(Beauty Report Card)

The 10 French Pharmacy Skin Care Products I Buy Whenever I’m In Paris

Worth the hype.

Erin Lukas
erin lukas
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If your algorithm has you on #SkinTok, you’ve probably come across a French pharmacy skin care haul or two on your FYP. While there are a number of reasons to visit Paris, a trip to “la pharmacie” (as it’s known among Parisians), is quickly becoming justification for pulling the trigger and booking a flight. So what’s so special about pharmacies in France? Their beauty aisles, especially the skin care ones, are a treasure trove of affordable products for virtually every skin type and concern. Not only do these items deliver results, many feel luxurious to use. The caveat is the assortment can be overwhelming, not to mention difficult to decipher if you can’t read French. Luckily, I’ve found the best French pharmacy skin care products after buying and testing a number on various trips.

Whether I’m in Paris for work or for pleasure, I always find time to make a pilgrimage to City Pharma, perhaps the most famous and biggest pharmacy in the city. It’s always stocked to the brim with the most popular items and there are a number of sales associates in lab coats on standby to help you find the best remedy for your exact concern. That said, it can get touristy (and busy) so expect crowds if you go mid-day or on a weekend.

One of my recent City Pharma hauls. Courtesy of Erin Lukas

During your shopping excursion, you’re sure to discover entirely new brands and/or collections from your favorites that aren’t carried in the US. You’ll also find some prestige lines like Caudalie at a fraction of the price it goes for at Sephora. While some skin care favorites are only available in France, there are a handful of independent online retailers that ship to the US. The downsides are they’re often marked up more than you’d pay in France, can take awhile to ship, and you might have to pay duties and taxes when they arrive. However, if a trip isn’t in the cards or you’re desperate to get your hands on a restock on a holy grail, this shopping option is a solid solution.

Ahead, the 10 French pharmacy skin care finds I always stock up on when I’m in Paris. Best believe they’re worth the hype.