Karolina Olizarowicz loves running her Maryport beauty salon but it has taken her a while to find it.

Karolina is from Poland, where she taught tourism and leisure to adult evening classes.

She and her husband Piotr moved to Essex in 2006 where she began working for Ryan Air. After the birth of her first child she worked in a haberdashery store and then, after son number two came along, she became a dinner lady.

That led to her training as a teaching assistant, working one-to-one with children with autism and ADHD.

“That was so rewarding but also very intense,” she said.

She was suffering burnout and it was her own bad habit that led her in her new direction.

“I bit my nails and they were terrible so I used to do them all the time to try and keep them nice. I started to think I would like to do the same for other people.

“My husband suggested I return to college. I was not sure at first but I went and qualified.”

At the same time, as lockdown was about to be announced, the family decided to move from Essex to Cumbria.

“We love the outdoors and we did not want our children, Dawid, now 14 , and Oliwer, aged eight, stuck on their phones or television all day.

"My husband loves the mountains and I love the sea, so Maryport was the best place to come.”

News and Star: karolina

While Piotr works as a receptionist at the Cockermouth Premier Inn, Karolina took the chance to open her own business, Vivid Beauty, in Maryport.

"I am an outsider, but I have been made to feel so welcome by other businesses in the area and also by the people of the town.

"My clients, too, have been so welcoming. I only ever have one at a time in my shop and I also go to a sheltered living facility in Workington once a month. You share so much with your clients that sometimes it seems like therapy, too."

Karolina also became involved as an educator for the OPI range of products which means going to other salons and teaching staff how they should be used. Her salon is also OPI Training Centre for Cumberland and surrounding areas.

And on top of that, she has an award which she shares with the nail treatment company - and got to meet Made in Chelsea star Jamie Laing in the process.

The move to Cumbria has been life-changing for Karolina and her family, and when they are not at school or work, they are spending time together in the fells or at the coast.