Monday 8.30pm RTÉ ONE
Off The Rails


Every week several top stylists, hairdressers and make up artists contribute to Off The Rails. If you want to get in contact with them yourself or read about their best tips click on the links below.

- Cathy O'Connor
- Melissa O'Connor
- Joy Hawkridge
- Paula Hughes
- Marietta Doran

- Celia Holman Lee
- Jan Brierton

Hair Stylists
- Gary Kavanagh
- Erich Conlon
- Tamar Chambers
- Paul Hession
- Michael Leong
- Michael Doyle
- Stephen Kelly

Make up Artists
- Ivey Sullivan - Love Hawkridge - Zoe Clark - Emily Dunne


CATHY O'CONNOR has no interest in celebrities, but admires Gwen Stefani for her individual look. Being the fashion editor of U magazine for a number of years, Cathy styled and coordinated a number of fashion editorials, leading and inspiring the fashionistas of Ireland towards fashion heaven! She has also styled music videos for Boyzone and Eurovision veteran Johnny Logan.

Highs: All of the makeovers have been really exciting because we
get to make a difference. It's such a privilege to be part of someone
else's transformation and it's an amazing moment when they look at themselves after the team have worked with them and see their confidence shine.

Best Bargain: Anything I buy at the sales in Havana or at Chissy McLeod's
sample sales - legendary!

Fantasy Buy: If I could afford it, I'd have a hairdresser and makeup artist with me at all times. There's nothing like having professionals work on you.

Don't: Irish women seem to buy individual pieces that they like
and don't consider what they'll wear it with. The result is that it's more
difficult to achieve a 'total look' which makes the difference between being
stylish or not.

Do: I know it's a cliché but I really believe that beauty comes from
within. For me the most attractive people are those who are spirited,
people who have an energy about them, you can usually see it in the eyes.
You could spend a fortune on clothes, makeup, hair and if you're unhappy,
all that effort just won't have the same impact.

Cathy O'Connor can be contacted at 087 2842911

MELISSA O'CONNOR thinks Britney Spears is possibly the worst dressed person ever, but admires Fair City's Robin O'Reilly for her flawless elegance. Melissa's background is in film where she was a costume design assistant shopping for, and dressing, stars such as Cate Blanchett, Julianne Moore, Pierce Brosnan and many more. She felt that after meeting the demands of some of Hollywood's hottest properties she had what it takes to become a style consultant and now runs her own successful personal shopping and styling business.

Highs: I once had to dress Pierce Brosnan and Michael Sheen for a film shot in Ireland. They had to look like rock stars so I flew to New York to Dolce et Gabanna HQ and got to go through the vintage section picking what I wanted to take. Heaven.

Lows: Absolutely loads about diva demands but can't blab. unfortunately. Personally I have nearly been blown off a cliff doing a shoot in gale force winds. not fun.

Best Bargain: Vintage Chanel navy wool coat for €10 in a charity shop.

Worst Fashion Moment: My son was eleven pounds at birth and when I was pregnant I was huge.... huger than anyone I have ever seen.... it is impossible to look stylish that misshapen, so I hermitted at home.

Fantasy Buy: Without a shadow of a doubt a Hermes Birkin in Dark Chocolate Brown...I really covet this but they are way over priced and unless I was also donating millions to charity the guilt would ruin it.

Don't: Where do I start? Irish men and women wear the wrong size clothes; they are afraid of colour and are too scruffy for words. We are part of Europe, so it's time to polish those shoes and brush that hair. I hate bad grooming it ruins even the most expensive clothes. Also we tend to skimp on work clothes and good casuals and splurge on things for 'going out'. The result being that during the day everyone looks awful and at night it looks like a carnival.

Do: Make sure your clothes are in perfect condition, immaculate, well ironed etc. Know what suits your shape and if you are hopeless admit it and get advice from a well dressed honest friend or expert. Most importantly: Don't be a slave to fashion, try to express your personality.

