Shopping
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Shopping in Paris: Best picks and secret addresses

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Here are some interesting boutiques and stores in Paris you should visit when you are in the beautiful city.

1. LADUREE
16, rue Royale (located at the junction of rue Royale and rue Saint Honore)
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This is hubs. Standing in front of the confectionary store and cafe looking very satisfied with his macarons. Unfortunately, you can’t see his face.

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I’m sure everyone knows Laduree, but this particular store is one of the confectioner’s largest, if not most beautiful, in Paris. It has a tea salon with mahogany walls and panelling. It also comes with a gift boutique in case you want to get Hello Kitty stationery and Laduree candles.

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The macarons are delicious.20120715-231906.jpg

PIERRE HERME macaroons are awesome too.
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Pierre Herme is located at 4 rue Cambon 75001 Paris.

2. AMERICAN RETRO
10 rue Madame, 75006 Paris, in the Saint Germain area

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I really think the French love American and British culture, but are too snooty to admit it.
I stumbled across this store when strolling around in the St Germain area where there’s plenty of interesting little stores (unfortunately, I didn’t get round to visiting many of them).

So American Retro is a French brand founded in 2002 by two brothers.
The clothing in the store are hippy-looking ones with a luxe and French edge.

There were plenty of artfully draped tops, dresses and skirts.

The metallic shorts and the ‘SOLDE’ word on the windows caught my eye, and the sales assistant told me that everything in the two-storey store was going at half price :P

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I tried on plenty of pieces, including the basics brand Zoe Tees.

But in the end, I settled for a nude bejewelled skirt and nude silk tank (that cost about 150 Euros in total) because I had already spent too much elsewhere. I had also fallen in love with a gorgeous graphic asymmetrical chiffon skirt but there were no more sizes left.

3. FRENCH PHARMACIES
Every corner.

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They’re everywhere and chockful of French derm-based skincare brands, and beauty and personal care accessories.

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Besides a nail clipper and a nail file (they have really good quality stuff there) that I forgot to bring along for the trip, I snapped up my fave Bioderma Micelle Solution which was on a promo.

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4. CALINA SHOP&SPA
3 rue Roy, 75008 Paris (near the St Augustin church

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If you have a cat or a dog, you’ll love this store. It sells little puppies like these which were tumbling around in the cage…

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There’re racks and racks of cute clothing for your pet, including fuzzy sweaters…
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And quality, leather bejewelled collars Paris Hilton would love…
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And cosy little beds, and cute bags for you to carry poochy or kitty in.

Since we’re on the topic of animals,
here’s a pic of a grumpy old lady walking her cat for you.

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5. YVES ROCHER
102 avenue des Champs Elysee
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Whenever you feel bored in Paris after 7pm where most of the stores are closed, pop by the Yves Rocher store at Champs Elysee. It closes late, like 11pm.

The store was a respite from a cold and rainy night.

It reminded me alot of The Body Shop with its strong plant imagery and use of nature-based ingredients in its products. But considering that Yves Rocher started his brand in 1958…it’s clear which is the pioneer.

There were perfumes, bath products, skincare, makeup and beauty accessories.

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Near the cashier, there’s also a wall of handy travel-size products.

Most of the items in the store were really affordable.

Here’s what I got:
– A tube of acne gel
– An exfoliating facial wash
– A bottle of tanning oil
– A bottle of body moisturiser
– A pack of anti-ageing facial wipes
– A lip brush
– Deodorant
– A travel-sized bottle of micelle solution
– Four mask packs

It all totalled up to about 49 Euros because many of the items were going at half price.

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Since the brand prides itself on being eco, you have to pay 0,70 Euros for a re-usable bag.

Yves Rocher is a must-visit if you like French beauty products.

6. BHV
Hotel de Ville station

I’m mentioning this department store, and more specifically level B1, the DIY section, because it’s the largest I’ve seen.

Hubs chatted up the guy who did restorations at the Hermes boutique at St. Honore. And he recommended this place for shoe paint and accessories.

It offers almost anything to fix your leather goods. Or even to make your own, like belts and bags.

Hubs got shoe paint, brushes and leather laces for his shoes.

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There were also animal skins to be turned into bags and pouches…

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and shoe trees..

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and foam shoe trees for women’s shoes like these…

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Which fit perfectly in my Loubies…

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And this was just a small section in the floor which had plenty of stuff for every kind of DIY.

The staff there only speak French; a sign that it’s a place you should go for authentic French shopping if you’re into DIY.

Happy shopping when you get to Paris!

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