marina iwakoshi
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Elevating Nail Art with Vanity Projects by Marina Iwakoshi: The Tortoise Shell Nails Trend

Nail art has evolved far beyond mere manicures in the contemporary world, with artists like Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B showcasing show-stopping nails that have become headline-worthy. In 2023, nails have transformed into Instagram-breaking high art, and at the forefront of this creative revolution stands Marina Iwakoshi, a New York City-based nail artist renowned for her bold and bedazzled nail designs.

One of the most notable trends that Marina has embraced is the captivating Tortoise Shell pattern nails, which have taken the nail art world by storm for the fall of 2023. This article delves into the fascinating journey of Marina Iwakoshi, her innovative approach to nail art, and the rise of the Tortoise Shell nails trend.

marina iwakoshi

Photo Credit: marina iwakoshi

Tortoise Shell Pattern Nails: A Fall 2023 Trend

Tortoise Shell pattern nails have emerged as a significant trend for fall 2023, with Marina Iwakoshi as a leading advocate of this mesmerizing style. The trend draws its inspiration from the latte nail trend, emphasizing darker and warmer colors to complement the autumn season.

Marina notes, “People have begun embracing brown nails, a trend that has its roots in the latte nail trend and the general preference for darker hues during the fall season.” This shift in color palette owes its origins to trendsetters like Hailey Bieber, who started with grey stone nails, ventured into chocolate hues, and eventually embraced darker greys.

For the fall of 2023, a spectrum of autumnal colors, including brown, maroon, burgundy, dark green, and ochre, are in vogue. However, it’s the Tortoise Shell nails that have garnered the most attention. Marina’s skillful execution of this trend has made it one of the defining nail styles for the season.

The Resilience of “Glazed Donut Nails”

While Tortoise Shell nails are reigning supreme, the allure of “glazed donut nails” remains undiminished. Hailey Bieber, known for her trendsetting style, trail-blazed this trend in 2022. The glazed donut nails achieve a lustrous and ethereal appearance by starting with a nude base color and layering it with pearlescent or shimmery gel polish. It’s a manicure that exudes elegance and charm, akin to its namesake.

Marina Iwakoshi, always quick to embrace inspiration, believes that it all begins with that initial spark of creativity. She shares, “It all starts with a spark of inspiration, and we create something from there.” This unwavering commitment to innovation is at the core of her nail artistry.

marina iwakoshi

Photo Credit: marina iwakoshi

Marina Iwakoshi: A Creative Powerhouse

Marina Iwakoshi, the driving force behind Vanity Projects, has transcended the realm of nail artistry, emerging as a prominent figure in the world of high art. Born in Takayama, Japan, in 1986, Marina brought with her a deep passion for fashion, the arts, and culture when she moved to the United States in 2009 to study music industry studies in upstate New York.

During her college years, Marina began experimenting with nail art as a creative outlet and a means to bond with friends. Her innate artistic talent became increasingly apparent, and her friends soon transformed into loyal clients. This marked the inception of her journey into the world of nail design.

Following her graduation in 2011, Marina embarked on a more formal path, enrolling in a nail specialist program in New York City. In 2012, she proudly obtained her nail license, solidifying her position as a game-changer in the realm of nail art.

Over the past decade, Marina has transitioned from being a local talent to a global sensation. Her creative approach to nail art has attracted a diverse clientele, ranging from musicians to celebrities and everyday New Yorkers who seek her unique and personalized designs.

Marina’s career trajectory reached new heights when she joined Vanity Projects, a prestigious nail salon located in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Vanity Projects is home to some of New York’s most renowned nail artists, and Marina’s presence there further solidified her status as an industry leader.

Her artistic prowess extends beyond the salon’s confines, with her editorial portfolio gracing the pages of prestigious publications like D’Scene, Schon magazine, L’Officiel Ukraine, and Elle Mexico, among others. Marina’s work has become synonymous with setting trends and pushing the boundaries of nail art.

marina iwakoshi

Photo Credit: marina iwakoshi

A Canvas at Your Fingertips

At Vanity Projects, nails transcend being mere canvases; they become avenues for self-expression and storytelling. Marina’s signature style involves hand-painting individual animal portraits onto her clients’ fingernails. Each piece is a masterpiece, meticulously crafted with an attention to detail that rivals traditional art forms.

Marina states, “People love getting animal nails done in 2023, where I hand-paint individual animal portraits on their fingernails. My clients adore dog and cat nails the most, often combining poodles and feline portraits. Tiger and leopard nails are also immensely popular. It’s all about celebrating the animals they love.”

“Poodle nails,” she continues, “are a massive hit. People adore having portraits of their pets adorning their nails. It’s a unique way to showcase their deep affection for their furry companions.”

What sets Marina’s work apart is her unwavering commitment to personalization. Clients flock to her because they know that she can bring their unique visions to life. As she succinctly puts it, “There are not many salons that can replicate what we do here at Vanity Projects in New York City. My clients all have specific ideas, and they genuinely want to challenge us.”

Celebrity Clients and Red Carpet Glamour

Marina Iwakoshi’s talent has not gone unnoticed by the world’s most renowned celebrities. Her clientele includes A-listers who seek her expertise for their red carpet moments. Notable celebrities such as Game of Thrones actor Sophie Turner, Irish actress Ruth Negga, and Hollywood star Laura Harrier have entrusted Marina to create stunning nail art for the world-renowned MET Gala.

In addition to these high-profile events, Marina has also had the honor of working with Whoopi Goldberg, Keke Palmer, and Serena Williams for the US Open. Her ability to seamlessly blend creativity and style has made her the go-to nail artist for celebrities on the biggest stages.

Marina Iwakoshi’s journey from a small-town artist to a global sensation serves as an inspirational testament to the power of creativity and self-expression. With each stroke of her brush, Marina transforms nails into captivating works of art, weaving stories and capturing the essence of her clients’ desires. In a world where nail art has evolved into a form of high artistry, Marina Iwakoshi’s innovative and personalized approach is poised to leave an indelible mark on the world of beauty for years to come. It’s a testament to the limitless possibilities of pursuing one’s passions and creating beauty at your fingertips.

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