Director of Belfast Children’s Festival reveals why she loves going makeup free

Director of Young at Art, Eibhlin De Barra

As Belfast Children’s Festival prepares to celebrate its 20th birthday, Kathryn McKenna caught up with Director of the event, Eibhlin De Barra, who reveals why she often doesn’t have time for makeup.

As Belfast Children’s Festival prepares to welcome over 30,000 visitors from Friday, March 9 to Wednesday, March 14, Kathryn McKenna catches up with Director of the event, Eibhlin De Barra, who reveals why she often loves going makeup free due to her busy schedule.

Director of Young at Art, Eibhlin De Barra, reveals the contents of her makeup bag

Eibhlin explains, “As Director of Young at Art, I programme the Belfast Children’s Festival.

“It’s an annual six-day event that hosts a range of local and international theatre, dance and music performances, as well as visual arts, comedy and interactive events for all the family.

“So at the moment my ‘typical day’ can be quite long, and during the festival itself starts early and finishes late. But I wouldn’t change it for the world!

“I like to think that I take good care of my skincare, I have my mum to thank for that as she encouraged me to have a good routine from my early teens. I cleanse, tone and moisture morning and night and always wear a sunscreen - even in the Northern Irish winter months!

“There’s no greater treat for me than a professional facial, but even just a nice bath and a face mask once a week is bliss. I have to admit that I’m rather lazy when it comes to a makeup routine, I rarely wear it day-to-day.

“I’m afraid I relish that extra 10 to 15 minutes in bed too much!”

And Eibhlin reveals she tends not to branch out with new products, “I’m a bit of a creature of habit, so I tend to stick to what I know and trust, probably a little due to laziness,” she laughs, “But the last product I purchased was concealer. I used to use the Barbara Daly one in the range she created for Tesco (I know, the glamour!) but it was discontinued a while back but I managed to hunt some down on Ebay. So, yes, I don’t like change! I get to travel in my role as a festival programmer and was in South Korea recently and purchased some fabulous face masks, including red ginseng and lotus flower, as a treat for myself and the Young at Art team.

“If I had to choose just one ‘go-to’ beauty or makeup item, I could not live without Lush’s Angels on Bare Skin. It’s essential.

“I rarely wear make-up daily, but I do wear it when attending an important event or going out for a night out, and putting it on really perks me up and gets me in the party mood. I wear Maybelline Foundation Mousse, and Yves Saint Laurent’s loose powder, and for eye shadows, I tend to stick to greys and blacks. I am currently using an Estee Lauder liquid eyeliner, and my favourite Clarins lip gloss. I need to purchase a new mascara when I get a moment after the festival finishes - I may even break with tradition and shockingly try something new!”

From Friday, March 9 to Wednesday, March 14, more than 120 events will take place in 14 locations across the city as Belfast Children’s Festival has become one of the largest children’s arts festivals in the UK and Ireland.

This year, adults will pay the same price as children, maximum ticket price £10, and many events are free. Many festival events sell out so you are advised to book early to avoid disappointment.

To find out more information about events and to buy tickets online, visit

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