pay with cashBesides the stress of attending classes and worrying about grades, students who want to attend nail school may have the stress of figuring out how to pay for their education. While all forms of education can be costly, there are ways to defray the cost of attending nail technician school. The trick is to explore all of the options available and to apply for as much financial aid as possible.

The Cost of Nail School

Tuition for nail technician programs varies depending on specific factors, such as location (did you know California is more expensive than Texas?), type of school, and the length of the training. Lengthy programs at a college that offers cosmetology training classes, for example, generally are more expensive than online classes that students can take toward the hours they need for certification as a nail tech. Students should also be aware that additional costs, such as supplies and textbooks, are also their responsibility. Enter your ZIP below to see where you can train nearby to become a licensed nail artist.

Types of Financial Aid

One of the best ways to reduce the cost of nail technology school is to apply for a variety of financial aid types. A common misconception is that financial aid is available only to students who wish to attend a more formal college or university program. In reality, the same financial aid options are available for students who want to obtain cosmetology licensing.

Financial Aid TypeDescription
Scholarships
Available from schools and from professional organizations.
GrantsAvailable from schools, professional organizations, as well as state and federal programs.
LoansPrivate loans, as well as those from state and federal programs.
Each of these types of financial aid has different requirements. Students who need help finding financial aid to attend a nail academy should start with the school they hope to attend.

From there, they should branch out to professional organizations within the field, and then federal and state programs. Loans should be a last resort, since they must be repaid within a set timeframe. Scholarships and grants do not have repayment requirements, which makes them a more attractive option.

Applying for Financial Aid

Students who intend to apply for financial aid must prepare since the process is more involved than simply filling out a few forms. If students wish to apply for federal scholarships and grants, for example, they will need to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA form. Along with the form, they must submit copies of tax returns and, in some cases, pay stubs. Other information that may need to be submitted along with applications include:

  • Portfolios of completed nail work
  • Essays
  • Recommendations from former employers or personal references
  • Tax returns from both parents and students


The exact documentation needed for each financial aid opportunity varies, so students should read the application instructions carefully. In some cases, forgetting to include specific information can disqualify the student from further consideration.

Lack of available cash should never be a reason to forego getting an education in any field. Those who want to become a nail technician do have options available, and a little bit of prior planning helps. If students need help with their financial aid planning, often the school is able to help decode some of the mysteries.