The New York Destination Where Nail Care Meets Self
Aug 08, 2023
Sundays NoMad location
Truth be told, nail salons are usually never destinations that visitors to any city go out of their way to seek.
In fact, most New Yorkers I know— me included—simply view them as functional places where we go for our weekly manicures and monthly pedicures. We pick our salons based on convenience and proximity to where we live or work. Given a choice, our regular spot is the one where we get the best service or find the technician we love most.
Sundays, a trio of New York City salons (the Upper East Side, Nomad and Hudson Yards) is the exception to this norm. It more than transcends the typical cookie cutter visit to be a wellness brand that encourages you to take care of yourself and creates a setting where you can do just that.
Yes, I’m a fan and will tell you from my experience that sundays is a place that any tourist or city dweller needs to make a trip to now. Can I be really honest and tell you how much it’s transformed my life? My appointments are my time to decompress and leave the daily stresses of my life behind- I come out ready to face whatever challenges I may face. Yes, all from a visit to a nail salon.
I spoke with the brand’s founder, Amy Ling Lin, who is the person behind this innovative way of approaching nail care. She’s here to tell you more about the Sundays story.
Sundays founder Amy Ling Lin
Our conversation follows:
Your philosophy is that nail care equals self care. What does that mean?
We see our hands more than we see our faces, making our hands a constant reminder of self-care. People may forget how important their hands are, how capable they can be. The way you can say thank you to your hands is by taking care of your hands.
Sometimes your hands can show how busy your life is, whether it is a nail chip or dry skin, you can sometimes distinguish what people may do as an occupation. In a way, your hands can show how much you care for your well-being. So many people invest money and time to care for their appearance, especially in skincare, handbags, and apparel, but hands are so often overlooked.
Even if it’s just taking the time to paint your nails or massage your hand with your favorite lotion, you can practice self-care in these moments of silence while reflecting and appreciating the smaller things in life.
Can you describe the Sundays experience?
The moment you walk in, you’re welcomed into a space that feels like home- our inspiration comes from the Danish hygge concept, a place of coziness and serenity where one can reconnect with themselves individually or among the company of people they are closest to.
We curate our nail polishes to be timeless colors to eliminate the overwhelming options, giving you more time to focus on relaxing. We serve tea while getting your manicure done and offer guided meditation as a way to provide a sense of feeling and looking good while getting a manicure done.
The sundays experience is about caring for your nails to make them healthier but also a mind & body experience. After your service, you write yourself a love letter to remind you about the sense of ease. You will leave with our positive affirmation card to help you continue your day with a little bit of self-care.
What are the details in the salon that equal self-care?
Our space relaxes the nervous system by activating all your senses through tones and colors. You first hear the calming ambiance via soothing music, see the serene interior and colors that provide a sense of calmness, and are greeted with tea to give a taste of peace.
Our meditative manicures use binaural beats (most commonly known as sound wave therapy) that help create the same brain wave pattern one would experience during meditation, guiding you with breathwork and moments of self-reflection while your hands are being cared for. Meanwhile, the soft aroma of our organic soy candles helps to promote an even more tranquil environment.
Why is self-care important?
Self-care goes beyond the concept of pampering yourself- it helps us understand ourselves and our needs better. When you take time to care and love yourself, you feel good about yourself. A lot of clients feel renewed after service and express how it encourages them to do more for themselves. In the simplest terms, you build confidence to know “You have this, you can do this, let’s do this.” You feel empowered to do more things which is all connected to self-worth. This is the epitome of self-care.
I believe we have to self-care in order to care for others. Good self-care helps our hard work become more sustainable, avoiding burn-outs, and easing stress, helping refresh our minds along the way.
How did you choose this line of work? What inspired you?
I originally got into the nail industry to help immigrants as I am very passionate about helping this cause. A majority of salon employees are usually immigrants and as I continued working in the nail industry, I discovered besides helping them, I can help myself and others through the practice of self-care and love by helping achieve a moment of relaxation in the middle of a busy city.
One unique thing about a manicure is it is a weekly ritual, and it's affordable, a unique combination to have in wellness. I grew up as a very anxious kid and I’m so proud about how far I have come in life. I feel more calm now and I am excited to continue this journey with clients with a little practice of self-care.
What are some other ways besides getting a manicure that we can incorporate self-care in our lives?
Taking the time to massage tired feet and hands with your favorite lotion and oil is a simple thing you can do- not only are you hydrating your body, you’re taking the time to care for yourself, paying attention to the parts of your body that are most used and more often overlooked.
Another great way of incorporating self-care into our lives is walking. I like taking walks after a meeting or call as it is a great way to practice self-care. Walking allows you to connect yourself to the present moment. Pay attention to the elements outside, people, buildings, and trees to help you break the stress down.
Other ways include weaving mindfulness into your daily life through conscious breathing (taking slower, longer inhales and exhales), savoring the moment and life’s blessings like paying attention to the way the sun or breeze feels or partaking in activities that boost endorphins like building authentic connections, practicing self-compassion and loving/accepting yourself and the flaws that may arise.Your philosophy is that nail care equals self care. What does that mean?Can you describe the Sundays experience?What are the details in the salon that equal self-care?Why is self-care important?How did you choose this line of work? What inspired you?What are some other ways besides getting a manicure that we can incorporate self-care in our lives?