Maryam Naderi is not one to sit back and accept things the way they are — especially when health and wellness standards are being compromised. Throughout her decade-long career as a management consultant, Maryam realized that the nail salon market was majorly lacking. She explained to us that a fresh manicure is the easiest and most cost efficient way for a woman to boost her confidence, and she would always head to the nail salon before a major presentation, often in front of a room of men in suits. On her business travels, she was unable to find salons that were clean, free of toxic fumes, and at an accessible price point. After reading the New York Times expose about the harmful effects of product toxins on nail techs, and salon customers, she decided to take action. In November 2016, Maryam opened Paloma, Houston’s first nontoxic nail salon. The zen space not only creates an “escape to beautiful” for their customers, but is also free of the toxic smells that are associated with getting a mani-pedi. We chatted with Maryam about her morning routine and how she takes on the day with two jobs; in addition to running Paloma, she is still a part-time management consultant. Keep reading to get a glimpse into her AM ritual, as well as the beauty products and wellness tips that keep her energized throughout the day.
What time your wake-up call?
Anytime between 5-7 am depending on the day’s activities.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Make coffee, and I don’t really want to talk to anyone until I’ve had at least half a cup! Then, I immediately check the schedule for the day at Paloma. If I have any friends or clients I know coming in, I try to make a point to be there to see how they are liking everything. I have the privilege of meeting our clients first hand and talking to them about what they love about Paloma and what else they would like to see us offer. It’s so important to me that we continue to deliver an excellent nail service to our clients.
Early bird or night owl?
Early bird for sure! I have two jobs technically; I do business development for a global professional services firm in the energy management consulting group, and I own Paloma, Houston’s first nontoxic nail space. Thankfully, I have an amazing team at Paloma which enables me to do both (and a very understanding husband!).
What do you eat for breakfast?
80% of the time it’s a green smoothie with spinach, kale, frozen pineapple, coconut butter, camu camu powder, and cashew butter. It’s like dessert; I love it! On the weekends, my husband makes a big breakfast involving eggs, which keep me full for hours.
Any morning rituals?
I try to keep it zen in the morning because I am bombarded with emails, texts, etc. during the day and into the night, but sometimes I get trapped into checking Instagram while drinking my morning cup of coffee.
What’s your getting ready routine?
Ideally, I have an hour to get ready. I love taking time to perfectly apply my mascara and lipstick — in reality that happens only sometimes. Usually I’m squeezing in a shower to really wake up and get my face looking more plump (hello hot shower!), deciding what to wear while in the shower, then throwing on whatever I think will fit my day’s activities the best.
Lately, I’ve developed this habit of wearing the same outfit (more or less) for 3-4 days in a row, then switching. My husband thinks it’s really weird, but I think it’s time efficient! I always apply Deborah Lippmann Rich Girl hand cream as soon as I get in the car to protect my hands from the sun.
What’s your favorite getting ready soundtrack?
Anything upbeat and dance-y! Usually whatever I’ve added to my Spotify playlist from a Soulcycle class.
Do you stick to the same hair and makeup routine, or do you like to experiment?
I always tell myself I’ll experiment, but I end up sticking to the same routine. Anytime I show up somewhere with red lipstick, my friends are shocked!
If you could only put on one item of makeup, what would it be?
Kevin Aucoin concealer.
Do you workout in the morning?
I workout when I can regardless of the time of day. Sometimes it’s a Soulcycle class, sometimes it’s a long walk, and occasionally weight training — always with good music!
Do you plan your outfits in advance or create them on the fly?
Usually on the fly — unless I have a big event or corporate meetings, then I decide the night before. When I feel put together, I feel like I do better work.
Do you prefer morning or night showers?
Usually both! A nightly shower is non-negotiable. I love going to bed feeling super clean. I try to always apply a hydrating hand cream and cuticle oil before bed.
Do you have a signature scent?
I have a revolving collection of three Jo Malone perfumes at any given time and sometimes I mix them together randomly or just use one. Currently I’m loving Orange Blossom, Tuburose Angelica, and Wood Sage & Sea Salt.
What’s your daily uniform?
Jeans, a soft tank or t-shirt, my watch, and colorful light scarf or fun necklace.
I never leave the house without __________.
What one word would you use to describe your morning?
Efficient! I love getting through emails and open items before I take on the world.
Healthiest morning habit?
My green smoothie.
- 1 cup water
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 cup frozen pineapple (or any type of frozen fruit)
- fresh ginger (optional)
- 1 tbsp cashew butter
- 1 tbsp coconut butter
- 1 tsp camu camu powder
Worst morning habit?
Skipping my green smoothie!
If you had one extra hour every morning, how would you use it?
Yoga and meditation, please!