Monthly Archives: July 2019

A Career In Beauty Therapy: Alex Hankin

A Career In Beauty Therapy: Alex Hankin

Find Your Career in Beauty Therapy

with Alex Hankin

A career in beauty therapy can take you places you may not have considered before. From a career in the traditional spa to a career educating future beauty therapists, there are incredible opportunities available in the beauty industry.

This week on the “A Career in Beauty Therapy” series, we catch up with Alex Hankin – a truly inspiring business owner, lash expert and founder of Battle Lashes.

Tell us about BatteLashes!

We founded Battle Lashes with one goal in mind: providing a high-quality, smart, and reliable Service. 

Battle Lashes is a well-established eyelash enhancement studio in Canberra, Australia. Battle Lashes focuses strongly on the correct and safe application of your enhancements ensuring eye safety.
We focus strongly on our eyelash technique and knowledge to create a softer and lighter enhancement to suit each individual. At Battle Lashes we believe the quality of education for the consumer will define higher standards of services in the industry.

 Lash extensions are the number one beauty must for instant gratification, and the trend of having false lashes is rapidly increasing. But, we have to remind people that lash extensions can cause damage if they are not applied correctly! We don’t want to put a downer on lashes or anyone but it’s not a joke when proper eye health and lash care comes into play. That’s where Battle Lashes comes in, and that’s how we got our reputation. 

How incredible do lash extensions make you feel! My personal journey in lashes started early. I’ve had an obsession with lash enhancements since I was a young teen. My lash obsession has led me to over 10 years of service experience and an incredible business model!

Tell us about your career in beauty therapy.

,I always had an eye for lashes! I was always obsessed with anything I could put on my eyes to enhance them. Whilst in high school I was given the incentive to attend two days at TAFE to study hair dressing (which was the closest thing to beauty in a small country town). Once I had finished high school and my first year in hairdressing, I moved straight to Canberra to study Beauty Therapy to add yet another trade skill to my repertoire. Although I didn’t go straight into beauty once I was qualified, I did manage to land my first job in beauty less than 12 months after moving to Canberra, and this is where I got to start applying lashes. The only reason I got to apply eyelash extensions as a junior was because no one else wanted to nor did they like the service. Fast forward a few office jobs, a stint in the Army, a child, and an online kids clothing brand, I started lashing for friends and family to help support both my son and myself. Two weeks after returning home from the Army I starting lashes again. I registered the business name Battle Lashes and 4 years later here I am! A reputable salon, an incredible team, our own line of lashes and an education section to enforce the fundamentals of safe and lasting lashing!

Your tag line is “LASH SPECIALISTS “the precision of a surgeon, the vision of an architect”. Tell us more about this.

This tagline really represents how we at Battle Lashes approach styling and creating the perfect set of lashes tailored individually to each client. We are meticulous in the way we work – steady hands, focused, and committed to making your lashes and your experience in the salon the best it can possibly be. Each client, each eye and each face is completely unique. There isn’t a “one size fits all” solution when it comes to lash extensions. We look at your entire face, your face shape, and eye shape, along with your natural lashes and create the perfect look for you.

Why is beauty therapy education so important for your business?

Understanding the in’s and out’s of the human body from a beauty perspective is vital for lash technicians. Understanding the anatomy of the eye, what it does along with the natural lash cycles and contraindications are what make great technicians. Also, understanding the salon environment is important from a business perspective. A business can’t operate solely on steps of service and thus understanding Beauty Therapy as a whole enables students with the skill and mindset to become an asset to any business.

Education is important, and not just short courses. Use the internet to research, join forums and be present in the current industry trends to keep yourself relevant with techniques and/or services. 

What advice would you give to someone considering a career in beauty?

Jump! There is never any certainty with anything in life, but if your service is in high demand and your books are closed to new clients, it’s time to get someone in and train them up to your standard. Be confident in your dreams and trust in yourself – business is hard and there is no handbook – it’s just yourself and your vision. Get a good accountant, make sure you cross your T’s and dot your I’s because nobody else is going to do it for you. Be strong and work on upskilling yourself and your team – furthering your education and staying up to date is vital!
And most importantly, be the best version of YOU, every day! Because you never know who is watching.

Why do you love your career in beauty therapy?

