Paul Mitchell the School Reno opens new nail technician program due to industry growth

Economic growth in northern Nevada is positively affecting many industry sectors in the region — including the beauty industry.

The Paul Mitchell the School Reno is now offering a new nail tech program due to growth in demand for the service.

“It has primarily been a hair school for the longest time,” Lori Ann Kruse, marketing lead for Paul Mitchell the School Reno, said.

The increase in demand for nail technicians is causing the Reno school to expand their curriculum. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nationwide employment for manicurists and pedicurists is expected to grow by 10 percent from 2014 to 2024.

“It is supply and demand,” Doug Christensen, the owner of Paul Mitchell the School Reno, said.

Christensen said that the service industries are often overlooked when talking about the impact to the economy. He explained that when the economy is thriving, more people spend money on services like skin and nail care. During these times it pays to specialize within the industry. However, when the economy is in a recession, people are more frugal with their money and it is better to be more generalized in the industry in positions such as hair stylist.

“This industry is very cyclical,” Christensen said.

He explained that this is the second time in his career seeing this trend.

Christensen is a graduate of the Paul Mitchell The School Provo as well as Paul Mitchell Advanced Education. Christensen bought the Reno school franchise when he was just 27 years old. He was also the owner of Ethan Douglas Paul Mitchell Salon, located in Midtown. He eventually closed it to focus fully on the school.

“People in this industry are generous, kind, energetic and fun,” he said.

“You can make a decent living.”

Christensen lives in Reno with his wife and five children.

“We love Reno,” Christensen said. “We couldn’t imagine living anywhere else.”

Since the Paul Mitchell the School Reno opened in 2008, the school has continued to grow and currently serves approximately 150 students. Students can enroll at any time and classes for the program start each month.

“To enroll you need a high school diploma or high school equivalency and a great attitude,” Christensen said.

Students are required to complete 600 hours for the new nail tech program and 1,600 hours for their cosmetology program.

“Some finish a little quicker than others,” Christensen said.

The school has an 80 percent placement rate for their graduates.

“We have strong relationships with the hair salons in the area,” he said. “And because we are a national brand we have connections nationally.”

They currently have about 20 instructors, or learning leaders as they call them. The school recently brought on one additional learning leader to help with the new nail tech program. According to Christensen, they plan to hire more as they grow.

“We have grown organically and we will continue to grow organically,” he said.

The Paul Mitchell School is also a full functioning salon. The public can call or just walk in to make an appointment. Christensen explained that the appointments typically take longer since it is still a learning environment.

The school is introducing the nail tech program to the community with a grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony hosted by The Chamber of Reno, Sparks, and Northern Nevada. The public is invited to attend the ceremony that will be held from 11 a.m. to noon, Thursday, Feb. 9 at the school located at 1600 Holcomb Ave.

For more information about the Paul Mitchell the School Reno, go to


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