‘The word partner sounds like a person you might set up an unsuccessful novelty fridge magnet business with’

Coping: Parents provide us with skewed expectations about what a partner should be

Though our lives can be altered by means within our control or outside it, we have a tendency to think negatively about change, and for good reason.

Coping: We have greater skills of adaptation than we give ourselves credit for

Fenty1

Celebrity make-up lines are often a disappointment. Laura Kennedy tests Rihanna’s effort

Beauty Report: Testing products in the lead up to a winter wedding will give you a good sense of their lasting quality

Double Serum is unique in that it is a universal product, suitable for all ages, all ethnicities and now thankfully given the removal of one controversial ingredient, all skin types.

Laura Kennedy: Lovers of good skincare will know all about Clarins Double Serum

Kim Kardashian:  ‘Vogue’ quoted a plethora of just some of the frightening-sounding treatments required to achieve a body in the Kardashian style. Photograph: Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images

Coping: We augment and adjust our bodies in minor and major ways all the time, doing everything from removing body hair to piercin(...)

Beauty Report: When temperatures indoors and out start to change, skin can turn rather mutinous

Like an intense but insecure young man mustering up the courage to ask you out for coffee, Spinoza is a slow burner

Spinoza, the philosopher, annoyed many but I was drawn to his complex style and challenging ideas

MAC is widely known as a brand which caters to all ethnicities, ages and genders

Red lips are going nowhere, and thank goodness for that. Photograph: iStock

Beauty Report: Trends are fun but don’t slavishly follow them. Pick the ones you love

Munroe Bergdorf:  dropped by L’Oreal  Photograph: Dave M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images

Transgender model Bergdorf, whose person is her brand, was hired by L’Oréal to reflect the brand’s values. They had to fire her

Laura Kennedy as a Trinity College PhD philosophy student. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Coping: With a Stoic sense of ourselves as works in progress, we can make our lives better

Sam’s Barbers has an authentic vintage atmosphere with every hint of modern comfort and style.

Grooming has moved from preening to maintenance. One shop is at its epicentre

Beauty Report: You need something to last all the way to October, and more is definitely more

 Conor McGregor: What he  is doing is what everyone is doing – pushing the rock up the mountain. Photograph: David Sleator

Daring Dubliner believes he is capable of something no one has ever done before

‘When she began to lose her grip entirely on reality, I felt sympathy for her for the first time. Her distress was primal.’

Coping: Judging something we don’t understand is not fair to the person suffering

Half of Sydney’s pubs have refused to show the highly anticipated bout for fear of what one Sydney publican described to the Telegraph as the ‘transient [Irish] backpacker’. Photograph: Getty Images

There are very few venues showing the fight, so staying in might be the best option

The tools most worth paying for are the ones that save time and effort.

Laura Kennedy: If you’re going to be using an appliance for years to come, it makes sense to invest in the right ones

BEXX

When you need a little help, give your skin some heavy duty coverage

Sometimes I lie awake in the dark and fear the complacency that is the first step along that road to ruining what you have. Photograph: Getty Images

There are times when we start to consider the possible futures we have closed off

The best quality full coverage bases are a must-have item.

Full coverage foundations to help with bad skin days and move you seamlessly into winter

Beautyxx

Try these beauty products that are functional first, lovely second

If Ireland and the UK were to become countries where long-term renting was to be more widespread, we would need a stiff cultural redirect to get there. Photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Coping: Tenants are viewed as homeowners-in-waiting, somehow having failed to achieve a basic life essential

Cloon Keen Atelier, Max Benjamin: a growing number of Irish brands use local ingredients

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Two lipsticks, one moisturiser – and no, foundation stick is not a paste

Bere Island: I walked with her here,  summer after summer

Coping: This is the first time we have come to Bere Island without my mother

While you should spend an affordable amount on a serum, there should be limits

Beauty: Products for fresh, flawless skin without needing to top up

The Handmaid’s Tale? `We are not slinking into dystopia. Rather, we are still engaged in the long crawl out it’

Coping: Laws that discriminate against women are aftershocks of a past dystopia

Beauty4

From mirror polish to Kim Kardashian kits, a mix of hype and scarcity creates pent-up demand for some beauty products

Vita Liberata Body Blur in Latte Light (€37.50), L’Oréal Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Elixir (€15.99), Bondi Sands Self-Tanning Foam Ultra Dark (€17.99) and La Mer After Sun Enhancer (€105)

Beauty: Some of these are aimed tanning veterans, others at the lazy and nervous

Jodie Whittaker will become the first woman to play  Doctor Who, the BBC has revealed. Photograph: Colin Hutton/BBC/PA Wire

People celebrating a female Doctor Who as a symbol of increasing gender equality have got it wrong

There are plenty of options around the country for the perfect manicure

If you are going to spend a lot of money on a beauty product, you need to choose wisely

For the fourth night in a row Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather pretended to hate each other. Photo: Scott Heavey/PA Wire

McGregor and Mayweather final press stop was obnoxious, vulgar and entertaining

‘A coffee table is a strange piece of furniture – non-essential, to be sure, but very inconvenient to be without’

Coping: My mother’s fable of a new sofa may have been the defining allegory of my childhood

‘Adele nude’ is probably the best way to describe Blush Nude – a luscious sixties throwback with a modern texture.

