The doors have opened for me and i feel like i’m step­ping in those doors now.

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This stead­fast work ethic stems from her child­hood. “I am from a very nor­mal fam­ily in Perth, my mum’s a nurse, my dad’s a brick­layer. It was all about, ‘hard work pays off ’. My par­ents taught me if you want some­thing, you can’t rely on any­one to give it to you – just go get it your­self.”

How­ever this wasn’t the first time Jess has con­sid­ered go­ing into busi­ness. “I’ve had a lot of peo­ple ask me to do busi­nesses with them,” she re­veals, “but I’ve said no. I’ve been ap­proached a lot for peo­ple to give my de­sign and my brand to, but it was a real con­scious de­ci­sion to say, ‘No, I re­ally want to have some­thing that I call the shots [on] and that I’m in­vent­ing my­self.’”

Equal Beauty is the prod­uct of two years of solid re­search. “I ac­tu­ally sat in the lab and for­mu­lated it with my chemist,” says Jess. “This isn’t about me just slap­ping my name to some­thing, this is some­thing that I’ve cu­rated, that I’ve man­i­fested.”

When asked if she now con­sid­ers her­self a busi­ness­woman, Jess hes­i­tates briefly be­fore re­ply­ing, “I guess so, yeah. I feel like I am a busi­ness­woman. I am turn­ing into that.”

She also says au­then­tic­ity and in­tegrity are cen­tral to her busi­ness ethic. “As I get older, I’m re­ally con­scious about who I sur­round my­self with, who I work with. I’m all about au­then­tic­ity, about truth. I don’t want you to lie to me, don’t want you to blow smoke. I want the truth. It’s bet­ter for me, it’s bet­ter for ev­ery­body else.

“My big­gest learn­ing curve would be know­ing who to trust. Mak­ing sure that… legally you have every­thing set up be­fore you go into any talks. I’ve re­ally learnt it’s im­por­tant to pro­tect your­self as a busi­ness­woman… there’s peo­ple who want things for the wrong rea­sons. It’s re­ally im­por­tant to have a good lawyer.

“Life is about mak­ing choices, and some­times they’re re­ally hard.” When asked about hav­ing made tough calls in her own life, Jess replies, “Well, with peo­ple that you work with. You know… leav­ing my fam­ily at a young age, break-ups with peo­ple be­cause we’re not go­ing in the same di­rec­tion, choos­ing ca­reer over per­sonal life. Some­times the de­ci­sions that we have to make to fol­low our pas­sion, they’re the tough­est lessons.

“It was a long process, get­ting hurt, be­ing vul­ner­a­ble and get­ting f**ked over… un­der­stand­ing who’s on my team, who’s not, know­ing who to trust, what do I stand for. I spend a lot of time alone trav­el­ling so I write a lot and try and be re­ally hon­est with my­self. I like to con­front things now.”

These days, it’s a strong sense of self that keeps Jess grounded. “When you have that cer­tainty of who you are, that’s re­ally good. I tell young girls, ‘Just get to know your­self. Don’t try and be ev­ery­body else, just find your own… what­ever that is, just find it.’ I think for me, when I found it that’s when every­thing re­ally start­ing fall­ing into place. I just had to look in­wards.

Now, the time has come to share the fruits of tough lessons learnt. “I can’t wait to have a fam­ily, that’s the next thing. I grew up in a big fam­ily,” says Jess, who is the youngest of four. “So I would love to have lots of kids. I want to leave some­thing be­hind for my chil­dren… Get mar­ried, have kids, teach them every­thing I’d known… Teach them that what­ever you put your mind to, you can do it.”

In the mean­time, Jess is pre­par­ing to jet back to Perth for what will be her first week­end home in two years, ahead of a busy year that will see the re­lease of her line and two up­com­ing films. And, it seems, she’s more than ready.

“I feel like now is the time for me. I think every­thing in life is about tim­ing… the doors have opened for me and I feel like I’m step­ping in those doors now.”

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