The Most Affordable French Skincare Routine

Affordable French Skincare Routine

I have to be honest when I say that I don’t have a specific skincare regime. My skincare routine usually takes place in the morning. However, very rarely do I do anything at night. Oftentimes, I’m so tired that I really can’t be bothered with it. On top of this, anything beyond a face wash and moisturizer seems a bit too much for me. Lately, I’ve really been into French related things (more of these articles to come!). One topic that I find interesting is the French skincare routine. Like, my previous article on French clothing, I wondered if there was an affordable French skincare routine.

Trying to find an affordable French skincare routine can be really hard! Many products seem to cost so much! Just on Pinterest, there are tons of French skincare routines and French beauty hacks. However, is there an affordable French skincare routine? I asked myself this question because I want to take more care of my skin.

I have a cousin who has flawless skin. Actually, many of my family members have flawless skin. Mine could be flawless, but yet it’s probably one baby step above mediocre. The thing is that I noticed many of them have fairly simple routines. They may have two or three steps max. So, I thought, well is this just a genetic issue or should I up my skincare game?

An Affordable Skincare Routine

From my research, French skincare is fairly simple depending on which French girl you ask. Additionally, it seems that many French women will spend more money on moisturizers than any other part of their routine. That being said, every routine is different and there is no one French skincare model to follow. However, I did find some common themes and have created an affordable French skincare routine.

Face Wash

A popular face wash I saw across the board was a Kiehl’s face wash, which can be about $30. However, some alternatives to consider are Cetaphil, CeraVe, or Aveeno. A friend of mine recommended African Black Soap from Whole Foods. Although it’s fairly natural and does a good job cleaning, it is a bit drying for me. So, I’m definitely looking to eventually finding a staple cleanser.

Now, I’ve had cleansers that have given me massive breakouts. I found out those were the culprits because of It is my absolute favorite website to use when it comes to having a breakout. I try to make sure to check my products on there if I do get breakouts. For me, it takes a few weeks for breakouts to occur

Micellar Water

This is an absolute French staple. I think this and moisturizing were the only steps that were consistent across the board when doing some research. I’ve heard about micellar water because of Garnier ads but I really didn’t give it much thought.

The popular brand seems to be Bioderma. Again, this brand costs about $25, which would add a serious dent in my bank account along with the steps in a skincare routine. In order to make this an affordable skincare routine, opt for NYX, Simple, or La Roche-Posay’s micellar waters. I think Garnier is probably the most popular because I’ve seen a lot of their ads. However, I’ve heard that it’s not very good. Again, check out if you’re worried!


Now, I only found one or two articles that mentioned using a toner. So, it’s hard to say if this is a typical step for a French skincare routine. My gut is telling me that it’s not super popular, but something some French do use.

To make this a part of an affordable skincare routine, I recommend witch hazel or Simple’s soothing facial toner. Personally, I have a bottle of Dickinson’s witch hazel toner, but I’ve been told that Thayer’s is also a good witch hazel. If you want to spend a little bit more on toner, I’ve heard some good things about Mario Badescu Skin Care Seaweed Cleansing Lotion.

Eye Cream

Eye cream is another product that doesn’t seem too high on the French skincare routine. However, I’ve read article s that recommend an eye cream. I’m not quite sure how important they are since many of the women in my family don’t own one and, as I’ve said, they have beautiful skin. If you’re looking for an eye cream, I suggest E.L.F’s Illuminating Eye Cream, Burt’s Bees Sensitive Eye Cream, or Neutrogena’s Hydro Boost Gel-Cream For Eyes.


Finally, the most important part of a French skincare routine is the moisturizer. Having a moisturizer seemed to be the most important step for French women. Honestly, I would have to agree!

French women definitely shell out money for a good moisturizer. I suppose for good reason! Kiehl’s seems to be a popular one here too. However, I love my Garnier Skin Active, but I’ve heard good things about E.L.F’s Daily Hydration Moisturizer and Cetaphil.  If you’re looking to splurge a little, check out La Roche-Posay’s Double Repair Moisturizer or go all the way with Kiehl’s oil-free moisturizer.

So, I really hope this affordable french skincare routine helped you in your quest to clearer and hydrated skin. I tend to have oily skin so hydration really isn’t a problem for me. That being said, I really want to take better care of my body and having a skincare routine is definitely a start!

Question of the day: What’s your skincare staple? Would you follow this affordable French skincare routine?

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Photo by Olly Joy on Unsplash

  1. I use to work for a French skincare brand and the French women have amazing skin! They like to keep it simple and I found they loved face and body oils and moisturisers with anti ageing in it. I always say that you can create a skincare regime easily if you start with the basics of cleansing, toning and moisturising then add other bits in slowly like eye cream and masks.

    Pinar |

    1. Ah that’s so cool that you used to work for a French skincare brand! I definitely agree that French women have nice skin! There definitely seems to be a focus on skincare than makeup! Thank you so much for reading!

  2. Micellaire water tends to be drying on me so I don’t use it. In your place, I would remove my makeup with coconut oil and tone with rosewater spray from the health food store. I keep an extra bottle in the fridge to spritz my face and freshen it during the day and also to set makeup. CVS carries Vichy products – a French pharmacy brand – so I might investigate their shelves for a cleansing milk. Same with moisturizer. A good one is so important and Vichy has some good products. I make my own serums by combining extra-virgin olive oil, camellia seed oil and vitamin E oil. I also add the contents of several vitamin A capsules when I can find them.

    1. I found that it doesn’t really dry me out. In fact, it makes my skin produce more oils. That’s the downside that I don’t like about it. I do want to get into natural creams and serums so thank you so much for the suggestions!

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