A Midsommar’s weekend dream

Kieran Harnett

I am very excited about heading down to Body&Soul this weekend and can’t believe this is my first time going to what’s known as one of Ireland’s most beautiful festivals.

One area I’m particularly looking forward to visiting is the Absolut stage which has a fantastic line up of acts curated by DJ Arveene. But what I am most enraptured by is the dreamy Swedish Midsommar vibe that Absolut are bringing to the festival.

Midsommar is a big celebration in Sweden. Taking place on summer solstice, the weekend of the longest day of the year, Midsommar is the Swedish celebration of the summer season. Its origins lie in Sweden’s agricultural roots: it was a time to welcome the months of fertility ahead.

Midsommar has lots of magical traditions that really make me want to go to Sweden.

Before people wore flower crowns to Coachella, Woodstock or any festival, they were worn during Sweden’s Midsommar. Flower crowns have long been a symbol of rebirth and fertility, and wearing them is connected to the essence of the holiday. Gathering flowers to weave into crowns was considered a way to harness nature’s magic and ensure good health throughout the year.

Midsommer is associated with the idea of young women finding their husbands. On their way home from celebrating, girls are meant to pick seven different wild flowers and put them under their pillow before bed, allowing their husband to come to them in their dreams.

Hopefully I can find seven different wild flowers to pick this weekend…

Body & Soul 2017 will take place from Friday, June 23rd to Sunday, June 25th at Ballinlough Castle in County Westmeath.

Absolut preview of Midsommar at Body and Soul at Everleigh Garden.jpg


Looking to get a cute gift? (maybe for yourself…)

Prepare for an overuse of the work cute, but seriously so much of the stuff at Moss Cottage (located in the quaint red brick cottages on Dundrum’s Main Street) is so super cute.

From cards to candles to mugs – they sell some of my favourite brands (hello Ban.do) and also stock Annie Sloane chalk paint (which if you don’t know it – it will enable you to transform a piece of furniture in a completely idiot proof way).

Check out some of the cute things on offer right now, which you can also get online www.mosscottage.ie


The Happiness Planner Notebook, €27.95

White Adumbledore Mug, €12.50

Green Unicorn Card with 3D tail, €6

Clean Slate Neroli + Coconut Candle, €19

Hunter Paper Co Card, €4

Happy shopping! 

Inside the make-up bag ….with Yolanda Zaw

[Kind of like ‘Through the key hole’ only with make up bags.]


Because we love nothing more than to have a nosy around another girls make-up bag and poke through all their stuff!

Today we go inside the make-up bag with Yolanda Zaw.

Yolanda is the health and lifestyle editor for Evoke.ie and I’m sure hanging around Evoke HQ she has her finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the make up and style stakes!

Today Yolanda is opening up her make-up bag and telling us about her five favourite things.

Yolanda: As a journalist, I do get a lot of make-up sent in and being a typical girl, I love it all! The problem is, I don’t really know what to do with most of it and I tend to just store it all away and go back to my well-worn favourites.

The beauty bag that I have in my handbag is strategically small. I used to have a bigger one which I would overpack. I ended up lugging kilos of make-up everywhere with me. I downsized and now I only carry the essentials.

My beauty routine for everyday is pretty simple. I don’t like to wear too much make-up during the day unless I have an event or function. If I am going straight from office to bar, I slip a shimmer eyeshadow and a red lippy into my bag and just update my daytime look before I head out.

My top 5 favourites at the minute are:

  1. Lancome Hypnose Mascara (€28 in Boots)
    This has to be my all time favourite beauty product. My mother actually used it before me, I’m a little embarrassed to admit. She’s a big Lancome fan and I used to steal this mascara out of her handbag when I was a poor university student.
    Now I stock up on it duty-free every time I’m at the airport. Even on days when I’m going make-up free, I still like to apply a coat or two of mascara to just lift my look a little.
    Despite the fact that I adore this product, I have cheated on it with other mascaras but these affairs have been brief and always end badly!
  1. NARS blush twin – Orgasm & Laguna (€39 in Brown Thomas)
    I really like NARS products and this is my go-to blush. Orgasm has a really nice subtle shimmer and is great for the apples of my cheeks while the Laguna is more a deep bronze for contouring and shading.
    I didn’t really wear bronzer before I found this product but this combination really works for me and I often get compliments when I have it on.
  1. Lucas Paw Paw Ointment (Not available in Ireland but with some work you can get it delivered)
    This is an iconic Australian product. If you see this poking out of a girl’s handbag, chances are, she’s Aussie. When I moved to Dublin from Perth, Western Australia (2 years ago)I brought over a dozen of these tubes. I have introduced all my friends here to them and everyone loves it.
    The all-natural ointment is actually for all sorts of things including burns, cuts, rashes but everyone I know uses it for one thing and one thing only: chapped lips!
    It tend to get really dry and cracked lips in winter and this is the remedy. I apply before I go to bed and in the morning my lips are soft and smooth.
  1. L’Oreal Brow Artist Genius Kit (€15.29 in Boots)
    This is a recent discovery of mine. I was browsing in my local Boots when I spotted this. My eyebrows can be a little unruly at times and I’ve been looking for something to tame them and fill them in without the dramatic line you get when you use a pencil.
    The genius kit comes with a wax to smooth out and shape and a power to fill in and enhance. It also comes with a tiny angled brush perfect for brows and a mini-tweezer. The kit is ideal for the handbag.
  1. Revlon Photoready BB Cream (€14.99 in Boots)
    I used to wear a foundation each day, probably out of habit really. In my teens and early twenties I was prone to breakouts and I used foundation as a cover up. Nowadays, while I still get the occasional pimple, I don’t usually get all out acne anymore. When I eventually realised this about myself, I switched to a BB cream.
    I really like this one by Revlon because it matches my skin tone perfectly, has SPF and offers just the right amount of coverage without the heavy feel of foundation. I feel like my skin can breathe now.



