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Lotions and Potions from France...oh my!

I'd love to buy some special French lotions, facial creams, shampoos etc. on our upcoming trip to Paris and Provence. Can anyone tell me what to buy that is wonderfully French (and not available in the U.S.) and where to buy these items? I'm not thinking expensive perfumes, and can't afford the very high end. I know RS mentions Sephora, but we have that here in San Diego...thanks!

Posted by
8293 posts

There is a brand of moisturizer we always buy when in Paris. Mixta is the name. It comes in a tube, various types, under 10 euro. Absolutely love it. Look for it in Monoprix.

Posted by
4684 posts

To avoid problems at the airport, don't put them in your hand luggage, or you might be made to throw them away.

Posted by
3696 posts

I always find wonderful items either at the department stores, or at the markets. Definitely, be sure you are checking a bag with those items on the way home. There are so many amazing products and most of them smell heavenly.

Posted by
1135 posts

Le Petit Marseillais is fantastic brand of body wash, lotions, and shampoos. Every time I go pick up some items. The price is very affordable and the quality is stellar.

Posted by
876 posts

I can't actually recommend any of these products, but I ran across this list when I was surfing Buzzfeed a couple of months ago (I'm so impressed that I managed to find it again!): http://www.buzzfeed.com/peggy/french-beauty-products#.twGr26kkR

Also, you might check the French products on Smallflower.com. Make a note of anything that looks interesting, then look for it in Paris. :) Have fun. I always like to buy some hand or body lotion in whatever city is first on my itinerary. There's always plenty left at the end of the trip, so I'll pack it. Then when I use the lotion later at home, the scent reminds me of Paris or Dublin or Salzburg!

Posted by
5697 posts

Not French, but the Nivea cream we got in Germany is less watery than the same brand name (produced in Mexico) that we get at home. Will be bringing back many large jars on our next trip (in the checked bag.)

Posted by
2002 posts

Go to any pharmacy or Monoprix store you will see great stuff.

Posted by
776 posts

In Paris go to CityPharma, fabulous place! Buy Nuxe brand hand cream and the lip conditioner with honey. I bought a sampler pack there and had to return to buy full sized moisturizer, body oil and more lip stuff. My friends who travelled with me last November are mourning now that they finished their Nuxe prodeucts. City Pharma is famous, google it for the address. You can buy Nuxe at Monoprix too.

I do love Monoprix. Some have groceries too. Monop just has food for quick meals. There are mony Monoprix in France. Their website in French can show locations with maps.

Also find an open air market and buy bars of soap. Often the displays of colours then the different aromas is great. Enjoy!

Posted by
43 posts

Such fabulous tips! Just what I was hoping for when I posted this question. (And yes, Teresa, I am impressed!). Thanks to all.

Posted by
1821 posts

Any products you buy will be special. My wife is just finishing up a bottle of nail polish remover she got in Rome and says she wants to replace it when we go back next month. There is nothing special about the nail polish remover other than the label and that it reminds her of the time we spent there. Finding a store and buying the nail polish remover after figuring out what it was called is a fonder memory for her than seeing some of the great attractions.

Posted by
7710 posts

Yes, just go into any pharmacie or parapharmacie and browse . . you'll see plenty of stuff you can't get at home. Lots of fun!

Posted by
83 posts

My favorite French skin product is Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse. I don't spend much time or effort on beauty products, but I swear by this oil. I use it on my poor old cracked heels. Just a couple of drops a day help keep them soft. And you can use it on your face, your hair, etc. It is liquid gold, honestly.

Posted by
43 posts

Thanks Terry! That is definitely going on my list!
And I bet that nail polish remover IS better, Richard! (-;