As you read previously, Smoke & Mirrors attended the Nail Tech Event of the Smokies earlier in July. Here’s the wrap-up!
The Nail Tech Event of the Smokies is held every summer in the Gatlinburg Convention Center. Gatlinburg, if you have never visited, is the play place of the south. It has every activity imaginable – from whitewater rafting and ziplining to shopping and spas, and all kinds of tourist attractions. Although I have lived in the southeast for most of my life this was my first time visiting, and I was blown away. If you come to this show there is no shortage of activities for you to choose from outside of show hours.
The convention center itself is small but well-kept and clean. It was hot outside but the temperature inside the venue was comfortable. There were friendly show coordinators stationed just inside the doors, ready to answer questions about the venue, show schedule or classes.
Billed as a three-day show, this is primarily a one-day show with an early check-in day before, and a workshop/classes day after. (Unfortunately no Continuing-education credits are given for any of the classes.) I arrived on Saturday for early check-in and ready to begin shopping, only to find that Saturday was vendor setup day. The only thing you can do at the show on Saturday is choose from a couple early workshops or check-in. So I checked-in and went back out into Gatlinburg for some sight-seeing fun.
During check-in we received a nice gift from Nail Art Elegance.com, whom I had never heard of before that day. They carry a great selection of “Nail Charms, Decals, Flatback Swarovski Elements and Rhinestones, Glitters” on their website, at great prices! And, Rock Bottom Soap Company provided a trial size of their Lavender Body Polish, which smelled great! Rock Bottom Soap sells hand-made goat milk soap in London, Kentucky.
On Sunday, the show floor was packed! Every major nail product company had a booth, and some re-sellers and consultants were there, too. They all had representatives available to discuss and sell product, and some were doing product demos on show guests.
I stopped by the Gelish booth to pick up some of the products from my wish list and was disappointed to find that they were not doing Polygel demos (they were too busy selling product to a line of customers). The booth attendant explained that they would later, as time allowed.
Here’s that I bought at the Gelish booth:
Check the Smoke & Mirrors YouTube channel later for an unboxing video for the PolyGel Trial Kit. It was my understanding that show vendors usually sell their product below MSRP, but the items I bought were pretty much full price. I paid MSRP for the PolyGel kit, and the Gelish was $13 per bottle. All of my items were wrapped in a nice reusable plastic bag with the Morgan Taylor logo on one side, and Gelish logo on the other.
I also stopped by the OPI booth and picked up some fun items:
Actually, I didn’t even buy the bottle of nail polish. The booth attendant just handed it to me. I bought the t-shirt to wear at the salon, and it has been a great conversation-starter so far!
On Monday I wasn’t scheduled for any classes, so we went home on Sunday night. All-in -all, it was a good but tiresome weekend. If you are looking for a NAILS ONLY show that is more intimate than the larger beauty shows, NTES is the one for you. The venue was just right for this show, and you can have a great time in the Gatlinburg area. Also, be sure to check the workshop schedule because I’m sure they have some useful classes that can help build your career.
I’m so glad I went, but I’m not sure when or if I’ll go back. I was looking to stock up on some supplies at below MSRP, and I didn’t really get to do that. I also would rather visit Gatlinburg when it not high season – too hot and too many people there in July! I actually felt bad for a couple of the vendor reps at the show because they were clearly exhausted from a week at another beauty show out west, and had flown straight in to work NTES. Too bad NTES couldn’t be held at least a couple weeks before or after the other show.
Have you ever attended the Nail Tech Event of the Smokies? Are you thinking of going next year? I tried to give a feel for the show in this post, with some things I wish someone had told me before I went. If you have any questions or comments about the show, please leave a comment!