Tom Bachik is probably the last guy you’d think would land a gig with Chanel as their first-ever celebrity manicurist. Let’s just address the obvious stereotypes first and say: he’s straight, married, and has three kids. He’s also very resourceful, turning his skill as a graphic artist into a pretty lucrative profession.
After getting sick of the whole starving artist thing (he used to airbrush graphics onto motorcycles and helmets), and at the urging of his pregnant wife, he enrolled in cosmetology school after hearing that manicurists could make six figures a year. He won a nail art competition early in his career, and started attracting a celebrity clientele. That turned into editorial gigs with magazines and stints on designer runways. Then Chanel came knocking. Here’s what Tom had to tell us about his life as Chanel’s celeb manicurist, the trends he’s seeing, and what celebs want:
Fashionista: You’re the first contracted manicurist for Chanel. What are your responsibilities in this role?
Tom Bachik: I love being part of such an iconic brand–one that creates the color trends, not just trendy colors. My clients love that I have the hottest shades on the market. My responsibilities include getting all the amazing colors out on my clients and Hollywood A-listers for red carpet events, movie premieres, magazine covers, fashion editorials, music videos etc. Also describing the best ways to use these shades in magazine articles and personal appearances. I have to say it’s a dream come true.
We had a sneak peek at the new fall colors. How are these new shades inspiring you and how are you using them on the hands and feet?
These new colors are a modern take on metallics. Shimmery iridescence and metallic shimmer with a hint of sparkle made more wearable with olive undertones gives us street style chic and femininity with an edge. With their neutral tones, the metallic colors [are] the perfect complement to copper, khaki, and deep, rich makeup for fall. Keeping nails slightly shorter and a softer more round shape will allow anyone to pull this look off.
Which spring/summer colors have been most popular? Celeb favorites?
Chanel Limited Edition Nail Colour in Beige Petal, a soft rose beige, has been an all-time favorite on photo shoots and with celebs a like. But if you want fresh flower and summer garden looks then Chanel Limited Edition Nail Colour in Mimosa, a bright lemon yellow, will keep a smile on your nails. And I’m not going to lie: Chanel Limited Edition Holiday 2010 shade Pulsion, a bright fuchsia, and the Chanel Limited Edition Cruise Collection’s Riva, a soft baby blue, continue to be my faves!
Can you share new color/shape/manicure trends that you see emerging now?
Normally as we move to into fall and winter, nails tend to get a bit longer, but this year I’m seeing nails staying on the shorter side. [Also] I see an active, soft, round shape which is perfect to keep rich deep hues and metallics from becoming too heavy and goth.
Any tips for how to get current season Chanel polishes when they seem to have have sold out everywhere? Please tell us the secrets!
Readers should check chanel.com and local Beauté counters, who often have stock of sold-out shades.
Any tips for women doing their own nails at home?
*Cleanse nails with acetone polish remover or alcohol before polishing to remove oils and contaminants that block adhesion.
*Use a separate base and top coat for best results and longer wear.
*Clean up polish from around cuticle area with an old eye or lip liner brush dipped in acetone polish remover between coats for a perfect finish and to speed up dry time.