How We Improve

How We Improve

We set out to create a fun, open and transparent nail competition. We've made some mistakes along the way while trying to create the best nail competition we can. We're entering our 4th year in 2017 and thought since we judge others, Who better to judge us than those who participated in our event? Just how a nail competitor receives a mark and tries to improve on a technique or issue,  we too are marked on our performance. Below you will find a record of our biggest mistakes and how we've enacted change to correct them. Don't worry, we don't publish comments unless they are public or  have been granted permission to on private communication.

  • Problem: Prizes not received by competitors.
    • How We Improve: All sponsor prizes will now be on location. No more "drop shipping."
  • Problem: Incorrect placement awarded during ceremony
    • How We Improve: Awards ceremony will now take place hours after final category rather than minutes.


September 2016 via FaceBook

Ok here goes. I cringe at the though of confrontation and drama, but it has to be done.

*Disclaimer: The views and opinions posted below do not necessarily reflect those of the Canada Nail Cup and the ESI Spa Show, it's organizers, sponsors, or any other affiliated parties.
I would also like to detach this post from my own business, Nail Kandy, please understand that I am posting solely on my own personal behalf.
Those who are tagged in this post, who would like to be un-included, please let me know and I will un-tag you.

Additionally, this account is based solely on my own personal experience, and discussions with other people associated with the event. I do not know all of the facts regarding this matter, and will consider input from any one else with any pertinent information regarding this issue.

In April of 2016, I entered, and competed as a Professional in the Canada Nail Cup, held during the ESI Spa Show in Toronto. I entered in all 6 categories and placed as a winner in three, (3D Gel Design, Mixed Media Judged and Blinged). At the time of the event's awards ceremony, I received, in the order that I previously mentioned, 3rd place, 2nd place, and 2nd place.
I received three certificates, and was awarded one prize in person at the ceremony (from the Blinged category). At the time of the competition, (to my recollection) I was told that the other sponsors (who were not present at the ESI Spa Show as vendors), would be in contact with me for my information in order to send the prizes.

After the date of the competition, approximately three weeks passed, and I was contacted via telephone by one of the organizers of Nail Cup, to explain to me that there had been an error during the judges' tally of scores, and one of my 3rd place achievements was actually meant to be a 1st place win. I was apologized to and informed that the wrongfully winning 1st place competitor had been contacted, and was willing to send the trophy to me. I provided my mailing address, and explained that I had a concierge service in my apartment building that the trophy could be left with (as to not make an awkward situation worse by asking to meet face to face), and also offered that "Whatever (competitor) would like to do in terms of getting the trophy to me, I was willing to accommodate".

Approximately one month later, I made a follow-up telephone call to the show organizer , explaining that I had not been contacted by (competitor), and also that I had not been contacted by the prize sponsors that I had won awards from. I was told that they, (the show organizers) would "follow up" and get back to me.

By early August, I still had not been contacted by (competitor), had not heard back from the show organizer, and had not been contacted by the prize sponsors.
I had just moved to a new address, and sent an e-mail to the show organizer to update my mailing info, and hoped that it would prompt a further response regarding what (if anything) had been done regarding the prizes.

My patience was wearing quite thin at that point, so I made a personal effort to reach out to a fellow competitor that I had contact information for, to inquire if they had been faced with any issues in receiving any prizes from sponsors (they placed in a few of the same categories as me, so they would be owed prizes from the same sponsors). They told me that no, they had not been contacted by, or received prizes from those particular sponsors and was also curious about what had happened. This lead me to contact one of the prize sponsors. I explained to the sponsor that I was having difficulty reaching the Nail Cup organizer, and that myself and at least one other competitor had not received prizes from the competition, including ones from this particular sponsor. I was told by the sponsor company, that the they had sent the prizes out to the show (in April).

So at this point, there is definitely something not right happening. I proceeded to reach out to other parties affiliated with this competition (which is also held in Vancouver, and had it's competition this year in February). A couple of the Vancouver Cup's competitors told me that they too, were missing prizes and were not able to get a response from the show organizer.

I kept digging. A fellow nail tech who was not a competitor or affiliated with the Cup or the ESI show tipped me off to another Nail Professional show that was planned to be held in Vancouver earlier in the year, and was organized by parties affiliated with those same organizers as the Nail Cup.
The show had been cancelled, despite vendors and other nail techs investing money to attend the show and were not being provided with refunds. An open letter from one of the organizers was written explaining that in the case of this particular show, an additional business partner who had been given responsibility for the online accounts and financial information from payments for the event had gone M.I.A, and was unreachable.
This issue has still not been resolved, and affected parties are attempting to make arrangements with their credit card providers and even filing police reports for fraud. Please keep in mind that this is a SEPARATE issue that occurred shortly BEFORE the Canada Nail Cup, and the issues that occurred then.

I am posting this because it needs exposure. At this point, I am not looking for prizes, awards, or recognition. I want a clear and honest explanation, for myself, and for my fellow competitors, who invested time, money and effort to participate in these events. Especially for the student competitors. If this is their first taste of the nail industry, I am saddened and embarrassed for their experience.

