A Guide to French Pharmacy Skincare



Try as I may, I will most probably never truly look like the quintessential Parisian woman. I can, however, live vicariously through her by raiding the shelves of Paris’ pharmacies or online to find the best that the French pharmaceutical brands have to offer! I’ve developed quite an arsenal of French pharmacy skincare products and so rather than going through the entirety of my stash, I thought I’d share my favourite products and how they came to be so. 

For heavy-duty makeup removal, I’m partial to Vichy’s purete thermal cleansing oil and for removing the remanents of said removal or for a lighter cleanse, I adore Nuxe’s melting cleansing gel with rose petals; which is both balmy and buttery in texture and is not dissimilar to Turkish delight in scent. Need I say any more?

On the topic of cleansing, Klorane’s mango butter shampoo and conditioning balm is a rather fab pairing for their detangling properties and nourishing ingredients, without in any way promoting grease or weighing my locks down.

Although I don’t consider thermale waters and such like to be entirely necessary steps in anyone’s skincare regime, I do love Avene’s eau thermale spring water for calming my skin when it’s agitated in any way or as a mid-day refreshing spritz for the complexion. For regulating oil production in the summer time when my skin can lean towards the greasy side of things, La Roche-Posay’s serozinc main ingredient of zinc is all kinds of fab. Speaking of the summer time, when the weather’s fine (Mungo Jerry, anyone, no?), La Roche-Posay’s Anthelios XL Fluid SPF 50+ is fantastic for those who stray from SPFs for fear that they will enhance their oiliness or will be emblematic of those awful, sticky SPFs of previous years!

In the moisturisation and hydration department, I have four favourites that I use intermittently, dependent on what I think my skin is in need of. For a morning moisturiser-primer hybrid, Bioderma’s sébium range is great as although my skin is far from being oily or blemished, it offers just the right amount of hydration whilst keeping any excess sebum at bay on those hot and bothersome summer days. If for any reason any blemishes start to peek through, the cult effaclar duo from La Roche-Posay seems to instantaneously eradicate them as the LHA and salicylic acid work to repair the surface of the skin. For an intense boost of hydration, both the Vichy aqualia thermal serum and idealia skin sleep are favourites of mine, namely for the skin sleep’s gel-balm consistency and high concentration of hyaluronic acid in both products.

I’ll be honest in saying that I find applying eye cream to be a tedious task and is consequently one that I often skip but for when my eyes begin to resemble the texture of crepe paper, I love Vichy’s Idealia Eyes for its slight pearlescent finish, silicone brush applicator and lifting effect.

Do you have any French pharmacy skincare favourites? Jess x


8 thoughts on “A Guide to French Pharmacy Skincare

  1. I have soooo many favorites hahah I have very sensitive skin so i mostly use french pharmacy
    And I actually tried everything from this picture exept nuxe and vichy gels, so I wanted to know more about them. My skin can be pretty oily. I’ve tried some makeup removing oil and only one seems to be okay for me (it did’d make me breakout, but there are some greasiness). How you feel about them? I can guess you have combo or oily skin because of this Bioderma cream.

    1. They’re so brilliant for sensitive skin aren’t they! I would highly recommend the nuxe cleanser as it has a beautiful balm-like texture that doesn’t leave any residue on the skin. Although saying that, my skin gets oily in the summer and I find the Vichy cleansing oil to be perfectly fine as it also leaves no residue! The Bioderma moisturiser I mentioned in this post is fantastic for oily skin as well! Hope that’s helpful x

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