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Triona McCarthy on the advent of ‘lockdown lines’ – and how to tackle them

Our, eh, high-brow beauty expert has all the latest lingo, lust-haves, top tips, tricks and product picks for you to browse

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Triona McCarthy

Triona McCarthy

Triona McCarthy

Lockdown has certainly resulted in a LOT of, eh, self-reflection — literally. I don’t think I’ve ever looked at my mug as much, thanks to all the Zoom calls and Insta Lives I’m doing. And now we have some new lingo...

Lockdown lines’ is a term coined by Boots after it recently carried out a survey on 2,018 women, in which more than half of them said they felt their skin had aged by up to five years in the 11 months since the first lockdown. At least we’re all in it together and have masks to hide behind! Crow’s-feet lines, forehead lines and under-eye lines are what we’re noticing most, apparently. The research revealed that sleep disturbance was the main culprit for these new, erm, friends.Frinkles — let’s call them that... I’m coining my own phrases now as well!
But I draw the, eh, line, at the term ‘anti-ageing’ — we’re all flipping ageing. I prefer to say ‘age management’, as I’m all for ageing disgracefully.
The best way to take your mind off your new frinkles? Smiling! You’re better-looking when you smile.
Smiling releases all the feel-good neurotransmitters: endorphins, dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin. It relaxes the body, and lowers the heart rate and blood pressure. Smile and the world smiles back: it’s contagious! Try it on your next Zoom call.

The trick

Do you have lots of half-used lipsticks you’re not wearing? De-pot them (not Depop, sillies!). You’d be surprised how much lipstick can be left in the bottom of a tube. Scoop it out into an empty palette and mix — and even make new shades.

The treatment: Best brows

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Gwen Stefani

Gwen Stefani

Gwen Stefani

Supermodel Brows is a new range by Charlotte Tilbury that focuses on fixing, filling and feathering the frames of the face. (Oh, that’s a lot of ‘f’ words in one sentence... pardon my French!) Prices start from €16 for refills of the Brow Cheat and Brow Lift products (€28 each). Along with Brow Fix and Legendary Brows (€25 each), the products all work together to shape, define and enhance your natural brows.
What were we thinking when it came to eyebrows in the 1990s? I blame Gwen Stefani, pictured above, for that trend and that’s why I need all the brow products to fill mine out, having plucked them to infinity.
You can also book into Charlotte’s new Brow Clinic, which consists of a virtual consultation with a trained make-up artist.
See charlottetilbury.com for details. Note: Items ordered from the UK may incur extra charge

The trend: Scent sensation

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Armani Beauty Si Intense

Armani Beauty Si Intense

Armani Beauty Si Intense

I recently got to spend an afternoon with Cate Blanchett! Well, at a virtual event in my shoffice (shed office) to celebrate the launch of the new Armani Beauty Si Intense, above, €90. Ambassador Cate looked as elegant as ever in the most amazing red Armani ensemble, while she chatted about the scent that has gone straight to the top of the fragrance charts, despite only launching relatively recently.
I got to ask Cate a question, which was... If Si were a piece of Armani clothing, what would it be? To which she replied, “It would be one of Mr Armani’s deconstructed suits that moves as you move, which has power but also grace, so it looks like you just kind of threw it on.”
And if that’s not the best way to describe Si, then I don’t know what is.
Thank you, Cate — if you’re reading this, call me! I need that red outfit in my life...
Find Si Intense at Brown Thomas, Arnotts and selected pharmacies this month

The talk: How to get hero hair

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SteamPod 3.0

SteamPod 3.0

SteamPod 3.0

If you’re anything like me, you might have been glued to the Victoria Beckham autumn/winter ’21 show last month. Some more new lingo for you: the hair stylist for the show coined a name for the look — ‘lived-in luxe’. What a perfect description of the hair I’ve been rocking for a whole year now. I liken it to the ‘no make-up’ make-up look, which means focusing on the natural features of the face without changing it completely.
When I think back to my teen days and all the awful things I did to my hair, I shudder — although my mum was worse, with an iron and a towel in an effort to straighten her unruly mop. Why, oh why, did we do that to our healthy hair?
Hair needs to be really hydrated to look full and healthy, so straighteners that use steam are a good option — especially if your hair is a little on the dry side. SteamPod 3.0, above, €275, is the newest hair straightener and styling tool from L’Oréal Professionnel and is powered by, you guessed it, steam. This one not only has the water reservoir attached to it now, but it claims to work faster and gives even smoother hair, which results in less damage and the gift of more time. It’s also 14pc thinner and 37pc lighter for less bulk. And the rotative cord is handy for styling waves. What I love about it is how shiny my hair looks with it — and I can even do those ‘lived-in luxe’ loose waves. Victoria — if you need me for your next show, I’m available!

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SteamPod Steam-Activated Cream

SteamPod Steam-Activated Cream

SteamPod Steam-Activated Cream


SteamPod even has its own range of styling products, all €19.60, to go with the tool. There are two heat-protection products — SteamPod Steam-Activated Cream, above, (for thicker hair) or SteamPod Milk (for normal to fine hair types). Once the hair is styled, you can follow with the finishing SteamPod Serum. Find them all online at petermark.ie.

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Joico Defy Damage Sleepover Overnight Nourishing Treatment

Joico Defy Damage Sleepover Overnight Nourishing Treatment

Joico Defy Damage Sleepover Overnight Nourishing Treatment


One other great things about being home so much is that we have the time to let hair treatments really work. I often treat my locks to some nourishment while I get some shut-eye. Joico Defy Damage Sleepover Overnight Nourishing Treatment,, above, €24.50, is packed full of natural oils, amino acids and vitamins to protect against damage and make your hair shinier and stronger. Find it on beautybag.ie.

The tools

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Discovery Kit

Discovery Kit

Discovery Kit

Who else is missing the good old days of popping to beauty counters and sussing out the latest lust-haves? If the rise in popularity of discovery kits is any indication, I think we all are. A-lister favourite Dr Barbara Sturm is now available at Arnotts. This Discovery Kit, above, €95, is a great skincare option if you fancy a trial run before forking out for the full-size products.

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