The Trending French Beauty Secret That Totally Surprised Me

The Trending French Beauty Secret That Totally Surprised Me

Arlyn Hernandez
May 1, 2017
(Image credit: Stocky/Nadine Greeff)

French women have had a mythological standard of perfection attributed to them, often being characterized as having it all figured out. One scan across the shelves of your local bookstore will tell you that, if book titles are any indication, they know how to dress better, eat better, and just generally do everything better than women who are not French. There's certainly an allure to French beauty products and practices, as well, so when I received Google's Beauty Trends report for 2017 (which explored growing and declining search trends in the US, France and Japan), I was tres intrigued to see what those enigmatic French women were on the hunt for. What exactly will be contributing to their perpetual state of je ne sais quoi in 2017? Well, the data was interesting, to say the least.

There were certainly some crossover skincare trends in all three countries: charcoal masks, clay masks, sheet masks…basically, tons of masks, oh and some bath bombs, too. But a few things stood out upon digging in a little deeper into the data about France, and, spoiler alert, it involves donkeys.

Donkeys? Say what? Yes, evidently, French women love donkey milk products (soaps, creams, etc.). Before I could even keep going down the list of rising trends, I immediately Googled "What is donkey milk?". I mean, I of course, understand that donkeys are mammals, and produce milk for their offspring, but I wasn't sure if perhaps it was just another name for a manmade product of some sort, rather than a product of…lactation.

My initial search on the pressing matter (and thanks POPSUGAR BEAUTY for the enlightening article I clicked on)!
(Image credit: Arlyn Hernandez)

After some deep dive research (i.e., I spent about 20 minutes looking at pictures of packaging with donkeys on them and sending a few donkey GIFs to friends while I told them what I was up to), I learned that apart from being a breast milk substitute for (human) infants, it's also really, really good for the skin (some sources say ancient people considered it a miracle elixir). Donkey milk has nearly four times the amount of vitamin C that is found in cow's milk, and is incredibly tolerable. It also has tons of vitamins, proteins, minerals and essential fatty acids, making it a home run tonic for skincare. Wikipedia even goes as far as to say it's "been used since antiquity for cosmetic purposes." Who knew? Clearly, French women did.

A snippet from the Google trends report.
(Image credit: Google)

Also found in that report? French women are super into anti-cellulite products, heavily searching for anti-cellulite suction cups, anti-cellulite oils, anti-cellulite tights, and are 30x more likely to search for "cellulite" than the average American. But enough about cellulite, back to donkey milk.

I literally had no idea this was a thing, and coming from someone who has regularly put snail goop on her face in hopes of getting a glowing, ageless visage, I'm curious/fascinated. I have so many more questions, regarding the well-being of these donkeys, extraction methods, etc., but if you want skin like a French women ASAP, you might want to hold the questions and just check out these donkey milk-infused beauty products (and if you try them, PLEASE report back on whether it turned you into a goddess, or not).

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