KAREN Wesson is a successful nail specialist working with clients natural nails to make them shimmer, sparkle and shine.

She opened her own business six years ago and welcomes clients to her home-based salon in Chapelford for appointments and a catch up.

Here in our latest Meet The Salon Owner feature, Karen tells us how she’s always been interested in nails – even as a little girl - and how she enjoys keeping up with the ever-changing trends.

If you would like to appear in one of our Meet The Salon Owner, Meet The Makeup Artist or Meet The Beauty Therapist features email heidi.summerfield@newsquest.co.uk

Karen Wesson started her own business in 2017

Karen Wesson started her own business in 2017

What’s your full name?

Karen Wesson

What’s the name of the salon/business?

Perfect Polish by Karen

What’s the address?


Are you the owner/manager?


How many employees do you have?

Just me!

Karens creations

Karen's creations

When did you open the salon?

I opened in 2017.

Has it always been in the same location?

Yes, although I started off working out of my upstairs office and offering mobile appointments while I got a feel for which location was popular. However, the demand for mobile services was low due to my convenient location, so as the business really took off my husband converted part of the garage into a beautiful private nail studio in 2018. This meant that I could offer a larger choice of products that clients could see and a bespoke personalised one to one experience while in total control of all hygiene aspects.


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Are you local to the area? Did you grow up here?

I grew up in Culcheth and moved closer to Warrington town centre in 1999.

Tell me a bit about your salon/business. What do you do? What services do you provide?

I am a natural nail specialist and I help clients get the very best out of their natural nails including nail consultations and ongoing advice. I offer more than 160 gel polish colour choices, nail art and nail strengthening products without the commitment of acrylic or thick builder gel. I'm all about working with your nails - just making them better!

Why did you decide to open your own salon?

I have manicured my own nails since I was 11 and gel polish is an amazing product. I love the energy of being around other people so I decided to combine the two, especially as this works well around my family. It’s true when they say that if you do what you love, you never work a day in your life.

Karens salon is at home in Chapelford

Karen's salon is at home in Chapelford

What’s your hair and beauty background?

Absolutely none until I achieved my nail qualifications in 2017. I had a 20-year banking career and left the industry to have my children. Between banking and nails, I was a jewellery merchandiser creating retail displays and this taught me a lot about the theory of why certain designs and colours work well together. I’ve also had numerous creative hobbies over the years. I am organised, creative and I love colour and sparkle, so perfect for a nail business.

Why this type of business?

I’ve always been interested in all aspects of beauty and started looking after my nails when I was 11. I had stopped biting my nails and I was buying every Avon polish with my pocket money for my extremely long natural nails. My parents were worried that I was going silly with the polish fumes! The invention of hard-wearing, instantly dry gel polish totally changed the nail industry, replacing easily smudged regular polish lasting only 2 days with glossy gel polish lasting up to three weeks. I love the changing trends and how it offers the wearer confidence, a form of self-expression and even a jewellery alternative with all the nail art techniques and finishes on offer.

Were you open before/during/after the Covid-19 pandemic? How did this affect your business?

Yes, I was open before Covid and during the pandemic, when restrictions allowed and then after. It was a hard time to have a business that relies on face-to-face interaction. The big question was - would anyone come back? Especially as the fluffy towels were replaced with disposable mats, clients in masks and I was there in full PPE, mask, visor, gloves, apron, anti bac'ing everything in sight. It’s not exactly the relaxing pamper clients were used to. I had new clients and I didn’t know what they really looked like for months so it was nice when the masks finally came off. The most creative people in the industry had time to pass on their knowledge during the pandemic and it was a good time to learn new skills - a fantastic opportunity. Warrington Borough Council offered grants which enabled me to carry on and fortunately my clients were unphased with the strict Covid changes. I have always had high standards of hygiene and adhered to the industry rules. Integrity is everything and most of my customers were sprinting back to my door.


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What makes your business different to others in the same area/field? What sets your business apart from your competitors?

My son came up with the name Perfect Polish when he was nine, telling me it was an alliteration - he had to explain that it meant words starting with the same letter! While everyone knows that nothing in life is perfect, perfection is my intention for every set of nails. I create a safe quiet one to one experience where clients can be themselves in a confidential environment. When a cancer patient said she thought everyone leaves my salon with a smile on their face, it made my day. My nail creations have been seen on television – Lorraine and Rip Off Britain - on several occasions courtesy of a local financial journalist. I have dozens of five-star reviews on my Facebook page and earlier this year I was shortlisted for Warrington’s Best for Nails. I've always believed that maintaining high standards is the key to success.

Karen likes to keep up with evr-changing trends

Karen likes to keep up with evr-changing trends

Why do loyal clients return to your business?

My high standards of service are consistent from booking an appointment to leaving with beautiful nails. I love meeting and chatting to clients - existing and new – and I get to meet the most fascinating people. They must like me too as some clients spend several hours every month with me! The vibe is informative, relaxed and chatty. The beauty industry contributes massively to people’s sense of wellbeing and mental health and nails are something that you and others can see and admire.

What’s next? What do the next few months hold for you and your salon?

Christmas is always the busiest time of year. Christmas isn’t Christmas for some people without their nail pamper and sparkle. There are always new designs to keep up and the world of nails always has something new and exciting to offer. Who doesn't want an instant mood boost and a low commitment way to try out new colours and trends?