Doré: rē•Do Your Beauty Regimen the French Way
From fashion week to your skincare shelf.
Garance Doré is adept at creative rē-invention, having evolved for years along with her professional collaborator Emily Yeston. From Paris to New York and now to Los Angeles, she shifted from being a fashion illustrator to street style photographer to the editor of Atelier Doré. But this evolution has now given way to an eponymously named skincare line, Doré, which she co-founded with Yeston in 2022. Their task was essentially to modernize the quintessential must-haves from the rē-nowned French pharmacie, the iconic drugstore equivalent rumored to hold the secrets of French-girl beauty.
The courage in this business evolution is something Doré attributes to timing and self-attunement — an acknowledgment of the creative’s innate curiosity and the entrepreneur’s willingness to try something new. But while the business itself appears outwardly different, the co-founders consider the brand’s core to be the same. “I think we have this [shared] vision in everything we do and everything that we’ve done,” Doré says of her professional past with Yeston. ‘We already had the same values. So I think Doré the skincare line is really a new iteration of those same values, tastes, and styles.”
Doré the Skincare Line
The skincare line consists of Le Trio, three skincare staples inspired by the beloved French pharmacie: Le Cleanser, a gentle, gel-to-milk cleanser; La Crème, a hydrating cream; and Le Baume, a skin barrier-protective balm to lock it all in. They range in price from $12 to $36 sold individually or can be purchased as a set for $62. And there is absolutely no reason you cannot still reach for your favorite vitamin C serum for the daytime and your preferred retinol at night. But the real reason behind this three-step, minimalist approach is rooted in the French philosophy of beauty, which Doré and Yeston describe as finding what works and sticking with it; the epitome of quality over quantity.
“French beauty is really rooted in ancient practices and a lot of regularity,” Doré says. “It’s not so much about testing everything that’s out and new and piling on things — whether it’s clothes, beauty, or decor. It’s more about cultivating your own style.” She goes on to describe how personal both French style and home decor are, consisting of cherished pieces worn or used on rē-peat. They possess sentimental value and are reached for again and again because, well, nothing else compares. “It’s the same with their beauty products. ‘Oh, this product is one that my mother had me discover, and I’ve been using it since I was a teenager. This one is something new and interesting.’ It’s always this kind of mix,” Doré describes. “[There is] a real sense of classics and things that are always working.”
As Yeston explains, the French approach to skincare is also fundamentally different than what is seen in the States. “In the US, there’s more of a quick fix mentality when it comes to skincare. People are expecting to see results immediately,” she says, musing how the “holy grail” of skincare would be a product to make wrinkles disappear overnight. “There is more of a ‘patience and persistence’ mindset with the French women I’ve come to encounter. They understand that these changes take a bit of time, so they would rather go the more gentle, more patient, more consistent [route], and they know change will come.”
This gentle approach aligns with their hydrating formulations that respect the integrity of the skin barrier. Rather than an abrasive wash, the gel-to-milk formula possesses some astringency (thanks to witch hazel water) but will not strip away the skin’s natural, protective oils. (In fact, this gentle, lotion-like texture is preferred in much of Europe.) The hydrator imparts moisture via shea butter, sunflower seed oil, sodium hyaluronate, and soothing aloe, avoiding the risk of clogs with a touch of pore-purifying and anti-inflammatory salicylic acid. The balm — which fans of “slugging” to prevent overnight water loss (i.e., TEWL) will appreciate — locks hydration into the skin with castor seed oil, sunflower seed oil, aloe, and beeswax. Et voila.
Santé Meets Skincare
Yet consumers these days are value-driven, concerned about the safety and environmental implications of the brands they purchase. In order to rē-create the French pharmacie’s staples Stateside, Doré and Yeston accounted for these two contemporary concerns. First, they made them “clean” by modern standards. “What we saw [was] that some of these products we had known and loved from the pharmacie space for years were not where we wanted them to be from a clean and sustainable standpoint,” says Yeston. Thus they opted for formulas that are verified to be non-toxic according to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a watchdog organization that compiles and conducts research to document the toxicity of common beauty ingredients.
Next, they set their sights on sustainability. While beauty brands are notorious for the plastic waste they create, Doré was mindful not to contribute to the wasteful status quo by developing a plastic-neutral business model. “It’s always about working towards progress on that front because it’s hard to be perfect as the industry continues to evolve,” Yeston says. She explains that they still opted for plastic packaging in order to offset carbon emissions with shipping (i.e., weight, preventing breakages), but use partial post-consumer rē-cycled (PCR) packaging and have a rē-cycling program.
To create a low-carbon and low-waste model, they turned to Bluebird Climate, a software platform that helps brands rē-duce carbon emissions and waste. “It helped us make some informed decisions from a carbon measurement and end-of-cycle standpoint [in terms of] material choices,” Yeston explains. “Plastic neutral felt like a great fit because we knew we would be pulling out as much plastic as we put into the environment.”
Streamlined Skincare That Works
“Our main objective was to embody everything we believed when it came to beauty, and it was very simple because we needed the products we created,” Doré explains of their approach. The beauty industry is truly the backstage of fashion, which is perhaps why this transition felt natural to two seasoned industry-insiders. And after years in the industry, they had noticed one need where the multiplicity of brands falls short. “It was an idea of going to the core of our needs as women. We are from different generations, but we met at the idea of deep moisturization for sensitive skin. That was the idea.”
Their streamlined approach is more than just a bid at skinimalism; these are two successful women that have tried it all and found that true value lies in perfecting the basics. Doré is not offering a nine-step skincare regimen to become your new hobby; they are merely offering you exactly what they need: products that work consistently and efficiently so that they can get back to their busy lives. “We both spent so many years with huge beauty closets, trying so many beauty products,” Doré reflects of their editorial past. “Yet what was often missing was the one essential beauty product. That’s what we wanted to create: the [product so perfect] that you won’t need another one.”