhattan-native Kimberlee Cano, who grew up in Washington Heights, has revealed a nail art series celebrating Valentine’s Day and all the cheery colors and motifs associated with it. Dubbed “14 Days of Love,” Cano created a new nail designs for each of the 14 days leading up to the romantic holiday.
We spoke to Cano about what inspired the series, recent successes, what nail art trends she sees emerging up for 2014 and her dream client.
Check out our exchange below.
Snobette: When did you decide to become a nail artist?
Kimberlee Cano: “Like many of my peers, I embarked on the journey of becoming a nail artist during the pandemic, prompted by the closure of salons. Initially, it was just a way for me to handle my own nail care when professional services were unavailable. However, it quickly evolved into a passion that I genuinely love and have discovered I’m quite good at! The unexpected pivot led me to something bigger and more fulfilling than I initially anticipated.”
Snobette: What work did you do before becoming a nail artist?
Kimberlee Cano: “I’ve always been into a few different creative mediums, but nothing really stuck. I was always trying different things. I was working in the dental field actually up until the pandemic.”
Snobette: What is the inspiration for the “14 Days of Love” series?
Kimberlee Cano:“The inspiration is simply the essence of Valentine’s Day and its entire aesthetic. I’m captivated by the abundance of pink, hearts and the overall cute and loving vibe that surrounds the occasion, and I’m all for it! Embracing this theme aligns with my year-round style, so I decided to use this series as an opportunity to let my creativity run wild and go all out with the elements that truly resonate with me.”
Snobette: When did you start the series?
Kimberlee Cano: “I started the series February 2021. We were almost one full year into the pandemic by then and I was almost done with beauty school.”
Snobette: What do you think will be the big nail art trend for 2024?
Kimberlee Cano: “l think 3-D nail art is going to continue to be popular and will even get more intricate. There are a lot of new products on the market that are making it easy for people to really express themselves in more ways than they could with a brush. I also think duck nails are going to win people over.
Snobette: What’s been the best moment of your career thus far?
Kimberlee Cano: “Seeing Deja Foxx in Vogue magazine wearing the nails I designed for her was great. Also when actress Kara Young walked the red carpet at the Tony Award while wearing my nail design!”
Snobette: Do you have a dream nail client?
Kimberlee Cano: “I definitely would like to get more into the celebrity nail technician world, but to be honest a dream client of mine is just someone who has a great attitude, appreciates my work enough to let me freestyle, is understanding, flexible, takes care of her nails once she leaves me, and tips well! Every client I have is special in their own way, and I really love them all so much. It was once just a dream to have a full client list and I do now, so I can’t ask for more for real!”
Follow Kimberlee’s “14 Days of Love”nails series on Instagram at @kimtheproduct.