Amanda Koh, 24, and Andrea Koh, 20, didn’t keep a single cent of their profits after selling press-on nails on Instagram (@forduchessbyduke) for two weeks. 

Instead, the sisters donated all $1,600 – the amount raised from their sales minus cost – to the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (HOME) to support migrant workers affected by Covid-19.

“We really just wanted to help as much as we can, so we figured we should just donate everything,” Andrea says.

Amanda (left) and Andrea (right) run a nail business on Instagram, forduchessbyduke
Amanda (left) and Andrea (right) run a nail business on Instagram, @forduchessbyduke
Photo Credit: Andrea Koh

The sisters initially wanted to offer manicure services. However, they started selling hand-painted press-on nails instead when Covid-19 circuit breaker measures temporarily prohibited beauty services in Singapore.

To mark the opening of their business, they decided to channel the first two weeks of their profits to a worthy cause. 

After running a poll on their business account, they learnt that most of their followers would like to help migrant workers. 

“Evidently, migrant workers make up most of the Covid-19 cases [in Singapore]. I think people feel strongly about [helping] the workers right now,” says Andrea.

The sisters said they received “very encouraging” support from their friends. Even those who live overseas have placed orders. Some of their customers also paid substantially more than the purchase price to contribute more to the cause.

“The most eye-opening part of this experience is how generous people are, which is something I didn’t realise until now,” Andrea says.

Fordutchessbyduke hand-painted custom press-on nail sets.
Amanda and Andrea’s hand-painted custom press-on nail sets.
Photo Credit: @fordutchessbyduke

The sisters sell their basic designs for $11.90 per set. The more complex designs are priced up to $60. 

Andrea shares that it takes about seven hours to paint a customised Mulan set, as she has to plan the design and cure the nails under an ultraviolet lamp for each layer she paints.

Although donating 100% of their profits isn’t sustainable in the long run, the sisters intend to hold more fundraisers in the future and donate a portion of their earnings to other charities, such as animal shelters. 

“It’s definitely something we want to do continually,” Amanda says.

Edited by: Christel Yan
Proofread by: Eunice Tan