Friday 13 December 2019

Triona McCarthy: How to make your eyes mesmerise

Our resident beauty expert shows us how, with all her insider tips and tricks of the trade

Triona McCarthy - it's time to make your eyes mesmerise. Photo: Gerry Mooney.
Triona McCarthy - it's time to make your eyes mesmerise. Photo: Gerry Mooney.
Dual-Ended Cream Smudge/Ultra Fine Eyeliner.
Bobbi Brown's Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner
Opal Coast eyeshadow
Pearl Drops Smile Corrector
SLEEP PLUS + pillow spray

Triona McCarthy

It's time to make your eyes mesmerise!


Liquid liner is a make-up must-have when it comes to defining and emphasising the eyes. I love how a little bit of liner can instantly change my look from daytime to diva!

Although, it has to be said, applying liner takes a bit of practice. You gotta act cool, calm and collected around liquid eyeliner, because it can sense fear! Think of Bobbi Brown's Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner, €23.50, as your safety net. This industry favourite is the easiest to use, as control is easily achieved by using a small brush for application.

Bobbi Brown's Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner

There's a new sparkly version of this classic that has just landed on counters in time for the party season. It's more of a two-in-one shadow/liner-type version, with just the right amount of subtle sparkle for day, which can then be amped up for night time. Use it with the new Dual-Ended Cream Smudge/Ultra Fine Eyeliner Brush, €40. But master the original first, before moving on to this one.

Dual-Ended Cream Smudge/Ultra Fine Eyeliner.

It's a modern-day cult classic, and benefit's they're Real! push-up liner, €25, is also a cinch to use. It's easier to control than liquid liner, as it has a more solid consistency, but you get the liquid-liner effect. Try benefit's the remover, €19.50, a must when using black eyeliner unless you want two black-looking holes in your towels!


If you've never used liquid liner before, it's best to start with a soft pencil to draw your template, and then go over it with the liquid liner. Take the line from one corner of the eye to the other to extend the shape of the eyes. I find that looking down into a mirror is the best way to apply liner, as it gives you more space on the upper eyelid to draw your line.



I can't always afford those fancy/spendy/showy-offy liquid soaps and hand moisturizers for my bathroom, so I sometimes buy the perfectly priced but not-so prettily packaged versions from the supermarket. To make them look more expensive, I simply pull the labels off, as the plain plastic looks much better. FYI, nail-varnish remover will help to remove really sticky labels.



I'm obsessed with how yellow my teeth look lately! Now, they've never been the whitest in the world - they're naturally on the creamier colour chart, which, appara, means they're strong teeth.

Having really pale skin doesn't help either. Really, they only look whiter if I amp up the tan, something I'm not really a fan of doing. Anyhoo, it's when I see myself on TV that I particularly notice how canary yellow they look, especially if I'm wearing one of my beloved brightly coloured lippies.

No wonder all the slebs get fancy teeth work done the minute they make a few bob. Well, until I make my first million, I'll have to make do with Pearl Drops Smile Corrector,  €8.24, which is a bit like nail polish for your teeth.

Pearl Drops Smile Corrector

After cleaning your teeth, pat them dry with a tissue, then apply a thin layer of Pearl Drops Smile Corrector to your gnashers and allow it to dry. Now, it isn't like Tippex - it gives more of a lustre to your teeth, and it can go a bit streaky at first until you get the hang of it. Best of all, it brushes off at the end of the day with your toothbrush.



I know from judging Ladies Day at various race meetings all over Ireland that Kerry ladies are super stylish, just like model Daria Werbowy, who fell in love with Ireland - she now lives here - when she was photgraphed for a Vogue fashion spread shot in the Kingdom.

They never fail to impress me with their glamour and grooming. Of course they have great salons in the Kingdom, including Expose Beauty Lounge in Mounthawk, Tralee, tel (066) 718-9009, or email

This one-stop beauty shop has a hair salon, a nail bar, pedicure stations, a tanning suite, a make-up studio, and a retail area that stocks Dermalogica products, Harley Wax, Silk Lashes, HD Brows, Gelish nails and Karaja cosmetics.

Keep an eye on their Facebook page, see, for lots of promos.



I'm going gaga for everything Nars at the mo. I can't get enough of the Audacious lippies I told you about lately, and now the Nars Holiday 2014 Colour Collection, Laced with Edge, has landed in Brown Thomas.

Created for "the future femme", this compact collection has a luxe lace design on the packaging, and consists of three lipsticks, three glosses, three eye shadows and three nail polishes, with a touch of shimmer in each. It's the perfect look for the party season.

Opal Coast eyeshadow

However it's the new-formula Hardwired Eyeshadows, including Opal Coast,  €25, that really do it for me. This shade is my must-have for creating lots of little touches for lighting me up like the Christmas Treena that I become at this time of year! Canberra, a sparkly purple that really makes all eye colours pop, is another standout shade.

I use Opal Coast just under my brows as a highlighter and as a little eye lift. But, to really make my eyes look bigger, brighter and more twinkly, I dot some on the inner corners of my eyes as well.

Finally, I play up my pregnancy assets - my decolletage - by dabbing a little of this shade on my collarbones for some festive shimmer.



I cannot brain today, I has the dumb! Seriously, I get it from lack of sleep. With a lively one-year-old boy and a little sister arriving in two weeks' time, sleep deprivation isn't likely to let up anytime soon!

SLEEP PLUS + pillow spray

For those that have trouble sleeping, you need to try this works sleep plus + pillow spray,  €33, developed after customers complained of drifting off to sleep easily, but then waking up. Every time a restless sleeper moves in bed, the scent is released from the tiny drops of lavender encapsulated in the spray, allowing inhalation of the relaxing fragrance to calm and soothe.

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