Wednesday 18 October 2017

Bairbre Power: on the move & packing light

Stylish women who have the tricks for sidestepping hassle

Reversible coat, €129, available in grey/blue from Carolyn Donnelly's The Edit at Dunnes Stores.
Reversible coat, €129, available in grey/blue from Carolyn Donnelly's The Edit at Dunnes Stores.
Reversible coat from Carolyn Donnelly.
Millie and Gym range: patterned bra top.
L'oreal Paris Color Roche L'Huile nail varnish
Millie &Gym half-zip Tracktop, €30.
Bairbre Power

Bairbre Power

I haven't gotten my hands on the new Dyson hairdryer yet, but I confess, I am intrigued, because I blow dry my own hair most days. It's that kind of empowering, DIY approach to life and beauty regimens/maintenance that I salute.

Recently, I interviewed the Today FM radio producer and mum-to-be Mairead Ronan, and I was mightily impressed - not just at how fabulously groomed she was at her Renault Ireland ambassador's photocall, but the fact that she had done her hair and make-up all herself.

Intrigued by her 'can do' approach, I quizzed Mairead - who is due her second baby in September - about her DIY grooming and beauty regimen. Turns out the bouncy blow dry was all her own work, helped by her first ever business venture - a set of four, professional standard, ceramic barrel hair brushes of different sizes and bristles. The FARO range is on sale at The Loop in Dublin and Cork airports, and at Cara Pharmacies, for €43.

"I leave the house every morning at 5.30am, so I tend to wash my hair the night before and blast dry it. Then, in the morning, I spend about five minutes re-shaping," Mairead said.

Her foundation also looked exceptionally good and Mairead explained how she got that very professional finish.

"I have a very pared back make-up bag and it's very small and see through so I can see exactly where everything is. I use Ken Boylan's foundation with a little bit of Nars and a little bit of Estée Lauder Doublewear. I put three tiny dots on my hand and then blend them together and that's it. I'm using the Rimmel Kate for contouring and I wear Russian Red or Ruby Woo lipsticks by MAC."

Another Irish woman with a 'can do' attitude is Carolyn Donnelly, and I like what she is doing in her Edit range at Dunnes Stores. She is stylish yet practical, and her latest innovation for us to wear is a reversible trench which packs like a dream even if you roll it up into a ball. The coat (above right), costing €129, comes in a silver grey with blue lining, and also in a black and cream combination. You can wear it with the collars turned back to give a hint of colour and show off the belt too.

Carolyn is always on the move and admits she was determined to manufacture the "perfect coat" for our light summer showers which, let's face it, haven't been so light of late. Anyhow, her coat is lightweight, smart and completely reversible. Two days, two looks, one coat. Like your style, Carolyn!


Nail it!

L'oreal Paris Color Roche L'Huile nail varnish

I love the cut-glass bottles of the new L'Oreal Paris Color Riche L'Huile nail varnishes (€9.20, from supermarkets and pharmacies). The 16 colours are scented with rose, but the ace factor for me is the wider, round shaped brush which means each nail can be painted in a single stroke.

On the run

Millie and Gym range: patterned bra top.

Funny how my suitcase priorities have changed since I've taken up walking. Now, every city I go to, I bring a pair of trainers with me rather than heels! In London recently, I made a beeline for LuluLemon on King's Road, half thinking I might bump into Kate Middleton, who shops at that branch. The good news is that the line of yoga clothes and running gear is coming to the Brown Thomas store on Dublin's Grafton Street in the autumn. In the meantime, I've shopped the Millie & Gym range which is exclusive to Life Style Sports. Good on colour - their patterned sports bra top (above) is €20, and their €30 half-zip tracktop (below) comes in blue and pink. See

Millie &Gym half-zip Tracktop, €30.

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