BTVI graduates Nomanique and LucyLu follow their dreams

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Nomanique Bain, owner of Skyline Designs.

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Lucena Sawyer, better known as the makeup artist LucyLu.

Since she was a little girl, Nomanique Bain had a passion for all things beauty. That passion stayed with her through years of completing a Bachelor’s degree in Accounts to the day she enrolled at the Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI) to pursue her studies in Cosmetology.

Nomanique’s father convinced her that with a degree in Accounts she would always be able to find employment. Little did he know that Nomanique had a plan of her own. She knew that in the end it would all be for beauty. She considered the fact that with this degree she would learn how to manage her finances in her future salon – which has proven to be correct.

Nomanique began her studies at BTVI in the Spring of 2016, where she learned many invaluable lessons. The most important of these being handling challenges with patience, remaining humble, showing perseverance and being consistent. All of which she still applies in her professional life.

“My education at BTVI has helped to advance my career by increasing the knowledge I have about my trade. This has made me more confident when providing services for my clients and… has improved the quality of service I provide from start to finish,” she said.

Nomanique has no regrets about her decision to join the beauty industry. In fact, she is happy to reap the rewards of what has turned out to be a profitable career. She has been the proud owner of Skyline Designs for the past three years and plans to take her dream even further.

“As an adult, I’ve noticed how lucrative the beauty industry is and recognised the possibilities to travel and network with others in various fields; this sealed my decision to be a beautician,” she said.

Working in the beauty industry allows Nomanique to freely express her creativity without restriction. She considers herself to be an artist in her own right.

The entrepreneur plans to further her studies at BTVI to obtain her goal of becoming a well-rounded cosmetologist.

“In the future, I plan to take up the Face Care and Makeup Application course. I believe beauty should be all around: hair, skin and nails. I would want my clients to have the option of receiving all of those services when they come to Skyline Designs,” she said.

Skyline Designs is the official hairstyling team for the Miss University of the Bahamas and Miss World Bahamas 2018 pageants.

Meanwhile, fellow entrepreneur and owner of LucyLu Beauty, Lucena Sawyer is also making waves in the beauty industry as a hairstylist and makeup artist. She has been the owner of LucyLu Beauty for the past seven years.

Lucena, better known as LucyLu, also grew up loving all things beauty, but it was not her first career choice. She, too, pictured herself with a career in the financial sector. In fact, she began working in finance straight out of high school. Fortunately for her, she quickly realised that was not her passion. She needed a career that was exciting and would make her enjoy going to work.

“I had come to the realisation that I was better at working with my hands. It only made sense to try my hand at something that I had always loved doing, and that was (working) in the beauty field,” said the BTVI graduate.

As a self-taught beautician, there were certain aspects of hair care and hairstyling that LucyLu knew she could not teach herself. She spent a lot of her time watching tutorials online and learning from other stylists, but it was not enough for her. She needed an environment where she was guaranteed to perfect her skills. Hence, she enrolled at BTVI in spring 2016.

LucyLu’s education at BTVI helped her become more confident in herself as a hairstylist and has extended her knowledge of cosmetology.

“I needed to learn the basics, so I bit the bullet and returned to school. That was the best decision I made for my career. Everything that I had learned on my own started to make sense with the education I gained from my studies. It was like puzzle pieces; school was the final piece I needed,” she said.

Had LucyLu not made the decision to follow her dreams, she said she probably would have still been fighting her way through the corporate world. She is glad she got out when she did and she now has a career that allows her to fully express herself like the artist she is.

She is considering returning to BTVI as soon as she decides which trade she wants to pursue next.

These successful beauty professionals both received diplomas in Cosmetology from BTVI in May 2017 and completed the two-and-a-half year programme within 18 months, proving that nothing can stop a person with a dream and the drive to realise it.