Women have been coloring their fingernails for millennia, but as recent as five years ago, if you wanted your nails done, you did them yourself or got a girlfriend to help.

That's all changed in the past few years as nail salons have opened almost as fast as one's nails grow.

The business of nail art has progressed far beyond a French-tipped presentation. Glitter-encrusted, animal-printed, and wacky-designs have taken over from a simple red, pink or burgundy.

Much of the interest in eye-catching nails comes from celebrities, explained Sheila Geary, an instructor at Iowa School of Beauty in Sioux City.

"The flashier and glitzier is the trend right now," she said. "For example, Nicki Minaj launched her own nail polish color line and young girls want that. Even the Muppet movies featured nail polish. The girls see the stars and want to have the same look."

But to duplicate those presentations, a skilled manicurist or esthetician is almost a requirement. Iowa School of Beauty has added a nail technician diploma to its disciplines at the cosmetology school, Geary noted.

"A lot of young girls come into our program knowing how to do certain styles," she said. "When they're finished with the instruction, they are ready to do nails with a magazine-quality look."

The nail art market has even gone the way of Avon, Tupperware and Amway with parties in the home.

Jamberry Nails announced its official launch into the direct sales party plan industry.

Vickie Stabile, a consultant with Jamberry Nails, discovered the company at an out-of-town flea market last fall.

"I used to be one to do my nails all the time but with children and having to wait for polish to dry and sitting at the salon was too much," she said. "So, my nails were on the back burner for many years. I saw Jamberry Nails -- they were a new company -- and pondered selling them. I decided to join in December. I wore them to work to see how people commented on them and they did."

Jamberry Nails was the creative concept of three sisters: Keri Evans, Christy Hepworth and Lyndsey Ekstrom. After being at a salon receiving pedicures, the three sisters designed nail shields that could be put on in the comfort of their own home.

Like other in-home sales parties, the consultant receives a percentage and when other team members are added, the percentage grows.