HomeTagsPosts tagged with "tips"


If you promised yourself you’d hone your cooking skills in 2017, but are still struggling to operate the defrost setting on your microwave, you’re not alone.

Deciding that you’re going to become a culinary queen might happen overnight, but putting it into practice definitely doesn’t.

By acknowledging that you won’t be whipping up gourmet meals any time soon, you’ll give yourself a chance to arm yourself with the tips, tricks and tools needed to become a better cook in no time.

Ladies, we’ve got you covered.

1. Assess your knife collection

You wouldn’t try to write an essay or report with a broken or leaking pen, and the same should apply in the kitchen.

Sharpen your knives so they’re actually functional when you use them.

Struggling to handle your ingredients a result of shoddy implements is enough to put anyone off cooking.

2. Invest in a good frying pan and saucepan

Like knives, you wouldn’t believe the difference durable pots and pans make when you’re learning to cook.

Spending your hard-earned euros on kitchen equipment doesn’t sound in the least bit appealing – we know this, but believe us, it’s worth it.

Ruining what has the potential to be a great meal because your pan is an old rustbucket is the last thing you want.

3. Learn how to chop an onion (no seriously)

Onions are used in so many dishes, so it’s worth your while learning how to chop them properly.

(No one likes picking a giant hunk of onion out of their teeth, right?)

Cut off the top of the onion, and bin it. Peel off the outer layers, and chop the onion vertically. Then, chop it horizontally, and you're sorted.

4. Learn how to cook rice

The sign of a good cook is someone who can cook rice without looking like they're intending to feed (or poison) the entire town.

The key to cooking rice is to use the 1:2 ratio, so it's one-part rice, two parts water. 

And a fist-sized portion of rice generally counts as one serving.

5. Bulk buy chicken breasts 

Chicken is so versatile, and so easy to cook as well.

Bulk buy and store in your freezer, so you know for certain you will always have the basis for a quick and easy meal.

6. Invest in a cookery book

And actually study it.

Do your research and choose a publication which features simple meals suitable for any beginner.

Don't get overwhelmed by the content at the start, and instead tell yourself you'll have conquered all the recipes by the end of the year.

7. Focus on three recipes

If you try to master too many recipes at once, you'll have a meltdown and jack in your resolution for good.

Instead, focus on three recipes (breakfast, lunch and dinner) or three evening meals, if you'd rather, and master them before moving on.

Cooking is all about confidence, so the moment you've mastered three meals, you'll be much more prepared to tackle the next set.




We all know the scenario; we’re running late for work, college or just coffee with the girls when we try and slap some makeup on our faces in an effort to avoid looking like a character from The Walking Dead.

In our frantic state we drop the lipstick we hoped would fool people into thinking we give two s**ts, and it slides right down the white top we decided to wear on today of all days.

You may think that blouse is doomed to a life of imperfection but with these simple tips you’ll be able to erase any spills or smudges your makeup may have caused.

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If you’re using an oil-free foundation, try rubbing some shaving cream into the material.

If the stain is proving more stubborn, try adding a little alcohol to the mix.


Lipstick is made with oils so make sure to use an oil-based cleaner to remove to stain. Liquid soaps to clean grease can be the perfect solution.

With a tissue and a small dollop of soap, blot the stain to lift the colour. Spray a little water (don’t soak) and let it sit with the soap doing its magic for 10 minutes and rub away with a clean towel.


Using an oil-free makeup remover, blot the area until the stain is lifted.

This simple trick should even work on waterproof mascara.

Nail polish

Nail polish remover is the answer to your prayers is you accidently spill some polish.

However, it can sometimes lift dyes out of your clothes so try a testing it on a smaller, less noticeable area first.

If it is successful, then make sure to throw your clothes in the washing machine straight after.

If remover is a no-go, then try hairspray instead.

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The great eyebrow craze has been taking over the world for a few years now, and while you may think you don't have the skill to perfect them, you do. And, even though we should be pros at this stage, many are not (oops).

Here are some handy tips for getting the brows you've always wanted…


1. Choose the colour depending on your own hair colour

This is important. Try not to make your eyebrows too light or too dark because they will stand out a silly amount.


2. Put highlighter underneath the arch

This will show off the shape you've been working so hard on.


3. Don't stand too close to the mirror

You will see every tiny little detail and pluck them away to nothing, stand further back to look at them in order to gain a better perspective. 


4. Figure out which brow shape is best for your face shape

There are many different brow shapes, but they are not all suited to every person.


5. Never shave your eyebrows

Although it may seem like the easier and quicker option, you will highly regret it and wish you stuck to those tweezers. 

There you have it ladies!


Any time we’re flipping through the latest glossy fashion magazines to hit the newsstands, or scrolling through the Instagram feed of our favourite fashion icons, we generally end up feeling less than enthused.

