Getting Ready

A Guide to Parisian Summer Beauty

It works, even if you’re not Parisian!

By: Tara Gonzalez

Marta Pozzan is an Italian in America but, like anybody who works in fashion, she finds herself frequently in Paris. While there this past Couture Week, she admired the dresses at Monique Lhuillier (who swapped NYFW for Couture this year)—“The clothes were beyond dreamy. The models looked like ethereal creatures or fairies floating inside the Hotel d’Evreux!”—and felt inspired by the blush and nude beauty looks at shows like Dior, Azzaro, and Valentino. She also found herself, like most of us do, awestruck by the Parisian streets and French glamour.

Even if we try to move past everyone’s obsession with French-girl beauty, we find ourselves right back at it, looking at an old photo of Brigitte Bardot or watching a scene from a Godard film, asking ourselves why we don’t have the metabolism for endless croissants, the perfect head shape for a beret (a very real concern), or a go-to hairstyle inspired by a banana (a very real look). For Marta’s summer in Paris, she drew on the nonchalance of the French and wore a simple and natural beauty look that we’re trying to recreate until fall. Even if we can’t be found strolling the streets of Paris anytime soon, who says we can’t do as the French do until then?

Click through to read about the quintessential French-girl look, the perfect mask for thick hair, and the best beauty touch-up products for the heat.

“I use Leonor Greyl Masque a l’Orchidee on my hair: a softening, moisturizing and conditioning mask for thick and long hair like mine. It is perfect for traveling and great to apply before styling my hair, especially during events and fashion week when I know I’ll use a lot of products so the masque can really protect it and keep it healthy.”

Leonor Greyl Masque à l’Orchidée, Leonor Greyl L’Huile de Leonor Greyl, glasses by Marc Jacobs and HM

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

Leonor Greyl Masque àl’Orchidée

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

Leonor Greyl L’Huile de Leonor Greyl

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“Another key product is Leonor Greyl L’Huile de Leonor Greyl, formulated with natural oils. It makes your hair so soft and silky, and I usually wear it at night and sleep with it so in the morning my hair is ready to be washed and styled. In the summer, it protects hair from the damaging effects of the sun, seawater, and chlorine.”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“I use Votre Vu Lip Balm clear lip balm! It’s made with coconut oil, shea butter, and beeswax. A deliciously light coconut flavor is like a guiltless treat.”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“This intoxicating hand crème leaves a soft veil of almond and coconut fragrance lingering on the skin. One big serving of hydrating heaven!”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“The lip balm and hand crème are two products that are quite the best and also very rare to find. These products are a must-have for a busy girl’s schedule; carry it with you everywhere you go for moisturized hands and soft lips, and it smells like almond tart!!!”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“My beauty look for Couture was very simple and natural. Paris was quite hot during, so light and fresh makeup was a must. That includes a lot of moisturizer (preferably gel), SPF foundation, a bit of mascara, white eyeliner for the inside of the lower eyelid, a bit of blush, and pink or nude lips to finish the look. I want people to think I’m barely wearing anything.”

Shirt: Feminist World Tour Tee

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“French beauty is timeless, classy, mysterious, and innocent at the same time; and occasionally cold.”

Shirt: Feminist World Tour Tee

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“Marion Cotillard would be my number one French beauty icon. She’s just the perfect example of what an iconic French beauty looks like: light skin, blue/green eyes, minute features, and soft wavy hair.”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“My Pür Cameo Contour Dual-Ended Contour Stick is my go-to product for beauty touch-ups, it’s perfect to quickly fix your face makeup and hide your dark circles.”

Shirt: Feminist World Tour Tee Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“I also always carry some of the new Marc Jacobs eye pencils, they come in so many colors and they’re so fun to play with.”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“I love that French women rarely wear eye makeup and foundation. They’re all about a good red lipstick and a bit of mascara and they’re pretty much done. That's when classic beauty can shine and stand out, when it's not covered in makeup and yet it’s expressive and has personality.”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“The look is all-white everything. The dress is by Aritzia and the boots are by Dear Frances. I chose it because I know white and lighter colors are quite catchy to the eyes of street style photographers and the flowery pattern makes it very summery as well. I’m really into those white patent leather ankle boots, they’re my favorite thing to wear lately and the furry black-and-white Emm Kuo NY bag is quite the piece too.”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

“My favorite thing to do in Paris in the summer is to go to the Sacré-Cœur Basilica. You’ll meet so many interesting people and a lot of cool French kids hang out there during summer!”

Photo: Federica Dall’Orso

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