It’s pretty hard not to be inspired by the East London based salon Wah Nails. From creator Sharmadene Reid’s start up vision to it’s successful product launch and collaborations with countless brands, everything about the Wah girl ethos resonates that ‘crazy sexy cool" 90s vibe. I caught up with WAH girl cherriesnow to find out a little bit more about the Wah world!
1. What’s the day in the life of a WAH girl like?
The great thing about this job is that no day is the same. I’ve recently been to Thailand with WAH, which was literally the best trip ever! I’ve also been to Dublin a couple of times and I’m all over London so I’m never in the same place. When I used to work in the salon, there would be back to back appointments and I wouldn’t stop until my shift ended! Working in the salon is great experience because it improves your nail art skills and teaches you to work fast.
Now I just do events, shoots and VIPs. I check the call sheet for all the details. For events, the kit gets pre-packed in the salon ready for pick up. I prepare my own kit for shoots and VIPs. Sometimes I prepare nails before a shoot and other times I’ll paint nails on set. I love meeting and working with different people.
Above : Behind the scenes Ashley Williams SS15 Show manicure by Cherrie
Above : True Romance nails by Cherrie
2. You’ve had some amazing collaborations so far - are their any designers or artists you’d like to collab with in 2015?
I’m sure there are many more designers and artists that Sharmadean would like to collaborate with, and probably will eventually! I think it would be really cool if WAH joined forces with a major beauty brand like MAC.
Above : Wah Nails Topshop
Above : Wah Nails for Models Own
Above : Wah Nails for Lazy Oaf
3. Makeup wise - what are your top beauty products? What could you not be without?
This is quite hard for me because I’m a total beauty junkie but I’ve whittled it down…
1. Lancôme Hypnôse Mascara £22.50 – I prefer brown because it gives a softer look.
2. bareMinerals Original SPF 15 Foundation Powder £25 (in Golden Medium) – My skin tone is yellow based because I’m half Thai. This colour melts into my complexion so that it looks like I’ve got great skin and I’m not wearing any make up.
3. L’Occitane Citrus Verbena Summer Fragrance 150ml, £42 – I wear this all year round and I carry it everywhere – I decant it into a travel atomiser. I don’t like normal perfumes I prefer natural, uplifting scents. I’m obsessed with all things citrus and fresh mint.
4. MAC Cremesheen Lipstick in Coral Bliss £15.50 – I wear this everyday to perk up my lips, over my lip balm…
5. Lancôme Nutrix Nourishing and Repairing Treatment 125ml £52 – This sounds a bit extravagant but I used to work for Lancôme and while I was there I discovered that this rich cream makes the most amazing lip balm. I used to sell loads! The tube lasts ages. I squeeze some into a little pot and take it everywhere I go. In fact I have a few pots in various bags… If I forget it, I have a really bad day!
6. Aveda Control Paste £20 – I think this is for short hair, although my hair is long but it’s great for smoothing wispy bits and baby hair. It’s also matte so there’s no greasiness and it has that signature Aveda scent that I love
4. Personally what is your favorite nude nail polish?
I’m Real in the WAH London range is the perfect nude that suits every skin tone - The name was inspired by the Queen of nude, JLO.
5. What has been your favourite nail design so far?
My favourite nails are during spring/summer because I love an exotic, floral print, tropical or Asian. A good colour combination really makes a design, such as contrasting neon and nude. I also like the fresh, simple, sport luxe look.
Above : Tropical nails by Cherrie
6. Like many London born brands - you seem to have struck the right balance of staying on trend but also trend setting - how do you keep your teams and self inspired and motivated?
Sharmadean emails us a brief of ideas, plans and a colour palette to focus on for each month. Pinterest is great for creating ‘nail inspo’ mood boards. There’s never enough time to try out all the ideas I have as I’m inspired by everything all the time. The possibilities in nail art are never ending.
7. As a makeup artist time and time again clients ask for the flick liquid liner look - it’s classic, never goes out of fashion and suits many styles - what is the equivalent in your nail world? The look that is constantly requested and chameleon like in its ability?
The French Manicure will always be a classic, although it’s constantly being updated; the Double French, the Asymmetric French, the Neon French… You can’t go wrong with a Glitter Fade either!
Above : French Manicures by Cherrie
8. Nail drills - yay or nay?
Absolutely NAY! I’m all about healthy nail care.
9. Do you have any tips for creating the very popular “negative space” nail which is going to be very big in SS15?
I’m really pleased that the negative space look is finally catching on. Initially it was seen as ‘a bit weird’, like when Harem trousers first came into fashion. Now it’s really chic but edgy at the same time. I use a striper brush or the WAH nail art pens, which have a striper inside. I think it looks really cool in black, white, gold or silver.
Above : Negative Space nails by Cherrie
10. I recently purchased the WAH Nail Art book and have to say it is absolutely full of inspiration! Would Wah ever think about doing a WAH Magazine? There’s a serious lack of nail art magazines with really on trend East London styleee nail art!
Well WAH actually started out as a fanzine back in 2006… Hmm watch this space!!!
To get your hands on some Wah products look no further than your local Boots Store or online at http://www.boots.com/en/WAH-London/ They stock everything from Wah nail art pens, manicure tools and fancy new press on nails too :
For constant nail art inspiration and to keep up to date with the Wah team + Cherrie Snow be sure to follow them @ wahnails & @ cherries now
As it’s International Women’s Day this Saturday 8th March, we thought we’d give a bit of a WAH history lesson to celebrate. Gather round, class is in session…
As most of you are probably aware, WAH started life in 2005 as a small London zine for girls into street wear and hip hop, dreamed up and put together by Sharmadean Reid. You can still check out her original blog, WAHappenings which goes all the way back to 2006 (ancient in Internet years). WAH sounds like a pretty cool word, but what does it actually mean?
“We Ain’t booty shaking video girls but We Ain’t ashamed of our bodies. We Ain’t gonna stand back and go unnoticed. We Ain't trying to be something we’re not. We Ain’t gonna moan about the lack of women in hip hop. We ain’t obsessed with our appearance. We Ain’t gonna follow the rules. We ain’t stupid. We Ain’t Hoes.”
This may’ve been written almost ten years ago, but the attitude is still as
fresh as it was in 2005 when Sharmadean wrote her first editor’s letter…
“We can do anything we want, and do it equally, if not better than the boys. This magazine started as a seed in my head a long time ago and if I can water that seed, so can you. Stick to your guns and do what you believe in. We’re all about women in hip hop. What are you all about?”
From this, to a salon, to a Topshop concession, to events around the world, to two published books, WAH stands as pretty strong proof that anything is possible if you really put your mind to it.
The International Women’s Day website writes, “think globally and act locally! Make everyday IWD. Do your bit to ensure that the future for girls is bright, equal, safe and rewarding.” So ask yourself - what do you care about? What do you want to change? Cos in ten years time, it might be you writing this.
What are you doing on Saturday? Coming to this, DUH! WAH bo$$ Sharmadean Reid will be joined by Amber Atherton of jewellery brand My Flash Trash, as well as lawyer, an accountant and PR who will advise on the business side of being a creative entrepreneur. Grab some friends, think of some great questions and we’ll see you there! RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org