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Artisan Tours in Provence‑Alpes‑Côte d’Azur: Cosmetics & Wellbeing

A treasure trove of precious natural resources and time-honoured know-how, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur is reputed worldwide for its sunny, subtly-scented perfumes and cosmetics. Welcome to our exciting artisan tours in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur!

 

L’Occitane en Provence

A flagship cosmetics brand

The L’Occitane en Provence production site is situated a stone’s throw from Manosque, on the way to Valensole plateau. The factory and museum offer a deep dive into the wings of L’Occitane, flying the flag of Provence throughout the world. Founded in 1976, the brand has since opened stores in Paris, New York, London, Hong Kong, Japan, Brazil and more… The tour unveils the various stages of the cosmetics manufacturing process from the laboratory to the shipping department, and includes the weighing, production and packaging workshops. Visitors also discover the main plants used to make the products, their origins and characteristics, while the L’Occitane museum retraces the brand’s story.

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Savon de Marseille soap

Timeless…

Reputed throughout the globe, Savon de Marseille soap was exported from the 17th century onwards. It was King Louis XIV who laid down the very-precise regulations relating to its manufacture in 1688, consisting of 5-stage saponification in a cauldron, moulding and embossing on 6 sides. In all, around twenty stages are required to produce genuine Savon de Marseille soap! Today, many soap makers continue to perpetuate this time-honoured tradition, sometimes using machines built several centuries ago. Inside their walls, bathed in an old-fashioned atmosphere, visitors can learn all their is to know about this heritage product, which has seen a comeback thanks to the green and DIY trends.

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Essential Oil

Lavender, a concentrate of Provence

The distillery Les Agnels d’Apt continues to uphold the region’s lavender traditions with pride. Opt for a tour, where you can see lavender being distilled and discover a whole range of organic oils and other cosmetics and fragrances concocted by the Agnel family. Another must-do for lavender fans is the Musée de la Lavande, where lavender has been grown and distilled for four generations. Don’t miss the fabulous collection of copper stills! Just a short hop down the road in Sault, the Aroma’plantes distillery is a vast and beautiful organic farm specialized in the production and distillation of aromatic and medicinal plants (lavender, Herbes de Provence, mint, lemon balm, etc.). Push open the door to the art gallery and laboratory, where the brand’s Cosmessences cosmetics are made. You can buy them on site, online and at various outlets. A genuine ode to the senses.

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Perfumes

Floral fragrances of the Côte d’Azur

Grasse, on the Côte d’Azur, first became a hub of flower growing for the perfumery industry in the 16th century. Tucked in the first foothills of the Prealps, the town’s micro-climate is perfect for nurturing the most delicate flowers (rose, jasmine, orange, violet, mimosa, etc.). World-renowned perfumers continue to curate their creations here and famous brands such as Fragonard, Galimard and Molinard invite visitors to delve into their know-how, from the perfumer’s workshop to laboratories and packaging of the magnificent finished products.

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Discover the full list of Provence Alpes-Côte d’Azur artisan tours.

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