the shiz behind the biz

Melissa Coulter - Touch of Utopia

My motto? - work hard, play hard.
— Melissa Coulter

Melissa : the original side-hustle glam gal who loves fast cars, golf and madonna...not necessarily in that order

“travel, golf, nice cars - I like to be seen! I like nice brands with quality service."  


“I was born and bred here, when I left school I got my first administration job with Rylands Mitre 10. I was working on the back trade desk, then I worked for Nautilus shipping and that’s when I got more into a sales role, I used to go down to the port and service the ships for their stores. From there I had my son, so I decided to do a Bachelor of Education at JCU, but realised in the final years of prac that I didn’t want to be a teacher, and when my son was old enough to go to daycare I said, ‘I just want to get a 9-5 admin job, so I went to work for GJ Gardner homes and worked my way up from admin to sales, sales manager, office manager then business manager.

I wanted to run my own business and put some of the skills I had learned into play, so thought, ‘outside the building industry, what do I know? I know makeup, I did some training with Estee Lauder when I was 17, 18, but I didn’t want to become a beauty therapist, I just wanted to do makeup, I did it more as a hobby.
I had my makeup kit and I’d just do friends and family, and what goes with makeup? Hair – so I started looking around and in 2009 found a salon in North Ward.
The owners were friends of the family, they were selling up and it just went from there. It was rundown so we cleaned it up, I did a full refurb, hands on tools myself – some of the staff helped as well. I always wanted to be big on customer service, I never wanted to have too many services, so hair and makeup, that was it.

I’m also the Regional Manager of North Queensland for Master Builders, it’s given me a lot of management skills and lets me stand back and look at the business, I’m much more effective now…”


Fashion style:
“The salon to me is a reflection of me so it’s that clean cut look and that industrial, structured-type look as well. I can be corporate, I can be anything really, I think for my age I can be pretty progressive! ”


Personal style:
“I’m a perfectionist, I think you can see that when you walk in to the salon. At home I’ve always had clean white lines, almost sterile-type home environment but now I’ve gone to a more industrial-type home, galvanised iron, concrete, timber and steel. I used to only have white, white tiled floors, white leather lounges, black and white dogs (moodles) and all that but I’m embracing colour a little bit more, not entirely, but a little bit - I’ve actually challenged myself. In the house now I’ve got a lime green lounge suite and some shabby chic pieces, and I went and bought a ginger cat! I’ve even got a red car now, I’ve really gone outside my comfort zone…”


On style:
“when you’re confident and comfortable in your own skin. I’m more open to people’s style now, I’m not so critical, I’m more accepting…”


Mel’s music:
“Anything Madonna. I like everything - I like country, 80s, 90s, easy listening, and the top hits over all the years. I’d be Madonna if I could be…”