#FrenchFriday : $100+ French drugstore beauty haul!

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Howdy! Let me welcome myself back to the blog after a well-deserved vacation, which turned out to be an epic trip to my homeland. Aahh France, how I had missed you... I enjoyed every minute of this adventure, from the chilly, rainy days in Paris to the naps by the pool in Montpellier. And of course, the food orgy in my hometown of Lyon, considered the gastronomy capital of France. I'm surprised I didn't put on more weight actually... oh wait, I don't own a scale!

Anyways, let me know if you'd like to see pictures of the sights, the foods, the vistas besides what I posted daily in my Instagram stories, but for today we'll focus on my beauty purchases. Long story short: I couldn't do the crazy high-end makeup shopping at the airport duty-free I was planning to indulge in, because I didn't have the time (Roissy is a hellhole). So most of what I brought back, I bought in one single trip to the largest pharmacy in Lyon, aptly named Grande Pharmacie Lyonnaise. Not much has changed in France since I left, but that pharmacie definitely has! It was always a great place to shop for cosmetics, but now it's turned into a real drugstore with most of the store devoted to cosmetics, and the prescription counters hidden in the back. My dream. Let's take a look at what I got!

One word first about "drugstore beauty" in France: we have many more brands than what is sold in US drugstores, and on average they are much higher quality, yet a lot of them remain affordable. Brands like Caudalie, Nuxe, Filorga, Bioderma, Avène, are all drugstore brands. They're sold in pharmacies and also in para-pharmacies: the same thing minus the medicines, in other words stores entirely dedicated to drugstore beauty. Prices can vary wildly from one store to the next, and I shopped at the GPL because it's known for having the lowest prices in town on most products.

About what I bought: you'll see that I focused on brands and products that I can't find in the US. While products found in both countries are cheaper in France, it can actually become pricey when you factor in the fees for excess baggage! Which brings me to the major concern I had while shopping: trying to keep the weight of my haul as low as possible. As tempting as it was to buy a huge bottle containing a half-gallon of Bioderma micellar water, it just wasn't a good idea considering I would have to fit everything in my suitcase (we ended up having to buy and check-in an extra bag...).

(turns out I'm obsessed with SPF these days...)

sunscreen mist Bioderma Uriage Vichy Soleilbiafine

- Soleil Biafine Mousse Solaire Effet Fraîcheur SPF 50 (around 14 euros). One more mousse sunscreen for the body to add to my collection! I really like this one, although I don't feel the refreshing effect it's promising. You might have heard of Biafine before, a medicated ointment for burns that is sometimes misused as a moisturizer by people with dry skin (would NOT recommend using the original Biafine on the whole face!). The brand has widely expanded its range since I left France, with skincare products for sensitive skin and a line of sunscreens.

And then I got THREE different sunscreen mists for the face, because why just buy one when you can try them all!

- Bioderma Hydrabio Eau de Soin SPF30 (around 10 euros). You might have seen this one in European blogs, this is the sunscreen mist that started the trend. I was actually shocked by the tiny size of the spray bottle. I have yet to test it!

- Uriage Brume d'Eau SPF30 (around 8 euros). Uriage is one of the mineral water based French skincare brands that is not available stateside, but is similar to Avène, La Roche-Posay, etc. I've tried this mist a few times and enjoyed it quite a bit! It's very light (if you don't overapply!) and leaves the face looking dewy, not greasy.

- Vichy Idéal Soleil Brume Fraîcheur SPF50 (around 13 euros). I like that this one has and SPF50 and not 30 like the other two, and the bottle is also 50% bigger. The one thing I don't like is that it's quite noticeably scented, other than that it feels quite similar to the Uriage mist.

Shower gels & Shampoo

shower gels shampoo Laino Klorane

- I got two travel-size shower gels by Laino (around 2 euros), a brand that makes traditional products like Marseille soap. I got the fig and the green tea! I had initially put some Klorane shower gels in my basket but switched to these because they were smaller hence lighter!

- I got a little weekender pouch from Klorane (about 7 euros) with very generous travel-sizes of their purifying shampoo, shower gel in the Eveil Matinal (that they translate as Awaken), and a small bottle of their cornflower cleansing water which I LOVE and reviewed recently.


skincare Bioderma Sanoflore

- Sanoflore Aciana Botanica Mousse d'Eau Nettoyante Bio (around 13 euros). Sanoflore is a brand of natural and organic skincare that expanded their range a lot and revamped their packaging for a more high-end look since I moved to the US. This organic facewash is supposed to remove makeup, cleanse and remove pollution particles from the skin (that last claim sounds silly, any cleanser should do that).

- Bioderma Hydrabio Brume Eau Apaisant Rafraîchissante. Want to guess what I paid for this huge 300 ml (10 fl oz) spray bottle? A whopping... 2 euros and 94 scents, tax included! For this price I had to get it, despite the larger size! It's Bioderma's version of a "mineral water" spray, expect that the brand doesn't own an actual spring, so they just added minerals to regular water - plus a few other things to soothe sensitive skins. It's very refreshing, I tested it on ridiculously hot days in Lyon and it helped calm irritations on my face from the constant sweating.


fragrance Roger Gallet

- Have you ever heard of Roger & Gallet? It's an old school brand that makes very classic but high quality soaps and colognes. They've redone their packaging and launched new scents in the past few years to appeal to a younger audience and I think it works well. Being a big fan of fig scents, I picked their Eau Parfumée in Fleur de Figuier (around 17 euros). I love the fragrance, but I should probably have gone for the more concentrated Eau de Cologne version because sadly it doesn't last.


- A-Derma Pain Dermatologique (around 4 euros). This is my favorite soap-free, fragrance-free cleansing bar, something that can be hard to find (the one from Avène is scented). I use it as an intimate wash, it's much more gentle than liquid formulas.

- Roger & Gallet Savon Parfumé Gingembre (around 5 euros). I would have gotten the fig one but it was sold out, so ginger it is!

On the picture you can also see a slice of Marseille soap and two liquid soap refills from Le Petit Marseillais, that I bought at the grocery store. And on the very first pic, you also got a sneak peek of the Bourjois makeup that I will show you in another post!

Have you tried any of these products? Anything in particular that you'd like me to review?

The products featured in this post were purchased by me. I received no compensation to write this post, which only reflects my personal opinion. This post may contain affiliate links. I receive a very small commission when you click on those links, and the money generated covers a small portion of my expenses to purchase products for review. Clicking on those links helps ensure that Beaumiroir continues to publish reviews of new and exciting high end French products - at no cost to you!

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