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Life-Changing Skin Care Tips Inspired by French Beauty

The modern skincare world can seem incredibly complicated, with a ton of different products and so much advice. The French skincare routine is much easier compared to some of the 10-step routines we’ve been seeing online! 

In reality, there are a few different ways to achieve healthy skin, so our goal is to help you with simple yet life-changing advice. When it comes to French beauty, it’s not only about your specific products but also how you use them! 

With these easy skin care tips, you’ll be able to make the most out of your beauty routine. 

French pharmacy brands

Scientist developing cosmetic product in laboratory

In France, most women buy their skincare products at the pharmacy, and French pharmacy brands are an important staple in most French skincare routines. These brands are renowned for formulating gentle products that are suitable for sensitive skin, and for investing a lot of money in clinical research. 

While French pharmacy brands put a large emphasis on science, their products still contain a lot of lovely natural skin care ingredients that have their own nourishing effects on the skin. 

Be consistent

French skincare comes at all kinds of price points, and contrary to popular belief, more expensive doesn’t always mean better. That’s why another one of our most important tips for great skin is to be consistent, no matter what products you decide to use. 

Cultivate skincare as a habit that you do every day, without changing up your products too much from day-to-day. Remove your makeup and moisturize every night, and wear sunscreen every morning. This consistency will pay off in the long term, by keeping your skin at optimal health for years to come.  

Cleansing should be gentle

One of the most important French beauty secrets to healthy skin is gentle cleansing, no matter your skin type. In many countries, those with oily skin resort to scrubbing their face with harsh, stripping cleansers that throw their skin off balance, leading to irritation, breakouts, and more oiliness. 

However, in the best French skincare routines, cleansing is gentle and usually done with creamy milk cleansers. These days, oil cleansers and micellar water are also incredibly popular, but the key is to avoid any harsh, foaming cleansers. 

Moisturize damp skin

Another easy skincare tip that makes a big difference is to apply moisturizer to the skin when it’s damp. This also applies to serums, essences, and any other hydrating skincare steps, although in French beauty, it’s okay to keep things minimal. 

Water makes the skin more permeable, so moisturizing agents sink in more deeply instead of sitting in a layer on top of the skin. The result is bouncy, more hydrated skin that feels soft to the touch but never greasy. 

Don’t neglect the neck and decolletage

Happy woman applying lotion on neck 

The skin doesn’t stop at the face! The French skincare routine extends from the face to the neck and chest, since those areas are all actually quite similar when it comes to skin thickness and level of exposure to the elements. Make sure to use your cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen from the face all the way down to your decolletage. 

It’s particularly important if you rely on your skincare routine to prevent premature signs of aging. If you forget to care for your neck, it’ll be an instant giveaway. 

Nurture your body with oils

The rest of the body also deserves some attention, although it doesn’t necessarily need the same products as the delicate skin on the face and neck.

The skin on the body is a little thicker and it’s usually less prone to acne, which is why French women love to nurture it with body oils rich in beneficial fatty acids and regenerative antioxidants.

Just as with the face, the body is also most ready to accept moisture when it’s damp. The best time to use body oil is immediately after the shower when the skin is totally saturated with water. Using oil immediately after will help to prevent that water from evaporating, which will leave the skin hydrated and soft. 

Skincare can be aromatherapeutic 

Lavender oil and lavender flowers on wooden table 

This skincare tip won’t work for everyone, but for many French women, it’s what makes their beauty routine so fun. France has a centuries-old tradition of perfumery, essential oil production, and aromatherapy, which also touches into the skincare world. 

While the benefits that essential oils have for the skin are debatable, it’s undeniable that they can have a beneficial effect on the mood. Lavender is incredibly calming while rose essential oil can make you more cheerful. 

Using natural skincare with essential oils can have a positive impact on your mental health, and it can also simply make the skincare experience more sensorial and enjoyable! If your skin is sensitive to fragrances, try lighting a scented candle while doing your beauty routine, instead. 

