With temperatures rising, now is a great time to talk about the best French summer skincare routine that I’ve learned since moving to Paris.
Whether I’m dashing down the hot sidewalks of Paris or catching some sun in the southern region of Côte d’Azur, my daily skincare routine changes slightly during the summer months in France.
While my French skincare routine isn’t complicated to begin with, extra care is needed to protect my skin from the additional UV rays it faces during the hotter months. Furthermore, exposure to the sea and sand can damage the skin or dry it out if you don’t pay attention.
French Summer Skincare Routine
The French girl beauty philosophy is all about prioritizing skincare above makeup and this rings especially true during the warmer summer months in Paris.
Protection and moisture are the key goals to creating the perfect French summer skincare routine. This will help you avoid premature aging on the facial skin in the form of wrinkles, fine lines, and even aging spots.
I have normal skin, but it does tend to get super oily in the summer, so these French skincare tips will focus on those with similar skin to mine!
Summer Morning Cleanser
I start off my summer days with a simple morning cleanse of my face while I shower, to break down all the oils that have accumulated overnight. I rotate my face wash but lately, I’ve been using the La Roche-Posay Toleriane Purifying Foaming Facial Cleanser.
The one product a French girl would never go without is sunscreen, of course. Everyone here in France knows the damage the sun can do to your face so moisturizing with sunscreen is key to preventing premature aging and sun damage. Don’t forget to reapply throughout the day, too! Most sunscreens only last 3-4 hours maximum and aren’t always waterproof.
Everyday Low-SPF Facial Sunscreen
On a daily basis in Paris, I use a low SPF facial sunscreen by Avène which works for most of my days running around in and out of the sun.
High-SPF Facial Sunscreen for Beach Days
If I’m on vacation or know I’ll be spending a lot of extra time outdoors in the sun, I’ll opt for a high SPF facial sunscreen by La Roche-Posay. I never use body sunscreen on my face as it’s too risky and could cause breakouts!
High-SPF Body Sunscreen
For the rest of my body, I use a high SPF La Roche-Posay sunscreen to block UV rays.
Don’t Forget the Lips
My summer skincare routine involves using a lip balm with SPF on a daily basis. The La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL SPF 50 Sun Stick does the trick well.
After my face is properly protected, I might use a tinted moisturizer to give it an even tone. I really love the Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer because it has SPF 30 already in it!
I always skip a heavy foundation in summer as it doesn’t sit well in the summer heat.
Instead, I use light and thin foundations only in summer.
Another product I would love to try is the La Roche-Posay Anthelios Tinted Sunscreen SPF 50 which is a bit stronger and also tinted.
French Facial Mist Spray
I started using a French facial mist since moving to Paris and I absolutely love this burst of hydration on my face in summer! I keep my facial mists in the refrigerator so the liquid is extra cool on my face. It’s a great way to cool my face down when coming home after a long hot day.
The Evian Natural Mineral Water Facial Spray is one of the best cooling mist sprays to pack with you on vacation.
The Avène Spring Thermal Water Spray has restorative properties which will help keep your skin clear.
The sun takes moisture out of the skin, so if I’m heading back from the beach I love using after-sun products to keep it healthy.
Body oil is a great way to restore some of the natural oils that help keep your skin hydrated. The Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Multi-Purpose Dry Oil for Body & Hair is a bestseller across France.
I recently discovered the Camille Flores Extra Virgin Coconut Oil which feels amazing on my legs after a day at the beach. Not to mention, it smells divine!
If I’m a little burned, I go for an after-sun gel which is a bit stronger and more healing. The La Roche-Posay Posthelios Hydrating After Sun Gel is perfect for this, and the clean beauty brand Respire also makes a fantastic after-sun gel.
It’s important to not forget about your haircare after spending a day in the sun, too. The Rene Furterer Solaire Nourishing Repair Shampoo is specially formulated for post-sun exposed hair. The Nuxe Sun After-Sun Hair and Body Shampoo is another option to try.
If I’m really sunburned, then I moisturize my skin using Bioderma Photoderm After-Sun Lotion.
No matter what I do during the day, I always make sure to fully remove my makeup with the cult classic Bioderma Sensibio H2O micellar water. This is one of the all-time best French beauty products to use if you aren’t already. I’ve tried other micellar waters, and none compare to this one.
After my makeup is gone, I proceed to cleanse my face before bed. Since my face is way more sweaty because of summer heat, this is super important! The La Roche Posay Effaclar Deep Cleansing Foaming Cream is what I turn to for a good scrub down of my face.
Night Moisturizer Cream
Using a night cream is another habit I picked up since moving to France and my face is super happy about it! I currently use a night cream by Nuxe which keeps my face nice and smooth after getting washed.
French Summer Skincare Tips
Lastly, here are a few French summer skincare tips to keep in mind.
You don’t need to exfoliate as often in the summer. Exfoliation removes the protective layers of skin, making it more prone to sun damage which you want to avoid.
Retinol at Night
Only use retinol at night! Retinol thins the skin, again leaving it too exposed. It can also potentially make your skin sensitive to UV rays.
Stay Very Hydrated
I know this one feels obvious, but it’s essential to the French summer skincare routine, I promise! Drink lots of water during summer as your body gets dehydrated much faster than in winter.
I hope you enjoyed reading about my French summer skincare routine! Subscribe to my newsletter below for more French girl beauty tips straight from Paris!