Melissa can be contacted on 086 8037788

PAULA HUGHES' most exciting job was a shoot for Harrods in Rome.

Lows: Styling a men's underwear packaging shoot where the samples were far too big so there was a lot of pinning and adjusting to be done!

Worst fashion moment: Cerise head to toe with red hair!!

Bag Essentials: Concealer and mascara by Kohl

Best Bargain: Missoni full-length dress for 90 pounds.

Fantasy Buy: Johnny Depp! And anything by Dries van Noten and Marni.

Do: Feel comfortable.

Don't: Conform.

Paula can be contacted on 086 2502014

MARIETTA DORAN would love nothing more her very own self-tanning machine. and to get her hands on Britney Spears. A graduate of the College of Marketing and Design Marietta worked as a freelance stylist in Ireland prior to moving to New Zealand where she worked for renowned fashion label, 'World'. Five years ago Marieta decided to move back to Ireland and began working as a freelance buyer and stylist. In addition she also developed her image consultancy business where Marietta will spend a day shopping with a client, selecting the ideal colours and outfits for all occasions.

Highs: Styling a complete fashion show at Sydney fashion week.
I got to meet Kate Blanchett who was writing an editorial for Australian Vogue. She bought a few pieces from me.

Lows: It was my first job for TV and the lady I was making over refused to wear any of the clothes I got for her. Not a nice experience when you have a whole camera crew depending on you.

Worst Fashion Moment: Wearing wellie boots and thinking I was the coolest.

Bag Essentials: I always carry mascara, belt, necktie, spare tights, mini sewing basket.... you name it....

Best Bargain: Alexander McQueen skirt that I bought in Brown Thomas for €50 ....collector's item really.

Do: Shoes and bags are the key to achieving a certain look.

Don't: show off your tummy and Irish men tend to have very bad footwear....The first thing I would look at are the shoes.

Marietta Doran, Personal Shopper, can be contacted on 087 9531582

CELIA HOLMAN LEE would love to get her hands on Mary Harney and Pat Rabbitte, but loves Nicole Kidman and Charlize Theron for their individuality.
A self made business woman who's worked in the fashion business for over 30 years, Celia is an expert in knowing how to dress any body. Her incredibly successful Limerick based model agency was the first in the country. She herself has been voted Ireland's most stylish woman on more than one occasion.

Highs: The Jim Kemmy Young Designer Awards and the Nell McCarffety Makeover.

Lows: Once at a fashion show we over-loaded the electricity supply so there were no lights in the middle of the show.

Worst fashion moment: In my time I have worn skirts that where too tight & too short, but learnt my mistake and bought a good full length mirror.

Bag Essentials: Lip gloss, mobile & perfume.

Best Bargain: Pair of leopard-print shoes from River Island.

Fantasy Buy: Hermes Birkin bag and the whole range of Crème De La Mar.

Don't: over accessorize or wear the wrong shapes for your body.

Do: Know your shape and wear a foundation that is the right colour tone for your skin.

Celia can be contacted on (061) 412726

JAN BRIERTON lives in Dublin and has worked on a number of editorials for Prudence, Irish Tatler, Sunday Independent, Confetti, L'Oreal, Wella, Sasha & Rachel Mackey etc. She loves fashion, food, music, films and art, (in no particular order!) She always wanted to be a ballet dancer, and attempted to start last year; "the image of me in my electric boogaloo tracksuit attempting arabesque will stay with me forever!" Jan would love to get her hand on Gwen Stefani as she thinks she's too over styled.

Highs: Shooting fashion editorials and campaigns for 10 days in South Africa, earlier this year; "It's somewhere I have always dreamed of travelling to, and it was everything I could have wished for. I'm going back there this year for a family break." And also receiving a standing ovation for the work I did at the L'Oreal colour Trophy for CATS.

Lows: Working in Paris on a Bridal Editorial where the model ruined two items of clothing. Lucky they were samples!!!