Go all-out with the occasional treatment

While consistency is important, treating yourself to some extra self-care can also be beneficial! In general, it’s not great to surprise the skin with new products, but a few times a week, you should exfoliate or mask your skin and give yourself a longer-than-normal massage. 

While these added treatments aren’t mandatory for healthy skin (it’s what you do every day that really matters), they’re still an easy way to amp up your glow and to feel pampered. 

It’s not all or nothing

Simple picture of makeup removing tools on small wooden tray

Since consistency is so important, we also want to reinforce that skin care is not all or nothing! While a multi-step routine with double cleansing, toning, multiple serums and creams can be nice, you’re also allowed to keep things basic and even to take shortcuts. 

Having a few pre-planned shortcuts, like a bottle of micellar water in a cupboard for easy makeup removal or a bottle of face lotion near your bed can go a long way towards helping you maintain your consistency on nights when you’re too tired to go all-out. 

Simple skin care success 

Skin care is highly individual since each person has a different skin type and slightly different concerns. However, our tips for great skin are universal, because no matter who you are or what your budget is, you deserve to have healthy, well-cared-for skin!

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8 Easy Ways to Give Yourself a Mini Makeover at Home
August 11, 2021
8 Easy Ways to Give Yourself a Mini Makeover at Home

A beauty makeover is more than just a funny montage in a romantic comedy.  When life seems boring and mundane, giving yourself a new look is a sure way to improve your mood. You can transform yourself from head-to-toe or opt for a simple makeover that targets just one part of your look.  No matter what kind of makeover you choose, that moment when you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror with a new style is incredibly energizing! We’ve collected a few makeover tips and suggestions for how you can give yourself an easy mini-makeover at home.  DIY facial   The first step to a truly rejuvenating one-day beauty makeover is a pampering facial. It’s a great way to give the skin a pick-me-up, especially if you plan to put some makeup on after.  The ideal facial should include some exfoliation, to remove dead skin buildup and prepare the skin to accept moisture. You can make your own scrub, or use an exfoliant from your favorite skincare brand. After that, give yourself a gentle facial massage, and follow it up with a nourishing mask or a thick layer of moisturizer.  Hairstyle Changing up your hair can make the biggest difference, and it’s the one thing that many of us have neglected over the last year. If you’re ready to make a big change, you can give yourself a haircut, but for most of us, taking the time to master a new hairstyle is a safer bet.  If you’ve been wearing your hair straight for the longest time, we recommend giving a tousled, wavy look a try! It’s a French girl staple that you can achieve with the help of a texturizing spray and a large curling iron. If your hair is naturally a little wavy, you can also just go to sleep with a braid in, and you should wake up with nice, natural-looking curls.  New style    The best way to give yourself a style makeover without having to spend much money is to invest in some new accessories. It’s amazing how big of a difference a nice silk scarf or a skinny belt can make to your look! Even smaller touches, like earrings and bracelets, can amp up an outfit.  