Beauty: It may sound drab but the most flattering shade is the shade of your natural lips

How to look good with the minimum of effort

‘People describe my neighbour as a joke, a relic of a time that never was. He is harmless, they say. He’s ‘just’ a foolish old man’

Coping: Our neighbour had worked himself into a great rage and the veil of socially acceptable artifice came down

Charlotte Tilbury Unisex Healthy Glow: a tube of instant sun that works for all skins

Beauty: Charlotte Tilbury's Unisex Healthy Glow is a tube of instant sun

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If your skin is good in your 20s, you don’t have to work too hard to maintain it

Blurry concept: Most people marry to have a lovely day and exhibit their relationship for friends and family. Photograph: iStock/Getty

Coping: It’s bizarre for the Government to have any role in the union of two people

If you can find something at €5 rather than €35, why on earth wouldn’t you?

Twenty-five complimentary places at a future Urban Decay masterclass is up for grabs. Photograph: Brian McEvoy

Laura Kennedy on the beauty booty that's exclusive to the popular make-up brand's first standalone shop which has opened on Grafto(...)

Nails Inc. The Gel Switch Manicure (€49 from Brown Thomas Beauty Lounge, €55 for pedicure)

Warmer days are tough on pale skin but getting a glow is a few clever products away

 Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather: McGregor’s audacity in feeling entitled to fight Mayweather despite an absence of professional boxing fights has ruffled feathers.

Coping: Conor McGregor’s audacity attracts attention but Mayweather’s views on women are horrifying

Laura Kennedy has some advice to perk up grey skin pallour experienced during menstruation

As Father’s Day approaches, we find ways to stop manly hands stealing

How we define “madness” or mental disorder is caught up with culture and politics in a way purely physiological illnesses are not.

Laura Kennedy: Diagnosis and treatment of mental illness are often shots in dark

Excellent colour products - lipstick, eyeshadow, liners and their ilk - are easiest to find on a budget

From a must-have highlighter for a fiver to Kendall Jenner's favourite cheap as chips shampoo

A luxury candle or diffuser boosts the atmosphere, promotes relaxation and is a treat

Members of the public take part in a vigil for the victims of the London Bridge terror attacks, in Potters Fields Park on June 5, 2017 in London, England. Photograph: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

There is textual basis in many religions for terrible acts. There must be a way to recognise the real impact and context of terror(...)

... but indulge yourself at bath time. Try these bath and shower products to reinvigorate and relax

‘The mantra of politeness is robust and important’

Coping: The fact that someone is rude to you doesn’t mean that emulating them is the only possible response

L’Occitane Immortelle Divine Eye Balm (€67)

Eyes can betray stress and tiredness more treacherously than any other part of the face

Like a microcosm of Plato’s cave, once you learn to detect the lack of logic with which we think, it is impossible to see anything else

Coping: Philosophers are prone to as much pettiness and defensiveness as others

Any SPF under 30 isn’t worth purchasing – except for a false sense of security.

We have scoured the shelves for the best sun screen creams

Whip stung: holding the cake slice in one limp-wristed hand, a saucer with a slice of her baking in the other, she turned to him in front of everyone. Photograph: E+/Getty

Coping: My fiery grand-aunt wasn’t afraid to speak her mind. We should be more like her

Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops, €37 from beautybay.com

It’s time to admit the highlighter to the hall of daily staples

“We had an exterminator come, but he couldn’t find the nest either.” Photograph: iStock

Coping: In the dark, every unkind thought about yourself finds a tender spot and stings

Luas works at Trinity: why refusing to  have any sympathy with someone because of their background is sheer bigotry. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Laura Kennedy: Luas works at College Green were disturbing students during study for final exams

A dry shampoo and even a dry conditioner are two must-haves for summer months

To make air travel easier I try to minimise liquid products while ensuring I have what I need

Scorn and pity: who knows how many teenage girls make the trip to Britain and never tell? Photograph: Getty

Coping: Women don’t get pregnant alone. So don’t abandon young single mothers

Certain ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, glycolic and lactic acids and retinol or retinyl palmitate are usually indicators of a useful and reliable product.

