I have a fantasy that someday I'm going to move to Paris. I see myself biking along the Seine, wearing cute capris and a striped T, a baguette in my basket and a bottle of red in my bag. I'm on my way to my French boyfriend's flat in the 6th where we'll talk about French philosophers, drink wine, eat cheese and bread and just be super, super Parisian. Then I wake up and realize that that is never going to happen. Which is fine, because the C train is kind of like the Metro, and if I stop at Maison Kayser for a baguette, I can trick myself into believing I'm in Paris. But regardless of where I'm living (or not living as the case may be), I do have a thing for France — the food, the landscape, the people — it's all just so flipping chic. So since I'm stuck on this continent, we turned to Stephanie Palacci, co-Founder of the uber-cool French organic toothpaste brand, LEBON, to give us her tips on how to be more French. Because honestly, who doesn't want that?
WEAR FRENCH SNEAKERS
Since I was a child I've frequently worn sneakers for comfort. A few years ago, I discovered the French ethical sneaker brand VEJA. Their sneakers are so comfortable, they have a really cool design, but even more than that, the materials they use, including the rubber, has a highly ethical origin.
BUY FRENCH ART
I love the French illustrator Marine De Quenetain so much. Marine has become very popular in the Parisian Beauty Industry (and now worldwide). Her style is so fancy, happy and arty. She has a lot of artistic references and we love working with her. You can purchase her prints online.
WEAR FRENCH FASHION
Sezane is a French brand that just opened a location in New YorkCity (254 Elizabeth Street) and I highly recommend people visit the store. I love their relaxed yet chic style, which I believe embodies the French “everyday” outfit. I also love their newsletter, Le Journal, which does a great job of summing up the French way of life:
Sézane is for all women with a French spirit- les femmes libres. We’re for beautiful chaos, glorious failures. Celebrating the profound and the banal. Basic, fundamental sweetness- the very small pleasures that heighten the joy of living. Born of female ingenuity, Sézane has always been a means through which we celebrate liberty ‘The French Way’. We’ve evolved through an exchange of ideas, uninhibited creativity and instinct.
SUPPORT FRENCH CAUSES
Working in the Beauty Industry led me to know a lot of passionate people, one of whom is Frédérique Verley, VOGUE Paris Beauty Editor and Co-Founder of Association Sauvade, a non-profit organization whose purpose is to save abandoned cats and dogs from Reunion Island (nearby Mauritius Island). I found my dog, Bullette, on their Instagram account and I couldn’t resist. A few weeks later she was the new member of our family.
SHOP LIKE THE FRENCH
Each time I am in Paris, I try to go to La Grande Epicerie from Le Bon Marche. I know that I will find some of the most healthy organic food ever, and I also know that the restaurant on the 2nd floor will then provide me with a combination of simple and intense flavors. After lunch, I cross the road through the internal passerelle, which brings me to the Fashion and Beauty departments. I do my best to stay very reasonable in shopping and I try to resist. But sometimes I don’t because LBM is,undoubtedly the perfect Parisian temple of fashion and beauty. My favorite bags are the special edition of Le Bon Marche last summer — I even had one customized.
EAT LIKE THE FRENCH
When I was a student at university, I had little time for lunch between classes. Luckily there was a Le Pain Quotidien on the corner and we would have a bite there all the time. It was one of the best time in my life, with my friends, when we spent time together at Le Pain Quotidien. We still do it today (with the same friends!). I can’t deny that now, when Richard and I, or with our kids, push the door to enter one in Europe or in the US, it brings me back to my student years.
USE FRENCH COSMETICS
The luxury, organic skincare market is full of lovely brands, but I love Delbove Cosmetics the most. It was established in Belgium in 1967, and provides some truly efficient organic skincare treasures. I am totally addict to my everyday ritual, The Magical Ritual. It's very simple and only takes me about 2 or 3 minutes every morning. My skin has never been better since I started using this three years ago.
about stephanie palacci
Stephanie Palacci was born in Belgium in the Mid-70s, then spent most of her childhood with her parents and little sister In Central Africa. Stephanie thinks this wild environment is where her deep connection with nature was formed. After returning from Africa, and spending a few years in Provence, Stephanie moved to Brussels to study Art History at University. Graduating as an Art Historian and Photographer, Stephanie returned to Provence, where she met her husband Richard. After having their two children Charline and Noé, Stephanie moved to Santa Teresa, Costa Rica and in August 2013 had the very first idea of what should become the Organic Oral Care brand LEBON.