It gives me the creativity I need to express. There are endless treatments in the beauty industry that can be offered and taught. There are new products constantly being developed and new things to explore. But mostly, as a busy woman myself, I love the feeling that our services give others. Lashes create some kind of invisible confidence boost, some kind of instant gratification that anything is doable and that you just, CAN. There is something about how lashes make you feel, and being able to give that to another woman is an incredible thing to be a part of. A woman creating confidence in another woman with lashes is an addiction in itself. 

Where can people find more information about you?

Our business grew to what it is today from word of mouth. Ask around and ask people in Canberra if they have heard of Battle Lashes. If not, we use Instagram (@battlelash) a lot to keep our followers up to date with what we are doing in the salon. We also have facebook and our website www.battlelashes.com


We are so incredibly grateful to Alex for sharing her experience in the beauty industry.

For more guidance about your future career in beauty therapy, chat to the expert team at ACTI at 02 6176 3411.


A Career In Beauty Therapy: Brooke Harris

A Career In Beauty Therapy: Brooke Harris

Find Your Career in Beauty Therapy

with Brooke Harris

A career in beauty therapy can take you places you may not have considered before. From a career in the traditional spa to a career educating future beauty therapists, there are incredible opportunities available in the beauty industry.

This week on the “A Career in Beauty Therapy” series, we catch up with Brooke Harris – assistant manager, beauty therapist, and Beaute Industrie contributor. We were lucky enough to have Brooke share her career in the beauty industry so far.

Tell us about your career in the beauty industry

I was 15 years old when I discovered a passion for health and well-being. I loved pampering myself and all things luxury. I found my passion for beauty therapy after a makeup application that left me feeling some crazy self-love. After feeling this way, I promised myself to pass this feeling onto someone else.

I was 17 when I enrolled to do a Diploma of Beauty Therapy at Elly Lukas. A year later I completed that course with two international qualifications and two awards under my belt. Whilst studying full time I was also working in a day spa, I worked here for 18 months. When I got comfortable I decided I needed to start something new. I loved my job, but I needed a new challenge.  In mid-2017 I started my role on the other side of the industry. The Clinic. When I started my job in the major cosmetic laser clinic franchise, I was a Junior Therapist when I started here, I had no idea what I was doing, and I was definitely thrown into the deep end.

 6 months later I was promoted to assistant manager.  Whilst being in this role (which I had no idea what I was doing, I very quickly had to learn to adapt and prioritize even the smallest things). I very quickly learned that there was no one to turn to for advice or ask questions to in times of DIRE need.  Whilst these thoughts were brewing Beaute Industrie was born, and I pitched my idea of having someone on board in the industry that could give the best advice or recommendations to. 

Tell us a little about you and your role with Beaute Industrie

I teamed up with Beaute Industrie in 2018 after Tamara’s very first Beaute Brunch, after which I noticed that there were very few support options for budding therapists in the industry. I was left with a burning desire to change that with Beaute Industrie.  My role at Beaute Industrie is to share the information and the challenges, to give advice to budding therapists or to give direction to someone who wanted to enter the industry who might not have an idea where they need to begin.  A therapist may find @bi.therapistbrooke to be valuable as its content is created to help inspire and allow a safe place for questions and curiosities to be answered.

What has been the best part of your career so far?

When studying beauty therapy, you have a couple of times when you sit down and really have to take everything in.  The highlight of my career at this point in time would be winning the Endota Spa Therapist Award through Elly Lukas.  It was a moment where I looked around and saw that all my hard work was recognized and my 5:30 am starts and weekend working had all paid off.  Winning an award like the Endota Award (for me) was fulfilling and overwhelming and has led to many more career opportunities.

What do you love most about the beauty industry?

I would like to see the eradication of prejudices and negativity.  Leave the “every man for himself mentality” behind and start to create a place where information is shared, and businesses strive to encourage growth.

I love the new technologies and research that comes out. I love the constant adaption – no two treatments or days are the same.

When you first enter a treatment room you don’t always know what to expect or how demanding a client can be.  For me, being a beauty therapist is about being able to walk into the treatment room, and take it all in.  It’s like a constant improv reality Tv show.

What advice would you give to someone considering a career in beauty?

Be excited about changes and challenges.  You’re always going to need to be able to adapt. Although you are studying beauty therapy you are not limited to be a beauty therapist, – you could mentor, or be an owner, a business development manager the choices are endless. There’s no limit. Don’t be afraid to say “yes” to opportunities and get outside your comfort zone.

What change would you like to see in the beauty industry in the next few years?