Best Bargain: A €2 leather bag from second-hand shop, and a Zandra Rhodes hand painted dress for €35 from a capsule collection she did for Top Shop.

Worst Fashion Moment: I wore a padded A-line full length skirt in black, with plain trainers, and a padded gilet which resembled a bullet proof vest!! I was warm, VERY warm but certainly not "hot!"

Bag Essential: Smaller little bags to carry keys, make-up, cards, etc.

Fantasy Buy: A VW Camper van (I'm a hippy at heart!)

Don't: Let yesterday take up too much of today.

Do: Dance at least once a day!
Have fun with fashion, and don't take it too seriously & remember less is more!

Jan Brierton can be contacted at Morgan The Agency on 01-6614572

JOY HAWKRIDGE is originally from Cape Town S.A. She started out at the age of twelve doing hair for her brothers and sisters she is now the owner/director of Whetstone Hairdressing ltd.

Highs: Enjoying champagne with Andie McDowell whilst styling her hair over the 2 days she was in Dublin for her film premier, interviews and appearance on the late late show.

Lows: Getting up very early and working long hours for photo shoots and fashion shows etc. ( but the result is always worth it !!!)

Admire: Anyone who makes an effort to look great.

Worst Fashion moment: Crop tops, and those hideous waist high jeans in the '90s.

Fantasy Buy: Front row tickets to all the catwalk shows in Paris fashion week.

Bag Essentials: Camera, Aveda lip saver, phone, tail-comb, hairspray, GHD's, grips,wax and shine eliments.

Best buy: This year it was a pair of D&G jeans in Paris they were a great bargain go with everything this season. Do: Try different styles with your hair, clothes, music, you'll be amazed how easy it is to get stuck in a fashion era.

Don't: Ever let yourself go, if in doubt ask the most stylish person you know to be honest with you.

Tip: Your hair should be the most expensive accessory you 'll ever purchase - Because you wear it every day!!!

You can contact Joy Hawkridge by the phoning 01 6711344 / 6711662
Whetstone Hairdressing Ltd. 7 Parliament Street, Temple Bar D2


GARY KAVANAGH never leaves the house without his personal organiser and if money was no object he'd love to buy Prada's entire new collection.
Gary is undoubtedly one of Ireland's best-known hair stylists. In addition to his role as creative director of Peter Mark, he also looks after the tresses of some of the country's best-known celebrities as well as ensuring many international celebrities look their best while visiting Ireland.

Highs: Being flown by private jet to Monte Carlo, to look after a
special lady and partying with some of the Monagasque Royal Family.

Lows: Being caught out in an old mansion in the heart of the country, and the only power source was round pin sockets. Panic! Had to travel for hours and miles to find the correct adapter. Horrific.

Admires: Designer Louise Kennedy - she always looks the epitome of classic style. She makes it all look so effortless, and simple. A wonderful example of less is more.

Worst Fashion Moment: a Canary Yellow jacket bought at the height of the Miami Vice days. It was horrendous, and I die when I think of it, worn of course with sleeves rolled up. Ugh!

Do: Wash you hair as often as you feel it needs it. It's a mistake to believe that too much washing damages your hair - the opposite is true. And use your hair conditioner liberally, too much will make your hair heavy and lank.

Gary can be contacted at Peter Mark, Stephens Green, (01) 4780362

PAUL HESSION would love to get his hands on Angelina Jolie. but only for her tresses of course! Paul is one of the leading figures in the Irish hairdressing industry and has been involved in the family business for the last 13 years. Paul has also represented the Irish Artistic Team of the Irish Hairdressing Federation on numerous occasions and his work has been covered by Ireland's leading fashion magazines.

Highs: Working on the Brown Thomas International fashion show with celebrities such as Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Linda Evangelista!

Lows: Many years back I was working on a photo shoot for a feature on curly hair. No matter what I did I couldn't get the model's hair to stay curly. not an ideal situation to be in as a hairdresser!

