Style Beauty

Saturday 20 July 2019

Ruth Griffin's natural beauties: embrace the real you, laughter lines and all...

Silver-lining: Actress and model Olivia Treacy at the Shelbourne hotel. Photo: El Keegan
Silver-lining: Actress and model Olivia Treacy at the Shelbourne hotel. Photo: El Keegan
Ruth Griffin. Photo: Naomi Gaffey
Bobbi Brown Nude on Nude Eye Palette Limited Edition
Fuschia Luxury Nudes Take 2
Repairing Cleansing Treatment €32 - and selected salons.
Joico's Color Infuse Red
Alfaparf Milano Grey Pride Forever Grey Balm €14.95
Make-up artist Warren Dowdall
Ruth Griffin

Ruth Griffin

I was lucky enough to have shared the catwalk with some supermodel legends - Naomi Campbell, Tyra Banks, Heidi Klum, Christy Turlington and Helena Christensen. But the model who had the most affect on me was our own former Miss Ireland, Olivia Tracey.

Now 55, when we first met Olivia was warm, courteous and lovely to me. But more than that, I absolutely loved her individuality in choosing to ignore everyone's advice to dye her hair and, instead, let it go white. To me, it's what makes her so stunning.

It reminds me of the Japanese expression 'wabi-sabi'. Essentially wabi-sabi translates as the wisdom and beauty of imperfection, -nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.

To me, our scars, laughter lines and imperfections highlight our individuality. One of the first things I noticed about my ex-husband (a very handsome man) was actually a deep scar running down his jaw line. I was intrigued by this perceived imperfection.

I've zero interest in growing old gracefully. I want to age on my own terms with Olivia as my muse (see panel opposite to copy Olivia's silver-tresses).

Treat vs Cheat

Bobbi Brown Nude on Nude Eye Palette Limited Edition

This gorgeous, natural-toned eye shadow palette is a one-stop shop for every wearable eye and brow shadow you'll ever need - €46.

Fuschia Luxury Nudes Take 2

The pigments aren't as strong in these shadows, so you'll have to use more product, but overall a good make-up choice - €26.

3 of the best - crowning glory


For all hair types

PETA approved this natural, environmentally-aware haircare line as wholly cruelty-free. Described as "skincare for the hair", the use of extracts from papaya, pineapple and green peas keeps the hair moisturised longer. I've only been using this for two weeks but my hair feels much softer. Use twice a week without shampoo.

* KEVIN.MURPHY RE.STORE Repairing Cleansing Treatment €32, and selected salons.


Add light to white hair

Make like the gorgeous silver-tressed Olivia Treacy, and highlight your silver barnet with this paraben-free, light reflecting, pearl-based conditioning treatment. It illuminates the bright tones of white and grey hair and eliminates that unwanted yellow tinge. For blonde beauties, check out their Blonde Parade Mask €14.95, suitable for all blonde tones.

* that's it Alfaparf Milano Grey Pride Forever Grey Balm €14.95, and selected salons nationwide.


For Titian-haired beauties

Refresh red coloured and highlighted hair, with this tone-enhancing pigmented shampoo and conditioner. Available for brown and copper toned hair also, it will last through multiple shampoos, while boosting colour vibrancy and shine between colour treatments.

* Joico Color Infuse Red Shampoo and Conditioner, €16.95, salons nationwide.

Masterclass with Warren Dowdall

Make-up artist Warren Dowdall

Make-up artist Warren Dowdall works with Brown Thomas' Beauty Style Team offering make-up and beauty workshops and consultations that include all beauty brands available throughout the beauty hall. To book an appointment, call (01) 667-7222 or email

What five products do you use the most?

Bobbi Brown Corrector. Apply it on the under-eye area and right out along the cheekbone before concealer for that blown-out brightness that lifts the face. Laura Mercier Primer is always in my kit and Tom Ford's Traceless Foundation stick can be used as foundation, concealer or as a touch-up. Charlotte Tilbury's Retoucher concealer adds radiance and coverage and her Filmstar Bronze And Glow palette makes contouring and strobing easy.

What skincare routine do you recommend?

Don't be afraid to shop across brands to find your perfect routine. I recommend a gentle cleanser like Sisley's Creamy Mousse and a leave-on exfoliant that gently melts away dead skin like Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion. A potent serum rich in antioxidants is key to repairing the skin. I love La Prairie Anti-ageing Rapid Response Booster. To seal all those ingredients in, use a moisturiser suited to your skin type. If you're drier, Tilbury's Magic Cream is rich in plant oils to restore moisture levels. Those with oilier skin should stick to water-based oil-free hydrators like La Mer's Oil Absorbing Lotion. I always advise an SPF. Laura Mercier has the most fabulous Daily Face shield with SPF 40.

What common mistakes do women make with their make-up?

For me, a lot of the make-up mishaps come from social media trends. They can look beautiful in controlled lighting with a filter but they don't necessarily translate well or look wearable in real life! For example, the ombré lip, super contoured face, Instabrows... Make-up should enhance what you love about yourself and make you feel like the most confident, beautiful version of you.

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