League of Extraordinary Women – Kate Fissenden

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Kate Fissenden


Kate Fissenden

City: Melbourne, Australia

Business: Stevie K Cosmetics

What: Melbourne Made Cosmetics Range, Online Retailer

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1. What was the catalyst for launching your business?

You know how you hear people talk about a ‘Lightbulb Moment’? Well, that’s exactly what it was.

Sitting in a dark bar down a cobblestone alleyway in Tallin, Estonia, I was a few wines down and excitedly telling my boyfriend about my past jobs working for some of the biggest brands in the cosmetics industry.

The packaging, the smells, the colours. Every little process and the importance of ingredients.

He sat there looking at me with a look I had never seen before. “Never have I seen you talk about something with so much passion, this is what you need to do, you need to work in cosmetics”.

Fast forward one year and more stories than you could poke a stick at and here we are! I have just launched my very own brand, Stevie K Cosmetics. Made right here in Melbourne.

2. What do you love most about what you do now?

Even though I don’t have an established business, I am doing what I love and that is creating. I run every aspect of this business from design, formulation, marketing, branding. You name it, I do it. My heart and soul goes into these products and there is nothing more satisfying than seeing my ideas slowly come to life.

It is so hard and it is so stressful but I would not change it for the world. I could cry with excitement (and a touch of complete fear!) with the fact we have just launched.

3. Describe the biggest setback you faced when establishing your business? How did it affect you and how did you push through?

There are so many. When you are designing a product from scratch, most things that can go wrong will go wrong haha. The biggest setback would be working with Australian manufacturers. Sadly, I have been turned away and made fun of by the ‘big boys’ of the industry. If you don’t have a million dollars they don’t want to work with you. I see why so many Australian brands get their products made in China, but I refused. Blame my stubborn personality.  I am lucky that through my previous employment in this industry, one company has decided to come with me on this journey and are behind me all the way.

4. Everyone has days where they feel flat or uninspired – do you have any tricks or tactics for overcoming these feelings?

I have a little note stuck on my desk that says “Remember why you started” and it really is that simple. Stick to your guns, give it all you have. If you need to cry then do it. Scream, drink some wine, go for a run, have a mini breakdown and then get right back to work!

About Stevie K

Who is Stevie K?

The Stevie K woman is strong, sexy and a little bit rock’n’roll. She lives life on her own terms.

Void of vanity, we’re for the women who aren’t afraid to be themselves.

Frills and bows or sass and a single malt. Delicate beauties or power players. Embrace your individuality.

The new kid on the beauty block, Stevie K Cosmetics is designed and made in Melbourne, Australia. With punchy colours and eye-catching designs, our packaging takes inspiration from the street art and culture of this amazing city.

Join the Stevie K gang. We’ve got your back.

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