Worst Fashion Moment: A pair of silver PVC trousers that in error I thought would be great for a hair show.... I was wrong!

Bag Essentials: Berocca, Solpadine and of course my scissors and comb.

Best Bargain: A leather D² jacket

Fantasy Buy: A Louis Vuitton kit bag

Do: Always get a haircut that suits you - in general it is best to keep it simple. Don't always be led by trends, it won't always suit you!

Don't: Try too hard!
Paul is currently based in the Hession Salon located in Drumcondra (Tel. 01-8376265).

Michael Leong is one of Ireland's best known and most talented hairstylists. Born in Malaysia, Michael moved to Ireland intending to study medicine. Walking down Grafton Street in Dublin one day he saw a notice in the window of Peter Mark looking for part-time staff. He joined the group as a trainee and the rest, as they say, is history ... After working in Peter Mark for a number of years Michael is now a freelance hairstylist

Highs: Brown Thomas Supermodels Shows and Peter O'Brien Couture show in Paris.

Don't: Over accessorize!

Worst Fashion Mistake: The 80's Kajagoogoo LiMahl influence haircut.

Bag Essential: My credit card off course!

Tip: To be stylish is how one wears oneself; never wear anything that panics the cat!

Best Bargain: My gym instructor Steven Ward at Fitness Dock.

Fantasy Buy: Porcelain Teeth?

Michael can be contacted on 087-2557870 or

Michael Doyle MICHAEL DOYLE would love to get his hands on Jerry Hall to sort out that colour and loose half her hair. Michael Doyle is one of Ireland's best known hairstylists. A leader of the Peter Mark Creative Team, he has been with the group for 14 years since his return from London and has become a firm favourite among his many clients, celebrities and the fashion and beauty media. A winner of many hairdressing awards, including the L'Oreal Colour Trophy, Michael managed the Irish Hairdressers Federation Artistic Team for two years.

Highs: Taking care of Jodie Kidd, Tyra Banks, Sophie Dahl and Anna Kournikova's hair all on the same day.

Admires: Kate Moss-She's got an individual and very edgy style.

Worst Fashion Moment: A pair of cycling shorts question!!!!

Bag Essentials: Water and an alarm clock.

Do: Keep your hair simple

Don't: Over use fake tan

Fantasy Buy: La Prairie Products.

Best Bargain: They put prices up when they see me coming!

Michael can be contacted at Peter Mark, Stephens Green, (01) 4780362

Stephen began his training in Jersey, and spent seven years out there learning the tricks of the trade. He returned to Dublin roughly 13 years ago, and started working for Peter Mark almost immediately after arriving in Dublin. He worked his way through the ranks of the Irish hairdressing scene and on to the Peter Mark Artistic Team after a few years. One of Stephens' greatest moments was winning the 'Creative Hairdresser of the Year' award in 2000. He has now left Peter Mark and works for Zeba Hairdressing on Sth William Street.

Highs: Worked on the MTV Music Awards in Edinburgh

Lows: Any horror stories/tales to tell from a previous life. No Thank God unless you class my 80's fashion disasters as horror stories

Don't: Wear too much fake tan.

Worst Fashion Mistake: My blonde quiff and moustache for my 21st

Bag Essential: 8 hour cream

Tip: "Condition, shine, gloss" Look after your hair the same way you look after your skin. Buy the right products.

Best Bargain: Classic Fendi tux at a very good price. I think it fell off the back of a lorry.

Fantasy Buy: Complete set of Louis Vuitton luggage. Life membership to the Mandala Spa
Stephen can be contacted at Zeba Hairdressing ph: 01-6716444

Tamar Chambers
Tamar Chambers is the manager of Lunatic Fringe Hairdressing in Grafton Street, Dublin. She is also the Artistic Director for the Robert Chambers Hair Group. Tamar is the only daughter of renowned Irish Hairdressing icon Robert Chambers and trained originally at the Robert Chambers School of Hairdressing on Grafton Street.
When Tamar was invited to join the Irish Hairdressing Federation Artistic Team in 2000, she was the youngest ever member on the team.

