Korean Girls' Favorite Place to Shop for Skincare Is a Pharmacy in Paris

Amanda Montell
PHOTO:

celiasamyn.be

You'd think South Korean tourists would come to France for the croissants or the Mona Lisa. But for skincare-obsessed visitors, Paris's main attraction has become a regular pharmacy in the Fifth Arrondissement.

From the outside, Pharmacie Monge looks totally standard, down to the traditional green cross that adorns all French pharmacy exteriors. But unlike your average shop, this one is usually packed with South Korean travelers stocking up on moisturizers and serums from French brands like Caudalie, Avène, and Nuxe, which retail for much higher prices back at home.

Pharmacie Monge's owner, Alexandre Freyburger, has staffed the place with Korean-speaking employees to cater to its new clientele. "We are spontaneously put in Korean guidebooks!" he told The New York Times. Tourists from China, other East Asian countries, and South America are known to bring business as well.

What's so special about the ordinary French pharmacy? To find out, read on.

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