It’s quite obvious that one of the biggest reasons I was so excited to travel to Paris was the copious amount of beauty shopping I planned on doing. For someone addicted to French cosmetics, Paris is basically the Mecca of beauty shopping. So I’d been saving my money and collecting my shopping list, and today I thought I’d share my experience (and top tips) of beauty shopping in Paris, for your next trip.
My top tips for beauty shopping in Paris:
- Always trust the experts | I made some of my best beauty buys thanks to recommendations from sales assistants.
- Not everything is cheaper | While most beauty brands were quite a bit cheaper in Paris than in Finland, there were a few surprises.
- Do your research | Especially if you’re planning on shopping at Citypharma, it’s best to know what you’re going in for.
BEAUTY SHOPPING IN PARIS
DIOR | 30 Avenue Montaigne
First of all, I have to say that the Dior Montaigne is without a doubt one of the most gorgeous stores I’ve ever seen. The mirrored doors and all that paneling made my interior loving heart flutter. That said, otherwise the experience left something to be desired. First of all, compared to the service I had at other high-end stores in Paris, the customer service was just not that great. The sales assistant made me feel like I was a massive inconvenience and the whole process included quite a bit of waiting around and being bounced from one customer service person to the next. The prices were roughly the same as in Finland, and nowhere visible at the store so that you had to ask for everything.
Go snap a photo and admire the décor outside, but skip the shopping.
MAISON MARGIELA | 13 Rue de Grenelle
I had been lusting after the Maison Margiela Replica fragrances on the interwebs for months. But the idea of dishing out a hundred euros for a scent without first giving it a sniff just seemed way too scary. So I bided my time until I’d get to try the perfumes out in Paris. There are several Maison Margiela boutiques in Paris that stock the fragrances, and I opted for the Saint-Germain-Des-Prés location.
It’s a quiet little boutique that proved to be a bit difficult to find. But they did have all of the fragrances in stock. The customer service isn’t even worth mentioning, but the prices were at least a good thirty euros less than I’ve seen anywhere online. So if you’re looking to save some pennies, I recommend stopping by.
CHANEL | 31 Rue Cambon
If you only have time for one beauty stop in Paris, make it Chanel Rue Cambon. Absolutely everything about visiting the very first Chanel store was just a magical experience. The store was obviously beautiful, and the staff incredibly friendly. The sales assistant helping me spoke great English, let me patiently try out all the shades, and even tried some of the nail polishes on herself so I wouldn’t have to ruin my manicure! The prices were much less expensive than in Finland, and the samples they slipped into my bag were so great that I ended up going back again the next day. They also offered me champagne while waiting. (I have to say that sipping champagne at Chanel was one of those pinch me moments for me!)
CITYPHARMA | 26 Rue du Four
Read literally any post on beauty shopping in Paris, and they’ll all tell you that Citypharma is a must. Arguably the best pharmacie in Paris, Citypharma is packed to the brim with French pharmacy brands. They have anything you could possibly want, all at inexpensive prices, and often plenty of fab offers too. The staff is very helpful and seriously know what they’re talking about, so if you get a chance to chat (and know your French) take all the tips you can get. Be warned though that the store can be extremely packed. So if tight crowded spaces make you uncomfortable, go for one of the smaller pharmacies dotted on every street corner.
Have you ever been beauty shopping in Paris?