Highs: Being chosen as the Irish Wella Trend Vision 2005 Gold Award Winner, with my Being Rebellious creation. Then when I represented Ireland at the global final in London.

Lows: Sorry, can't think of any. I'm loving it!

Admires: Anyone who dares to be different! Search for your own style to express your personality.

Worst Fashion Moment: Wearing Black non stop. Colour is very uplifting.

Fantasy buy: My own photographic studio

Bag essentials: Mobile phone, credit card and make-up!

Best Bargain: A Vivienne Westwood pendant on e-bay

Do: Get the right advice! There is a look for everyone!

Don't: Be afraid to try new things!

Contact Tamar at 016793766/94 or

ERICH CONLON feels Irish people don't wear the correct hairstyle to match their skin tone and eyes. One of the leading hair stylists in Reds On The Green Erich has worked in the business for 10 years. He worked on the QE2 for a short time before starting in Reds On The Green 6 years ago.

Highs: Working with Maureen O'Hara last year. Sitting on her bed having cups of tea and gossiping

Lows: A client announcing on the shop floor, with little discretion, that she was going through the menopause. Red face, cold sweat and my very own mini menopause come to mind.

Admires: Grainne Seoige, Simon and Christian Stokes. Because everything is appropriate whether shopping, working or attending an event.

Worst Fashion Moment: Everything I wore and did with my hair in the 90's. I'm blushing as I recall those times!!!! Blonde bob, velvet trousers, lycra tops etc.

Do's: Find what suits you. Never make the mistake of seeing someone else and thinking the same will suit you as it looks so well on them.

Don't: Wear clothes that do nothing for you skin tone.

Bag Essentials: Keys, wallet, phone, aftershave, cosmetic bag including YSL Touche Eclat, Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream and Royal "Effem" Brow pencil 505. Basically everything bar the kitchen sick.

Best Bargain: A John Smedley jumper which I nearly bought for $250 in New York, I later saw in TK Maxx for €32. Well done Erich!

Fantasy Buy: "Brown Thomas". Only joking. The entire luggage set in Louis Vuitton which would probably never be used but adored on a daily basis!

For more information visit or ph: 01-6788211


IVEY SULLIVAN once had purple stripes in her hair and would love to make Wayne Rooney girlfriend Colleen McLoughlin less 'chav' and more chic.

Highs: French Vogue decided to send a crew on a three week cruise of the African coast stopping at exotic locations like Zanzibar.

Lows: I was once handed a wet suit and had to cling to a rock in the sea in order to make sure the models' make-up remained perfect! Above and beyond the call of duty in my book.

Admires: French women like Caroline Bouquet who make everything, including jeans, look chic just by having the right handbag.

Bag Essentials: Elizabeth Arden 8 hour crème. It's amazing how many things you can use it for! Lip gloss, moisturiser, you can even use it to stick glitter on your eyes!

Best Barging: A Nina Ricci couture suit from the fifties that I picked up for 80 Euros at a flea market in Paris.

Fantasy Buy: A Hermes crocodile Berkin bag. Very expensive and there is a waiting list! But it would last forever!

Do: Invest in a foundation brush. Every girl should have one; it makes applying foundation so much easier.

Don't: Forget to dress for the climate - you see lots of bare midriffs and blue feet in December.

Ivey can be contacted c/o Morgan The Agency, phone: (01) 6614572.

LOVE HAWKRIDGE is originally from South Africa has always had an interest in make up fashion and photography. Love works as a full time Make Up Artist with her sister Joy in Whetstone Aveda Hair and beauty Salons, as well as freelancing. Love enjoys creating the complete look.