If you’re willing to invest a little more, you can give yourself a complete style makeover by upgrading your wardrobe. Your first, and most relieving step, should be to get rid of the clothes you don’t like anymore—you can take some inspiration from Marie Kondo for that!  After that, consider what kind of aesthetic you’d like to have, and browse Pinterest for inspiration! You may decide to pick up a few new outfits or a couple of separates that’ll enhance your existing wardrobe. Building a French capsule wardrobe is another great way to go about things, especially if you’d like to simplify your life with classy yet versatile clothes. Lip color   If everything we’ve suggested so far seems a little too involved, you can give yourself the most low-effort beauty makeover with a simple lipstick change. Red is our favorite color, of course, because it adds glam factor even to a totally bare face, but any vibrant color will act as a quick pick-me-up.  One of the benefits of our Matte Constance lipsticks is that they come in a duo-pack, so you can experiment with the help of two lipsticks in one!  At-home mani Giving yourself a simple manicure will help you feel polished and put together, and it’s an especially nice treat when you don’t want to fuss with hair or makeup. Every time you look down at your hands, you’ll feel a little more composed.  You don’t even have to paint your nails—the simple act of soaking your hands in water, moisturizing the cuticles, and filing your nails into a nice shape is enough on its own. However, nail polish is great, especially if you decide to get creative and experiment with nail art.  New makeup technique    You don’t have to buy dozens of new makeup products just to improve your makeup game. If you always wear natural makeup, try a smokey eye. If you’ve been doing your eyeshadow the same way for the last five years, try a newer trend like a cut crease or a fox eye.  Many of us fall into the habit of doing our makeup the same way every day (that’s actually the secret behind the 5-minute face!). However, taking the time to experiment with styles and techniques you haven’t tried before can be a lot of fun, and you might even discover something new to add to your daily look!  Up your brow game Bushy brows are in these days! Upping your brow game will bring out your eyes, and going for a fluffier look will also give you a youthful air. It’s the best makeup hack for immediately transforming your face. You’ll feel more put-together, but unlike wearing a brightly-colored lipstick, it won’t make you feel too showy.  All you need to amp up your brows is a great eyebrow makeup product, like the Brow Arcade pencil. First, brush the hairs up for a feathery look, and then add a few strokes of color to fill them in.  Hair color    Another extreme (but surprisingly quick) makeover you can do is to change your hair color! Box dyes have come a long way over the last few years, so you can achieve shiny hair all by yourself at home.  We recommend choosing a color that’s not too far from your natural shade, so you don’t have to deal with damaging bleach. The key to finding a color that really flatters you is to choose a shade that is either slightly darker or lighter than your skin tone, but with a matching undertone. For instance, gold-based shades are great for those with warm skin, while blue-based or ashy tones are best for cool skin.  Coloring your hair can be a fun way to mix things up, but we’re also big fans of keeping it totally natural! Uplifting change  Small or big, a simple makeover is an instant mood-lifter. Whether you decide to give yourself a new look or just make a few small changes, we know you’ll feel renewed, energized, and ready to face the world!   

