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Best Dressed Lady Tips

Galway Races 2018

Chanelle, Lady McCoy - Enterpreneur

As a previous winner of the Galway Races and a prominent race goer known for style and elegance herself, Chanelle - Lady McCoy is delighted to be guest judge of the 2018 g Hotel Best Dressed.

This year at the Galway races, I am looking for something elegant, chic, not over accessorised and not under accessorised. No spaghetti straps, just something that is appropriate, but very elegant and chic.  Feel like your outfit reflects you and your personality, because when you feel you look good in an outfit, this gives you lots of self-confidence. An outfit needs to be finished off with good posture, when you feel confidence in what you are wearing you will walk tall, no slouched shoulders!

Bairbre Power - Fashion Editor of the Irish Independent

Ladies Day at the Galway Races is a celebration of style and for me, the winning ingredient is wearing an outfit that reflects your personality rather than ‘wears’ you. 

  • I think it’s important to have a sense of what is appropriate for race day and for me, that definitely means no ballgowns.
  • I love to see colour. There’s nothing more glorious rather a rainbow of colour in the g Hotel’s sponsors tent but then again, cream works for me too. One of my all-time favourite winning outfits was the cream ensemble worn by florist Anne Marie O’Leary in 2010. Her Carol Kennelly hat and Karyn Moriarty dress were the epitome of elegance and the combination of an elegant outfit and showstopper hat never fails to catch my eye as I walk around the course from 11.30am.
  • I had the best Ladies Day ever at the Galway Races last year because I really comfortable in what I was wearing and that’s the secret to an enjoyable day whether you are judging, competing or just coming to have a look at the style. In short, never suffer for your fashion. It’s not a good look.
  • The killer shoes that perfectly match your outfit but kill your toes after an hour are a No No. I chose a Leonora Ferguson headpiece last year that never moved all day long which was a real bonus and from experience, I would recommend you road test your hat/headpiece in advance to make sure it is secure. Ballybrit can be a windy spot and having good strong pins or a comb sown into the hat always helps. A high maintenance is more trouble than it’s worth. 
  • Seasoned racegoers will know to be there early if you want to be spotted and invited to be a finalist.
  • I’m not a big fan of over-embellished looks so don’t throw the kitchen sink at your outfit and be judicious in how you accessorise.
  • Do your homework and Don’t take everything for granted. That means trying on your complete outfit- everything, from the inside out- at least 24 hours in advance so you can tweak bra straps, hemlines and heel height if required. 
  • Clutch bags don’t take much but there’s always room for a few plasters and gel pads. 
  • Best thing of all to bring to the course for Ladies Day? A smile

Mandy Maher - Owner of Catwalk Model Agency Galway & Dublin

As a judge at the Best Dressed Lady Competition at the Galway Races for the past 11 years, there is so much to take into account when choosing the lucky lady on the day, so here are some tips I hope will help!

  • Prepare your skin:  A few days beforehand, while showering use a good  scrub to remove dead skin cells & afterwards pop on plenty of moisturiser to have your skin glowing. 
  •  As above:  A really good facial will prepare your skin to look & feel amazing:
  • Tan:   It can either look amazing or be completely wrong:  Ensure you go to a good salon to get proper salon tan applied (it always looks better), choose a tan that suits your skin type (not that dreadful orange), very light sun kissed tan always looks the part.
  • Nails need to be immaculate:  Well manicured nails are a must:  French polish is still very much in fashion, but why not be bold & try out some of this seasons new Pastel shades……………(oh & don’t forget your toe nails) !!!!
  • Remember it is a day meeting, so keep your makeup natural, simply eye colours & don't overdo the foundation.
  • Hair:  Choose a hair style that suits your outfit & hat (very important), have it well groomed, clean & shiny.
  • The outfit is so important: (obviously), so remember to wear something appropriate:  You are going to the races & not heading out for a night on the town.  Think of something elegant, Classical, smart but yet trendy.  Ensure your outfit is not too short or showing too much flesh and definitely not a long evening gown…..(believe me I have seen it all) !!!
  • The Hat:  The hat is a huge part of completing an outfit.  So when choosing a hat pick something that suits your face shape and again this is where you can introduce colour to complete your look.
  • Finally:  Choose comfy shoes:  Nothing as bad as looking at someone who cannot walk in their heels !!!!  Bring pumps to change into for the evening.

How to Enter:

  • Be Prepared – Check out the Judges Tips above
  • Get there Early – Judging starts at 11am
  • Be Seen – if you wish to be considered, you need to be visible so the judges can spot you so make sure you are in the vicinity of the g Hotel Best Dressed Marquee & Fashion Runway
  • Know your Timings – The judges announce the winner between 2.30pm-3pm so be at the g Hotel Best Dressed Marquee
  • Enjoy yourself – Ladies Day is lots of fun so make sure you enjoy it!
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