Carly Knowles provides practical business advice for small beauty salons and freelance artists during lockdown
Tell us a little about you and how you got into the beauty industry
I have always been an industry enthusiast growing up, having bad skin as a teen and my Mum taking me for treatments with a super talented skin therapist to seek answers and results for my own skin. I think the help she gave me was probably one of the major inspirations for me joining this industry as I was in awe of her knowledge. I’m a therapist of just under 20 years, since 2006 a clinic owner/entrepreneur, Mum of 2 maniac toddlers, Miller & Bonnie, & I am a country girl from a rural area in Victoria, from a small town called Yarrawonga.
I have had a busy career jam packed full of opportunities that have presented to me over the years.
I was lured to the Gold Coast in my early days to pursue working in the film industry because back then there was so much work happening at that time.
I worked in some high end clinics around the Gold Coast for a few years, where I snagged quite a few contracts working with some A grade celebs as their private therapist, and also working in the make-up trailers assisting.
I opened my first ever clinic on the Gold Coast in Mermaid Beach and had that clinic for 10 years. It was my baby, and I nurtured and loved that business like it was my own child. My husband and I then decided it was time to move closer to family, to have our own family, and relocated home to country Victoria where I would then open my second clinic in the small regional town of Yarrawonga.
Last year was tough and it all taught us to pivot our business in some way. I had a side project I had been working on for years on and off, it was just a bit of a love project that I had never found the confidence to actually launch or do anything with.
Last year, having more time on my hands, I found myself feeling an urge to complete this project and actually bring it to life to ensure that I would then have jobs and more security for me and my team if and when more shutdowns happen due to the pandemic. So that is when Dewy & Lewy Skincare was born, a cosmeceutical skincare range, offering powerful formulations, with cell changing ingredients! We are so proud of what we have achieved with our new side hustle and am excited to finally share it with our customers.
What do you enjoy most about working in the beauty industry?
The connections I get to make with people. I absolutely love my clients, and no matter where I go, I always stay connected to the people I have been in contact with. Most of my ex-staff members are still in touch with me years after they have moved on, and I have been very grateful to have been guided, worked with and aligned myself with some amazing people in our industry who have opened up multiple opportunities contributing to my businesses success. I love that our industry has unlimited avenues. There are so many opportunities and ways for you to gain career advancement by being in this industry. It truly never gets boring.
How do you manage your business, Bella Pelle, through lockdown?
Being in a forced shutdown really sucks and you are allowed to feel all the emotions. But you can not stay there. You have to use this time to be proactive and give your business the attention you always say you haven’t got time for. It’s not the time to sit down and feel sorry for yourself for too long, don’t fall into a device vortex and spend all day just flicking through social media. Don’t let this messed up pandemic win. I refuse to let it swallow my livelihood and that’s how I would encourage anyone else to start tackling it too.
I really focus on what I can do rather than what I can’t do during these times.
I constantly check in on my team, making sure they are ok, keeping the communication lines open with them, and try to keep them engaged and connected with the business as much as possible.