I am reaching out to you, my nail community, to help me and help those affected by this wrongdoing. Please help me bring attention to this issue. Please share this. Please help me restore my faith in this industry. I have given this issue so much patience, tolerance and hope for a good outcome, but I cannot stay quiet any longer.

I am tagging the following people in this post: The Canada Nail Cup show organizers, current and past judges of the Canada Nail Cup, Sponsor companies who participated in this year's event, my fellow competitors, and past competitors from other shows (Vancouver). I do not have contact information for every competitor (especially those in the student category). I will post the names of the winning competitors from Toronto 2016's competition (as they are posted on the Canada Nail Cup's winners’ page).

If you know of anyone who was involved in this issue that has not been tagged, please add them in the comments section. If you have had an experience relating to this issue, please add it in the comments section (or contact me privately at any time). If you have any questions regarding anything I have said in this post, please contact me privately.

Additionally, if you would like to be un-tagged, or were mistakenly tagged in this post, please contact me privately and I will remove your name.

Thank you for reading this post. Thank you for your support.

*Second disclaimer. Just to emphasize:
The views and opinions posted do not necessarily reflect those of the Canada Nail Cup, it's organizers, sponsors, or any other affiliated parties.
I would also like to detach this post from my own business, Nail Kandy, please understand that I am posting only on my own personal behalf.
This account is based solely on my own personal experience, and discussions with other people associated with the event that follows. I do not know all of the facts regarding this matter, and will consider input from anyone else with any pertinent information regarding this issue.

[edit, private contacts removed.]

Hi Kate Bee-Land, first off, we're very sorry for your experience. Your story and others similar to it have caused us to affect changes moving forward. Since you’ve decided to mention it here now, the cat is out of the bag for 2017: Some changes are being announced here before being posted to our main website.

We noticed your email on Aug 29th but were away on summer vacation when it came in. We’ve responded to that with more details just now.

Your story is true, you were awarded the wrong prize. It is a real shame, and for the amount of work and passion we put into creating the event, we can empathize how equally disappointing it is for you.  We posted the correct results on our website for official record and did contact the incorrect winner as soon as we returned to BC after the event. We then facilitated contact between the two of you. Plans were put into place and the incorrect recipient graciously volunteered to drop off the award to your door service. Looking back, it was unfair of us to ask rely on that as a solution.

From our point of view, we awarded the wrong prize to the wrong person, so that's something we should make amends for rather than leave it up to the two of you competitors to work out.  We'll create a new award for you Kate and send it out.

Regarding prize fulfillment here’s where the cat is out of the bag for 2017 should we be honored by the community to continue. In year Vancouver 2015 we had the same issues with some sponsors not sending or fulfilling prizes correctly. We had all prizes on location for year 3 Vancouver 2016 and attempted to have all prizes on hand for year 2 in Toronto 2016 but existing agreements and logistics prevented enacting change. It is now our policy to have all prizes on location for all competitions to avoid disappointment like the one you have mentioned. Plus they just look cool too.

We don't charge much to participate in our competition so we rely on the generosity of our sponsors to provide something more tangible than the bragging rights or bullet point on your business card. We can't explain why prizes don't get sent out. We certainly forward your information to sponsors, and winners names are published on the front page of our website should they ever loose it.

We attempt to do VERY much competition wise in just one day; what other competitions do in two or three days in fact. Our original schedule, as stated on our website was created with nail techs in mind. No early mornings and a schedule system that allows just one hand model making it easy for the budget minded tech's to participate with ease. Our flat rate registration fee shows we’re certainly not in this to make money. We want to create the best nail competition we can and that means learning from mistakes we’ve made. It’s unfortunate that we made some along the way and we’re sorry they involved you.

Moving forward our schedule will be created for accuracy of the judges and sufficient work time for staff rather than competitors’ “one stop shop.” This will allow proper time for reflection, adjudication and score tallying. It will also mean the “awards ceremony” won’t be just 45 minutes after the last category finishes but rather, hours after. This will be inconvenient for out of owners who are always rushing to grab a plane, or catch a ferry but in the end accuracy is very important. We need to learn from our mistakes and by slowing down and lengthening the competition day is the only way to avoid errors.

  • Problem: Score cards not received.
    • How We Improve: Score cards are now provided at the end of the awards ceremony.

 September 2016 via FaceBook

Cathie Bal I competed in Vancouver as well and was told by Patrick that I would be sent a copy of my score sheet so I could see where I needed to improve my skills and never received it or gotten any response after trying to contact them either.

Hi Cathy. We're sorry you never received your results. If you're speaking of Vancouver 2016 all results were sent via email about one week after the event as scanned PDFs. We'll check our send folder and re-send for you. For the record, competitors have always been invited to stay after the awards to view their score cards the day-of. In the future copies will be provided after/during the awards ceremony so you won't have to wait or chance of emails getting lost.