Nandumbu’s journey into the nail care industry

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Nandumbu’s journey into the nail care industry

The Covid-19 pandemic led many people to explore new hobbies or interests, and for Claudia Diana Indileni Nandumbu – a blogger, songwriter and an English degree holder based in Windhoek – it was no exception. What started as a way to pass time during the pandemic quickly turned into a passion and a career for Nandumbu as she pursued her love for nail care.

“When I got the hang of it, being a nail tech taught me so much about myself. One could say it was part of my self-discovery journey; it allowed me to tap into my creative side, and I grew to fall in love with it that I decided to turn it into something more than just a hobby,” she told VIBEZ!

Nandumbu completed a basic gel nail training course in 2021 with Anna Chosen Nails, a well-known self-made nail technician and businesswoman in Oshakati. 

While training is essential, Nandumbu believes that practice and consistency are the keys to perfecting one’s skills.

Staying up-to-date with the latest nail trends is critical for nail technicians, and Nandumbu has found several ways to do so.

 She emphasises the importance of networking with other nail technicians and beauticians – sharing tips and techniques that can benefit everyone. Nandumbu also follows qualified nail technicians on social media platforms, reads local and international fashion magazines and blogs, and suggests experimenting to find one’s unique style.

However, she noted, it is important to keep in mind that while it may be fun to keep up with the latest nail trends, it is more fun to find one’s own unique style because trends get started by creative people with a willingness to try something new – and if a particular combination does not work, simply remove it and try something else instead.

Nandumbu believes that every good nail technician should possess qualities patience, discipline, consistency, self-motivation and exceptional communication skills. 

She noted that communication is particularly important in her line of work, as building a relationship with clients and understanding their preferences is essential to delivering quality service.

Maintaining a sterile environment for clients is critical; Nandumbu ensures that she sterilises her tools between each treatment, using a mixture of warm water and bleach or methylated spirits.

As a nail technician, Nandumbu encounters several misconceptions about nail care. She stresses that nails do not need to breathe, and that wearing nail polish can act as a barrier to protecting the natural oils that keep nails flexible.  She also dispels the notion that gels and acrylics are damaging, pointing out that poor removal techniques are the cause of damage, rather than the products themselves.

On men shying away from treating and grooming their nails because of the fear that it emasculates them or makes them effeminate, Nandumbu said: “The truth, however, is regular manicures and pedicures ensure the removal of dead skin cells, which is an essential part of encouraging new skin cell growth”.

For Nandumbu, her line of work is not just about offering nail care services. She creates a friendly and welcoming environment for her clients, providing a space for them to relax and unwind. 

She considers herself a therapist of sorts, as clients often open up and share their emotions during their appointments.

For those interested in pursuing a career as a nail technician, Nandumbu’s advice is they should never give up, and that they should be patient in perfecting their craft. 

She emphasised the importance of believing in oneself and not comparing oneself to others. 

“If you do not believe in what you do, no one else will,” she said. 

“So, it’s up to you to make them believe in your talent by working hard and always giving it your utmost best.”