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Mom who started out making do in the kitchen now runs a bath bomb stand

A mum who gave up her job as a carer to open her own business is ‘exploding’ with happiness after showcasing her scented sensations at Longton Market. Nakoma Overhand has been successfully conducting “The Bomb by Nakoma” for four weeks.

The mum-of-three sells handcrafted bath bombs, soaps, melt waxes and carpet deodorizers, all available in different scents. It’s something she started doing from the comfort of her own kitchen during the coronavirus lockdown in 2020 and it has grown rapidly since then.

Demand for its products – the most expensive product being just under £7 – has exploded. It’s a relief for the former caregiver who quit her job to focus on this new venture.

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Having struggled to find her true self in her previous jobs, Nakoma says making and selling bath bombs has become “second nature” to her. It was LUSH, in Hanley, who inspired her to start her own scent story and dive deep into the world of bath bombs.

The 30-year-old, from Trent Vale, said: “I suffer from mental illness and struggle to find a job. I started making bath bombs and it’s become my forte now, it’s second nature to me.

“I was obsessed with LUSH and would shop there constantly. This intrigued me and I thought how do you do this? I started researching what it was, then took the plunge and got the aesthetic evaluation.

“It’s a legally binding document that allows me to be able to sell them. It took me 10 months to submit the reviews because I was constantly worrying and playing with the recipe to make it do certain things and work in certain ways.

“The first evaluation took place in 2020. From there, we added new products. It was a long process.

She started the business from her kitchen in 2020

“We first started in my kitchen, then it went to the dining room. Then I converted our summer house in the garden into what we called the Bomb Shack. I exceeded the space, and the demand became greater and greater.

During the lockdown – when face-to-face contact was prohibited – Nakoma had a plastic box in her garden where customers could pick up their orders. It would be a chance for her to interact with them behind her socially distanced window.

She has been selling on Facebook for two years, but launched her website earlier this year. She hopes her “profitable” range, consisting of 32 different fragrances, will take off and wants to open her own boutique in the future.

Nakoma told Stoke-on-TrentLive: “It’s been difficult. We had the pandemic and everything was so uncertain.

“All the kids were home and it got pretty fun. You couldn’t see the other people face to face, so we put a plastic box in the garden and we collected.

“People would order us and then come to the garden and their order was in the box. There was hand sanitizer and a jar they could put the money in. It was funny because we waved at them through the window.

“It’s a full-time job because there’s a lot of work. I work a lot behind the scenes and it takes a lot of time.

“There is never a moment when I can say that I have nothing to do. I hope that one day we will become big enough to be able to start employing other people and opening up to different places.

“The children are very proud and they love it. There were times when I missed five hours of sleep because I stayed up so many nights when we had craft fairs or craft markets.

She added: “Self-confidence was the hardest part for me and I constantly doubted myself. With everything going on with the pandemic, I thought I was going to go for it. I won’t let what happens in the world influence my decision.

“It was about getting out of my comfort zone. Sometimes it’s surprising how quickly you can adapt to what’s happening.

“We have been really well received in the market. It’s a community and I’m part of a little little family. Everyone has been really nice. It makes waking up in the morning and going to work a positive feeling. You feel like you are with friends.

“Our products are profitable. You can have fun without breaking the bank; your children can still enjoy themselves without it affecting your finances. I tried to keep my prices reasonable.

“It’s something needed in Longton. There are a lot of stalls that are still closed, they need people. I hope one day I will have my own shop and expand to different areas, that’s the dream.

The Bomb by Nakoma is open every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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