Meet Martina Ngo, the owner of Charme Natural Nails Studio in Tacoma, WA. Martina wants to help her clients feel beautiful and confident with their natural nails by offering organic nail services that promote healthy nails. Martina started Charme by working multiple different jobs at once, pouring all of her extra money into her passion.
Bonus: While you’re there, meet the shop dogs Charm, Chico, and Chai.
Get to know more about Martina and Charme Natural Nails Studio in this Business Q&A.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
What’s your favorite part about the community your business is in and why?
Our clients are the best. They have similar values as us: paying staff [a] living wage, sanitation standards for [the] beauty industry, health and environmentally conscious[ness]. Our new location that we’ve moved to is so us! The vibe of [Tacoma’s] Proctor neighborhood and the other small businesses nearby, we frequently shop at as well!
Why is it important to you and your business that people #SpendLikeItMatters?
There are a lot of untold ‘secrets’ in our industry. I mean, it’s been mentioned before here and there but often swept under the rug. At Charme Studio we pay our employees a living wage, which doesn’t often happen at your typical nail salon. We are highest in sanitation standards — we sterilize all tools in [a] medical autoclave like your dental offices do. We use brand new files and buffers. We are diabetic friendly and completely waterless! Eco friendly! We care about nail health and try to educate our clients how to care for them at home as well. We are very transparent with staff and clients all around. We genuinely care! This question is loaded for us, and we could go on and on. We actually have blog posts that talk about who we are, what we do and why we exist.
As a business owner, what’s the strangest or craziest idea you’ve ever tried?
We are completely waterless! No soaking prior to your mani pedi services! [It’s the] most sanitary method of getting mani pedi services. When starting Charme Studio, there wasn’t a salon in the whole country that was completely waterless. There were independent nail techs that may provide waterless services but not a whole salon model.