What I learned about Parisian Style

Admittedly this post is about 3 months overdue, and if we factor in the fact that I last wrote a blog post about a year ago then its approximately 15 months late. But who’s counting! Well, clearly I am, but then again life happens.

To be honest, I wasn’t happy with the layout and style of the blog. The internet is brimming with so many perfectly curated, fabulously edited, mesmerising blogs that sometimes you just feel like you can’t measure up. But maybe we don’t have to, maybe sometimes it’s just about being a little imperfect, a little messy, a little human. (That said, I still hope to make a few small changes to this site to bring it closer to how I’d envisioned it.)

If you’ve been following me on Instagram then you will probably know I had a big life change in the past 7 months – med school finally ended, and I finally became a doctor which was equal parts exciting and terrifying. There’ve been long days and sleepless nights, and to be honest, sometimes you’re doing well just to get through the day.

Hopefully all of that helps explain the lack of activity here, but hopefully you’ll also bear with me as I try to make some changes and conjure up some new projects 😉

Ok enough waffle.

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Back in November my younger brother and I made a quick trip to Paris (including Disney, of course). I’ll likely do a belated photo diary of that weekend at some point, but for now, I thought it would be nice to share what I learned about Parisian winter style while we were there. Of course, these are just observations, but they were interesting to note nonetheless.

Neutral tones, block colour, very little pattern

I could probably count on one hand the number of times we saw people wearing bright colours . Black, navy, grey, beige and brown seemed to be the colours of choice. It was unusual to see such uniformity. Here in Ireland, yes a lot of us do like our neutrals, but walk down a busy street on any given day and you’ll likely still see some neon or funky pattern, whatever the season. As someone who is quite partial to the old neutral palette, this sea of black and navy made my heart sing a little.

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Don’t forget to pop that collar

I’ve not seen so many popped collars since 2007 when all the teenage boys had blonde tips in their hair and wore boat shoes with head to toe Abercrombie… A popped collar with a chic coat, giant scarf and beret (yes, we saw MANY of these!) while conversing mellifluously in French did seem decidedly more sophisticated though …

Huge blanket scarves

As pointed out above. Paris gets darn cold in winter and ain’t nobody got time for a flimsy scarf that won’t keep you warm and toasty. I did note that this was where some folks injected some colour and pattern into their looks.

Minimal face and eye makeup, but all about the statement lipIMG_1168

Not once did I see a caked on face, in fact, I’m not even sure foundation is much of a thing in Paris, it seemed to be tinted moisturiser or bare face for the most part, though perhaps someone considerably more in the French loop could clarify? Anyway, minimal face and statement lip is so modern and perfect for those of us in a hurry so it was great to see. Most people seemed to opt for dark lipstick colours, which of course I commend. There wasn’t much in the way of red (wearing Nars Audacious lipstick in Olivia in this photo, it’s actually much darker irl, but comes up more red in photos) .Parisians seem to prefer orange if they’re after a bright lip – which was really quite inspired. As a general rule I wouldn’t tend to wear orange lipstick in winter, but it looked gorgeous with very little face makeup and against the backdrop of winter neutrals.

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(An attempt at Parisian evening makeup. Minimal face makeup with a lived in 5 minute smokey eye.) 

Runners/trainers are for exercise only

As a tourist I quite happily wore my runners around as we were walking pretty much all day every day trying to get in as many of the sights and cafes as possible. However, besides tourists I didn’t see anyone else wearing this god-sent, comfy footwear style. Boots or shoes only apparently, and yes, you guessed it, in a neutral shade.

Foldable thermal jacket under a nice coat for warmth

I was quite struck by the fact that nobody else was shivering like a maniac in their chic jackets and coats. At any given time I’d about 4 layers on under my jacket (and was still cold), hence the snowman-shaped look. Anyway, it transpired that a lot people wore those really compact down jackets under their nice outerwear to keep them toasty. Suddenly it all made sense.

Like I said, these were just observations, which, of course, are grossly generalised. Hopefully though, they’ve given you an insight into the world of everyday winter style in Paris. I, for one, am rather obsessed with this pared back look.

Have a great week, folks! Off to root out some orange lipstick now 😉

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