It’s not often that I use Gritty Pretty as a platform to write a “personal” post…

But, Gritty Pretty is my brand and I’ll do whatever the heck I want.

For this particular post though, if I’m honest, I’m not even quite sure where to start. I’m sure she doesn’t know this (up until now!) but Lisa Messenger, serial entrepreneur and founder of The Collective, has inadvertently become a mentor of mine.

Call it a culmination of mysterious workings by The Universe but I’ve actually been a fan and follower of Lisa’s work for about 5 or 6 years now. At the time I first came across Lisa’s work, I was working as Beauty Editor at FAMOUS magazine and received a copy of one of her books, Books to Boost Your Brand. Now, let me point out that I’m sent beauty products – not books – so as fate would have it, I picked it up at the magazine’s book sale that happened every now and then when the Features Editor needed to clear his desk from underneath the masses.

Since then, Lisa and her experiences (in both business and life) really struck a cord with me. As a beauty journalist and now as an editor myself, I’m incredibly self-motivated and I often seek inspiration from the authors of self-help books. Knowledge is, after all, power.

After that non-physical run in with Lisa, well, life happened. I continued working for a variety of magazines. I found love. I found myself and I completely and comfortably came into my own.

Fast forward to June earlier this year and it seemed The Universe was ready to bring Lisa back into my life – and this time in more of an impactful way.

An email from Lisa’s creative director, Jade Dunwoody wrote, “We’d love for you to be on the cover of The Collective’s September issue.” I almost fell off my bloody chair. And, if I didn’t, I certainly needed help getting up off it.

I. Could. Not. Believe. It.

Could this fiercely intelligent, trailblazing businesswoman really want ME on the cover of her awe-inspiring, collectively empowering and forward-thinking publication?

She did because this happened…

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When it came to meeting Lisa for the first time, it felt like I’d know her for years. Perhaps, through her books, I had. We discussed what it meant to run a business without absolutely no outside investment or equity partners and we basically continued to fan-girl each other with shrieks of admiration for a good half hour. It was in that moment – and also in the moments during a two week sabbatical in Bali when I read her other books Daring & Disruptive and Money & Mindfulness – that I realised this woman had unwittingly become a mentor of mine. A woman I don’t just look up to professionally but personally. A woman who grabs life by the balls, giving herself wholly and freely to the world and whom makes a conscious effort to leave a positive effect on other people.

One of my personal mantras to live by is to work hard and be successful while remaining kind and respectful. I’ve seen how business can be done – and how it shouldn’t – and one of the most important business lessons I’ve learned is that there is more power in partnerships. Why drag others down when raising them up requires far less effort and gives a much greater sense of reward?

This post, in which Lisa will give you her own pockets of fashion and beauty wisdom, is about celebrating a woman who dedicates her life to celebrating others.

As I said, it’s quite rare that I use Gritty Pretty to publish anything other than beauty but when it comes to Lisa Messenger, well, I’m the boss so I’m making an exception!

I hope you enjoy.

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GRITTY PRETTY: What is your favourite fragrance?
I have so many but right now its CHANEL Chance Eau de Parfum.

GP: What are your 3 makeup essentials?
Inika Truly Organic Liquid Foundation, Ultraceuticals Ultra CC Powder and MAC Bronzing Powder.

GP: What is your morning and night skin care routine?
I use Rationale Super Antioxidant ACE Rejuvenating Serum, Rationale PhotoDynamic Light Activated Day Cream SPF 15 and Rationale Nutrify SPF 3O Mineral Sunscreen every morning. At night, I use Rationale ProCeramide Emulsion Preparatory Cleanser, Rationale Catalyst Skin Refining Serum and Rationale DNA Reactivating Night Cream.

GP: OK, you’ve got a Very Important Meeting. What’s your go-to outfit that always makes you feel confident?
At the moment, I’m loving IRO Paris, Aje, Alice McCall and Manning Cartell – these are my go-to brands at the moment that make me feel amazing and totally on brand.

GP: Which beauty product that appears in this month’s The Collective magazine will you be personally stocking up on?
I’ve got the whole set of The Body Shop’s Spa of the World range (seriously – I’m loving it!). I also really enjoy the CLINIQUE Smart Custom-Repair range. Eleanor was also our guest Beauty Editor this issue and she sparked my curiosity with O&M Project Sukuroi Gold Smoothing Balm – my hair takes a beating so anything that’s going to restore my hair, I’ll take three!

GP: Alright then, let’s talk pampering. Where you go to unwind and relax?
LM: My new fave getaway are the spas in Daylesford, Victoria.

GP: We’re loving your fresh ‘lob’ hair cut. Who regularly cuts and colours your hair?
Robbie at Halt Hair, Surry Hills – I’ve been going there for eight years.

GP: You featured Gritty Pretty’s Eleanor Pendleton on this month’s cover of The Collective. Why did you choose Eleanor?
When we decided we wanted to feature real entrepreneurs that are reviving their industries, Eleanor was one of the first cover stars we were adamant about. She’s injected excitement and a new grit to an industry that would normally be called “traditional.” She shows the everyday person that with perseverance and passion then anything is possible!

Lisa Messenger’s new book Money & Mindfulness is available now.

On Thursday 29 October, Lisa Messenger and The Collective September cover stars Eleanor Pendleton, Samantha Wills, Luc Wiesman and Toby & Pete will be hosting a special one-time only event in Sydney, Australia to discuss how to disrupt, innovate and succeed in business. Tickets are limited. Click here to book now.


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