The excitement of not knowing whats next, one day I 'd be making up Hilary Clinton in the Clarence penthouse the next day doing a fashion editorial in and tent

Whether in salon or on location I hate standing around but that comes with the job also carrying my kit around as it weighs a ton

Kevyn Aucoin was an amazing make up artist to the stars I would have loved to work with him. I admire beauty in all forms

Worst Fashion Moments
The 80's was by far the worst and in the name of fashion I cut myself a huge fringe oh my god!!! it was awful no wonder I never became a hairdresser ha and the rolled up sleeves and shorts (wham)

Fantasy buy
A first class ticket around the world I love travel and adventure

Bag Essentials
Aveda two in one cheek and lip creme to freshen up any look its amazing what a bit of rouge will do for a pale complexion and a powder book from the bodyshop for that unwanted shine its nice and small

have your eyebrows professionally shaped as it makes the most difference in a make over when done correctly and always cleanse, tone and moisturise your face, its a great habit to get into if you want to glow

Don't wear nail polish if you want strong and healthy nails as they grow much better with out anything on them if you must wear it then just for the occasion and straight off again

Tinted eyelashes for any one who has sensitive eyes or hates wearing mascara also to prevent those black smudges under the eyes

You can contact Love Hawkridge in Whetstone Aveda Lifestyle and concept salons
24 Sth Anne St D2 01 6724727 or
7 Parliament St D2 01 6711344 or
mobile 0877842502

ZOE CLARK covets a Peter O'Brien dress and once got a terrible fright when an airline lost her treasured make-up kit (she only got it back three days later). Having trained with M.A.C in Harvey Nichols, Zoe Clark moved over to Dublin where she spent some time with Make Up For Ever. Zoe has been working as a freelance make-up artist for the last 10 years now and has built up an extraordinary credit list.

Highs: I was recently flown to New York for a promotional tour during the St Patrick's celebrations with the new Irish group 'Celtic Woman'. We had a lot of fun!

Admires: Kate Moss for her cool, up to the minute sense of style and Isabella Rossellini for her elegance.

Worst Fashion Moment: Probably wearing the wrong outfit at lunchtime! Doing a presentation in a dress that I hadn't realised was very see-through in bright lights! A little embarrassing.

Bag Essentials: I always carry a MAC studio Fix for touching up my make-up.

Best Bargain: A dress I picked up in England at a market for £10 that is very 70's and then seeing one just like it in the shops for ?175!

Do: Only use foundation where you need it most, and less is more!

Don't: Wear clothes that don't fit, are too small or shapeless.

Zoe is also available for weddings and can be contacted at 087 264 9480 or via

Emily Dunne EMILY DUNNE never goes anywhere without her Armani clear lip gloss no 6 and would love to have a go at doing Mary Harney's make up. Emily Dunne has worked in the makeup business for many years and is now working and managing the accounts at Georgio Armani Cosmetics in Brown Thomas.

Highs: Working in Paris with the Armani international team.

Lows: On a fashion shoot with a major publication the photographer decided to go up into the hills for a dramatic effect. We never checked the weather forecast, were drenched, got caught over a river and had to wade back. Lesson learnt: always check the weather forecast when heading for the hills!

Worst Fashion Moment: Wearing my old wranglers with an ugly multicoloured top and no make up out to the DIY shop and meeting an old friend from school. Typical!

Do: Drink lots of water and take off that face at the end of the day and be fresh for make up the next morning with yummy skin. Always have a comfy standby in clothes i.e. black pants and crisp white blouse and lots of colourful jewellery to brighten any outfit.

Don't: Wear strong lip liner and stay away from white pants after September/October.

Best Bargain: A beautiful bright green wrap, bought in a market on a trip to Rome. I'll wear it forever with black suits, jeans and numerous tops.

Fantasy Buy: The Louis Vuitton travel range- heaven!

Emily can be contacted at the Georgio Armani Cosmetics counter in Brown Thomas, ph: 617 1140 2005 RTE Terms and Conditions