For a true beauty obsessive there are few places more exciting than a French pharmacy and the beauty brands housed within. There are a three good reasons for this: first, they sit tantalizingly out of reach but not so far that you can't visit to restock your supplies. Second, most of us want to have that je ne sais quoi that French women like Caroline de Maigret, Lea Seydoux and Julia Restoin-Roitfeld possess and because we think we’ll find ‘that’ in a French product. And third, it’s the mystery of not knowing what any of the boxes or bottles say; all the products look serious and effective. Lucky then, that we’ve done some digging and can reveal the brands and products that get the ‘tres bon’ seal of approval from French women. Oh, and you can stock up on them from the comfort of your own laptop...
French model and author Caroline de Maigret told The Lifestyle Edit that contrary to popular belief she washes her hair every day. "I buy Elsève by L’Oréal, the one with the orange bottle, but don’t use any conditioner whatsoever. Otherwise it makes my hair too slick. I like it to look big and a bit messy and conditioner makes it look too nice. It’s a good trick. After that I just let it air dry and never brush."
Julia Restoin-Roitfeld cleanses her skin with Bioderma. She told Into The Gloss, "When I do get home, I always try to take off my makeup—that's number one."
Jeweller Aurélie Bidermann swears by the classic French pharmacy buy, Homéoplasmine (£14). It "is a cream for babies, but in France we use it like a lip balm!" she told Vogue.com. "This cream is magical—you can put it anywhere when your skin is dry or if you have any irritations or sensitivities."
Anyone who is anyone in Paris visits Christophe Robin at Le Maurice Hotel for their colour including Lea Seydoux. She told Red Online, "I love his products, especially the Regenerating Mask, £53."
Model Ophelie Guillermand, also loves a French pharmacy, she told Vogue.com, "No matter what, every time I go to Paris I pass by the pharmacy! My essentials, as for most of the best makeup artists, are Bioderma Créaline (£11) to make my skin clean. Embryolisse's Lait-Crème (£20) moisturiser every night before going to sleep. This cream is a dream for the face, but also the best emergency cream for any dry skin."
Want more French beauty secrets? This is how to make your haircare routine really, really French!