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We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our site, show personalized content and targetedanalyze site traffic, and understand where our audiences come from. To learn more or opt-out, read our Cookie Policy. Blue jeans, an off-the-shoulder top, a little red lipstick, and off you go into the evening. The effortlessly chic French woman is one of the most persistent tropes in our lifestyle landscape. Sixty years after a young, unapologetically sexual Brigitte Bardot danced her way into the pop culture canon in the film And God Created Womanpublications like VogueInto the Gloss, and Who What Wear now publish a steady stream of articles on the supposedly superior and increasingly specific ways that French women dress, do their hair, eat, exercise, and fall in love.

Some of these articles are written with a dash of knowing humor, because our French Girl obsession has become something of a joke. Coco Chanel, immortalized not so much as a young woman but as an elegant matriarch, retires nearby. Who is she? She has a ature perfume. She makes money for big American drugstore chains, department stores, independent brands, book publishers, magazines, and digital media companies. The obsession has become a business, and in that sense, the French Girl is perfectly real.

The Chanel-inspired packaging of its skincare products is perfect, nothing more than glass jars and black sans serif type on rectangular white labels. French Girl Organics, which is sold at Anthropologie and Williamsburg jewelry mecca Catbird, is neither the work of a Parisian It girl nor a clever marketing team, but rather a something Seattle resident named Kristeen Griffin-Grimes who has a warm, ready laugh and an unpretentious demeanor.

Griffin-Grimes grew up on an oyster farm in Seattle, surrounded by the sensory pleasures of good food and nature. She always felt a strong affinity for France through her Cajun mother, whose ancestors had immigrated to Prince Edward Island from France in the early s and later to New Orleans.

Suddenly, everything shifted. Her first foray into French Girl anything was writing French Girl Knitsa book of knitting patterns that took inspiration from French film and history. Later, she organized group knitting tours to France. Griffin-Grimes found herself exhausted after finishing her second French Girl Knits book and began funneling her love of gardening and cooking into making beauty products using her own ingredients. She sold them on Etsy. I think that really is at the heart of it. According to the conventional wisdom, heaven is a French pharmacy.

From Goop to i-Dbeauty reporters sing the praises of the products lining the shelves of everyday drugstores, like Klorane the best dry shampooBioderma the best makeup removerHomeoplasmine the best all-purpose ointmentand Embryolisse the best moisturizer. For a long time, the Americans most attuned to these products were makeup artists, models, and fashion editors, who could stock up while they were in Paris for Fashion Week. International distribution, as well as the internet, is changing that. In addition to being more expensive than the mainstream American skincare brands, these products sit apart from the pack on shelves with special lighting.

But it is a mass trend. Violette — just Violette — is a year-old makeup artist who is both respected within the fashion establishment, having worked with photographers like Patrick Demarchelier and Mario Sorrenti, and a popular presence on YouTube, where she delivers tutorials to her nearly 97, subscribers. Violette is the Parisian dream, except she moved to New York when she was 19 to seek work as a makeup artist. She has eye-grazing bangs, brown hair worn in a state of controlled chaos, and a charming accent that inspires fans to leave her videos playing as background noise.

Violette says that the French philosophy toward makeup — no foundation, messy hair, mascara, red lipstick, which works doubly as blush — is fundamental to her approach, but the diversity of techniques and looks she encountered in New York has greatly influenced her style. France cornered the market on style centuries ago.

Dior came along inand Givenchy in Sex is the other, and nobody lingers in the public consciousness in that regard as much as Brigitte Bardot. In addition to giving us heroines, film has encouraged and sustained the mythical quality of France itself. Even the Pixar movie Ratatouillethe sweet one about a rat who cooks and that also Bbw blk girl here lookin for France fun a French Girl chefis transportive.

The list goes on and on.

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The French New Wave gave us Anna Karina, with her perfect bangs, cat-eye liner, cardigans, and colorful tights; Jean Seberg, known for her blond pixie cut and striped shirts, emerged at the same time. Ironically, none of these women are French.

You can see this as proof that anyone can be a French Girl if she tries hard enough, or as evidence that no cultural moment exists in a vacuum.

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A natural beauty look is preferred, as are neutral shades like black, gray, and khaki. Less evident to the foreign eye is the degree of classism that is baked into Parisian style. Wherever you go, high fashion favors those who can afford it. If the nouveau riche dress in a gaudy manner and the upper crust exerts restraint, emulating the latter is an attempt, intentional or not, to tap into its privilege.

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Philippon grew up in a family of barbers, and describes being the comparatively poor kid in a posh area outside Paris. He feels that many French style icons carry themselves with a nonchalant air to such great effect because they have solid manners to fall back on. Because they know all the good behaviors, then they can break from them. Pinel now finds Paris sartorial demands limiting. When she moved to Washington, DC for college, she was met by a fashion scene that was outgoing and fun. Her peers were shopping at Urban Outfitters, wearing highlighter-hued American Apparel hoodies, and listening to M.

Inevitably, foreigners took matters into their own hands. The French theme sometimes reaches comical, albeit self-aware, heights. It sells floral dresses with short sleeves and deep V-necks, high-waisted blue jeans, and crocheted tops. Rouje is the creation of Jeanne Damas, a sometime-actress with a fondness for red lipstick and a haircut that falls in perfect disorder.

When you ask people to name contemporary French It girls, she is usually on the list. She also draws inspiration from women in her own life, like her mother, sister, aunts, and friends, and, of course, from Birkin. Damas may be a French Girl for our Instagram era, but she still takes notes from her predecessors. France represents a quarter of its business at this point, but the US is its fastest-growing market. For both brands, the US is a big focus in the coming year.

In recent years, American shoppers may have noticed the creep of modern French brands like Sandro, Maje, and the Kooples. Sandro Bbw blk girl here lookin for France fun been in business since and Maje sincebut neither expanded to the States until Comptoir des Cotonniers did make a run at winning over American shoppers, but exited the US in The brothers, however, are warm and talkative.

Their style skews as far from any Parisian archetype as you could imagine. On a recent trip to New York to promote their summer capsule collection, they were decked out like flamboyant warlocks in layers of black heavily accessorized with big silver rings, necklaces, scarves, and brimmed hats.

They all have beards and glasses. The Elichas say they always dressed differently from their peers, and have at various times drawn on punk culture and Japanese street style. Despite its country of origin, the Kooples has an international flavor. The staff at its headquarters represents over 30 different nationalities. For foreign brands still establishing themselves in the US, that means deliberately becoming a little more American. Inclusive of the US, the Kooples is in 36 countries now and maintains a remarkable consistency in its approach to international expansion.

It begins with pushing out a ton of marketing imagery, says CEO Nicolas Dreyfus, like plastering the streets with photos of those beautiful couples.

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The brand then moves into department stores, launches a local e-commerce site, and eventually opens its own stores. For all its worldliness, the Kooples does throw off distinctly Parisian vibes it sells a lot of floral scarves and breezy blouses with its studded sandals and destroyed jeansand the standardized way in which it enters new countries speaks to the global appeal of French style, the idealization of which is not a singularly American pastime.

French customers tend to style their Kooples looks more simply than Londoners or New Yorkers, but the best-selling pieces in one city are almost always the best-selling pieces in every other city. Shoppers behave pretty much the same wherever you go. The great irony of the French Girl craze is that the literature acknowledges that Parisian women conceal their efforts to look effortless. But make sure you have a steamy past. Yet by undercutting the fantasy, How to Be Parisian makes it seem ever more attainable.

Bbw blk girl here lookin for France fun

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