We all know her. The beautiful woman who indulges in a glass of wine, eats baguettes, wakes up with bedhead, and still looks more effortlessly beautiful than we do on our best days. French women all have that je’ne sais pas we lust for. We had a chat with two of Paris’ biggest beauty makers, Christophe Robin and David Mallett who each own namesake Parisian salons and signature luxury hair care lines about what makes French girl hair. Keep reading for tips on how to channel your inner Parisienne.
French Women Never Flat Iron Their Hair
“Flat, straight, hair looks like death. They like to have a bit of bounce and a little bit of movement.” – David Mallett
“The biggest difference [between French hair] is that they are much more into movement than other countries in the world, and they like volume. They love sexy, messy hair, and they’re okay with it falling in their faces.” – Christophe Robin
French Women Know How to Style Their Hair
“They use curling irons, they style the hair, and if it’s dirty they slick it in a bun.
They invest in professional blowdrys, or they do it themselves at home, and they know how to do it really well.” – David Mallett
They Make Self Care a Priority
“The French are good clientele because they take the time to take care of themselves. Though they may be busy all week, they always spend one day on the weekend to pamper themselves. They’ll sleep with oils in their hair, they get their nails done, they trim their bangs, and it may take all day, but it’s the only day they’ll spend on it all week! To have the nonchalant attitude of the French, they stay well manicured.” – Christophe Robin
They Wash Hair Less
“Because they wash it a lot less, they get that fantastic, clumpy, thick, undone hair. They use a lot less product because they only wash the hair once a week, but when they do use product they spend a lot of time, doing a mask, treatment, etc. And it’s better for us as stylists because color fadage here [in France] is not a problem for the woman that washes her hair 4 times a month.” – David Mallett
They Spend on Good Cuts and Color
“They spend a lot of money on color and cuts. It’s very much a part of who they are.
Single process color always ends up looking too red and French women despise that. They hate that warm reflection and tend to prefer cooler, nuttier colors.” – David Mallett
They Appreciate Art and Nature
“It’s girls who want to be seen for their art, not their appearance. It’s the appreciation of the past, the history, the culture. We’re close to North Africa and the Mediterranean where we see a lot of oils and natural ingredients. Even Clarin’s best selling oil is completely natural, the same formula for over 50 years without any promotion. The natural ingredients work better. They’re trusted.” – Christophe Robin
They Experiment Less
“They are much less experimental, they find the right look and they stick with it. You don’t find a lot of French women with very outrageous hair.” – David Mallett
They Prefer Balayage
“They hate stripey highlights. When French women have highlights, the color has to melt. They prefer hand painted hair, where the roots are darker and the ends are lighter, so already the color has a faded look. Normally color is done in a double session, lightening and then repigmenting. Single process color always ends up looking too red and French women despise that. They hate that warm reflection and tend to prefer cooler, nuttier colors.” – David Mallett