When qualified nail technician Vicky Bentley got the opportunity to own her own salon, she put a lot of thought into how she would make this work. Even so, she doubted her chances of success.
“Knowing that all your hard work pays off is a great feeling. Our success is also down to our being able to offer our clients something different or a bit extra. It means they keep coming back to us.
However, three years on, she’s proved herself wrong by moving with her business partner, Camilla to bigger premises and adding to their client list.
These aren’t the only measures of success. Cam and Bentleys Beauty Boutique in West Bromwich have a staff team of three nail technicians, plus a team of four beauty therapists who provide treatments including lash tints, microblading and tanning.
“If someone had told me five years ago that this was what coming back to college would lead to, there’s no way I’d have believed them,” said 29-year-old Vicky.
Her interest in the beauty industry started when she became pregnant with her daughter. This prompted her to rethink her career as a customer service advisor.
“I knew I wanted to do something different,” said Vicky. “I’ve always visited nail salons and found them an enjoyable environment to be in. And I knew that my working hours could be flexible, which was a bonus.”
Vicky’s training came in the form of a Level 3 Nail Technology qualification completed at Walsall College. The process of learning something new had its challenges but with help from her tutor she overcame these.
“Learning to be a skilled nail technician isn’t as easy as people might think,” Vicky commented. “When I first started my course, I was making mistakes all the time. False nails would come off and all sorts. I had a real crisis of confidence. My tutor, Vicky was always patient and encouraging. She got me through.”
Once qualified, Vicky spent her evenings and weekends as a mobile nail technician, fitting her work in and around the needs of her baby daughter.
Although she was comfortable in her new job, Vicky was interested when a family member mentioned that a nearby shop was available to rent. But she made sure she was aware of all the risks before taking starting up the business.
“I took my time working out the costs involved in setting up and running the premises, so I actually ended up with a full business plan,” said Vicky. “I put a lot of faith into doing well. Thankfully, it came off.”
Having now settled into their new premises, further plans are in place to add in a training facility to meet the continuing demand for beauticians and nail artists.
“Knowing that all your hard work pays off is a great feeling,” Vicky added. “Our success is also down to our being able to offer our clients something different or a bit extra. It means they keep coming back to us.
“High standards and a desire to always improve are key to you and your business going further.”