After all, who has a spare €200 to spend on Kanye latest Addidas trainers anyway?

In short, generally-speaking the most stylish women of the moment have limitless amounts of cash to throw around on their wardrobes.

Actually, most fashion editors could maybe use a reality check when it comes to informing us about the must-have bag of the season – we only just finished paying the bill for the last one!

However, you don’t have to frustrated any longer! With just a few simple tricks you can make your wardrobe appear on par with those sitting FRO at fashion week.


All black everything

Not just a Kylie Jenner catchphrase. A monochrome look will elongate your body and it always looks as if you’ve intentionally spent hours putting the look together. An all-white look will also do the trick. As long as your blacks match and your whites are bright, you’re guaranteed to gain some fashion credentials.


Add a belt and learn to tuck

Tucking in any shirttails or baggy jumper hems will give your look instant polish. Adding a belt will cinch your waist and give you an air of serious style diva. Paring your over sized scarf with your belt will open whole new wardrobe choices for you, also handy with our always changing weather situation.


Gold accessories

Who doesn’t love some gold accents? According to fashion editors adding some gold accessories to your look, either in the jewellery department or with a bag, is going to make you look like you stepped straight out of Vogue.


Have it tailored

It even sounds fancy. Instead of ripping the tags off and throwing away your receipts right away, take a day or two before flinging yourself into those brand new culottes and head to your local seamstress. A quick nip and tuck makes your look seem much more one of a kind, so instant style elevation.


Grab your iron!

This one seems obvious, and also your mammy probably warned you about this for years before you took your style seriously. Nobody likes early mornings, but five extra minutes to make sure your look is freshly pressed will add instant polish to your look, even some of your oldest and more well-worn pieces. 


Hate to be the bearers of bad news ladies but this is actually possible. Whether you’re getting all glammed up for a big night on the town or your just putting in a 9-to-5 day with the essentials from your make-up bag, you could be doing some serious damage. We may not even realise it but some of the most common make-up habits can be doing awful things to our skin without us even noticing. So, to help keep you at your healthiest, we identified the worst habits we’re all guilty of that can ruin our glowing appearance.

Ignoring expiration dates

You wouldn’t use bread that’s been sitting in your kitchen turning green would you? The same goes for your cosmetics. Almost all of your products should have a symbol on their label that lets you know how long it’s safe to keep using once opened. And while we all have our absolute favourites we couldn’t live without, clinging to that two year old MAC matte could give you a nasty infection. Or worse, age old mascara might leave you with some less than sultry stink eye. Rebecca Taylor, M.D., an ophthalmologist and spokeswoman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology, recommends getting rid of them after three months.

Sharing is actually not so caring

It really doesn’t matter how amazing your BFF’s lippy was last night, you need go and buy your own. Or you could end up like the woman who borrowed her friend’s make-up brush and ended losing the use of her legs due to catching MRSA.  Nobody wants a cold sore, or conjunctivitis. Not cool. So to avoid the any risky infections, or the inevitable cold shoulder when a certain gloss goes missing, keep your favourites separate. You can still admire, obviously, just from afar.

Fake it ‘til you make it

Between holidays, festivals or just your social life in general, it can be easier to fork out and have a professional take care of your stubby lash woes. Be warned though, some of the glues contain less than sweet ingredients. Such as formaldehyde, which can cause serious irritation to your eyes. Taylor says that “if applied poorly, extensions can cause lashes to become brittle and break off”. Which is exactly the look we were hoping to avoid. She recommends having a patch test done so you can see how the glue will affect you before going all-in.

Misplacing your lines

Look, we all want that doe-eyed oh-so-pretty aesthetic, it’s not that uncommon. But here’s a helpful tip, applying liner to your waterline isn’t going to help. The opposite actually. And, it’s going to mess with your vision too #epicfail. Your eyes have their own natural bacteria and putting liner in the mix is going to make it too crowded in there. Steal clear of the water then!

Hitting the hay, face intact

It’s always tempting after a long day (or night) to dive straight into the duvet, to hell with the face wipes, bring on the naps! How about no, though? Skipping this vital step in the beauty process is going to leave your eyes irritated, and your pores clogged. So clogged pores might not lead to certain death, but Taylor explains “when you toss and turn your head throughout the night, traces of makeup can migrate into the eye.” And nobody wants to wake up the morning of that most important interview with a nasty stye. Pass us the cleanser please and thank you. 


We all want long, strong nails that look great and don’t chip every time you as much as open a door.

But between the Irish weather (why is it still not hot yet?!) and basic everyday tasks, our hands and nails take a pretty serious beating.

So here are six tips that are great to help your nails withstand the hardships of everyday life and to keep on growing.

