Five female-run Canberra businesses you need to know about

Who runs the small business world? Girls.

There’s no denying that Canberra is home to many amazing small businesses who are all trying to make a positive impact—but did you know that more and more women are entering into the innovation ecosystem to share their groundbreaking ideas?

All fresh out of participating in the Canberra Innovation Network’s first SME Business Accelerator program (AKA the ultimate how-to guide on how to change the way you think about your business and take it up a notch), here are five female-run Canberra businesses you need to know about.

You can thank us later.

Adele Haussmann – Her Smile

Helping women overcome their anxiety surrounding self-image Adele Haussmann began Her Smile to help women build their confidence so they can take on the world.

Educating women about exercise, food, beauty, and style so they have a healthy relationship with themselves, Her Smile offers everything from the ultimate salon experience at their boutique location to retreats to re-energise, personal training sessions, and even a wardrobe analysis.

Winner of the Altitude Business Awards 2021, Adele has made tackling personal goals easier and more accessible by eliminating stress, anxiety, tension, and feelings of inadequacy. Did someone say “your one-stop wellness shop”?


Wendy Lees – Vetro e Metallo

Located in Braidwood (making her an honorary Canberran), Wendy Lees has a passion— and talent—for handcrafting jewellery using salvage metals and Murano glass. With the ethos of upcycling copper, brass, silver, and glass to create collections with soul, Vetro e Metallo is known for its low carbon footprint and strict adherence to sustainability and Australian hand-making.


Swan Ricco – LIFA LAB

Collagen cookie anyone? On a mission to help and educate people to achieve a healthy lifestyle through all-natural organic ingredients, LIFA LAB was launched by Swan Ricco in 2019.

Handcrafted for those who prefer natural alternatives, her plant-based super mixes are scientifically formulated to combine exotic spices and herbs that help make you feel your best on your health journey. And her vegan collagen cookies promise stronger hair, skin, and nails. Nom.


Angela Smith – Blackwattle Alpaca Yarn and Fibre

Another honorary Canberran, Angela Smith, and her husband Mathew began Blackwattle Yarn after falling in love with alpacas–and who can blame them!? Processing and selling the fibre from the herd, Angela uses her artistic skills to hand-dye the yarn and create stunning, colourful products. Pretty and functional, you can see why the business has flourished.

Renee Beerworth – Spinach Ventures

Launching Spinach Ventures in 2015, Renee Beerworth has a vision of a world where businesses bring people together and create a sense of belonging for everyone in their work sphere—no matter who or where they are.

Consulting, mentoring, and advising on the leading people practices and methodologies in HR Strategy, HR Advisory and Organisational Design, the aim of Spinach Ventures is to cultivate a work culture where people flourish, businesses thrive and communities prosper. It’s workplace brilliance brought to light.


Article by Erin Cross, originally published by HerCanberra.

Image: CBRIN Female Founders event, photography by Mude