When she’s not busy leading her PR company, Sweaty Betty, or landing a deal for her digital influencer agency, Ministry of Talent, professional powerhouse Roxy Jacenko can be found in her gorgeous Bondi home. As the author of Strictly Confidential, The Rumour Mill and The Spotlight, a juicy series that reveals the inside scoop on the world of publicity, and a previous cast member on the 3rd season of The Celebrity Apprentice Australia, Roxy’s (rare!) free time is spent with her two children, Hunter and Pixie. At just four years old, Pixie is following in her mother’s footsteps, taking on the world under the spotlight. The four-year old caught our attention via her highly scrutinised blog (penned by mum), her designer duds and unmistakable strawberry-blonde hair. Ever the entrepreneur, Roxy spun another business off its success launching in-demand hair accessory line, Pixie’s Bows.
Roxy warmly welcomed us into her home (and soldiered on through our shoot, despite suffering from pneumonia after a serious post-surgery infection earlier this year). As she casually worked her way through a series of top shelf wardrobe changes (for both her and Pixie), she chatted candidly about her upbringing and attitude to work, revealing her dedication to beauty maintenance. Despite a gruelling life/work juggle, Roxy finds time for weekly spray tans, blowdries, hair colour and extensions, manicures and makeup appointments - proving that no matter how busy you are, there's always time to have your nails done.
"I’ve been working since I was fourteen.
I worked every afternoon after school, seven days a week, from four to eight. I worked at George at Flower Man in Double Bay on Saturdays and Sundays when I had started my PR company. I used to like working there because they were the only place on a Christmas Day I could work. I was like, ‘please! It’s triple time! I’m working!’
My goal was to make something of myself
like my parents did with themselves. They both came from working class backgrounds, as clothing manufacturers. And now my mum works with me! I guess I learned work ethic in a sense that they never just gave me anything. So, while I was at a private school and girls would get Mercedes for first cars, I got a fourteen-year-old Volvo that was worth $4000. It was always instilled in me that if you want something, you have to work. No one is going to give it to you. [With work] I’m obsessive compulsive; that’s my edge. I can confidently guarantee you that there is no other PR girl who will respond to your email within three minutes!
I fell into PR.
I actually started as a receptionist and office admin and ended up moving my way throughout the business under the instruction of two big name fashion players at the time, Mark Keighery of MARCS and Helen Robbins who headed up Diesel Italy (denim) where I worked. I had no idea really what I wanted to do, other than get a job and not go to school! I had aspirations of being in the Police Force (maybe I spent too much time when I was young watching ABC’s The Bill) but my Mum feared for my safety so always steered me away from it.
I love my job.
I love watching the team evolve, getting great results for our clients and the opportunity to experience so much on a daily basis – our world is constantly changing and digital is a perfect example of the opportunity within my job. One minute I am running a PR company and the next I am negotiating a deal for our digital influencer agency, The Ministry of Talent.
I started Pixie’s blog just for fun.
Instagram wasn’t really around when I did that. It was used, but not used in the capacity it is now. So, I did it as a tongue in cheek way, saying thank you to people who had given us gifts for her. And then one thing led to another and I started the Instagram and it’s gone from strength to strength. There’s a fascination with it. First, it’s a lot of stuff... And you also just have to remember that she doesn’t look like a normal kid because of that red hair! That’s so unique. So, she stands out. She’s exposed to a lot of things that most four year olds are not.
We sell hundreds of thousands of bows a year.
It’s unbelievable. It started when people on Instagram would ask, ‘where did you get it?’ And I was like, ‘do you know what, I can’t bring myself to tell someone where I got it, I’m going to make them!’ So we started making them. Clever gifting is a big part of it; Suri Cruz, Beyonce, they’ve all had them. The reality is that I’ve always been an entrepreneur and I’ve always thought good enough will not be good enough in my eyes. I can always do more, I can always achieve more, and that always comes from the mentality that I want to make my parents proud. I pushed the boundaries because I wanted them to look and go, ‘wow I invested all of that time and all of that energy bringing her up, and wow look what she has achieved.” Pixie will retire at five. I will be working until I’m a hundred and fifty five.
When I was growing up I tried everything,
Cutting my hair boy short like Posh Spice was a bad move, I don’t know what part of me thought I needed to channel my inner Posh Spice, but it wasn’t a good look. Throw in a bleach job and it was a sight for sore eyes… the kind of pictures that when your mum fetches them to have a laugh with friends you want to crawl under the sofa in horror!
I don’t really think I have a beauty influence.
I guess with beauty it’s important to do what suits you, just like fashion. My personal style is very of the minute, and my bank account doesn’t thank me for it. I adore Balmain Jackets and have one in every colour, Dior Shoes at the moment are to die for and about the only heel I can sprint in (cause who runs?!) Dolce and Gabbana is a wardrobe staple, mostly because Pixie and I love wearing a matching frock (naff, I know, but we think it's fun) and Hermes Birkins – I collect them in various sizes and colours so one day Pixie will have a wonderful collection to hand to her daughter.
Beauty routines require consistency.
I loathe that there’s not one miracle cream that you lather on once and it works for a year! You have to be consistent and regimented. I cleanse in the shower with Dr Lewinn's Cleansing Milk for my sensitive skin. My body wash is always Peppermint Grove Body Wash in Gardenia. I swear by Resultime Serum SOS as a moisturizer, as I suffer from very bad rosacea, and then it's straight into make up for the day.
