Rose paints her way to Lowell Academy Hairstyling Institute


Grace Hsu

Mia Rose poses with her Lowell Academy Hairstyling Institute folder in the WA Flag Lobby.

Grace Hsu, Co-Features Editor

Senior Mia Rose sits on her bedroom floor with a computer propped open and nail polish in hand. Guiding the brush in precise motions, she smiles and creates an intricate design. When all ten nails are colorful and shiny, she takes a bottle of nail polish remover and removes the polish. Then she repeats the process for hours and hours on end.

For Rose, it was after she learned to do beautiful manicures through YouTube that she turned this newfound hobby into a career path.

Since February, Rose has attended Lowell Academy Hairstyling Institute to major in hair, skin, and nails to pursue her dream of becoming a nail technician at her own salon. Through dual enrollment, she will graduate in December and jump into the new year with her new skills.

Lowell Academy Hairstyling Institute is a cosmetology school that prepares students for the cosmetic industry, whether it be in a salon or spa.

According to Rose, she found the school after doing some research on cosmetology schools nearby. She chose it for its close proximity to her house and good reputation. After a tour and an interview, Rose knew it was the place for her and committed to the college in December of 2022.

At the academy, she learns nail care beauty techniques and the proper uses of professional nail care products. However, the school does more than teach how to give a manicure, as it goes into the anatomy, physiology, and pathology of nails and skin. Students also have the opportunity to practice their skills with clients. Rose admires the learning style of the school, where students get informational packets to learn techniques on their own and instructors are there to assist.

“[The school] is pretty self-paced. So whatever you need to work on, you work on that day, and you get a new packet every time you complete a certain amount of hours,” Rose said. “Every Friday you have a test that you can study for whenever you want throughout the day, so it’s very relaxed. It’s not crazy hard, but it’s a lot of fun.”

Rose has already partially started her own business from her house’s sunroom. She has had some sporadic clients ever since places started to reopen after the pandemic. Her Instagram account ( dedicated to her nail designs has over four hundred followers. Throughout her posts over the years, her style shifts are clear.

“I used to be really into super long nails and crazy colors and I still enjoy those colors and stuff. [Now,] I’m not so much of a long nail person,” Rose said. “I’ve been trying to embrace my natural nails more recently, just because it’s more convenient with everyday life.”

While the style of her nails has changed, Rose sticks to acrylic nails and acrylic extensions. She has also done gel nails and Gel X nails, but she is still practicing these two newer styles. Her specialty is nail art, which she has learned through various social media platforms.

“I do the art part of nails. I’m pretty good at mimicking designs,” Rose said. “If you show me something from Pinterest or Instagram, I could do the same design on you pretty easily. But I think I’m best at the shape of acrylics.”

Ever since she started practicing acrylics in 2020, Rose has improved in many ways. Not only has she refined her nail shapes and technique, but especially improved her nail art with practice, since many clients gravitate towards the same designs and trends.

Rose notes that her success has come from a lot of practice and the people that helped her on her journey to becoming a better nail artist. She acknowledges that her first client, Jordan Krauss, a WA graduate from the class of ’23, was a big help because Krauss stuck with her since she started, despite the fact that Rose was inexperienced and her nails took five hours to complete.

“My mom was a great help as well. She provided me with the sunroom, which was huge. My sisters were a huge help because they let me practice on them all the time,” Rose said. “They were there when my nails were horrible and fell off. Now I try to do their nails whenever they ask as a thank you.”

Rose has come a long way since her first nail design during quarantine. As she continues her business and develops new skills and techniques, Krauss is sure that Rose will succeed.

“[Rose] is amazing at nails and better than any salon I have ever been to,” Krauss said. “I think she will continue to be successful because of her go-getter attitude and I am so proud of her for following her passions and going to cosmetology school.”

Mia Rose’s nail designs can be viewed on her Instagram