Moisturise your cuticles
Cold air, tap water and hand soap are some of the most basic things your hands come into contact with on a daily basis. But these can totally dry them out and can prevent your nails from growing. Keep a hand moisturiser with you and apply it regularly. Take special care to rub the cream into your cuticles at least a few times a day.

Keep your nails rounded
When your nails do grow that bit longer, make sure to keep them filed into a rounded shape. This way, they are way less likely to snag on fabrics or break in general.

Use a nourishing base coat
If you are painting your nails, it is vital that you use a good base coat first. Even if you are going bare, a nourishing base coat can protect your nails from those damaging everyday chores.

Eat protein
Your nails are made of protein so it makes sense that a protein diet will help them to grow. Try eating protein rich foods such as eggs, meat, salmon, greens and beans to spurt on your nail growth.

Do NOT wear fake nails
These are incredibly damaging to your real nails and they will seriously prevent their growth. Also, when removing nail polish from your nails always use a nail polish remover and never pick it off.

Wear gloves
Don’t even think about washing the dishes without rubber gloves on! The hot and soapy water will dry out your hands and nails. So, whenever you are doing any of your household chores, be sure to wear gloves. 



Many of us suffer with flat hair. While achieving volume sounds easy, backcombing without knowing how to is actually very difficult. You can often just end up with knotty and frizzy hair and then decide you're not going out anymore. It's a real struggle…

You don't need to worry anymore though, we are here to save the day and give you tips for the perfect backcomb.

1. Use a volumising shampoo and conditioner
You may not be thinking about the end result when you're washing your hair but it is actually very important. Using the right shampoo and conditioner for the look you want to achieve will make the job a lot easier. 

2. Buy a backcombing brush
These are lifesavers. Designed for backcombing, these are a beauty must-have. And great news girls, Penney's have them!

3. Blow dry your hair upside down
This will prepare your hair for backcombing by adding volume at an early stage.

4. Begin at the front
By starting at the front you will be bringing these parts together, but starting at the back loses this hold.

5. Pay close attention to the root
The root is the most important part to backcomb because it adds volume without the frizz. However, move onto the other parts of the strands of hair until your hair is standing up by itself, then move onto the next part.

6. Make it smooth
Brush over the top layer lightly with a comb when you have finished backcombing. This will smooth out the frizz but keep the volume.

7. Spray, spray, spray
There's nothing like the overwhelming smell of hairspray to know you're ready to show off your perfectly backcombed hair.



When it comes to eyeliner, we all have so many goals but we can rarely achieve them. It is one of those things you need to do well, or don't do at all. 

Here are the do's and don'ts of eyeliner to guide you on your next attempt. Try looking at a celebrity make-up look you like and following that for further help. 

1. Apply white to the lower waterline to open up your eyes and make them appear wider.

2. Cut corners so you don't completely overdo it and make your eyes look strange.

3. Leave the bottom lash line liquid liner free if you don't want a dramatic look. 

1. Leave a gap between your eyeliner and top lash line. Blend it into your lashes so it emphasises your lashes instead of drawing attention to the gap. 

2. Only line the bottom lash line. Your eyes will look droopy and bizarre without anything on the top.

3. Just use it to draw a thick line around your eyes. You will end up with panda eyes. Experiment with different shapes and styles.



She always looks flawless, but the sexiest woman in the world had a serious wardrobe malfunction at last night's BAFTAs. Michelle Keegan showed up on the red carpet in a long, strappy mint green dress with sequins on the back.

However, it wasn't the design of the dress that was catching our eye. After sitting down for a while, it appears that Michelle's dress creased and by the time she hit the red carpet the creases still hadn't fallen out. Either that or she didn't have time to iron it before she left.


Fashion stylist and journalist Laura Mullett has given us expert advice on how to avoid the crease dilemma: "When it comes to silky and slithery fabrics the secret is to steam the garment, let it cool down and dry – then hang it with plenty of breathing space on either side.

"What I would recommend is gently spritzing spray starch on the non visible side from about 10/15cm to give the fabric more grip and stiffness ahead of a special night. Also be vigilant of your positioning when sitting in a car or sitting at an event to spread the skirt section flat above and smooth under you discreetly to prevent unsightly creasing."

Here are five other ways to prevent wrinkled clothing, perfect if you're not a fan of the old ironing…

1. Cut down on cotton
Cotton always creases easier than synthetic material. However, higher quality clothes can be fully cotton but also wrinkle-resistant. Invest in some wrinkle-resistant pieces for your wardrobe, it will be worth it. 

2. Put less clothes in your washing machine
An overloaded washing machine means less room to move around, which means more opportunity to get twisted together. These creases then stay as the washing machine spins and keeps them tangled together.

3. Put less clothes in your dryer
Similarly to the washing machine, clothes in the dryer need more room to move around and open up, otherwise they will stay creased. 

