The Student News Site of Green Level High School

The Gator's Eye

The Student News Site of Green Level High School

The Gator's Eye

The Student News Site of Green Level High School

The Gator's Eye

Painted By Lub: A Green Level Senior’s Nail Art Empire

Image Credits: Lubaina Hussain / Made with Canva

Lubaina Hussain—a senior here at Green Level—has synthesized her talent for nail art and knack for entrepreneurship to create her own nail business, Painted By Lub. She’s taken the local manicure market by storm with her affordable and personalized services, which many GLHS students find preferable to a regular salon. Known fondly for her intricate designs and sparkly flair, she’s amassed many enthusiastic customers and followers who love how she brings trends and her own creative visions to life through wearable art.

Lubaina started doing nails when she was in middle school, but took a break until her sophomore year of high school during quarantine. It was then that she began practicing nails on her friends and family for free. This past summer, she got really into honing her craft and practicing more advanced techniques. She finally felt confident to start charging for her services during Prom season last school year, and to her surprise, her business was instantly a sensation.

Looking for a way to curb her nail-biting habit, Lubaina had originally turned to synthetic nails for herself. 

“I needed a way to not bite them, and actually doing nails was the only way,” she said.

Though, with her long-time affinity for creativity, particularly drawing, Lubaina found herself interested in the artistic side of manicures as well, and felt motivated to bring her talents to other peoples’ hands too. After starting to charge for her services last year, she was encouraged by a friend of hers to post her work on Instagram.

“I originally didn’t start an account because I was scared of what people would think, but my friend said I should just try it, so I finally did it. I was happy that a lot of people liked what I did and gave me compliments,” said Lubaina.

Painted By Lub (@paintedbylub) has amassed almost 300 followers on Instagram, growing her business even further. Customers and admirers love seeing her posts of the nail sets she’s done recently, and can easily find her policies, prices, and services in her story highlights. With her business being home-based, she keeps a nail station in her house with all of her supplies. Customers enjoy this calm environment in contrast to a bustling salon, and prefer Lubaina’s lower prices as an independent artist.

“Prices depend on the design the customer wants, but they are definitely cheaper than anywhere else. Super complex stuff by me is still cheaper than basic sets from a salon,” Lubaina noted.

Lubaina says the fact you can’t quite find her designs anywhere else is what makes her business especially unique. She described many instances in which customers wanted certain designs and found that the salon couldn’t accomplish them, but then came to her, and were able to get the nails they desired. She also emphasized that she loves when her customers choose the “Freestyle” option, as it allows her to use their nails as a blank canvas to be creative and experiment with different techniques. While she has her own creative style, Lubaina pays attention to trends in nail art too, adopting certain aspects she likes and incorporating them into her sets.

Green Level Senior and Painted By Lub customer Shruthi Kethamakka noted “Lubaina’s really good. You show her a picture of what you want, and she can do any design perfectly.”

As for her future plans, Lubaina sees herself attending a 4-year university beginning next fall. She doesn’t plan to pursue cosmetology professionally, and doesn’t think it will be realistic to keep up a nail station for customers while living in a dorm due to limited space, but hopes to continue selling her press-on sets while in college. She says she’s very content with where her nail business is and will enjoy finishing out this year of in-person manicuring.

If you’re interested in scheduling an appointment with Lubaina, you can DM her business’s Instagram: @paintedbylub.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
R. Butler
R. Butler, Opinion Editor
Regan is a senior and this is her second year being part of the Gator's Eye. In her free time, she enjoys writing (of course), spending time with friends, and singing with her band and the Green Level Chorus. She likes reporting on interesting things going on at GLHS, as well as larger-scale issues and topics.