The Who, What and Where of Paris, France

Paris is such an iconic destination and whilst I’m yet to visit just yet, I’ve enlisted two lovely women who are frequent visitors to share their experiences of what they hear, see and do to allow us to live vicariously through them. Meet Jill Healy-Quintard, a specialist in the Mind/Body connection, and Charlotte Ravet, LUXit Makeup Artist & Hair Stylist, for all the inspiration and #travelgoals!

[ Charlotte & Jill ]

FASHION + STYLE

Jill: “I have been travelling between France and Australia for 20+ years and lived in the south as well and have noted since we are all only separated by perhaps missing a twitter, youtube update or a post on Facebook, that the fashion throughout the world, particularly with Gen X has become global rather than limited to a specific city or country, although each place tweak their own uniqueness. In Paris in the fashion districts and the tourist districts there will always be people dressed typically Parisienne style, but the young people could be from any country eg. in the hip hop music and dance scene the fashion is totally global and that is from Zimbabwe to Croatia and everywhere in between. My family and friends in Paris love our Australian style, but I do note that the women members of my family young and older tend to wear more make-up and are never seen without make-up or very coiffed hair. The perfume is much stronger and the shoes have a definite very good and well groomed style, if they are not wearing trainers and workout gear.”

Charlotte: “The typical French uniform is usually a good leather jacket, slim jeans, a nice top, messy bun or loose hair and for the most adventurous a classic red lipstick. If you want to learn more about the Parisian look you could definitely look Ines de la Fressange’s book: Parisian chic. A “bible” for any French women full of tips, places to go, and best looks to wear. So French, so chic!”

A big fashion trend in Paris those last years is the effortless style, to achieve this, there is the secret “rule of three”.

Charlotte: “You never to do the three things at the same time: hair, makeup, clothes. You always have to leave one. For example, if you are going to a dressed up party and wear a cocktail dress with high heels, you can do your makeup but will drop the hair. Or look like you haven’t done much and opt for a “bed hair” style. If you have your hair and makeup properly done you will probably wear flat shoes. I never feel overdressed or too sexy in Australia but going out in Paris I always do more fashion details, instead of a full glamour look. A stylish handbags and a nice pair of shoes will always be noticed!”

BEAUTY & SKINCARE

Charlotte: “I always stock skin care going to France; Bioderma, Avene and La Roche Posay  are brands I always trust. I also buy a cream at the chemist call “Ialuset”. This cream is 100% hyaluronic acid and usually used for burns and ulcers on the skin. But it also does miracles if you apply before sleeping to plump your skin before a big day or after a peeling treatment. *This is just a tip and this is not the actual prescription for this cream, so I would recommend a patch test before use in case of reaction, as no prescription are required.”

Jill: “I have relatives and friends in and around Paris and the South of France. My sister in law, who has recently moved from Paris to Cannes, is totally the opposite of the ‘How to Look Parisian Wherever You Are’ and speaking of, my Paris based sister in law found the article in a newspaper and said sadly that women are beginning to copy the Kardashian look.  Far too much botox and filler. My daughter said to me last year when visiting our relatives, that women in Cannes look the same- not just natives but tourists as well though. It is sad to see many of the gorgeous young girls smoking, although they certainly have the stunning French look, tres cool, while lying with their partner/lover/friends on the grass of the Place des Vosges (one of my favourite places in the Marais in the 4th) and just chatting or reading or embracing.

“In the early 2000’s the way French women in my classes kept their weight down was to smoke, drink coffee and have 1 meal a day if any at all…….which is the real truth of Why French Women Don’t Get Fat!”

Madame Quintard (my mother in law) and her sister were the invisible menders of incredible fabrics for all the designers in the exclusive Place Vendome, which (before bulk cheap clothing) was the center of Paris fashion in the 1st and she even had a dress made for our daughter by Chanel for her baptism in Paris. I always saw her as the epitome of Parisienne French. She never went out without having spent a long time grooming and always had everything immaculate, including her house.”

Charlotte: French women are actually not wearing this much makeup, the French are more into skincare and hair care. A beautiful natural skin and silky hair will be the first step in the beauty routine. We like to see the skin under the makeup and are big fan of the “no makeup look”. Liner, highlights and false lashes are not a big thing in Paris, sorry!”

SHOPPING

Charlotte: “When I travel to Paris there is a few beauty places to never miss! Firstly, the huge Sephora in Champs Elysees. It’s definitely a beauty temple where I can spend hours looking at all the latest beauty products. If you go during the sales, products can be discounted up to 70%!

For the luxury places, Guerlain which is next door to Sephora has one of the most beautiful perfumes and beauty shop, and don’t forget to stop by Laduree for a delicious macaron across the street! On the side of my classic Chanel N 5, I choose my parfum form Martin Margiela at Galeries Lafayette, the scents are very unique and delicate. For the professional makeup artists, there are two places to not miss; 1. Mac cosmetics rue des Saints-Peres, a professional Mac store with an extensive range of products, and 2. Maqpro, le maquillage professionel, a professional makeup store with a thousand choice of colours and textures. The company is family owned and products are made in France using luxury ingredients, and they also offer a range of convenient palettes and customisable products to suit all professional artists.”

Jill Healy-Quintard is an Australian married to a Frenchman from Paris, and has trained and worked for more than 30 years in fitness and wellness for the body and the mind. Whilst running a range of exercise classes for her clients, she also writes for her fitness and wellness blog.

Charlotte Ravet is an elite makeup artist and hair stylist based in Sydney. Her expertise spans bridal, editorial, beauty, commercials & celebrities alongside training, and if you’re interested in booking Charlotte to visit you for a service you can book at www.luxit.me.

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