4. Hang clothes immediately after drying
Don't give clothes the chance to crease after drying by throwing them anywhere. Hang them up straight away to prevent any creases forming, the air in the dryer causes wrinkles on clothes if left there for too long. 

5. Be careful how you wear it
The way you're wearing your clothes can cause wrinkles and creases during the day. Straighten your skirt before you sit down so it doesn't all bunch up, pull up your trousers before you sit down and avoid leaving things such as your handbag on your lap while you are travelling. 




Many of us may feel that washing our hair every single day is good for it. However, this is not the case. Unless you desperately need to, you should try to avoid washing your hair everyday and here are 5 reasons why.

1. Natural Oils
We all hear about the natural oils in our hair and how important they are. Rather than trying to get rid of them, we should be grateful for them. They make your hair healthier and shinier.

2. Keeping colour
Conditioner can strip the colour from your hair and shampoo can cause it to fade. If you want to keep your hair dye locked in for as long as possible then you need to prevent yourself from washing it on a daily basis. 

3. Styling your hair
Fresh hair can be difficult to work with. Hair that hasn't been washed for a day or two will hold better and be more manageable. This will end up saving you time in the morning. 

4. Product build up
Sometimes greasy hair can be caused by a build up of products rather than your own natural olis, so try avoiding them for over a day. 

5. Heat protection
By not washing your hair everyday you are not spending as much time blow drying it as you normally would. This means less heat and less damage to your locks. 

Try this for a week and see if you notice the difference. 



Shaving can be the biggest chore EVER. You miss spots you can’t see, your skin can get irritated and you realise at the last moment your razor is rusty and unusable – gah!

Here are some shaving hacks that will make shaving your legs easier and leave you with soft, smooth skin every time.

1. Skip the shaving cream and grab your hair conditioner or baby oil
Many of you may already be aware that using hair conditioner to shave your legs will leave you with super smooth legs at half the price. For those who didn’t know, you need to get on this! Using baby oil is said to make smoothness last even longer.

2. Exfoliate, Exfoliate, Exfoliate
It may seem  like a lot of effort to exfoliate your legs before you even get around to shaving them, but it will be worth it in the long run. Exfoliating your legs will ensure you avoid any unwanted ingrown hairs as well as decreasing the risk of cutting yourself.

3. Double shave
If you have a bit more time on your hands – then this is the tip for you. This isn’t just a tip for any old Saturday night, this is for the weddings and weekends away on your calendar! In a bowl, mix olive oil and sugar, exfoliate your legs with it and then shave. Then, apply more and shave again. Also, do this somewhere you won’t slip on any oil if it accidentally gets anywhere.

4. Moisturise
The importance of moisturising before and after shaving cannot be overlooked. You can use oil or cream – just make sure you do it. Moisturising before shaving can prep the skin and help avoid ingrown hairs. Afterwards, you need to moisturise to ensure your skin doesn’t dry out.

5. Dealing with razor burn
Those red, bumpy marks on your skin after a shave can have you reaching for the tights. To avoid this in the first place, the key is to exfoliate and moisturise. But if it’s too late for that, try holding a warm, but not hot, facecloth on the area and then moisturise with a natural product, such as coconut oil.


Ah January, we meet again. This, ladies, is the time where we all bow our heads and vow to be the best possible versions of ourselves that we can be, right?

In addition to being kinder to old people and looking after our money, we also use January to focus on our health and well-being.

In other words, we nervously tie up our brand new runners, stagger out into the January cold and attempt a few half-hearted laps of the estate and then, let’s be honest here, give up after three days.

Well, no more! If you’re serious about running (or even if you’re not serious, but willing it to give it a go for the laugh) here’s how to do it!

1. Firstly, you will need the right gear because your college hoody just isn’t going to cut it.

Use the sales to pick up some good running shoes, a sports bra and a running top that will keep you warm, but won’t overheat you.

2. Choose a safe route that suits your goals.

Don’t hare off into the middle of a woods which leaves you frightened, deflated, staggering home and vowing never to look at your runners again.

3. Begin with the walk-run method.

Walk for four minutes and run for one minute, then gradually increase your running time so that you’re running more than you’re walking.

4. Move your body in a way that feels natural and focus on your breathing.

While running may feel completely alien to you, it’s important to relax your upper body because being rigid only slows you down and try to land softly so you don’t damage your joints!

5. Stick with it, girls!

Choose your running days and don’t flake on them. The longer you stick with it, the sooner your walk- run method will be a thing of the past and you’ll be officially known as a 'runner'. How cool is that?

It will be difficult at first, but you will improve the more you practise.

Remember, running is a fantastic way to keep fit, stay healthy and hey, with all the spending we did over Christmas our funds just don’t stretch to a gym membership, so get out there and hit those streets!