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What Women Are Buying at Sephora France

How do you make a beauty product seem fancier than it is? Put a little French on its packaging — an elle suffix, a superfluous é  — and some people automatically think it's a little better. Whether that's true is up for discussion, but the psychology often works.

As it turns out, the opposite is also true. While browsing a Sephora in Paris last month, I spotted a few differences from American Sephora. The stores look alike, but French Sephora has a few brands not carried in its American counterparts: Chanel, Sampar, Leonor Greyl, and so forth. What was more surprising, though, is that makeup from L'Oréal and Maybelline was also stocked, and they cost nearly twice as much as they do in the States. I spotted French women lingering over those eye shadows longer than they did while looking at offerings from French beauty brands — which just goes to show you, the allure of foreign beauty goods is universal.


Join The Conversation
crazy-fabulous crazy-fabulous 8 years
I love Sephora. That's funnny that with all the luxe beauty goods they are wanting the american ones! :)
dinghy dinghy 8 years
L'Oréal, Maybelline and Bourjois are definitely drugstore brands as well (not sure drugstore is exactly the appropriate word, but you get my drift.) I don't know about prices though. I've never seen Sampar or Leonor Greyl...I'm not the most observant gal in the world, so maybe they are actually around...but I suspect Sephora Champs Elysées or even Rivoli aren't representative of French Sephoras in general. These two stores, esp. the CE one, are huge compared to most. But yeah, French Sephoras do sell a lot of American brands. L'Oréal isn't one of them though (am I misunderstanding or is that what you were saying ?)
arcticpuppet arcticpuppet 8 years
thats interesting!
shaima shaima 8 years
i'm french, from Paris but i don't shop in Sephora a lot, i like Printemps or Galeries Lafayette better; cause whenever i go to Sephora, i always get bad advice, make up not appropriated with my skin tone :( Concerning the price, it's true that L'oréal is more expensive. When my family from Florida told me that, i didnt trust them but then i compared when i traveled to America.
leslievanhouten leslievanhouten 8 years
When Sephora first opened in the US, all the "cast members" had to follow "la beaute" when they were "on stage" which meant red lipstick, hair pulled back in a bun or pony tail and the black glove. They also had an origami style of gift wrap, which eschewed scotch tape. None of that lasted very long.
tglynn tglynn 8 years
The Sephora in Paris was the first Sephora I ever went into :D I fell in love
qtpie qtpie 8 years
Yeah Maybelline & L'Oreal can be way more expensive outside the US.
ModernGraceKelly ModernGraceKelly 8 years
With the price conversion, our drugstore brand is still cheaper than their French brands like Chanel. So it makes alot of sense for them to be just as thrifty as we are. They can buy more for a lesser price.
poptart-princess poptart-princess 8 years
did you also notice that at France's Sephora that all the sales associates have make up "uniform" - they must wear red lipstick and when they show you a fragrance they have to wear black gloves? that's how it was when i went there. however, U.S. Sephora carries Chanel. i've bought lipstick by them there before. they also have Clinique and Dior, so might as well...
bengalspice bengalspice 8 years
I've seen Chanel sold in Sephora.
Francoisehardly Francoisehardly 8 years
I wouldn't mind having Leonor Greyl products at the Sephora here, and not because it's a French brand.
rachelbojangles rachelbojangles 8 years
Isn't Bourjois a drugstore brand overseas but over here it's sold in Sephora.
greentea14 greentea14 8 years
That's true, in Colombia DiorShow costs around forty seven dollars and the same goes for Clinique products. Maybelline, Max Factor, and drugstore brands in general go for about three times the price they sell for in America
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