Top-to-toe lockdown beauty


HOME SPA Turn your claustrophobic cocoon into a luxuriating lagoon.


Maggie Gibbons

How are you coping with being confined to home? For a while I was actually enjoying it – the peace and quiet was wonderful. But now... well let’s just say the novelty has worn off. On the upside, my house is spotless, I’m cooking stuff I never cooked before, and I’ve also taken up knitting! Having said that, I’ll be grey and fat by the time all this is over. The roots are a disaster, but you know what? I couldn’t care less.
The lockdown has at least been great for teaching us appreciation for what we have. I’m lucky that my husband and I have everything we need – a warm home and enough food, and we happen to live in the most beautiful place imaginable, ‘God’s pocket’ as it’s affectionately known.
All this stress is playing havoc with people’s skin though. Many of us are finding it hard to get a good night’s sleep, laying awake worrying about health and finances. Our routines have been turned upside down too, and we’re not getting as much outdoors time as we were used to. That means less vitamin D from the sun and more indoor air, which can be quite drying, especially when the heating is on. You might be reaching for sweet treats for comfort too, which can lead to break outs!
Whether your skin is crying out for some TLC or your just bored out of your mind, now is as good a time as any to pamper yourself.

I’m a great woman for facial oils and serums, and one of my top recommendations is Nunaia organic oil serum (€79). A real radiance booster that’s 100 percent natural, vegan and high performing, it was judged to be the best facial oil of 2019 by some real heavyweights in the beauty biz.
Or why not make a nourishing DIY face mask? Mix half a mashed avocado with a teaspoon of honey, spread on and leave for 15 minutes before removing with a wet facecloth. You’ll be glowing!

Aveeno Skin Relief Nourish and Repair Cica Balm (50ml, €7.85), is brilliant for dry, exposed, chapped skin – perfect for right now – and it’s great value. It is healing as well as protecting and moisturising. Aveeno also does a wonderful moisturising lotion (200ml, €6.12).

Hands and nails
Want to get rid of those shellac nails but can’t get to a salon? Soak a piece of cotton wool in acetone (nail polish remover). Place the wet pad on to the nail, then wrap a piece of tinfoil around it. Leave for about 15 minutes, or longer if you can, then take an orange stick and gently scrape away the colour. Afterwards apply oil (any oil is fine) to your nails and cuticles.
Uriage Bariederm Repairing Hand Cream is great for inflamed hands, and with all the hand washing and sanitising these days, this is a common problem. This cream is non-sticky and fast penetrating.
Lockdown locks
Isn’t it great to just let your hair ‘hang loose’ at the moment. I’m trying to leave mine longer between washes. As for cutting, no stylist wants you reaching for the scissors, although many of us are! I hope Lynda at LS in Westport isn’t reading this, as I’ve already trimmed mine. It’s a bob, so I can’t really do too much damage … can I?
Try making your own hot-oil treatments for your hair. Wash your hair as you normally-would, then apply about two tablespoons of oil to the hair and wrap in a towel. Leave on for ten to 15 minutes, or as long as you like. Wash again, and dry as usual.

The only time I pay any attention to my feet is when the sun appears, and then I panic! Legs get shaved, and toenails get clipped and polished. A good pedicure creates a real feel-good factor. Right now that’s a no no, so why now do it yourself with SVR Xerial Peel (€35). This is an exfoliating sock mask that deeply moisturises feet while targeting the rough and thickened areas for a new-skin feel in less than two weeks.

Many of these products are available from your local chemist, but if you can’t get them there, try Irish online beauty store, If you enter the code MM20, you’ll get a 20 percent discount along with four free travel-size products. Valid until the end of May, this is a great offer. Plus, delivery is free for orders over €20.

Maggie Gibbons is an Image/Style Consultant based in Louisburgh. She can be contacted at