What to do With Your Eyebrows
July 29, 2021
What to do With Your Eyebrows

What’s the secret to flawless-looking eyebrows? Good eyebrows have been making headlines in the beauty industry for years now and show no signs of taking a backseat anytime soon. But with so many techniques and products out there, how do you know where to start when it comes to getting beautiful, natural brows? In this article we’ll be covering everything you need to know when it comes to how to get perfect eyebrows naturally, plucking your eyebrows, and eyebrow treatments.    Here’s what to do with your eyebrows, broken down into simple, manageable steps.  Eyebrow treatments for beautiful brows Here are some of the most popular eyebrow treatments, what the process looks like, and why you may want to give them a try. Threading Threading originated in India and involves the use of cotton thread to roll over the surface of the skin to drive unwanted hair out of the follicle. It’s precise, organic, requires minimal contact with the skin, and involves no nasty chemicals. You can expect results to last for up to two weeks.  Waxing Eyebrow waxing uses a thin layer of warm wax over the area of hair you want to be removed. A small strip of fabric is then used to quickly remove the hair. When done properly by a professional, the wax is applied at a temperature that opens the pore and allows the hair to be removed without causing breakage. Waxing is ideal for anyone with extra bushy brows looking to create a strong, sculpted arch line. An eyebrow wax will usually last a minimum of two weeks before the hair starts growing out again.    Tinting Tinting your eyebrows involves using a semi-permanent dye in a tone close to your natural hair color and adding it to your existing eyebrow hair. It’s a quick treatment that will create the appearance of fuller-looking, defined brows. Results can last between 1-3 months, this will cut time off your morning makeup routine by eliminating the need for excess products.  Microblading Microblading is similar to tattooing and involves a type of semi-permanent makeup used to fill in your brow however you like. Defined, hair-like strokes are created using a needle and brow pigment ink. This will allow you to change the shape of your brows and add more definition wherever you want it.  Microblading will take around two hours to complete, and can last anywhere between 18 and 30 months. Top tricks for plucking your eyebrows Plucking is one of the simplest and most common eyebrow treatments out there, but it shouldn’t be underestimated! If you already have luscious brows, lightly plucking your eyebrows may be all you need to get rid of stragglers. And this is all tweezers should be used for—not to shape your eyebrows.  Let me share an insider secret with you: one of the best ways to get beautiful brows is to leave them alone! Another great tip is to wait to tweeze as long as possible, and then get all those stragglers in one go. This way, all the hairs will be on the same growth cycle and grow back at around the same time.  Don’t worry if you’ve been over-plucking your eyebrows (we’ve all been there). Put the tweezers down for now and let your brows grow out naturally. Use a brow pencil to fill in any gaps—more on that later.  How to shape your eyebrows the right way I’d recommend avoiding doing it yourself. Save up the money you need, and invest in a professional service. It'll be much quicker, and you’ll save yourself the drama of it going wrong. You don’t want to spend all that time growing your eyebrows out only to mess them up! Shaping your eyebrows is more complicated than you may think, and a brow specialist will have a ton of knowledge and should know how to enhance your natural arch line and give you the most flattering shape.   Avoid getting certain product on your brows This might be a random fact, but did you know that products like moisturizer, SPF, and foundation can all dislodge your hairs and inhibit growth? Yes! Of course, it’s difficult not to get these kinds of products on your brows when you’re applying them to your face. So when you’re done, gently wipe away any product from your brows. Problem solved! Experiment with eyebrow products The market is saturated with brilliant eyebrow products from pencils to pens, powders, gels, mascaras, and more. Every product will work differently for different skin types and can help you achieve various results. So, the first step is to think about what your end brow goals are. If you want to fill in sparse spots and add some definition, a brow pencil and spoolie brush will work well. If you’re trying to tame your hairs and lightly shape them, a light brow gel might do the job. And if you have no idea where to start, then experiment with different products. See what you like and what works well with your natural features. Have fun with it! How to fill in eyebrows naturally Choose the right shade There are so many shades of blond and brown, which means you can’t always depend on a “one color fits all” kind of product. Fortunately, the Brow Arcade has four colors to choose from, so you can find the best shade to match your brows! When testing other products, the best approach is to try out different shades and see what works for you. As a general rule, those with light eyebrows should go for one shade darker than their hair color, while women with dark brows should go one shade lighter than their hair. If you have cool undertones you should use products with an ashy color, and if you have warm undertones you should use golden-toned colors.  Draw lightly Remember, it’s easier to add product than it is to remove it, so start lightly and gradually build up from there as needed. How to brush your brows While filling in your brows you can brush them in a downward direction with a spoolie to help you spot any patchy areas and fill them in. Brushing the hair down exposes the skin and allows you to draw directly on it. This will give you added definition. Once you’re done, remember to brush your brows back upward! Add brow gel/mascara If you’re looking to darken the look of your eyebrows, then mascara is the best product to swipe on for a look that is bold but believable. A brow gel should be the final thing you add to your brows. But if you already have fabulous natural arches, mascara might be the only thing you need for beautiful brows. Complete the look by making your brow bone pop This is the final step when it comes to perfecting your beautiful brows. Once you’re done filling them in and layering your chosen products, you want to make all your hard work pop. If you really want to spotlight your brows, opt for a highlighter and swipe it just underneath your arches. For a subtler look, use a concealer one shade lighter than your skin tone. This will still brighten up your brow area but create a more natural look. And that’s how to get perfect eyebrows naturally!

