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Step into Beauty: The Fabulous Journey of Diana Anderson

But what got Diana into the nail and beauty world in the first place? Well, it was motherhood. When her second son was in nursery, she needed a part-time gig that fit her schedule. Job hunting was a headache, but thankfully, her friend Cristina, who owned a Massage Salon, nudged her in the right direction. Diana took the plunge into one of our courses from Cristina’s recommendation and hasn’t looked back since.

Diana swears by the flexibility our courses offer. As a busy mom juggling life and being able to study at her own pace was a game-changer. Plus, the online portal is super user-friendly, making learning a breeze. No boring textbooks here—just colourful notes and helpful pictures that keep things interesting.

With grit and determination, Diana wasted no time and turned her dream into reality, opening her salon just a year after taking her first course with us! Her first paying client booked the very next day! Talk about hitting the ground running. Diana has faced many challenges along the way but has remained strong throughout, learning and growing with each obstacle she’s encountered. And boy, did her hard work pay off!

Her salon has secured countless awards and she has even been featured in magazines as “An Inspiration to All Women in the Industry“. Now, Diana has big dreams for the future. She wants to open a branch of her salon back in her hometown in the Philippines and she would also like to start her own beauty academy there. With her drive and determination, there’s no doubt she’ll make it happen.

So, to all the girls out there dreaming of starting their own beauty business, Diana has some advice: Do your research, get qualified, and never stop learning. Oh, and don’t forget to have fun along the way! If you want to connect with Diana and hear more about her journey, hit her up on TikTok or Instagram. She’d love to hear from you!

Story in Full:

  1. When did you take your first course with us? 2014. My very first course with Next Step Beauty was ‘Body Massage’. I finished it on 28th February 2014. I think it’s the best course I have taken so far. For 10 years of massaging. I can’t count how many clients I have already.

  2. What inspired you to enter the nail and beauty industry? Being a mother. When my second son was in the nursery,  I started looking for a part-time job. With my situation at that time, it was impossible to find a job. Need to work on weekends and mostly they were asking if I could drive which I couldn’t at that time. I have a friend who owns a Massage salon in Sunderland Cristina, she was the one who first encouraged me to take up the course, so I can work part-time with her. It was the best decision because I could work out what days and what time I would work.

  3. How did you first discover our training courses, and what motivated you to sign up for them? After my conversation with Christina, I started looking online for a school that’s accessible and not so expensive from where I live, and I found Next Step Beauty on Google search. I read some reviews and they were good so I tried them & never looked back ever since.

  4. What specific skills or knowledge did you gain from the courses that you found most valuable?
    A lot. I have taken many courses in NSB, Beauty, Nails, Holistic & Physiology & Anatomy. The reasons why I like learning through NSB are; that I can work out with my own time (handy when you’re a busy mother and working at the time), the online portal is very easy to use and all the notes and very well presented and very knowledgeable. I like the colour combinations and the photos for the courses are very nice, so I don’t feel bored reading them. I really like the idea that when I have spare time or if I need to re-learn all the courses I took; I can just log in online and they are all there. Most of all, it’s easy to access the Certificates, I can just download them when I need a copy. 

  5. How did you go about launching your own business after you completed our course(s)?
    I opened my first salon on 1st June 2015. I saw an opportunity to rent a premises in South Shields. I attended a few business conferences that were offered in our local council just to know what are the regulations and requirements to open the salon. I honestly didn’t have so much capital when I started. The most important was we paid the rent, which was almost £2,000 altogether. I cleaned the whole place, my first salon had 4 rooms. I painted most of the walls and most of the furniture I used in the salon was second-hand in FB market. It was scary. Some of my friends thought I was crazy to open a salon. The funny thing was, I was already self-employed when I opened my first salon as I was already doing some massages, Manicure & pedicures from home, so I had stuff to work on already.  My husband & I decorated the rooms one by one. While I was cleaning & decorating, I operated straight away and my very first client was JACKIE. I will never forget her, she booked a Spa Pedicure. The rest was history.

  6. How long after you took your first course with us did you have your first paying customer?
    The NEXT DAY. I was lucky enough to have a friend who owns a Massage Salon. I took insurance straight away and basically had a paying client the next day. I was just brave enough or maybe I just wanted my money back straight away.

  7. What marketing activities have you found to be the most effective in attracting clients to your business?
    FACEBOOK. I think people are on social media. Next is ‘Word of Mouth’. I really do my best to look after my clients.  They are the ones who tell their friends & family about me & third good marketing is ‘Google Business’. They are great for people that’s visiting the town or if they haven’t heard about you yet, but looking for some treatments.  

  8. How do you stay updated with the latest trends and techniques in the nail and beauty industry?
    Oh, I study a lot. I like doing new courses. I watch watch going on on social media such as TikTok and Instagram.  I read a lot of beauty magazines and lately, I’ve been joining competitions in the Beauty/Nail/Holistic industry. They are a great way to learn more from the masters and challenge my own capabilities.

