Marie Louise McConville: We shouldn't be ashamed to show off our natural look
Am I the only person finding it uncomfortable watching Love Island?
As readers will know, I am a massive fan. But the tragic death of Caroline Flack has put the spotlight on what is real and important.
It has certainly made me stop and think about the impression given by the contestants, particularly the sheer amount of time and effort the girls especially spend on making themselves up.
From face masks and exfoliator sessions to mammoth make-up application, extreme eyebrow maintenance and hair jenga, they really give getting ready their all.
I am honestly exhausted watching it and as viewers, we are only seeing the edited version.
Of course, they then emerge from the village looking phenomenal and suddenly I feel like rubbish, lying on the bed, in my jammies with my hair tied up in a messy `mum bun'.
I suddenly start doubting my self-worth because I don't look like them and my self-esteem takes an epic nose-dive.
Of course as I have got older, I've learned that no-one is perfect - not you, not me, not the Love Island girls, nobody.
At the Oscars last week we saw many of our favourite actors and actresses looking sensational. However, what we must realise is, they didn't wake up like that.
Their looks, like in Love Island, took many, many hours of prep and be under no illusion, all sorts of trickery from flat-suits to professional make-up conturing came into play.
Sometimes I worry that my little Abbie will fall victim to all this falsity and will feel under pressure, like many young people, to look like their idols.
Thank goodness then for people like Brooklyn Decker, a well-known American model and actress who is best known for her appearances in magazines such as Sports Illustrated.
The 32-year-old, who has appeared in movies such as `Just Go With It', also has two children so like the rest of us, is a busy girl.
This week, Brooklyn took to Instagram to share a photo of herself - nothing new there - except in the snap, she was without make-up and her hair was pretty wild looking (like me when I get out of bed).
She was not ashamed of the photo nor was she slagging herself off because she didn't look like the Brooklyn that stuns on the red carpet.
She was just being herself and she was obviously proud of her look, why else would she share the picture?
I think more celebs should be like Brooklyn and not be afraid to show their natural selves off.
I think Brooklyn has shown herself to be a great role model here.
Yes, we all look better with make-up on - as another mum at the nursery school gates told me recently "You look so different with your glasses off and make-up on. It's amazing" - but we must remember, make up is just a mask, it's what's underneath that matters.
Maybe it's time we started to be truly proud of who we are - without the war paint.
Hats off to American model Ashley Graham this week who was not afraid to show what life as a new mother is really like.
The 32-year-old, who gave birth to her son Isaac a month ago, took to social media to share a candid image of stretch marks on her tummy.
Addressing her 10 million Instagram followers, the mother-of-one said: "No one talks about the recovery and healing".
Referring to the purple stretch marks, the proud model added: "Same me. few new stories".
Great job Ashley.
They are nothing to be ashamed of.
With New Year celebrations a distant memory, how do you fancy a fun night out at the flicks?
American comedy Like A Boss has just arrived at Movie House Cinemas and it promises to be perfect for a girl's night out.
Two female friends with very different ideals decide to start a beauty company together.
Tiffany Haddish stars as Mia Carter, a co-owner of Mel & Mia's with a brash personality and a desire to get rich quick.
Rose Byrne is Mel Paige, a co-owner of Mel & Mia's who's more business-savvy but lacks the confidence of her partner.
Salma Hayek stars as Claire Luna, a cosmetics mogul who obtains a controlling share of Mel & Mia's promising to bail out the owners, but only until she can steal their innovative new products for herself.
I have two pairs of tickets for Like A Boss at Movie House Cinemas to give away to two lucky readers.
If you fancy winning a pair of tickets, simply email your name, address and telephone number – along with the answer to the question below – to firstname.lastname@example.org
Closing date for entries is 12 noon on Tuesday, February 25, 2020
(Q) Name the actress who plays Mel Paige in Like A Boss
Normal Irish News Rules Apply
The winners of the Buella candles competition are Paul Hewitt, from Richill, Anne Marie McCrory, from Belfast, Toyah McKee, from Portglenone, Catriona McKeown, from Newry, Adrienne McDonnell, from Dunmurry, and
Ross McClymont, from Dundrum.