Learn French Phrases: French Makeup Terms
July 08, 2021
Learn French Phrases: French Makeup Terms

When you love French beauty, knowing the French words for certain makeup products can be quite helpful. They can come in handy if you’re planning to do some shopping in Paris, but it’s also useful for knowing what’s behind the names of your favorite French makeup products.  Read our guide for some must-know French makeup vocabulary. You’ll learn what’s behind the names of some of Vivienne Sabó’s most iconic products, as well as the meanings of some products from other French makeup brands.  From terms for different parts of the face to the names of products and tools, we cover it all!   Parts of the face in French Le visage: the face. It sounds so elegant in French, so it’s no surprise that so many brands all over the world have incorporated the word into their naming schemes!  La peau: the skin.  La yeux: the eyes.  Cils: eyelashes.  Les sourcils: the eyebrows. You might notice a similarity between the French words for brows and for eyelashes! The French term sourcils comes from the Latin supercilium which translates to “above the eyelash.” Les joues: the cheeks.  Les lèvres: the lips.  French makeup terms   Le maquillage: makeup. Fond de teint: foundation. Fond means base or foundation, while teint means tint, so literally, it’s a tinted base. It’s especially fitting because French women prefer a light tint over a full-coverage look.  Base de teint: primer.  La poudre: powder.  Poudre de soleil: bronzer. The literal translation is “sun powder,” which is beautifully appropriate since bronzer is meant to give the skin the illusion that it’s been sunkissed.  Fard: This term is a synonym for makeup, but it’s usually used to refer to specific products.  Le fard à paupière: eyeshadow. It translates as “makeup for the eyelids.”  Blush: blush. Contrary to popular belief, French women don’t use the word rouge to refer to blush. Instead, French makeup aficionados use the English term.   Le fard à joues: blush. This is another commonly used term, although it’s less popular than simply saying “blush.” It literally translates as “makeup for the cheeks.” Anticerne: concealer.  Correcteur: corrector, a synonym for concealer.  Le crayon: pencil.  Crayon à lèvres: lip liner.   Eyeliner: eyeliner. This is another one of those words that have been directly lifted from English to French.  Eyeliner liquide: liquid eyeliner.  Crayon yeux: eyeliner pencil. This is the term to use if you’re talking specifically about a kohl-style pencil, although it can also apply to retractable eyeliners.  Feutre fin: felt tip, also known as our must-have eyeliner. This eyeliner won't let you down, and the design itself is ideal for drawing on a precise wing in seconds.  Palette yeux: eyeshadow palette.  Mascara: mascara.    Mascara volumateur: volumizing mascara. We like our mascara to add some volume and amp up the drama, so this term is especially helpful.  Mascara allongeant: lengthening mascara.  Mascara waterproof: waterproof mascara. While the French word for waterproof is étanche, when it comes to makeup, the English term is used.    Éclat: radiance or shine. The word is flexible, referring both to the delicate glow of the moon as well as to the brilliant radiance of a precious gem, which is why it’s so useful in makeup.  Highlighter/illuminateur: highlighter. Most French makeup lovers use the English term for this glowy makeup product, but occasionally, the French word illuminateur is used instead.  Le rouge à lèvres: lipstick. Most French women own a signature red lipstick, so it’s no surprise that a more literal translation would mean, “red for the lips.” However, in practice, the phrase applies to all lipsticks no matter the shade!  Gloss à lèvres: Lip gloss.  Other French beauty terms    Faux-cils: False eyelashes.  Coffret: Box or kit. This is the term used for makeup sold in sets or bundles, as well.  Éponge de maquillage: makeup sponge.    Les pinceaux de maquillage: makeup brushes.  Recourbe-cils: eyelash curler.  Le vernis à ongles: nail polish.  Trousse de maquillage: makeup bag.  Démaquillant: makeup remover. Sans cruauté: cruelty-free. This one is especially important for us since all Vivienne Sabó products are cruelty-free and never tested on animals.   Nos amours, you’re ready for Paris!  Armed with the most important French makeup terms, you’ll be able to shop at the small beauty boutiques and the large makeup stores with ease. Keep practicing as you do your makeup every morning, and you’ll become a French language and beauty pro in no-time.