  9. Can you share a memorable milestone you have achieved in your business journey?
    Staying in the business for almost 11 years. This industry is very competitive, but with my passion and my hard work; I’m still here. Then my salon won ‘Best Eyelashes Extension Salon( Regional for Scotland) last year in April for UKHBA AWARDS. That made me realise that I am definitely good at what I am doing. I won Best Massage Therapist for UKHAIRAWARDS in 2022, won Best Lashes Specialist & Best Complimentary Therapist of UKHAIRAWARDS 2023, and won Best Massage Therapist for UKBEAUTY AWARDS 2023. Recently my salon has been featured by Beauty Guild, Guild Gazette as one of their Inspiring Women in the Business for ‘International Women’s Day’ and I have been featured this month again in Guild Gazette for sustainable business for their ‘EARTH DAY’ celebration.  I will say, hard work and believing in yourself does pay off. 

  10. How do you maintain a work-life balance while running your business?
    Through the years, I really learned to balance my lifestyle.  In my first salon, I was working full time and it gets so busy that I even had no time for my family ^ friends. I got really exhausted.  It was one of the reasons why my hubby & I decided to move to Scotland and seek a quieter life.  After 8 months, I had enough rest and decided to rent a table in the local salon. Then in August 2021, I decided to open another salon here in Newton Stewart, Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland.  Now, I really write down all the important tasks that I need to do first and really learn to say “NO” to some unnecessary activities so I have more energy for work or for more important tasks. It’s about knowing your priorities.  I want to retire early, so I am very focused on my goals.  On the days that the salon is not busy, I will always call some of my friends if they’re free for coffee or driving around. 

  11. Have you faced any setbacks or failures along the way, and how did you bounce back from them?
    YES. The first 2 years of the business were scary and you’re not making much money yet. I was wondering if I made the right decision.  However I really believed that I could do it, so kept learning & focus on marketing.  The most annoying thing actually was when I saw lots of my friends having weekend parties and I was stuck in the salon working. It was emotionally draining. But I have parents in the Philippines that I needed to help financially and some nephews & cousins that I was helping to study at University.  So I basically chose to keep working and make money. But through the years, I met lots of beautiful people working in the industry.  Your clients will be your family and friends so I was always excited to come back and work at the salon. 

  12. What role do you think networking plays in growing a business like yours, and do you have any tips for building professional relationships in the industry?
    Do not stop marketing.  Keep on posting when you have time, maybe at least one advertisement a day on social media. The people that saw it that day might need that treatment or they might know anyone that’s looking for that treatment. Always be nice to your clients as they are the ones who are basically paying your bills. Without them, you’ll never make it in this industry. Always practice ‘PRIVACY’ with your clients. I never say bad things about clients. I won’t mention any names especially in social media unless I have their permission. I think when your clients know that you can keep a secret, they trust you and they always come back to you. 

  13. What tools or resources do you rely on to manage and streamline your business operations?
    Social media. Facebook, WhatsApp Google Business and Instagram are very helpful for getting clients.  I also use a card machine at the salon so my clients have a choice of how to pay for their treatments. 

  14. How do you instigate customer feedback and ensure customer satisfaction?
    Always ask them before they leave if they are happy. When they come back, ask them if there were any problems with the treatments such as allergy reactions. When I have spare time, I go through all the clients and I send them messages to check if everything is alright about their previous treatment and if they need another one booked.

  15. What are your future goals and aspirations for your business?
    I still have very big goals as a Beauty Therapist. My very big goal is to open a branch in the village that I come from in the Philippines. Open my own Beauty Academy and transfer my skills to the next generation.  I don’t want all my skills to be wasted when I can’t do it already one day. There are still many courses I want to study in the beauty industry.  There is always room for improvement.  

  16. How has your experience with our training courses impacted your journey as an entrepreneur in the nail and beauty industry?
    NSB really helps me a lot. I always say “Thank you” to NSB and Victoria Arpels when I win an award because I feel you guys made it possible for me to work in the beauty industry.  When you’re a busy mother and you come from a different country, you just have no idea where to start. NSB really helps women like me to have skills and qualifications and work part-time or full-time in an easier way. NSB offers so many courses, you can just choose any that you want to learn. Their customer service is very approachable as well and it’s not expensive.  I have mentored lots of women already and I always introduce them to NSB.

  17. What advice would you give to someone considering starting their own nail and beauty business after completing similar training courses?
    First of all, learn and research. Research the ‘Rules and regulations ‘ in your local area about the business you are planning to open. Make sure you understand how TAX SYSTEM works. Don’t be afraid to ask anyone who’s already in the business, they will be happy to share some tips. Have a qualification & most of all get an ‘Insurance’. Don’t work without insurance. Anything can go wrong, so you have to protect yourself and the other party. Always re-train, re-learn and be open to new trends. That’s how you survive in this industry.
  18. Lastly, how can people connect with you?
    On TikTok: @dianaanderson594, On Instagram: @lovenails_80, On Facebook:  @DianaBeautyMassageNails, My salon is located at: 29A Victoria Street,  Newton Stewart,  Dumfries and Galloway DG8 9AH, My email address is: kercy_024@yahoo.com

Share Your Story:

We would love to hear about your journey! – Your experiences, however big or small, successful or otherwise, serve as a valuable resource to others who are just getting started! – So please drop us an email to info@nextstepbeauty.co.uk using “My Story So Far” in the subject line.


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