This past weekend in Bryant Park, Taste of France , organized by the New York French Community captivated thousands with the culture, cuisine, and atmosphere of France. In addition to booths full of French wine, crepes and bulldogs, (oh, and a 5 foot tall Eiffel Tower made out of butter!) we were fortunate enough to explore one of the most fabulous areas of French exports: the world of beauty. There were three beauty booths at A Taste of France: Clarins, L’Oreal, and Mane with Crafting Beauty. All offered samples and demonstrations. The L’Oreal booth had a rotating schedule of experts providing skin analyses, mini-facials, skin cancer screenings, and makeup demonstrations. Clarins offered samples and sold their fabulous products. Crafting Beauty and Mane organized what was our favorite part of the event. The beautiful and pure perfumes that Mane creates and Crafting Beauty packaged were truly something special.
Joonbug was lucky enough to get some exclusive insight into the Mane product line from the Michel Mane, the owner and master perfumer himself. The Mane booth was making pure lavender oil through the process of steam distillation. This involves steaming lavender with water and watching as the water and lavender oil separate in a glass distilling pot. They had a variety of other oils for visitors to smell, made from products that are internationally grown, but all distilled in France at the Mane laboratories based out of Grasse. These included cardamom, lavender, mimosa, orange flower, rose, Tonka bean, vanilla, and pink pepper. There was a signature "Taste of France" perfume created especially for the event, with packaging made by Crafting Beauty in square glass bottles and wrapped in a luxurious red velvet bag.
Joonbug created its own signature perfume with the help of Michel Mane! It was made from a Taste of France base scent with added nose of rose, jasmine, lavender, and spiced cardamom. Making your own perfume is easier than you may think! It simply involves finding the oils that you like and mixing them in just the right proportion. Of course, you need a master perfumer to know the proportions, but the scent process is an easy yet totally individual experience! Check out the Mane showroom on 555 Madison Avenue near 55th St. to learn more about their custom blends and signature scents!
A Taste of France was an event not to be missed. Still, the events vendors can be found all over the city, as well as a variety of amazing French cultural experiences! It’s always possible to get a taste of France in NYC!