I think the best compliment I ever received was when someone told me they thought I was French. Say what? Merci! Clearly they didn’t hear me open my mouth because I know how to say about three things in French, and probably pronounced horribly—oh to be fluent, goals. But regardless, I’ll take the compliment. From an outsiders prospective, I’ve always admired and looked up to certain stylish Parisians and their, well, everything. Their confidence, poise and cool demeanor have always led me to the conclusion that they hold some kind of secret to living life. I’m 99% sure they really do.
I’ll never forget when I was 21 and traveling in Spain and France with my mom, we ducked into a crêperie in Biarritz for some lunch. The only other person in the restaurant was a gorgeous, smooth skinned, long legged French woman with a white button down blouse eating by herself. She probably ate about four crepes (we could hardly put down 3 together) and alternated with a cigarette or two. I’m not going to lie, I wanted to slide my chair over and get her story (ask her what she was thinking about) but the fear of rejection was too strong. But I can still remember her so distinctively as superhuman.
My real-life sighting of the Parisian stereotype will forever hold a place in my mind but lately I’ve found some French woman that are much more relatable and inspiring me on a new level. I’m still convinced they’re superhumans with a secret though.
Garance Doré. Before I started listening to her Podcast, she was that impeccable woman smoking a cigarette in Biarritz. Known for her illustrations, photography, style, beauty and established front row seat at every fashion show, she is(to many of us) the iconic image of a French woman with all the je ne sais quoiyou could ask for. Translation, totally intimidating—like my friend eating crepes in Biarritz. After becoming a devoted listener to Pardon My French, I’ve realized those effortlessly cool French girls are searching for the same things we are—health, happiness, love, inspiration and the list goes on. Garance shares her personal journey on health, love and living on so many levels it’s been the most refreshing podcast to visit.
Violette. For a while I got really bored and uninspired by makeup and even all things beauty. Everything was feeling redundant and too staged. Then I came across Violette, a French make-up artist living in New York who has a YouTube channel. I can’t pin point exactly why I love her videos so much but they feel relaxed, easy and obtainable—she puts on makeup in the car sometimes or in less than 10 minutes. Most of all I’m inspired to play with makeup after watching her videos. She has a minimal approach, which I love and is oh so French.
Morgane Sézalory. While I don’t know too much about Morgane and her story I do know that she’s created a brand, Sézan that perfectly embodies the “effortless Parisian cool” all of us non-Parisians are scrambling for. I’ve been wearing a pair of their sneakers for over a year now and find myself pouring over the collection these days. I’m pretty sure she knows the secret too.