A builder has taken a second job so he can spend more time with his beautician wife – as a NAIL TECHNICIAN.
Andrew Doublett, 48, swaps his tools for another more delicate set still dressed in his builder’s overalls.
He first exchanged nine-inch nails for something a little more dainty after pitching in to help out at wife Julie’s salon when she became stuck.
But he found that joining his wife at the salon meant they got to spend more time together as he said he was fed up being alone while Julie worked late.
And he proved to be a master nail technician with his workmanship impressing his wife’s clients.
Andrew, of Penwortham, near Preston, Lancs., said: “I never thought of myself as a trailblazer and just stumbled into doing nails.
“A few women are taken aback and are a bit sceptical when they see me for the first time But I soon win them round.
“I had a bit of banter from mates and builder colleagues when I first started doing the nails because of the novelty factor.
“However, most people don’t bat an eyelid.”
Julie, 54, who owns Nature’s Way in Preston, first met Andrew 21 years ago, as she juggled jobs as a beautician and a psychiatric nurse and they married two years later.
A few years ago he stepped in as an emergency technician when Julie began losing staff.
Julie said: “Andrew doing nails all started when a nail technician left and went mobile, taking some of our clients with her.
“I was so fed up, I asked Andrew to take the nail stations out of the salon.”
But after visiting a national beauty exhibition, Andrew, noticing many of the nail technicians there were men said: “How hard can it be?”
Julie replied: “If you’re so clever, why don’t you do it?”
Reflecting on the conversation Andrew said: “I am always up for a challenge, so I took her on.”
Reluctant to train her husband herself, Julie arranged for an outside technician to come in and give Andrew a crash course in nails.
Julie said: “Andrew took to doing nails like a duck to water.
“I’ve had a lot of nail technicians, but I have never seen anyone adapt to something so quickly.
“With Andrew being male, he is more interested in the chemical reaction and the technical side of things.
“He actually understands what is happening during the process whereas some nail technicians aren’t interested in that side of things – only the finished result.
“Andrew did a wonderful job of doing nails right from the start. It was as if he had been doing it for years.
“It can take some nail technicians years to perfect their art. However, Andrew was a natural.”
Andrew, who quit his job with the Ordnance Survey to become a full-time builder around eight years ago, said: “I like taking something that doesn’t look very nice and making it look all shiny and new.
“It is possible to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.
“It is also about making people happy and that gives you a great deal of satisfaction.
“Some people come in with short, horrible nails and once you have finished, you can send them out feeling like a million dollars.”
When Andrew first went into the beauty business he was working full-time as a builder Monday to Friday and three evenings and Saturday on the nails.
Despite one of the reasons for taking up the role was to spend more time with his wife, the couple admit they rarely talk to each other while on shift at the salon.
Julie added: “It is nice that he enjoys my company and being with me.
“However, when Andrew works here, he is in about five hours but we hardly speak to each other or have contact with each other, as it is all about the clients.
“Then when we get home, we are usually too tired to talk to each other.”
Andrew joked: “The secret to a long and happy marriage is not talking to each other.”