I feel most beautiful…
with a spray tan and a great wash and blowdry. It’s simple but makes you feel fresh and – after a hell of a week – alive! I have a weekly spray tan with Deanna from Mobile Spray Tanning Australia. She comes to my home for a late evening appointment. I get a blowdry at least twice a week at Raw Salon, Darlinghurst with Anthony and also with Maggie or Jasmin at Joh Bailey at Double Bay. Park Hyatt Spa is divine and a special occasion go-to spa for me when I really need a time out. I get a manicure and pedicure weekly with Mervat Fanous, who comes to my office or home. I also love a quick mani/pedi at Bella Nails in Double Bay. I have my teeth cleaned religiously by Dr David Carr in Double Bay as I am white-obsessed and find that a three monthly ‘sand blast’ gives you those Melrose Place pearly whites. When I can, I do light treatments with Eva Karpati in Double Bay.
When it comes to makeup,
less is more and when possible, leave it to the professionals! I am a minimalist, but at the same time, I have an obsession with trying everything once, I am certainly a huge consumer. Sadly I am not consistent with my beauty regime – I suppose that comes down to managing the businesses and having kids, you try to do a bit of everything fast! I keep it quite simple day to day. For work I wear foundation, bronzer, mascara and illuminator. At night or for a special event I'll mix it up, but never with colour, I stay safe and with brown and black tones on the eyes and very bronzed skin. I have never been one for wearing red lip – I would look like a clown!
I regularly indulge in having my makeup done professionally
by Norman Gonzales and Max May and I often work in my own beauty buys with the artist's kit. I have recently started using Nude by Nature Mineral Bronzer. I find that a great spray tan has a limited life on the face versus the body and the Nude by Nature always works perfectly to match my neck and give me a golden bronze. I never go out without a full set of lashes, and have a stack from Glam by Manicare, which I have finally found the knack of how to apply (with an eyelash applicator!) and a lick of MAC Lip Gloss.
I am horrible with my hair.
Believe me, you would be too, if you had all of nine hairs like I do! This mane is a full time job, and whilst I’ve tried my hand at doubling as a hairstylist the Tangle Teezer always comes out 10 and Roxy 5! I swear by Anthony Nader at Raw for a cut every three months, then I have tape extensions by Jasmin Stevenson followed by a weekly wash and blowdry with Keiren Street at Valonz, Paddington. Ash Crocker looks after my colour every four weeks, as I am very dark. I changed to blonde because someone said they have more fun - but it really is a big job to maintain it!
I do my emails to relax.
Activities beyond work and family are a rarity for me, any spare time I have, it’s with the kids, Pixie (4) and Hunter (15 months) – if they are asleep, then it’s a good time for me to catch up on emails and draw inspiration from the world wide web. I’m also not social. I’m the most non-social PR girl you’ll ever meet. I don’t go anything, I’d much rather be on my emails, so if I’m not at work, I will be on my laptop at home.
I was so naughty as a pimply faced teen,
I used to wet the facial soap then put it straight back in the green plastic holder to try and trick my mother that I had actually washed my face. Thing is, she never fell for it, as the bar wouldn’t shrink with a simple splash of water! My first beauty product was the Clinique teen set. I didn’t even use it, but I had it - well everybody did - it was a cool thing to have in your bathroom.
My mum taught me…
to brush the teeth I want to keep and to wash my hair more often! I didn’t listen to either – it’s only when you hit 30, and you think, ‘heavens maybe I should start drinking this Dr Lewinn's moisturiser as where an earth are these lines popping up from?!’
I had a nose job for breathing and for aesthetics.
I had a very traditional Jewish nose. I had it done by a fabulous surgeon, but when I had such sickness [after the operations], people assume it was the doctor’s fault. It’s actually not; I had a bug, obviously, in my system. And about four weeks after, my nose started expanding, expanding, expanding, and it was all an infection. I ended up in the hospital for two weeks, and then I came home and had a PICC Line IV, which is a line in your arm to your heart because it’s the quickest way to disperse antibiotics, and a nurse everyday in my home. I’d stay home until midday to get the IV done, and then I’d go to work. And now I have pneumonia. The hospital and the doctor hadn’t seen what I got in fifteen years because it’s so unique for each person. It doesn’t do any good that I work like a lunatic and I don’t give myself any time to rest. But that doesn’t work when you have two children and a fascination with beautiful and lovely things!
My favourite feature is my boobs!
Funny thing is, I always wear a high neck, but being the girl in school referred to as Sultana Tits, having boobs now is quite fab. No one realises how lousy garments look when you have no bust to fill them out – then when you do, everything you wear looks completely different! As for my least favorite feature, I could have said my nose, but I fixed that up! I don’t have one, if I haven’t been happy with something, I’ve worked to fix it.
Sadly, I don't get to the gym these days
with family, kids, work – so I’ve given up dessert instead! I used to train daily with Matthew Flynn, an incredible trainer who does mobile visits complete with the equipment. He also offers great outdoor classes – this is on hold for me at the moment, but I’ll be getting back into it the minute both kids are in school. I am very lax when it comes to my own health and wellbeing. That is something that I know I need to correct, but when you have so much responsibility and so many people relying on you, you tend to put yourself and your health to a side – which I can admit isn’t smart!
I eat sushi literally every single day.
If I am mixing it up, then I'll have a Matzo Ball Soup (Hungarian clear soup with a ball made from Mazto Mill – unleavened flour). I eat out a lot and my regular go to’s are: Catalina, Rose Bay, for a quiet meal or celebration; on the weekends we will head to Crinitis for a fun meal with the kids and Sunday lunch with mum and the family at The Royal in Paddington is always casual but not compromised when it comes to food and service (and speed when it comes to kids)!"