I would like to see the eradication of prejudices and negativity.  Leave the “every man for himself mentality” behind and start to create a place where information is shared, and businesses strive to encourage growth.

To find out more about Brooke and Beaute Industrie you can visit her Instagram @bi.therapistbrooke


We are so incredibly grateful to Brooke for sharing her experience in the beauty industry.

For more guidance about your future career in beauty therapy, chat to the expert team at ACTI at 02 6176 3411.


A Career In Beauty Therapy: Belinda Hughes

A Career In Beauty Therapy: Belinda Hughes

Find Your Career in Beauty Therapy

with Belinda Hughes

A career in beauty therapy can take you places you may not have considered before. From a career in the traditional spa to a career educating future beauty therapists, there are incredible opportunities available in the beauty industry.

This week on the “A Career in Beauty Therapy” series, we catch up with Belinda Hughes – Clinic Owner and Natural Beauty Expert, and Skin Therapist. Belinda has had such an exceptional career in beauty and we can’t wait to share her story.

Tell us about your career in the beauty industry

 I started my beauty career in Canberra. I worked at Schick Natural Body Therapies in Kingston while I studied Beauty Therapy and that really shaped the direction that I took in the beauty industry. I wanted to know everything. I was an avid researcher of products and ingredients and that really set me up to build the business I have.

After almost 15 years in the industry, I opened my own clinic in the back on a pharmacy. Within months of opening, I had to move as they were closing down. I then found a room with a podiatrist to rent and then my business took off. Within 12 months I had to move again as I had outgrown the one room space with all the products I stocked.

About 16 months ago I moved four doors down to a two-room space. My husband has joined the business full time and we have over 20 brands in-clinic, a strong website with online booking and e-commerce, as well as the busy clinic.

I have a strong focus on getting people onto the correct products for their skin to heal and correct skin conditions in conjunction with their facial treatments, hence the ‘Skin Clinic’ rather than Day Spa. I strongly believe homecare is 80% of skincare results so clients should be using the correct products rather than the latest product over the counter.

Your clinic has a natural approach to skin care. Tell us about this and why it is important to you.

I had such a strong start in beauty therapy. I started work in a high-end natural beauty focused salon that really shaped me and how I work. During my studies I learned about the impact of free radicals and anti-oxidants on the skin. It made no sense to me why to put free radical causing petro-chemical ingredients in an anti-aging product. It just seemed counterproductive. I strictly work for the health of the skin so it can function at its best.

In my experience skin is always healthier in the long run when using professional antioxidant rich skincare. The skin just comes alive. My customers are very happy when they get these results.

What has been the best part of your career so far?

My career really took off when I started as a Sales Representative with Eminence Organic Skincare. I always thought it was such an amazing brand; I was thrilled to work with them. I still stock them in my clinic today.

The other stand out moment was when I started publishing an online magazine, Natural Beauty Expert, in 2014. That’s when I really started to shape what my current company looks like. Natural beauty is a lifelong passion for me and I love spreading the word far and wide to help as many people as possible with their skin. Natural Beauty Expert has lead to many opportunities such as speaking at expos, promoting brands I believe in, interviewing amazing people and even launching the first 100% natural Bellabox in 2015.  I also really enjoy doing education for other therapists in the industry who are interested in how natural beauty works for the skin.

What do you love most about the beauty industry?

I love helping people, so for me, it’s helping people with their skin. Appearance can really matter to people, especially when they have a skin condition that alters their natural appearance like severe acne or rosacea.

What advice would you give to someone considering a career in beauty?

Be passionate about what you do, because then everything else falls into place. You’re then motivated to seek out more information, work hard and achieve.

What change would you like to see in the beauty industry in the next few years?

I would like more regulations for the beauty industry. I’ve felt like this for years because under trained therapists are being let loose with advanced modalities like laser and skin needling. There should be more of a push for beauty therapists to complete advanced courses specialising in a specific area.

To find out more about Belinda and her amazing clinic you can:

Shop and book online: https://belindahughes.com.au 

Get social on Facebook: www.facebook.com/belindahughesskinclinic

Check out our Instagram: www.instagram.com/belindahughesskin


We are so incredibly grateful to Belinda for sharing her experience in the beauty industry.

For more guidance about your future career in beauty therapy, chat to the expert team at ACTI at 02 6176 3411.


