A Little Maquillage

beauty department at Le Bon Marché in Paris

Le Bon Marché, the most elegant department store in Paris. If you want to see the chicest women, hang out here for a while. Above, looking down from the top floor into the cosmetics and fragrance section.

Whew! We’re home, unpacked, and I’ve already done a little bit of grocery shopping and a few loads of laundry.

Before we left, I’d hinted at a “project” I’d be doing in Paris. Here’s the scoop: I’d arranged a photo session in Paris with a professional photographer, Carla Coulson. We did a full day of shooting around the 6th arrondissement, and had a blast! I brought along a few outfits, and learned the art of the quick change in small spaces. I also opted to have a professional makeup artist (Véronique Marot) for the shoot and she was fabulous. I learned a lot watching and listening to them as they worked, and their attention to detail was amazing. Both women were so interesting and fun, and it was great getting to know them. I was more at ease in front of the camera than I’d imagined possible. Can’t wait to see the photos!

Véronique was very light-handed with the makeup, which I appreciated. She has a very French approach to le maquillage, and I never felt overdone, even when she suggested a bright red lip color for a couple of the outfits. (I love the look of red lips and am always trying to find that perfect shade, and the confidence to wear it.)

A couple of the products she used I liked well enough to make note of to try again at home. The first is this Giorgio Armani “Luminessence CC” moisturizer, which she applied instead of foundation.

Giorgio Armani Luminessence CC moisturizer

It smooths and evens out skin tone, but still looks sheer and not at all cakey. It didn’t require a primer, and didn’t settle into my pores or lines. There’s no discernible fragrance and it doesn’t feel like I’m wearing makeup. There’s some SPF, though I’d add an additional layer of sunscreen underneath for daily wear.

Laura Mercier maquillage, brow pencil

The other was this Laura Mercier brow pencil in Ash Blonde. If you have lighter, or grey/greying hair, it’s an excellent color that doesn’t go too reddish or dark. Sharpener comes with.

For the red lips, Veronique used a lip pencil which she says is one of her favorites. It’s matte, but not drying, and stays put. She gets it at Monoprix! She was kind enough to give me one because we liked the color on me so much. For those of you who live near a Monoprix, the brand is Deborah Milano 24 Ore in #10.

I’ll be working next on my travel wardrobe recap, and hope to have that posted in a couple of days.

More for “le no makeup look…”

Stay in touch.

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14 Comments

  1. July 19, 2016 / 3:30 am

    How fun! I can’t wait to see the photos! The whole point of makeup should be to enhance, without being noticed on its own.
    I hope you got my favorite French pharmacy beauty product: Bioderma micellar water, which is the best makeup remover I’ve ever used.

  2. Michelle
    July 19, 2016 / 4:43 am

    I can also vouch for Giorgio Armani’s Luminessence CC – makes me look like me, but better 🙂 The photo shoot sounds like it was a lot of fun!!

  3. Beth Lowe
    July 19, 2016 / 4:43 am

    What a wonderfully special Paris treat. I try to plan one very special thing to do on each trip. I may add a photo shoot to my list or at least suggest it to a friend.What I love about your posts from this trip is how much you are enjoying it. I love your new lipstick, it really brights your face. My favorite cosmetics to purchase when I travel is having a makeover update from Dolce and Gabanna. You introduced me to Monoprix and I check out the impossible to find products. I am planning a trip for the spring either hiking in Scotland or Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Paris. I am still reading and planning.

    • July 19, 2016 / 4:04 pm

      Don’t want to intrude on Susan’s blog, I don’t know what the etiquette is about replying to other readers posts, but if Susan will forgive me for butting in here, I’d just like to say that I have just come back from a trip to Copenhagen. Great place, great people!

  4. July 19, 2016 / 5:24 am

    What fun! Can’t wait to see the photos. ~~Dee

  5. July 19, 2016 / 6:28 am

    Oh, that’s fabulous news! I love the portraits Carla Coulson has shot of various women in Paris — what fun for you and a treat for all of us to see the photos. Can’t wait!

  6. Susan D.
    July 19, 2016 / 12:36 pm

    What fun! I can’t wait to see the photos and I know you will always enjoy having these.

  7. July 19, 2016 / 3:20 pm

    Wow! Coulson took pics of La Contessa! I cannot wait to see the pics. That is tres cool!!

  8. July 19, 2016 / 3:56 pm

    What an amazing holiday filled with such special experiences. Looking forward to seeing your photoshoot and reading your suitcase analysis too, you do those so well. And I like the sound of all the make-up ideas you’ve shared from your photoshoot. Do you think that brow pencil would work on someone, I.e. me, with relatively little brow hair left. I avoid eye brow pencil as when I tried it the brows looked just like what they were, visibly badly painted on brows and a weird reddish brown, to boot, which you touch on in your post. Just maybe the shade you showcase today might work on my disappearing pensioner brows . . . Can you help?!

    • Susan B
      July 19, 2016 / 7:55 pm

      Hi Mary, my brows are pretty sparse. I’ve found that by filling in between hairs using short strokes in the direction of the hairs (rather than trying to create a defined shape) gives a more natural look, and using that spoolie to brush through after application also avoids the painted-on effect.

    • Alicia marshall
      July 20, 2016 / 5:56 am

      I would consider getting your eyebrows microbladed with permanent makeup.

  9. July 19, 2016 / 4:34 pm

    I read Carla’s blog and I have always wondered what it would be like to have a photo shoot in Paris. I’m looking forward to seeing your photos.

  10. plutrell
    July 19, 2016 / 5:31 pm

    I cannot wait to see your pictures! How exciting to do the shoot in Paris! I bet it was great fun!

  11. Pamela
    July 22, 2016 / 6:47 am

    How wonderful to have a photo shoot with Carla! Look forward to the pics.
    Was in Le Bon Marche only a few weeks ago too, specially during the sales. For fun, decided I’d treat myself to a red lipstick chosen specially by one of the make-up experts at Yves St Laurent. Was lucky to be advised by the nicest, most skilled woman who used to do make-up for catwalk models in the couture and pret a porter parades. She’s given that away and now does part time consultancy at LBM and make-up for special events at the Paris palace hotels. She found the absolute perfect red for me and then said she’d also like to choose another colour to bring out the green in my eyes! Perfect! She also recommended I get the Dior universal lip pencil to prevent colour bleeding. This works wonderfully! She also suggested I try a little Touche Eclat (already in my makeup bag, as I told her) just above the centre of my cupid’s bow in upper lip- apparently a make-up artists’ trick. After such a wonderful experience I decided to try a few others like Chanel and of course Dior. They were all wonderful – though none quite so interesting as the YSL lady (she told me about her grandmother and her YSL clothes from the past – and how she’d inherited them, and lots of stories as she applied the lipsticks etc). They all packed my bags with heaps of fabulous samples – skin care and perfumes.
    As my eyebrow colour was beginning to fade with the odd white hairs appearing my lovely DiL suggested I have them tinted – it’s wonderful and so easy. Now all I have to do is brush them. The beautician shapes them first by threading then applies a light brown tint. It lasts for ages. Might be worth trying? Best wishes, Pamela

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