Career LMBDW

16 Female-Founded Brands You Need To Know About

08 March 2019

Turns out girls wanna do more than just have fun, they want to run kickass brands that make our lives way better. Take a leaf out of these ladies’ books if you want to be the next best thing in business, they truly are the definition of #girlboss


Starting the business in 2010 from her parents’ garage, Jane Lu built up this fashion empire from just a laptop and two shelves of clothing.  The CEO and founder of Showpo ditched her accounting and corporate finance background to start her own business after a year travelling overseas (we wouldn’t want to go back to the desk life either!). Flash forward to 2018 and Lu has created a juggernaut clothing brand that ships to 80 countries with a cult social following of over 2.8 million. She also shares tons of insights into her life and the business struggles she’s faced as well as advice for young entrepreneurs setting out.

Frank Body

And for my next party trick, I will make babe's clothes disappear.

A post shared by frank body (@frank_bod) on

With a marketing and branding campaign like no other Frank Body burst onto the scene in 2013 with a cheeky tone and a scrub soon to be loved all over the world. The founders Jess Hatzis, Bree Johnson and Erika Geraerts discovered the power of scrubbing with coffee after Johnson’s fiancé was getting requests at his Melbourne cafes for leftover coffee grounds to use as an exfoliator. Turns out mixing the amazing (cellulite busting) benefits of a caffeine scrub with a smart Instagram campaign and fun, quirky brand tone across everything from the packaging to the influencer-based marketing strategy was a business model that saw the brand become the multi-million-dollar revenue maker it is today.

Keep It Cleaner

Instagram star and model, Steph Claire Smith started Keep It Cleaner, an interactive fitness and health program with her business partner and bestie, model Laura Henshaw in 2017. This all-round lifestyle brand helps girls (and boys) get fit, healthy and happy with 20-minute workouts, perfect for squeezing into your day (with no excuses) that get you super sweaty and build some serious lean muscle over time. Their approach to health is so amazingly holistic and easily applied to your life you’ll be hooked in no time. The program focuses on making young girls feel great about themselves too with mediation and calm sequences built into the site. The recipes (hello fajita bowl or honey and ricotta pancakes) are also so incredibly delicious, even your boyfriend will be begging for them.

The Beauty Chef 

One of the first mainstream brands on the Aussie market to introduce us to the power of probiotics, Carla Oates aka The Beauty Chef created a movement in the industry with her ‘beauty belongs in the belly’ philosophy. Her holistic beauty strategy has helped so many women (and men no doubt) fix their problem skin with her famous ‘Glow’ inner beauty powder. With a range of powders, cordials and now probiotic skincare, Carla’s products aim to improve gut health and support skin rejuvenation and trust us, it works!

Baby Anything

Lucie Ferguson (yup, that’s the sister of Elle Ferguson) is the creator of some of the finest delicate jewellery around. She even made her sister’s spectacular engagement ring! Handmade with precious metals and rare gems, her rings, earrings and necklaces are truly beautiful pieces, perfect for luxe layering. Lucie is also one hardworking woman, sourcing her stones from all over the world. We wish she’d create our engagement ring too!

Go-To Skincare

Former Cosmo beauty editor, author and wife to Hamish Blake (plus mum to two of the most gorgeous kids on the planet) Zoe Foster-Blake, started her epically effective beauty brand in 2014. Her products focus on ingredients you need (and none of the filler you don’t) which means they can do pretty impressive things for your skin. Our personal hero is, of course, Face Hero, the oil that saves you in winter when your wind-burned face is about to peel off in a flurry of dry, dead skin. The Exceptionoil (yeah, we may have a thing for her oils) will make you feel like you’ve headed off to Tahiti for the afternoon. We suggest slathering it all over your body then having a few glasses of wine with the heater on. You’ll legit convince yourself you’ve been transported to a tropical paradise.


Set your design’s vibe with these relaxing hues.🔵

A post shared by Canva (@canva) on

If you’ve ever had to design a resume or presentation last minute and your Photoshop skills aren’t quite up to par, no doubt you’ve heard of Canva. This multi-million-dollar design site was started by Melanie Perkins while studying a communications degree at just 19. With over 10 million users globally, this site will help anyone design websites, marketing documents and so much more, no lengthy Photoshop processes needed! It’s a real game changer!


