Wednesday, May 1, 2013

When in Paris...

When in Paris, it's hard not to get wrapped up in the effortless chicness of the French women.  They throw on a pair of heels and some red lipstick with everything.  Even with a pair of sneakers, they look chic when paired with a tailored trench coat and jeans that hit their ankles at the perfect spot.  They have perfect dewy skin (without obvious foundation!) and a natural rosy glow.  Their hair is impeccable, and don't even get me started on their perfumes.

In a desperate attempt to emulate some of their natural beauty, I hit up a couple French pharmacies and stores.

In the end, here's my modest haul - I only have so much space left in my suitcase after stocking up on German chocolate and beauty for the past four months:

I wasn't planning on buying Caudalie's Beauty Elixer, but after seeing it cheaper in a pharmacy, I couldn't resist.  It retails for $18 in the US, but I found this bottle for around 9 Euros, which is roughly $12.  I really enjoyed using this last summer and I really felt like it made my skin more radiant.  I didn't use a set time of day - sometimes I used this in the morning as my toner, sometimes at night, but definitely throughout the day to freshen up.

I also bought a travel size of Bioderma!  I honestly have no idea how to use this, as I'm quite content with my Clinique Take the Day Off cleanser, but I have heard so many raves about it I decided to pick up a small bottle.

The next item is the Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Foundation.  This was a must-have on my list for Paris, as Bourjois is not available is not available in the US and I had also heard so many good things about it.  I picked up the shade 53, which is a little bit light for my skin tone, but at least it has a yellow undertone.  I have a number of foundations a little too dark, so this will be good to mix with.  I've only worn it for one day, but I like the semi-matte texture it has.  I was out and about all day yesterday when I wore it though, so I didn't really check the lasting power.  I didn't notice that I got too oily with it, so that's a good sign!

Yves Rocher is also a brand I had only heard of vaguely before going to Europe.  There are a few Yves Rocher stores in Berlin, but I had never entered any of them.  Curiousity got the better of me here and I walked into it.  It reminds me of a bath and body works with its bath and body products, but with a smaller range.  They also had a pretty big makeup collection, but none of the items really interested me.  I picked up a Malaysian Coconut body lotion in a travel size perfect for Barcelona, and a Strawberry body spray.  

I'm usually not interested in fruity body sprays at all, but as soon as I smelled the strawberry, I could not stop sniffing it.  It's slightly sugary and over-saturated, but sometimes you just have to indulge your inner 5-year old.  I think I'll love wearing this in the summer when I just want something fresh and simple.

The Coconut body lotion screams beach to me - it has a pure coconut smell that lingers for awhile after the lotion absorbs.  It's also simple, but sometimes simple is best.

Although I didn't pick up very many products, I'm happy with the selections I made.  I was able to resist makeup (except for the foundation, an essential, I'd say) and I picked up products I cannot find in the US.  Here's to hoping I become even one bit like a Parisian.

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