I recently had the privilege of getting my nails done at a newly opened salon that Vogue magazine calls “the best gel manicure in New York City.” I’d like to note that I made my appointment before that writeup, but it’s still nice to know that Vogue & I have similar taste… and share the same respect and admiration for the talents of Asami Irigaki.
I first learned about Asami from my friend Jaclynn who has gone to her as a private client for years. Jaclynn’s nails are alwaysssssssss ON POINT. And when Asami was planning on opening Bisou Nail Atelier, Jaclynn could not have been more proud or excited. I attended the opening and was truly wowed by the salon itself, and also the nail art displayed. From designer fashion to surreal art, the inspirations and interpretations blew me away.
Asami’s canvas may be your nail bed but she is a true artist.
I went back to her salon two weeks after opening and walked out with nails that were a perfect representation of my brand. I could not wait to show EVERYone. It was really all I could talk about. I literally attended a launch event immediately after my appointment at the New Museum on Bowery and when the PR girls were checking me in, I actually gave my info and then said, “but can we now talk about my nails?”
They are a conversation starter and a people pleaser for sure. And I was asked for Asami’s contact info over and over again.
But rather than talk you through my experience, which I’ve gotten quite proficient in, I luckily had Denise with me to document it in photos so I can show versus tell.
Check it out….
THE FINAL SET
And speaking of the artist, I had a few questions for Asami of Bisou Nail Atelier..
How did you get started as a professional nail artist?
I got my start back in Japan when I was still in high school. I taught myself how to do nails and gel nail art by reading nail magazines. Nail art is a big part of Japanese culture and has been for many years!
Why did you open your own nail salon/atelier?
I believe that nail art is one of the tools women have to maintain one’s love of self and boost self confidence. I admire the women of NYC for their confidence and independence and felt this would be the perfect location for our first salon. I also wanted to provide my clients with non-damaging gel products from Japan to promote nail health
Your salon is very chic. How did you choose the decor/design?
Thanks! Often, nail salons can feel impersonal and worn down. I wanted to provide my clients with an upscale environment that they would look forward to going to and enjoy being in for the duration of their manicure which can sometimes be a lengthy process. Basically, I just envisioned where I would want to get my nails done and used that as my design inspo! :)
You mentioned the gel you use does not damage the nail. How does it work?
Many salons use gel that needs to filed or drilled off to completely remove it which ends up wearing down nails over time, making nails thin and fragile. The gel products we use are able to be soaked off and it is not necessary to buff or file down the nail in the removal process. I’ve noticed improvements in the health of some of my clients’ nails once they started coming to me for nail art and gel removal.
What are your most requested/popular nail art designs?
My clients have a wide range of requests but my personal preference and specialty is minimalist geometric designs featuring thin hand painted lines. I find that my clients browse through my personal instagram profile for ideas which could vary from NYFW-inspired nails to a simple geometric play on a french manicure.
What are your future goals?
Our mission is to create a new salon environment in New York City where both inner and outer beauty are celebrated in a relaxing, fashion-forward, environment, and eventually bring our concept to other cities so that everyone can enjoy, and love, Bisou!
Bisou Nail Atelier is located at 6 Spring Street in the heart of Nolita. The salon is currently open Monday through Thursday from 11am to 7pm (latest appointment) as well as Friday and Saturday from 10am to 6pm (latest appointment). The salon is appointment-only and you can schedule simply by phone or through the website.
A single-color gel manicure starts at $65 and prices go up based on the intricacy of the nail art chosen. Pricing is based on time. For example, a 2 hour nail art session will run $120 — pricing Asami feels is fair to both her clients and nail artists.
I highly recommend you go and get your nails did!
NOTE: This post is not sponsored. Service was complimentary for review. All thoughts are unbiased and my own. All photos are property of DIVAlicious. Photos taken at Bisou Nail Atelier by Denise Del Russo.
Lauren Cosenza is the creator and editor-in-chief of DIVAlicious®, the creator of BEAUTYfull™ a trusted beauty/fashion expert, an on-camera personality and spokesperson, a brand consultant and ambassador, a creative director, a published contributor and writer, a leading NYC-based professional makeup artist, a product junkie and an insatiable style seeker — with a former life at Cosmopolitan and Shape magazines.
Serving up style with a side of attitude, her site DIVAlicious gives women (and men) the confidence and permission to be fabulous. The site, with a goal to SPREAD BEAUTY, is filled with must-have products, pro tips and tricks, how-to DIY tutorials, makeovers, style inspiration and insider access. Topics range from beauty, fashion, culture, career, fitness, wellbeing, men’s and unisex offerings.