My box of Yves Rocher goodies has arrived. As you read in yesterday’s post, my review of the book Two Lipsticks and a Lover by Helena Frith-Powell, I’m determined to glam myself up a bit and not look too obviously like an ex-pat. I’m now one of the one in three women in France who regularly uses Yves Rocher products.

Here’s what I’ve treated myself too. I love Yves Rocher stuff. It always smells beautiful. Plus there was a factory in Cork, so there used to be a local connection. And the company has never done testing on animals.

Yves Rocher is all about beauty through plants. Yves Rocher himself, born in 1930 in La Gacilly in Brittany, learned about the healing powers when he was young. He said that his love of plants was inspired by the flowering uplands near his village and the nearby forest of Brocéliande. He began to sell a plant-based ointment by mail order, and that’s how his business empire began in 1958. (It was a haemorrhoid cream!) He began with one shop in Paris. Now there are 1,500 in twenty different countries. The company is worth around two billion euros and employs 15,000 people. Pas mal ! Bris Rocher, Yves’ grandson, is at the helm these days. Yves passed the business to his son Didier in 1992, but sadly Didier died two years later in mysterious circumstances. Yves took over again until his death in 2009.

Something I didn’t know until I did my research for this article is that Yves Rocher owns the Petit Bateau clothing company. I’ve dressed Ruadhri in quite a lot of these clothes. They’re not the cheapest but they’re reasonably priced and good quality. Like the cosmetics. Yves Rocher also owns several cosmetics brands – including Daniel Jouvance and Dr Pierre Ricard.

I buy my products by mail order, always very efficient, but Caiti told me the other day that there is an Yves Rocher shop in Gueret, which I hadn’t realised. (Only been living here 5 years!) I will have to investigate. But now it’s time to start my new beauty regime. I’m an eternal optimist!

Daily snippets for 3rd May

Today’s saint: St Philip, the apostle

Famous French person born this day: in 1764, Elisabeth of France, youngest sister of Louix XVI and executed during the Revolution

Famous French person who died this day: in 1997 Sébastien Enjolras, racing driving, killed during practice for the Le Mans 24 hour race

Today’s word; maquillage – make up

Today’s dicton: Qui n’a pas semé à la Sainte-Croix, au lieu d’un grain en mettra trois. Whoever hasn’t sown their seeds by Ste Croix (which is today, 3 May), then instead of one seed they’ll have to sow three.