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Women stop going straight as eBay sales of hair tongs tank

Influenced by the likes of Robbie Keane's glamorous wife Claudine Palmer or international stars such as Rihanna, Beyonce, and Cheryl Cole, Irish women are wearing their hair in a natural style and abandoning hair straighteners while also seeking DIY beauty solutions as they cut the cost of looking good.

Searches for hair straighteners, priced at up to €138, plummeted by 124 per cent compared to March-June last year, according to online auction firm eBay.ie.

Flawless skin and funky nails are also fashionable, with foundation and nail art ranking the site's first and second most sold items.

The bold and beautiful eyelashes look is also in, with searches for false eyelashes up by a whopping 237 per cent since 2010 and those for eye shadow up by 65 per cent.

Hair colouring, hair care, nail care, make-up, false eyelashes and nails, and general preening and pampering accounts for a huge share of a beauty and personal market that was worth €808m in 2009 -- but is thought to have fallen in the past 18 months -- according to market research firm Euromonitor International.

Understandably pessimistic about our weather, Irish women also looked into bronzing their bods at home, as searches for spray-tan tents sizzled 89 per cent more this year than they did in the run-up to last summer.

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