The crème de la crème — Paris


A family-run company, Clarins’s business strategy has always been about making products that are never discontinued but simply improved upon. This has won it a loyal following and helped to set it apart from other cosmetics giants.

Christian Courtin-Clarins, Isabelle Herbreteau, Pietro Andrea Mattioli

“In a family-run business there’s a lot of trust. When we shake hands we know it’s better than any contract,” says Christian Courtin-Clarins, chairman of the leading French beauty brand founded by his late father, Jacques, in 1954. Unlike many key companies that have fallen into the well-moisturised hands of industry giants Estée Lauder and L’Oréal, Clarins is firmly independent and family-owned. And with a presence in 145 countries, it has a large share of the $36.5bn (€27bn) global cosmetics industry: sales hit €1bn last year.

Jacques Courtin…

Clarins is founded in Paris by Jacques Courtin-Clarins

Christian Courtin-Clarins joins the company with his father and creates the export division

Becomes No 1 in France and opens its first US subsidiary

The firm enters the stockmarket and opens its own lab

Begins to implement policy of no animal testing or use of animal ingredients

Acquires licence for Thierry Mugler perfumes and Parfums Azzaro, which form the Clarins fragrance group

Dr Olivier Courtin-Clarins joins the group and opens an international research network

Responsible Development department created by Christian

Clarins leaves the stockmarket

Clarins will launch a fragrance for Swarovski

  • Les 3 Huiles pour le Visage et le Corps

    One of the original product ranges developed by the founder. Clarins’s fragrant body and face oils are recommended for their toning and nourishing properties.

  • Eau Dynamisante

    Created by Jacques Courtin-Clarins and launched in 1987, this was the first fragrance to combine skincare benefits of plant extracts and is a unisex chypre scent.

  • Double Serum Génération 6

    The formula of this skin-firming product is updated every four years. It is promoted as having anti-wrinkle properties.

  • Beauty Flash Balm

    Used to brighten complexions and eliminate signs of fatigue.

  • Bust Beauty Extra-Lift Gel

    The tightening effect of oat sugars and Vietnamese vu sua extract make this a “natural bra”.


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