Wednesday 21 March 2018

Triona McCarthy: Bunny girl

Our very own beautiful swan Triona McCarthy has the ultimate guide to achieving Natalie Portman’s perfect ballerina bun, and she’s found a straightening iron that’s good for your hair

Triona's trends: I hated Black Swan. While there’s no denying Natalie Portman’s mind-blowing acting, the dark plot left me cowering under my popcorn.

But I was mesmerised with the subtle make-up and Natalie’s beautiful bun. I see lots of peeps rocking those chic, messy buns, so I asked freelance hairstylist Lorraine Browne, below, for a lesson. The trick is to invest in a hair doughnut, above right - get one in Boots or Claire’s Accessories for under a tenner. These foam rings will give the right shape and add volume to your hair, producing a very sleek and smooth bun. Start by gathering your hair into a ponytail and secure it with a covered band.

Spritz a little Bumble and bumble holding spray, €19, in your hair for control. Pull the ponytail through the doughnut and secure the doughnut with a hairpin. Then tuck your ponytail in around the doughnut to conceal it, and pin your hair in place as you go J-Lo! Finish off the look with Bumble and bumble’s Bb Shine, €39.50. Lorraine has years of experience from working in salons and styling shows and shoots for Ireland AM and Xpose, and she’ll go to your home or place of work to do your hair, at a time that suits you best. She specialises in hair for special occasions such as weddings, debs and parties.

Lorraine Browne, tel: (087) 243-8814, or see

Triona's tricks

If you get a spot, reach for some aspirin. Don’t swallow it — instead, crush it up and mix with water into a paste, and apply it to the spot of bother. Aspirin contains acetylsalicylic acid, which is actually used in anti-acne treatments. It also reduces inflammation and swelling.

Mother's love

I’m very lucky that I get lots of lotions and potions to try out, but as I only have one face and many to try, my mum and my sisters get to share the love. My mum, Margaret, loves Creme de la Mer more than any other dream cream I send her way, and she budgets to buy it for herself.

The Radiant Serum, right, is Creme de la Mer’s newest offering, replacing The Lifting Face Serum. At €260, I feel a bit guilty writing about it, but my mum says she’d rather cut down on something else to get it. The buzzword this season is radiance, and this serum contains a Brightening Ferment for luminosity, and Blue Algae Lift Ferment, which the makers claim strengthens and renews skin elasticity. Use two to three drops morning and evening for a gorgeous glow.

Available at Dublin Airport and Brown Thomas, or see

Smooth talk

Janey Mac! When I look back at photos of myself from the Eighties — I cringe! The cut of me! Thank God for modern hair straighteners! But while they can turn me into a slinky-haired hottie, hair straighteners can definitely damage the hair as well. Well now, Joico has developed Joico K-Pak ReconstRx VaporIron, above, which it claims is a ground-breaking styling iron system that actually reconstructs, repairs and protects hair as it smoothes and straightens.

A built-in reservoir inside the straighteners deposits conditioner, called K-Pak ReconstrRx VaporFuel, on to your hair as you iron it, so that the hair is repaired as you straighten it. It really does leave your locks looking and feeling just like silk.

K-PAK ReconstRx VaporIron, €169; K-PAK ReconstRx VapourFuel, €14, Joico, tel: (045) 856-490 or see

Cult product

Normally I think bigger is better when it comes to bank balances, boobs and um, boys! But right now I’m McLovin the Essential Colours Mini Collections from Marks & Spencer.

For fingers and toes try Essential Colours Mini Nail Colour Collection, €7. There are three collections, each containing four high-shine, fast-dry, chip-resistant nail colours . Choose from Pastel Mix for soft and subtle, Lagoon, below, for shimmer and shine, or Brights for bold and beautiful. Also available in the range is the Essential Colours Mini Lip Gloss Collection — four gorgeous lip-gloss wands in Assorted and Brights at just €4.75 a set.

Because bigger isn’t always better!

Triona's most wanted

There are lashes and then there are Mink eyelash extensions. I had them done at Greystones salon Up to My Eyes. When Elaine McParland told me she has clients coming from all over the country, I thought, “Yeah, right.“ But then I had them done, and I am now fully addicted.

I’ve had eyelash extensions before and I hated them. I’d get big balls of glue in my lashes, and after a few days I’d pull them off along with most of my own lashes. But Up to My Eyes are specialists. The best tip I got was to buy swimming goggles to protect your lashes in the shower. I don’t need mascara or eyeliner with my new lashes even on a BNO - big night out - although Elaine recommends Blinc mascara and eyeliner.

So many people have commented on them and I think I look a lot like Kim Kardashian, left. They normally last for around four weeks and then you can get them refilled. A full set of luxury Mink eyelash extensions costs €120 and take two hours to apply. Refills take one hour and cost €50. Up to My Eyes, Theatre Lane Greystones, Co Wicklow, tel: (087) 236-3101 or see

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