Fiona Neale, CEO and Founder, Issada Cosmetics

Surround yourself with good people ...

A qualified beauty therapist and make-up artist, Brisbane girl Fiona Neale ran two salons in London before finding herself rubbing shoulders with transatlantic-travelling celebrities at the First Class Virgin Atlantic Hair and Beauty lounges at Heathrow Airport. It was here that Fiona discovered Issada make-up brushes being used in the salon and by her jet-setting clients. With a little research she uncovered that the brand stemmed, amazingly, from Bulimba in Brisbane. Fiona had always dreamt of starting her own skincare brand, but the brushes shifted this path, and she knew Issada needed a make-up arm to accompany it. Focusing on skin health and balancing the line between fashion trends and colours and healthy products, the mineral make-up wing of the company created ripples through the industry when Fiona launched it in 2006. Now stocked nationwide at 250 salons, spas, cosmetic clinics, and the two local concept boutiques, Issada proudly continues to call Bulimba home 13 years since its inception. The Weekend Edition caught up with Fiona to chat perfect weekends and inspirations.

How do you like to start your weekend?
With a blue-sky, sunny day, coffee and croissants in hand, and a long-stem rose from my husband and son.

What’s your favourite thing to do on a Saturday morning?
Definitely enjoying a lazy, delicious brunch.

How do you like to unwind?
Sitting in a park watching my son ride his new bike or out shopping with my mum.

What are your essentials for a well-spent weekend?
Friends, family, great food and wine, and a little bit of ‘me time’.

What’s something you’ve been meaning to do on the weekend but haven’t got around to yet?
Shop Paddington from one end to the other.

What’s your favourite thing to do on a Sunday evening?
Take my son to Beccofino for our favourite Pappardelle al Ragu d’Anatra.

What are you looking forward to next weekend?
Dinner with friends at Enoteca 1889.

What are you reading at the moment?
I’ve just finished The Vogue Factor by Kirstie Clements.

What inspires you?
Making dreams come true.

What was your childhood dream?
To have my own business, be old enough to wear high heels and be proficient with chopsticks – tick, tick, tick.

What has been your greatest achievement?
Launching the Issada Cosmetics range.

What is success to you?
Balancing all of my favourite things.

What are your words of wisdom?
Surround yourself with good people.

Perk up …
Pearl Cafe, Woolloongabba, for superb coffee.
Relax … on a boat out on Moreton Bay.
Dine … at Stokehouse Q or Mario at The Dining Room.
Indulge … at Spicers Peak Lodge.
Shop … Edward Street (Brisbane’s Rodeo Drive), Brisbane City.
Catch-up … on Oxford Street, Bulimba.
Be inspired … Fortitude Valley – diverse in food, architecture, culture and street fashion.



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