While there’s a huge amount of awesome activewear brands out there at the moment, one really stands out from the pack – Nimble. With fun but not over the top styles (think subtle snakeskin, water droplets and ‘moto’ ribbing) Katia Santilli and Vera Yang have created a brand that’s both beautiful and functional for your workout. After meeting in high school at age 14, the pair took on the activewear game quitting their day jobs in 2013 and say their success is all about balancing their lives with the business. Sounds like good advice tous!


Full set feeling 🎨🧡

A post shared by Glossier (@glossier) on

The US juggernaut beauty brand has developed a cult-like following around the world after founder Emily Weiss developed a “skin first, makeup second” policy. Transforming beauty for girls globally, Emily first popped onto the scene with a cameo in  The Hills before starting her famous blog, Into the Gloss in 2010, where we’ve been perving on celeb’s makeup bags ever since. Glossier products set themselves apart by being created consumer first, with Weiss heavily leaning on her social media to connect with her audience. The playful stickers Glossier products come with don’t hurt either!

PLAY etc

So. Darn. Cute. Coming very soon…

A post shared by PLAY etc. (@play_etc) on

While we may not have little kids yet, we definitely know what we’ll be dressing them in now thanks to Play etc. Created by former Cosmopolitan Editor in Chief, Bronwyn McCahon and Kristiina Rose-Innes the brand makes clothes for girls that are fun and easy to play in. Best of all, each item sold educates a girl for a day thanks to their partnership with ‘Room to Read’, a not-for-profit organization supporting girls education in developing countries. Keen to get on board but don’t have little ones? They’ve just created a range of women’s ‘Fun’ jumpers perfect for keeping warm this winter!


Pucker up, babe.

A post shared by GLAMAZON | Book Beauty Online ( on

The uber for beauty was originally created by Lauren Silvers (with a later merger with another #girlboss, Lisa Maree, head of a global swimwear label worn by the likes of Kim Kardashian). The premise was simple but oh-so-amazing, delivering beauty professionals to your door whether you were after hair, makeup, a spray tan or tons of other treatments. You can also find a last-minute appointment at your favourite salons. Our lazy asses will thank them eternally for connecting us to so many beauty services from the comfort of our own home.

SkinnyMe Tea

Tag your favourite 💕☕️ @jasminedowling

A post shared by SkinnyMe Tea (@smtofficial) on

Founded in 2012, Gretta Rose van Riel started her tea detox program from her Melbourne home. The company’s mission is to help people achieve their health and wellness goals through the world’s first ever teatox! This simple program combines Morning Cleanse and Evening Cleanse products as well as healthy recipes and PT designed workouts to help people accomplish their health and weight-loss goals. Gretta is listed in Forbes 30 Under 30 and continues to make waves in the health and wellbeing world, inspiring people to take control of their lifestyle through their love of tea.

The 5th

Not only has Gretta Rose van Riel become world-renowned in the health and wellness industry, she is also the co-creator of The 5th alongside Alex McBride. The 5th is a fashion brand that sells sleek and sophisticated watches and formats their business on a 5-day sales model. This means that a product is only available for sale for 5 days and then is restocked on the 5th of the next month. This unique way of selling made the business $1 million worth of sales in one single day!  

Grace Bijoux

A bohemian lovers dream! Grace Bijoux is a boutique designer and manufacturer of beautiful, handcrafted jewellery, with a specialisation in boho chic headpieces, anklets and body chains. Based in sunny Queensland, Lisa McDonald started Grace Bijoux in 2012 and is the head designer of her brand which ships to countries all over the globe.

Mon Purse

Fashion week street-style made easy with our Camera Bag. As seen on @jordynbosher

A post shared by Mon Purse (@mon_purse) on

Lana Hopkins idea for her brand, Mon Purse came to her in a Build-a-Bear workshop of all places. Walking around the mall one day, Lana was frustrated that she couldn’t find the perfect handbag and after participating in this workshop where her nephew could make and customise is own perfect bear, the idea for Mon Purse was born by building your own handbag. This gives both men and women the opportunity to design their own monogrammed handbag made from European leather.

Samantha Wills

At the age of 22, Samantha Wills launched her luxe bohemian jewellery line at Australian Fashion Week in 2004. Her brand inspires women to embrace their strength and femininity and be part of a conversation of women who are daring and creative. Samantha Wills has a much deserved international and celebrity following and has been profiled in Vogue, Harpers Baazar, and InStyle and she even designed earrings for Sex and the City. Talk about girl power!

Written by #girlbosses Cassidy Loane and Tamara Bose.