You already know, love, and envy French girl style, but what you may not know is that their beauty routines are equally as enviable. And thanks to the French pharmacie, they’re also affordable. American drugstores certainly offer their fair share of dupes that rival high-end makeup products and skincare, but French pharmacies are a treasure trove of affordable beauty products that keep French women’s skin glowy and their hair flawless, all without spending too much money or taking too much time. There’s no need to scour makeup counters or aisles of beauty stores if you don’t want to (but if you do, you do you)—the French pharmacie is a one-stop-shop for the best affordable products the beauty world has to offer.
Scroll on to shop them from the comfort of your home instead of booking a ticket to Paris (actually, we’ll take both, s’il vous plaît). A French girl walks into a drugstore, and here’s what she buys.
Avène is a longtime French-girl favorite for their skincare and SPF needs, but this tinted sunscreen formula might take the cake (or croissant). It's made with 100 percent mineral UVA and UVB filters (instead of chemical) and uses powerful antioxidants for extra protection against the sun's harmful rays, blue light, and pollution. Bonus: The slight tint blends into your skin tone for light coverage that will make you glow without having to put on foundation (a French girl's dream!).
Thermal spring water is a staple in French girls' routines but is something the rest of us often look past. Think of it as a fancy water to soothe irritation, hydrate skin, and totally refresh it whenever you need it throughout your day. This one is also rich in selenium, which is a powerful antioxidant used to boost glow and protect the skin.
Retinol is a must-have for the skincare obsessed, and the French are no exception. This one contains peptides that physically fill in wrinkles and tone the skin as well as vitamin E to help protect against pollution and harmful rays. Basically, if you only want one product to apply at night, let this be it.
It's no surprise the French don't like to try too hard or make too much of a fuss when it comes to their beauty routines. So, naturally, this multi-purpose dry oil has a cult following as the one product you can use for everything. Try it on dry strands to improve hair shine and reduce split ends, massage it in as a body oil to moisturize after your shower, or pat it on your face as the last step in your routine for added glow.
Because even French women drink too much wine or have a bad night's sleep, these eye patches are their go-to for those days when dark circles are taking over. Instead of applying a heavy layer of concealer, focus on skincare with these soothing, nourishing, and brightening eye patches that will help reduce puffiness.
While we stan a nourishing face cream or oil to deeply nourish the skin, sometimes we just need something that feels more lightweight and refreshing than heavy and creamy. Enter: this milky moisturizer. It's anti-aging, insanely hydrating, and flawlessly blends into the skin without feeling like another layer. The French even use it as a makeup primer and a sleeping mask (especially on flights!).
Walk through any French pharmacie or beauty store, and you'll see Klorane covering the walls (for good reason). It's the go-to haircare brand because of the superfood ingredients, incredible scents, and powerful results. This one helps thicken and strengthen hair, but check out their wide range of products to find the best one for your hair goals.
You know how your mom carried around Vaseline everywhere for chapped lips, dry skin, or irritation? This is basically that but way better. Many French women don't leave the house without this (appropriately named) Magic Cream. Dab it over lipstick for a moisturized finish, apply it to dry areas like elbows and hands, or rub it into skin to help with irritation like rosacea.
I don't know if you consider toothpaste to be a beauty product, but a French woman knows that good dental hygiene is a crucial part of her beauty routine. Plus, how pretty would this one look on your bathroom counter instead of the basic brand you have now?
A mineral face sunscreen in the form of a tinted compact? Yep, sign me up. This little compact is shockingly an SPF, not a foundation or concealer. It contains skin-nourishing vitamin E for potent antioxidant protection and thermal spring water to soften the skin. It comes in two shades that blend well—the tint makes it wearable for all skin tones (so you won't have to worry about that white cast from other sunscreens). Your SPF has never looked prettier.
Ever since I first tried this facial sunscreen in Paris, I've been hooked. Not only does it protect against sun damage like a normal SPF, but it also absorbs pore-clogging oil to prevent breakouts (can your SPF do that?). As if that didn't sell me already, it also has a matte finish, which means no more greasy sunscreen face.
Do you get sensitive, itchy, or dry skin (especially in the winter?). Guess what: so do French women. Their secret fix is this balm, which uses the latest skincare technology to alleviate redness, irritation, and dryness on the deepest level. Bonus: It contains that signature thermal spring water for additional soothing and hydrating.
Before we were putting oat milk in our lattes, the French were putting oat milk in their dry shampoos. French women do effortless beauty better than anybody, and dry shampoo is a staple in achieving effortless beauty. I love this one because, unlike most dry shampoos, it's nourishing and soothing (thanks to the oat milk!).