Trainers are good idea if your going to explore oz.
Flip flops..known as thongs in australia are a must, I assume your off to oz very soon, the weather us going to be hot nov, december and jan so you will viurtually live in them.
And yeah..maybe some nice shoes for work to slip on..dependant on what sort of work your doing.
Maybe a hair dryer but not a straightner... you may then need a power converter?
I'm normally pretty girly at home, use a hairdryer most days & straightners if I'm going out, I like my make up, nice clothes, jewellery, cosmetics etc. But when I spent 3 months in SE Asia I had to ditch all that stuff, I bought a change of clothes for about 5 days (really easy to get stuff washed in Asia), left the hairdryer & straightners, bought minimum make up & cosmetics.
I felt quite liberated just being natural & casual & not worrying too much about what I looked like. Not only that but my backpack would have weighed too much & I'm only small, would be way too much for me to carry. When ever I felt a bit scruffy and ungirly I would treat myself to a manicure, so easy in Vietnam and Thailand and so cheap!
In places like Cambodia & Laos I would have stood out even more if I was too groomed.
I would recommend one smartish outfit for visiting religious sites in Thailand though, i.e trousers, proper shoes & a top that covers shoulders and not low cut.
If you're going to be on the move quite a bit I wouldn't recommend taking too much. But you say you'll be working for a while in Oz, I guess you'll stay somewhere for a while so bringing a hairdryer & straightners is justified.
I just set off, and seriously, so many things don't matter anymore when you're out there. I brought my straighteners and havent used them once, but my friend has. Clothes wise, I took two pairs of shorts, and about seven little vest tops that would just squeeze into the side of my bag. Shoes - you don't need lots, I have a pair of flip flops and a good pair of Merrells trainer/sandal thing that are really comfy.
As for other little things, I got a body pouch thing, if you're security concsious. It's a flat pouch that fits around your waist underneath your trousers that you can put tickets, passport in. It's also waterproof so you can swim with it. Also you could take ear plugs, if you're staying in a hostel a lot of them tend to have nightclubs and bars outside which can get a little loud at night. Permanent marker, in case you want to hitchhike and need to make a last minute sign. All purpose soap, means you dont have to take shampoo, soap, or anythign like that cause it works on anything, even for washing fruit and veg. Silly little things like tin openers (the tiny ones that fit in your pocket) because you never know when you won't be able to open one. Bottle opener. Pen knife (not a swiss army one, just a normal pen knife will do). Knife, fork, spoon, you can get the little sets. Mosquito nets arent really essential, most hostels have them if there are a lot of mossies about. Torch, in case of power cuts. Not a sleeping bag, but a sleeping bag liner comes in handy. Travel towel (these are amazing, they take up no room at all and dry really quickly). Then maybe some superglue, sewing kit, etc incase anything breaks.
They're really the essentials. And, of course, take a razor, so many people forget it.
Girls - Marks & Spencers do travel hair straightners for £15! Our local store in Bath has just been re-vamped and they now have a section with a load of really cool travel essentials for us ladies - defiantely worth checking out (I don't work for M&S by the way!!)
If you are hoping to pick up bar work then a pair of flip flops is not going to cut it - for starters you wont get hired in any decent establishment if u rock up to an interveiw in a pair of thongs. We have quite strict work place health and safety laws in the hospitality industry so you have to minimum wear enclosed shoes (this is so that u dont try to sue then when u stand on a peice of broken glass in your open toed shoes) and probably black ones. Clothes and shoes are pretty cheap in australia so u might want to save the space and the backache and just buy things when u get here.