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top flight:

the cult of
french pharmacy

Devotees of French drugstore beauty, rejoice—pharmacy beauty has come to VIOLET GREY. Novices, prepare to be let in on the ultimate French-girl beauty secret.

Written By ERICA LOPEZ

BRIGITTE BARDOT AND MICHEL PICCOLI IN LE MEPRIS / GETTY IMAGES

As self-proclaimed Francophiles, we at VIOLET GREY have studied the art of Parisian elegance, from tousled hair and glowing skin to the proper way to say oh la la. We have found out how to perfect their done-undone beauty looks (see: matte red lips, imperfect smoky eyes) and where they go for for easily priced and très effective skincare—the pharmacy. In case you’re unfamiliar, the French pharmacy is a sort of beauty mecca, stocked with effective, gentle skincare that has inspired a cult-like following far beyond the City of Lights.

Many of these wares can be hard to find on this side of the Atlantic, so visiting Fashion Week models and editors, Cannes A-listers and tourists stock their Rimowa luggage to the brim with the likes of Avène, Klorane, and makeup artists’ favorite, Bioderma. But fear not—we are pleased to announce that the best of pharma-beauty has been plucked from Paris and delivered to the shelves of VIOLET GREY, expressly for your inner garçonne. Below, peruse our French picks.

PHARMACY
FAVORITES

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Try as they might, no one has been able to top the original eau micellaire. Simply soak a cotton pad with the gentle water cleanser and sweep it over the face to remove makeup. Voilà!

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A primer, moisturizer, and makeup remover in one, this no-frills lotion gained its reputation backstage with models and makeup artists who adore the highly effective lightweight formula.

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To create refined bedhead à la model Caroline de Maigret, we can think of no better texturizer than the industry’s first (side note: it’s also a favorite of Karl Lagerfeld). Lightly dust the product into roots and zhuzh to reveal a refreshed, perfectly imperfect mane.

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Treat a range of skin-related ailments with healing powers of Avène’s Cicalfate—the go-to treatment for cuts, burns, scars, and even your newborn’s diaper rash. 

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Derived directly from the grapes of Bordeaux, this hydrating facial mist is the perfect pick-me-up anywhere, anytime.

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Unscented and hypoallergenic, the Atoderm cream is made with minimal ingredients to be tolerated by the most sensitive skin types. For full moisturizing benefits, use the body lotion while skin is still lightly damp post-shower.

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Remove all traces of makeup in a flash with Klorane’s gentle cleansing wipes, which are free of alcohol, fragrance, and parabens.

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Use this mask, infused with Avène’s Thermal Spring Water (trace elements and silicates are clinically proven to soothe, soften, and balance the skin), twice a week to revive overstressed skin. 

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Pamper the delicate eye area with the anti-aging benefits of vinotherapy. Resveratrol firms, Viniferine corrects dark circles, and polyphenols (packed with antioxidants) prevents future damage.

the french
girl look

Study modern French mystique with gamine looks created by Parisian makeup artist Violette.