A DUNFERMLINE mum has been left "gobsmacked" after being nominated for a beauty industry rising star award.

Fiona Alexander, 41, has been working two jobs since launching her business, Flawless Forever Aesthetic, in October at Glow Nails Beauty and Gifts on Linburn Road.

In that time she has held onto her full time role in community occupational therapy, while taking on an extra evening and Saturday each week to treat clients.

Fiona offers everything from botox and wrinkle treatments to vampire facials - a procedure made famous by Kim Kardashian which involves drawing blood from a patient and re-injecting it into their face.

But it's her career history and strong connection with customers - such as those who have been through cancer treatment - who have struggled with their appearance which she believes has set her apart from others.

Fiona was nominated for the award, Rising Star in the 2023 Social Media Hair and Beauty Awards, by clients who can now cast their votes on Instagram to help her win.

She told the Press: "I have worked in end-of-life care, in nursing homes, and now in the community, it's about meeting needs, having empathy, managing expectations, and giving people the results they deserve,.

"I've had a lot of female clients who have previously been through cancer treatment which has destroyed their confidence.

"To be able to help them look in the mirror and be happy with what they see is why I do what I do.

"It's not about vanity as the conception is, there's a stigma that you have to hide what you've had done, it runs a lot deeper than that and is about self-esteem and confidence."

Fiona completed several exams and courses over the past year - while working and raising her family - to become a qualified aesthetics practitioner.

And she hopes to turn her venture into a full-time career now that she has more time to focus on her goals.

"There has been a lot of studying, exams, and assessments which took me a year to complete during the pandemic," she said.

"To be honest, if the pandemic hadn't happened, I wouldn't have bit the bullet."

She continued: "I always thought, 'do I have the time?', 'can I afford to invest in training?', I just thought, I'm biting the bullet, I'm doing it.

"It's so worth it, yes it's exhausting, yes I don't get to spend enough time at home, but I'm getting more than I put in and that's giving me satisfaction.

"I have got a plan in place, I've forward planned to where I want to be this time next year and in five years.

"I've always put my own career to the background, I've done it the opposite way to some people but now the kids are getting older I've got that time."

You can vote for Fiona on the Social Media Hair and Beauty Awards Instagram page.