A Career In Beauty Therapy: Ashlee Middleton

A Career In Beauty Therapy: Ashlee Middleton

Find Your Career in Beauty Therapy

with Ashlee Middleton

A career in beauty therapy can take you places you may not have considered before. From a career in the traditional spa to a career educating future beauty therapists, there are incredible opportunities available in the beauty industry.

This week on the “A Career in Beauty Therapy” series, we catch up with Ashlee Middleton. Ashlee has had an incredible career so far with extensive experience in education & training, beauty therapy, and more.

Tell us a little about you!

I knew from the age of 15 that I wanted to be in the beauty industry. When I was in Primary School I remember my Mum taking me to the local beauty salon for a steam and extraction treatment before Netball on Saturdays, which perhaps built the foundation of my love and passion for the beauty industry. I also suffered from hormonal acne as a teenager and as an adult, so I know how this can impact someone’s self-confidence.

I grew up in Albury/Wodonga, so after finishing Year 12 I moved to Canberra and studied my Diploma at Ellebana School of Beauty Therapy.

While I was studying I worked as a Manager at Hungry Jacks (also where I worked while at High School), which gave me really valuable Management experience. It taught me structure, organization, strong work ethic and how to manage people. I honestly believe this experience helped mold the career I have today in the beauty industry.

What has your career in the beauty industry looked like?

I started my career as a beauty therapist working in a Day Spa, but I also spent time over the years working as a therapist and managing beauty salons, and also worked as a cosmetic counter manager for Clarins.

I knew I had a passion for management and training, so in early 2011 I was lucky enough to get a job as a Business Consultant at Dermalogica. This was the turning point in my career. While here, I attended every course I could possibly do, learned everything I could from my colleagues and worked extremely hard to develop my skills. I was really lucky as Dermalogica invest a lot of time into developing their employees.

After 4 years I decided to open my own business, Skin and Beauty Bar, where we offered all beauty treatments, but specialized in skin treatments and spray tanning. I worked across all aspects of the business, including performing treatments, training staff, social media management, accounting, marketing, etc. I sold the business after a few years and secured a position as a Business Development Manager for Skinstitut, which had both sales and training elements. Again, I took all the opportunities available to develop my knowledge and skills. My time at Skinstitut really cemented my love for skin and skin treatments, and really extended my knowledge on ingredients, skin conditions, nutrition and treating the skin from a holistic approach.

I have recently started working for Lumenis, a company that sells Laser-based devices, as an Area Sales Manager. I have really enjoyed learning about the different types of laser machines and their capabilities. It has really expanded my knowledge of the amazing results we can achieve for our clients. This role also allows me to work closely with Dermatologists, Doctors and Plastic Surgeons, which has been very insightful.

Source: @ashleejademiddleton

I am very grateful to have worked in the beauty industry for 12 years, and I feel very privileged that I have a job that I love, and that I enjoy going to work every day. The best part of my career is knowing that along the way, I have helped beauty therapists and fellow colleagues become better at their job and helped develop their knowledge and skills. I have also been very blessed to work with some amazing people.

What advice would you give to someone considering a  career in beauty?

1.There are many career options.

2.Never stop learning and developing your skills.

3.Education is key! Take advantage of the courses your skincare/brand houses offer, even if you have to go in your own time.

4.Utilize industry Facebook groups and learn from your fellow colleagues.

5.Listen to industry based podcasts (I am a self-proclaimed podcast nerd). I personally listen to Beaute Industrie and Inside Aesthetics while I drive and at the gym.

6.Network, network, network!

What do you love most about the beauty industry?

I love that the beauty industry is forever evolving. When I first became a beauty therapist, Microdermabrasion was only just becoming a popular treatment. Now we are performing skin needling, laser treatments, body contouring procedures, cosmetic tattooing and much more.

I also love that we are seeing businesses that specialize in particular services. For example, I visit different businesses for nails, spray tans, waxing, laser and skin treatments.

What change would you like to see in the beauty industry in the next 5-10 years?

More training and development for beauty therapists around client consultation.

More emphasis on treating the skin with a holistic approach, looking at lifestyle and diet factors, and how they can affect the skin.

More training in the Certificate IV and Diploma level training on retail expectations.

An increase in the use of devices in beauty salons and clinics.


We are so incredibly grateful to Ashlee for sharing her experience in the beauty industry.

For more guidance about your future career in beauty therapy, chat to the expert team at ACTI at 02 6176 3411.