Inglot Make Up Demo


I was at a great make up demo with Maria Murphy, one of the Inglot PRO team, the other day.

Maria was really enthusiastic and excited about the make up and it was really infectious.

She also gave some great advice about winged eyeliner – her tip: you start from where your lower and upper lash line meet, maybe this is something that everyone else already knew and it’s such a small thing but already it’s helped me a lot as I tend to start somewhere above my lash line in a slightly different place each time.

Inglot is a brand that I haven’t used too much, so all in all – it was a good intro into Inglot and lots of great tips.

I am planning to go in for a proper make up lesson soon!

Inside the make-up bag ….with Andrea Horan

[Kind of like ‘Through the key hole’ only with make up bags.]


Because we love nothing more than to have a nosy around another girls make-up bag and poke through all their stuff!

Today we take a trip on the tropical side of life and go inside the make-up bag with Andrea Horan.

Andrea is the owner of Tropical Popical, Dublin’s most fabulous nail salon, and Tropical Hype, where she shows small businesses how to be their own guru of hype. Andrea is an all-round decadently stylish stun hun and provides some serious style inspo to us all (or me anyway).

Today Andrea is opening up her make-up bag (which was gold lamé as we anticipated – but leopard print would have been our second guess) and telling us about her five favourite things.

Andrea: It’s really funny that I ended up working in the beauty industry.  I’m not one of those people who swoons over new product launches or a new mascara with gorge packaging, probably because I worked in PR for so long and have become so cynical about how brands can sell the same product for 6 times the price if it has a cute box.  Bah beauty humbug!!  But cynicism aside (for now anyway) I love products that are easy to use and deliver on what they’re meant to do.  I’m definitely low maintenance when it comes to beauty products – I don’t even know how to put blusher on properly, let alone know how to contour!! I like people to look like who they are with a little enhancement rather than a whole new person when they have their face on.  My sister is obsessed with beauty products and she believes every claim she reads or hears in ads  about beauty products so she gets them, tries them out and then either tells me what I need or gets it for me.

My top 5 favourites at the minute are:

  1.  Chosunagh 22 Dong Gong Minn Brow Maker ($22 from Sephora, not available in Ireland – though I believe you can through a third party get delivery to the UK and then parcel motel it here)
    I’d love thicker, bushier eyebrows.  It wrecks my head though when you go to get your eyebrows done and it’s insisted that you have to shape them by taking more hair off the top, just cos that’s what’s the trend now.  NO.  So I don’t get my eyebrows done anymore and use this product to give them shape and an arch.  Because it’s formulated with henna, it sticks to all the random downy hairs (on the top!!) and makes your eyebrows look bigger and naturally bushier rather than drawn on.  I adore it. 
  2. Kiko Glitter eyeliner (€6.90 from kikocosmetics.com, delivery to Ireland costs €5.90)
    Mad about Kiko in general.  Their price points are unreal without any compromise to the pigment or quality of the product.  I buy loads of lipsticks and nail polishes to use in Tropical Popical.  I love this eyeliner because  it’s easy to whack on as you don’t have to be too precise with it and you look like you’ve a twinkle in your eye all the time!
  3. Make Up Forever Aqua Liner (€21, Make Up Forever Clarendon Street)
    I love coloured eyeliners.  There was a stage when I was doing a green and a blue layered on top of each other.  This Diamond Turquise Blue Aqua Liner is amazing because the colour pops like nothing else, doesn’t fade and doesn’t budge.  All essentials for coloured liners.
  4. MAC Strobe cream (€10 for a 30ml or €33.50 for a 50ml, MAC in Brown Thomas)
    I love dewy, highlighted skin.  Who doesn’t sure?  And as I’m so crap at where to highlight and layering products etc , I just lash this under everything for what I think is a stunning complexion.
  5. MAC Relentlessly Red Lipstick (€20, MAC in Brown Thomas)
    Because I don’t make much effort with make up for the most part but still like to look glam, I pop on a good red lipstick and feel like that makes up for my lack of contouring and eyeshadow etc.  I get my eyelashes done so a bit of CC cream, my brows on and a lick of this whopper red and I’m good to go.  Glam as you like.

My Jewellery #LustList right now

My friend pointed me in the direction of this delightful brand recently, the Bow and Button Factory. I already have my eye on a few things, this bracelet in particular.

bracelet 2

Have a look at all their gorgeous stuff at www.buttonandbowfactory.com

Another jewellery brand I have discovered, that has just recently come to Ireland, is By Dziubeka. The designer and owner of the range, Anna Dziubek, is based in Poland and now her array of cute bracelets and statement necklaces are available in Ireland. This is one of the really pretty, and very reasonably priced bracelets they were kind enough to send me.

braceletTake a look at the full collection here.

As always I’m obsessed with all Melissa Curry’s stuff, and now there is a new Imagine bangle – I need it.

bangle 8

The best thing about all these brands is that they are all created by amazing women #girlpower