These hard-working products can save you money and time

Shame is something we always have the capacity for; we may find the triggers for it intentionally or by accident. Photograph: Getty

Coping: Shame should be fought, or reasoned away

A good primer is very useful on bad skin days, special occasions and in hot weather

Outraged people tend not to be brave

Coping: We are more egotistical and less kind when placed at a remove from one another

Stay lippy over 60: Yves Saint Laurent’s Volupté Tint-in-Balm   is universally plumping as well as gorgeous.
The best make-up for over-60s

Beauty Report: Choose the right products for mature skin and your makeup will always be your friend

There are several disadvantages to being single

Coping: trailing down a country lane after someone’s wandering horse reminded me of the ways in which relationships can be tedious

It’s time to switch foundation for warmer weather

We are proved wrong almost constantly, but still tend to trust our instincts, our first impressions, and our senses

Coping: The fact that we feel, or believe, or insist that something is a certain way doesn’t make it so

Laura Kennedy and her late mother Emma: “While she was dying, and after, I would get jolts of realisation about the things we would never share”

Coping: now that my mother has gone I will never be parented again

if you’re older than seven, a homemade macaroni frame won’t cut it

Lucious facial oils are good for all skin types, and they won’t make you spotty, sticky or shiny

Laura Kennedy’s beauty report: don’t let fears of grease or acne put you off

The target of anger is the person, but its focus is the act, and the person is more than the act, however difficult it is to remember this

Coping: It isn’t always wise to try to repair an important relationship after a betrayal, but it is possible

If you made an informed decision at the time, torturing yourself now seems damaging

Adopting ‘Carpe Diem’ outlook because we could be dead tomorrow is not constructive

Avoid alcohol-based cleansers and make friends with acids

Laura Kennedy's Beauty Report: products to help you appear polished in a rush

‘Ireland is not so straightforward. Since moving to the UK a few months ago, I have fallen into the trap that seems to torment the Irish person abroad.’

Coping: After wanting badly to get out, Ireland has a way to call you back

YSL Faux Cils mascara, Catrice High Glow Mineral Highlighter, Maybelline Master Camo Colour Correcting Concealer,  Diane Kendal Studio Quiktrik Sticks for MAC, and Tom Ford blush in Ravish

How to achieve the not so effortlessly natural look

Daniel Pinchbeck isn’t bothered by ridicule, and was forced into considering big questions at a young age

Daniel Pinchbeck’s new book offers a revolutionary view of how to live

‘My adolescent self was very struck when she read Sylvia Plath’s 1963 novel, The Bell Jar’

The Bell Jar’s protagonist is rather like a young Plath herself, and lots of young women

Consider focusing on lips and cheeks for a fresher, natural take on an easy spring face

‘Like a car stuck in wet mud, the screeching whirr of the wheels’ effort simply sinks us further in. We need to recognise procrastination for what it is – the jutted lower lip of our pouty inner child.’

Coping: 'There is a corner of my mind devoted to haughtily disdaining people who procrastinate, a sure sign I am one of them'

For everyday problems the right topical product can save the day

“Making unbroken eye contact, and with a thudding heart, I declared: ‘I am 9 out of 10 angry with you right now”.

As Valentine’s Day approaches, rage over an onion bhaji puts things in perspective

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage concealer (€38); Dior Coral Colour Gradation Palette (€59); and Catrice the Nude Blossom Collection Eyeshadow Palette (€5.50).

Beauty Report: palettes tend to be pricey but can be invaluable

‘It can be easy to construct a narrative within our lives that leads us to focus on our own suffering.’

Coping: Nobel prize winner Joseph Brodsky has some advice for avoiding self-pity

This is an incredibly easy, polished-looking lip colour with zero effort or mirror required.

Negga's zero effort lippy and other picks for a payday beauty hall splurge

‘Spencer is reviled for his intolerance of difference and somewhat dismissive view of others’ humanity. The person who punched him, though clearly offended by that, is more akin to Spencer than he likely realised.’

The consensus, particularly from the left, seems to be that Spencer had it coming but the punch was no act of heroism

Over strong coffee and even stronger opinions, our readers gave their honest outlook on some of the latest hair products

The Irish Times Reader Beauty Panel tests a range of hair products that promise the glossiest of tresses ... but do they deliver?

“We should encourage the inquisitiveness of every child, because by asking questions they are learning philosophy.”

Coping: Children’s curiosity is an ideal starting point for learning philosophy

There’s plenty of help at hand to see you through the winter of discontent

We have a bad relationship with criticism – both in the giving and receiving. Photograph: iStock

Simply suggesting someone doesn’t know enough is an example of sloppy criticism

Pregnancy:   we should ask  why Irish women feel unable to have children earlier. Photograph: jupiterimages.com

There is an optimal biological window for procreation and a pragmatic time to begin parenting. But not all of us are able to jam i(...)

‘Eleanor Roosevelt who wrote Tomorrow Is Now – her manifesto on responsible citizenship, building a constructive political system, and collective responsibility – while she knew she was dying’

Coping: Eleanor Roosevelt was right, self-belief is a powerful aid to attainment

This is a new year to take charge of your life and embrace the frightening changes you might have been putting off.

Bin the fancy self-help books you got for Christmas and heed the wisdom of three great thinkers

Clockwise from lower left: Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Liquid Eyeliner, Chanel Sublimage Le Teint, Mac Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour,  Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick and Catrice High Glow Mineral Highlighting Powder

From skin thirst-quenchers, to pick-me-ups and solid, rich lip colours and foundation

Once a person you associate strongly with Christmas is gone, you have to let go of the version of Christmas you knew with them.

Christmas can never be what it was when my mother was alive but it can still be lovely

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