I recently tracked down the creator of my favourite lip glosses (they smell, taste AND look great), to find that the brains behind this beauty biz, is none other that Alex Fevola. I’ve always known Alex to be a beautiful, creative, busy working mum. She is also a talented photographer, trained makeup artist and, yes, the wife of AFL great Brendon Fevola. I was delighted to learn recently that she also has a full-blown beauty empire now, with Runway Room salons taking over Victoria… Next stop: The world. So, naturally, I had to ask Alex for her top tips while travelling, all whilst having my makeup done recently by her Runway Room team using their Australian-made products, in Prahran, Melbourne.
What are your go-to products when you pack for a trip away?
A necessity when travelling is Lip Prep – a hydrating, exfoliating Lip Balm, perfect for long flights. It will keep your lips nourished and hydrated when travelling. Also, a soft shade of pink, perfect for everyday wear.
How do I avoid looking so worn out by jet lag, or just general tiredness?
Pink Flesh under eye corrector is perfect for correcting under eye dark circles; the peach/pink tone will correct the purple under eyes and brighten up tired eyes.
Is there a hair product you can’t live without?
It’s a battle between dry shampoo and Fab Pro Purple Pigment conditioner. Fab Pro will keep your colour fresh, especially after swimming. My hair goes very brassy from chlorine so Fab Pro Platinum Pigment is a saviour!
Best body products for on the road?
Tan Extender and Moisturiser! If I’m going somewhere that requires wearing bikinis, then fake tan is essential! So, a good tan extender and moisturiser to keep skin hydrated is essential to avoid crocodile skin.
Where do you love to holiday?
I love anywhere tropical: Fiji, Vanuatu and Hawaii are some of my favourite overseas family holiday destinations. Closer to home, anywhere up North: Byron Bay, Noosa, and the Whitsundays are all stunning.
How did you build your business?
I have been completely obsessed with my business from the very beginning. I am so passionate about what I do. I think a genuine love for what you do is an important part of success. Authenticity and belief in what you’re selling is the key to a good business. I also think taking risks and having faith in your ideas and goals is important. If you over-think things, it would be hard to keep growing and branching out. I think experience and knowledge is essential. You need to know your industry inside and out. With knowledge comes confidence and belief in yourself.
Tell us about your beauty line.
So many people dream of creating their own range, what were your challenges?
I feel extremely grateful to have been able to create my own beauty line but it hasn’t been easy. Manufacturing in Australia and keeping the products affordable has been quite challenging as it’s very expensive to manufacture here, the manufacturing Industry here is limited which of course makes it far more expensive. There’s a lot to learn along the way. I think the hardest part has been learning how to actually sell your product. Where do you want to sit in the market? Who are you marketing to? Dealing with distributors and retailers, this is a new area for me and I’ve had to learn along the way. As a make-up artist of 20 odd years, I know make up and I have a good idea of what women want but learning the ropes of the cosmetics world of distribution, wholesaling and retailing has been challenging. It’s not an easy industry, the competition is fierce, you’re competing with some of the biggest businesses in the world with huge marketing budgets, superstar ambassadors, etc., so it’s hard to get retailers to take a risk with a small relatively unknown brand. Having said that, we have been incredibly lucky to partner with some amazing companies which has helped lift the profile of the brand. For example, Melbourne Fashion Week, Melbourne Racing Carnival, David Jones, Channel Nine’s “The Block”, Fox FM, Portsea Polo, Mercedes Fashion Week, etc..
I love the scent, taste and colours of the glosses. What are your fave items?
That is great to hear! One of my fave products is our Peach Punch Flush, it is so fresh and youthful on any skin, it finishes off a face beautifully. I also love our mascara and lipsticks. They are premium quality and comparable to (if not better than) most of the high-end brands that cost at least double the price.
What is the best way to buy your products?
In-salon or at one of our stockists is always a good way to buy as you can try on all the products and feel it on your skin, be colour-matched properly, and learn how to use the products. Alternatively, online is great as we always offer specials and discounts and have great images which are very representative of the actual shades.
You’ve achieved so much, faced all sorts of challenges, what are your hopes for the future?
I hope to see Runway Room continue to grow interstate and eventually, internationally. More salons, more products, more stockists! I just want people to love our products and services and most of all help women feel good about themselves. There is nothing better than seeing your client’s face when they see the end result after a make-over. It’s such a buzz. I never get tired of it, its always a great feeling, making someone’s day!
To visit the Runway Room website or to find a stockist, click here.