Ruth Griffin: Puttin' on the glitz
Party season looks
It's mid-November and the tinsel, glitter and sparkles are slowly but surely making their way into our homes, our outfits and, of course, our make-up bags. As your diary fills up with everything from family get-togethers to office lunches and festive bashes, you'll want to make sure that you're putting your best face forward.
To help you out, I've listed below some of the strongest trends in beauty for the 2018 party season. Sparkling manis and - believe it or not - blue eyeshadow are top of the trends. For a more classic look, a ruby-red lip is still the go-to for so many of us - fab, festive glamour in seconds!
Try these looks at home yourself - I've given each one a DIY difficulty rating and a list of products to use - or treat yourself for a big night out and book into a local salon for a party make-over. My favourite beauty pit-stop is Dublin's Dame Lane, where The Hive Salon (thehive.ie) is next door to One Dame Lane, run by make-up artist Lyndsey Cavanagh (lyndseycavanagh.com). They've teamed up to offer a Party Package, which includes hair, make-up and lashes, for €80.
Party season - and all the styling, late nights, rich foods and alcohol it involves - can be a war of attrition for your skin and hair, so make sure to give them some restorative TLC after a big night out. When you get home, remove your make-up thoroughly without faffing around with cleanser and cotton wool with the just-add-water Cleanse Off Mitt (€5.95 from pharmacies nationwide). Then, next morning, hydrate thirsty skin with Seoulista's Head-to-Toe Glow Box (€26, from pharmacies and Dunnes Stores).
Good hair day
Your skin's not the only thing that can become dehydrated - hair can suffer from thirst too. Keep it nourished this party season with The Wake-Up Circle Hair and Scalp Day After Recovery Mask by Davines, €10.50, from salons nationwide.
For a handy party beauty helper, and for complexion touch-ups throughout the night, slip this gorgeous, feather-light powder compact into your mála. Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish Skin Perfecting Micro Powder, €42 from Brown Thomas, BT2, Arnotts and brownthomas.com.
Six of the best Party season looks
The Smokey Eye
The make-up: A strong, sexy, smokey eye teamed with a classic nude lip.
The hair: Centre parting, loose blow dry with tons of texture left in.
DIY rating: If you're a dab hand with your make-up this is actually pretty easy to do. I wouldn't bring the shadow so far up to the brow bone; it will look more flattering to bring the dark shadow just beyond the crease. The hair is also undone and textured looking, so no need for major hairdressing skills here either.
Perfect for: Drinks, dinner, dancing!
Products to use: YSL Full Metal Eyeshadow, €30.50, from department stores nationwide; PS Pure Light Pink Glory Gloss, €3, from Penneys stores nationwide.
The Classic Red Lip
The make-up: A strong, true-red lip with tons of mascara.
The hair: Loose, big waves, undone texture and small lift to roots.
DIY rating: This make-up is a doddle to do yourself at home; a slick of strong red lipstick will make you party ready in seconds. The hair may need a bit of pro assistance to get right.
Perfect for: Any type of party!
Products to use: Clarins Joli Rouge Velvet in Deep Red, €24, from pharmacies and department stores nationwide; Lacura 3 D Effect Mascara, €2.50, from Aldi stores nationwide.
The make-up: The trend for blue eyeshadow that was resurrected by Kim Kardashian earlier this year has gotten a more subtle make-over for party season. The hair: Hard side parting, slicked down ponytail; a simple hairstyle is your best option when paired with a strong make-up look.
DIY rating: The hair is a piece of cake to DIY, but the make-up look requires a bit of technical skill to get right.
Perfect for: Any kind of evening bash.
Products to use: Make Up Forever Artist Shadow Iridescent Finish in Sky Blue, €20.50, from MUF stores and Debenhams stores nationwide and makeupforever.ie; Wet n Wild Megaglo Contouring Palette, €5.95, from pharmacies nationwide.
The Timeless Sophisticate
The make-up: A strong eye in a neutral hue, clean canvas skin and a deep, rosy-blush toned lip.
The hair: Undone chignon, with loose strands at front, slight lift to root of hair.
DIY rating: Easy peasy!
Perfect for: A dinner and theatre get together with friends.
Products to use: Tom Ford Runway Eyeshadow in Opal or Platinum, €38, from Brown Thomas and brownthomas.com; Chanel Rouge Coco Ultra Hydrating Lip Colour in Michele, €35, from department stores nationwide.
The make-up: The cat-eye flick trend continues this season; here it's the focal point of the make-up look. Skin is super smooth and flawless.
The hair: Side-swept, super-groomed curls.
DIY rating: Hair is super easy to DIY. Use the new ghd Oracle. Just spray hair with product, place ghd curler at root of hair, move the curler 45° angle and move straight down to the ends of hair. The slower you move the plates the bigger the curl; the faster you move it down your hair the looser the curl. Make-up is also effortless to DIY if you're handy with your liquid liner.
Perfect for: Any kind of party!
Products to use: ghd Oracle, €199, from petermark.ie and Peter Mark salons nationwide; Inglot All Covered Up Foundation, €38, from Inglot stores nationwide and inglot.ie.
The make-up: This is full wattage glamour, but not over the top. Think bronzed glowing skin, a strong brow, softly-defined eyes and glossy lips instead.
The hair: Side swept, Veronica Lake structured waves.
DIY rating: The make-up again is easy to achieve yourself, with the emphasis on glowing, gorgeous skin but the hair needs definite hairdresser skills.
Perfect for: A full-on, dancing till dawn bash!
Products to use: Huda Desert Dusk Eyeshadow Palette, €65, from Brown Thomas and Arnotts; Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz Pencil, €25, from Brown Thomas and Arnotts.