Manicurist to the stars Tom Bachik on Jennifer Lopez's cooking, summer trends and his dream client

by Ally Dean

He’s charismatic, talented and laid-back – so it’s easy to see why stars like Jennifer Lopez rely on manicurist Tom Bachik. “I’ll go to Jenn’s house to do her nails while we watch cartoons with the kids,” says the Global Nail Designer for L’Oréal Paris. “Jenn will cook these amazing pork chops and chocolate chip cookies while we work. It’s surreal!"

Tom counts Julianne Moore and Selena Gomez among his clients. Photo: © Getty Images

In Toronto to launch the new L’Oréal Paris nail collection, Tom spills his secret to a longlasting, high-shine manicure. “The new polishes contain four essential oils, which create really vibrant colours. Oils also work to nourish nails – when your nail flexes, the polish flexes – so your manicure also lasts way longer.” Here, Tom dishes to Hello! on the top trends, the celebrity who had him star-struck and his dream client.

What nail trends are you seeing this season?
Summer shades are really about classic, primary school shades like red, blue or green. These same shades transition into fall, but done in a rich, deeper tone. Darker doesn’t mean black; it’s more about really pigmented shades that have a bright depth. And sparkle is always a trend. It just makes you happy.

What about nail art?
Nails are an exclamation point at the end of the sentence but they follow fashion trends. With nail art, the minimal influence of the ’90s is really being felt. We are seeing a single dot, single line or coloured negative space. It’s about intentional, bold colour but used in a really minimal way.

Is there a Tom Bachik signature look?
I think I’m known more for my clients than a style, but I definitely have a preferred nail shape. I’m not a fan of the really spiky, stiletto nail or long square nails. I like a soft, almond-style, twenties-inspired nail. It’s more feminine and works with any polish or nail-art design.

Jennifer Lopez is a constant collaborator. Photo: © Getty Images

Do you have a favourite look you’ve created?
I recently did Jennifer’s nails in her video “I Luh Ya Papi.” The direction was “vintage Versace.” It took me days – I probably threw out a dozen sets trying to find the balance between street and glamorous – but I loved how they turned out.

Is there a celebrity you’ve worked with who made you star-struck?
Eva Longoria called me to see if I could do her friend’s nails. It turned out to be Victoria Beckham! She was great, but I was more nervous about David being there because my brother and I are huge soccer fans.

Are there any stars still on your bucket list?
Rihanna and I have tried but our schedules never work out. I would love to give her something architectural – elongated, tapered maybe, with an angled tip – something in the square family, but with an attitude.

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