BUSINESSWOMAN Nicola Wood has braved the Dragons’ Den for a hairy encounter – in more ways than one.

Nicola, 47, appears on the show tomorrow to pitch her hair extension holders in the hope that one of the famous dragons will invest in her business.

“We filmed it in May and I don’t think I slept the night before. I just kept practising my pitch,” said Nicola, who lives in Walmersley Road, Bury.

“I’ve always watched and always loved the show, so I decided to apply.”

They say that necessity is the mother of invention and that was certainly true for Nicola, who has been a hairdresser since leaving Radcliffe High School.

“I created and manufactured the hair extension holders because I found that I needed them, but they didn’t exist.”

Although she still works part time at Great Lengths salon in Bury, Nicola decided to set up her own business, Easiweft, two years ago.

Television viewers only get to see three minutes of each applicant’s pitch, and a few minutes of them being questioned by the dragons, but Nicola revealed that she was grilled by the dragons for 90 minutes.

“It was the longest one-and-a-half hours of my life. I’ve jumped out of planes but that doesn’t compare to what It feels like being in the den.

“You think you’re fully prepared for anything but then they throw questions at you that you’re not expecting.

“Deborah Meaden was really welcoming and lovely, which I wasn’t expecting, but Jenny Campbell, who’s a fellow northerner, was really hard on me which surprised me.”

Nicola said she got plenty of support and confidence-boosting beforehand from her husband, Gary, and sons Robbie and Billy.

Her contract forbids her from revealing whether her time in the den resulted in success, but you can see how she got on by watching the BBC2 show at 8.30pm on Sunday.

“Family and friends are coming round for a party to watch it, but I’ll be watching through my fingers,” laughed Nicola.