Meet the Nail Artist: Bana Jarjour of @banicured_
The artist behind “Golden Hour” and “Sparks Joy”
If your Instagram Explore page is filled with pictures of the latest trendy manicure designs and innovative gel nails, there’s a good chance you’ve seen the work of LA-based manicurist — and one of the creatives behind ManiMe’s recently launched Glow Up collection — Bana Jarjour.
Known on social media as banicured, Jarjour has worked with countless celebrity clients, from Kourtney Kardashian to Constance Wu, and has garnered over 435k followers on Instagram alone as she’s grown in her craft over the years. Her success is impressive all on its own, but even more so knowing that her journey into the nail space all started from a common pesky childhood habit. “I used to bite my nails as a kid, so when I was 12, my mom took me to buy nail art supplies,” Jarjour told ManiMe of her introduction to the world of nail art. “She thought that if I made my nails pretty, it would stop me from biting them, and it worked!”
From cartoon designs and sleek tortoiseshell, to trendy stick-on nail designs you’d never guess weren’t real, Jarjour has endless inspiration and technique to share with not only her clients, but the world — aspiring nail artists included. Read on below for our interview with Jarjour, as she opens up about her journey to where she is today, inspiration, and tips for your best at-home manicures.
When did you realize you wanted to be a nail artist, and how did you make it happen?
BJ: Before I created the Banicured page, my nail art was just a hobby and I had been pursuing a career in PR. After about two years or so, my page had gained thousands of followers, and brands began reaching out asking me to do nails at their events. Once I realized I could make a career out of my nail art, I enrolled in manicuring school to get licensed. After small gigs here and there, bigger brands started requesting me for photo shoots, and I was able to build my client list through the relationships I created over time.
How did you develop your nail art style?
BJ: I tried several different styles and stuck to what felt natural. That being said, I still like using all kinds of techniques and playing around with different styles. It keeps things interesting and allows my creativity to keep working
Where do you find inspiration for your work?
BJ: Anywhere I can! I’m typically inspired by clothing patterns, nature, and artwork
What's your best tip for an at-home manicure?
BJ: Paint thin coats and let them dry between applications.
What advice would you give to an aspiring nail artist?
BJ: Be patient with yourself! You won’t have everything figured out right away. Allow yourself time to learn new techniques and perfect them
What are your favorite colors or textures for nail art?
BJ: I love using shading to create dimension in nail art. Adding darker polishes to create shadows, or some white to create glare, can make the art really pop off the nail
What does a typical day in the life of Bana Jarjour look like?
BJ: My days can be so different! If it’s a shoot day, I’m usually up by 6am depending on the call time. I’ll be on set for about 8-10 hours, come home, make some dinner and watch TV (chances are it’s The Office, if there’s no football or basketball game that day). If it’s a day I work from home, I’ll usually answer emails, run errands, and work on nail designs for my Instagram page.
What's one hard truth about the industry that doesn't get talked about enough?
BJ: Manicuring is not taken as seriously as other beauty industries like hair or makeup. Oftentimes we don’t get credited for our work and we are typically paid less on sets and photo shoots.
What's one look or design that you're most proud of?
BJ: Any cartoon design, since those typically take several hours. And water marbling is special to me because it took me months to learn.
Bold or subtle? Bold
Bright or neutral? Bright
Matte or glossy? Glossy
What's something in your bag right now? Airpods
What's your coffee order? Black iced coffee or iced oat milk latte
What's your sign? Capricorn
Heels or sneakers? Sneakers