Love Is In The Hair–A French Blow Out!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

After yesterday’s drive up the road that shook the nerves, today is a completely lazy bum day of reading by the pool and not much else.

Bonaparte kindly suggested that since we are going to St. Tropez tomorrow to visit his dad that I just might want to make an appointment at a beauty salon and perhaps get my roots done and maybe get a blow out too.

Although I welcome this suggestion, I’m a bit hesitant because Adam, the stylist I go to and cannot live without, knows my hair; and he knows and understands about my hair loss issues.  But after taking a look in the mirror of the hair that hasn’t been washed in two weeks, I think Bonaparte just may have a point.

And before hitting the pool, I grab my Toppik, and head to the car to drive to the salon.

Theoule. Bubble House still here in 2016.

On the way to Geant we pass my favorite house. The bubble house down the street. This isn’t the Pierre Cardin bubble house. It’s someone else’s…

Theoule. Bubble house 2016 closer and closer

We had to sneak up on the fence to snap these pics. Look–the bubbles look like titties. I’m so in love with these little glass nipples…

Theoule. Bubble House 2016 windows

I want to caress these windows. Seriously. I love this house!

The galerie at Geant has a few hair salons, but I decided to make an appointment at Franck Provost. I’ve seen his chain of salons all over Paris and figured it was a safe bet.

Theoule. Geant. Long shot

How pathetic is this?  OTHER bloggers take artsy pics. I take pics of hypermarches.

Geant. Franck Provost. Sign.

Ladies and men. If you are in the area of Theoule-sur-Mer, might I suggest a hair appointment at Franck Provost?

I don’t care how uneducated I may be in the French language, but when it comes to making a hair appointment, I miraculously became quite fluent.

Me:  “Bonjour. Je voudrais prendre rendez-vous pour  un teinture, shampooing, conditionné et séchés .” “Pouvez-vous blow dry mes cheveux  d’une façon ondulée?” “Oh. Et je dois la perte de cheveux , mais je dois produit à déguiser .” “D’accord?” “A 17h30 ?”  “S’il vous plait?”

 Translation: Good Morning. I would like to make an appointment to have my hair colored, shampooed, conditioned and blow dried. Can you also blow my hair out in beachy waves?Oh. And I have hair loss but I have product to disguise. OK? At 5:30 PM? Please?

 Frenchman at front desk: “Nom?”

 Me: “Cat-reen” “Merci!”

 Easy peasy. A bit of grocery shopping, back to the apartment to change and…

Geant. Loading up on the fake sugar.

Let’s see. Fake sugar is always on my list. I have these in every purse!

Theoule. Geant. My favorite Creme de Cassis

Lest we not forget the importance of Cassis..

Geant. Saussicon. Yum!

I know..This isn’t food porn. It is merely saucisson! Now you know why I love Geant!

Geant. Little pop up card. Thought it was cute.

…and I have no idea who is going to receive this little pop-up card but I HAD to get it!

..back at the pool.  I gave “The Little Paris Bookshop” a final chance.  I’m telling you. This book was almost as painful to read as “The Scarlet Letter” was.

Theoule. Pool. More view

Back at the pool to do nothing but sit on my fat ass and read and suffer from hypochondria!

I’m not going to give you “spoilers” but this was one of  the worst books I’ve never finished reading.  The characters were not endearing. The book was poorly written AND one of the characters had a disease!

The disease is what threw me over the edge.  Look, I have nothing against tragedies. “Me Before You” was one of my favorite tragic books of all times—but it was about a tragic accident. It wasn’t about a disease.

 Books that are about awful diseases should carry a warning on the front cover. You know-like “smoking is bad for your health”.  These books should state the following:

Warning: This book contains a horrible disease. Hypochondriacs may become affected. They may also be prone to checking certain body parts multiple times a day and become stressed and anxious.  Therefore if you or a loved one suffer from hypochondria, this book may be harmful to your health.

 People at the pool started to stare at me because I sat in my chaise with a horrified look while checking my armpits for hours on end.

When we got back to the apartment, I placed the book on the shelf where I’ve left books in the past.  Apparently the owner of the apartment gets a kick out of this practice of mine because books I’ve left have remained on the shelf since 2010.

Theoule. Apartment. Book shelf addition.

These are the books that I’ve left over the years.  Little Paris Bookshop was the only one I despised!

This was the only book that I left with a note inside about how much I disliked it. I even left my email address for anyone who does decide to read it to let me know what they think of the book.

Travel tip: If you like to read during your vacation’s or travel’s downtime, and finish a book or two, leave them behind or give them to someone.  It’ll lighten your luggage on the way home and can give another visitor something to do during their downtime! Play it forward!

 Thankfully, I remembered my hair appointment. It distracted me from checking my armpits.

While I got my hair done, Bonaparte drove into Cannes to pick up wine from Nicolas. I entered Franck Provost smiling and happy because, hopefully, the staff would make me look human again.

Irene was my stylist. She was an adorable pixie of a woman with a raspy voice and smelled of cigarettes and perfume. A scent I was familiar with due to Danièle’s penchant for Marlboro lights and L’Heure Bleu. The aroma actually made me feel quite comfortable. I took out my Toppik, pointed to the top of my head, winked, and told her  “Apres color”.  For some odd reason she understood me.

Geant. Franck Provost. Iren and the other guy. Fun at the salon.

Oh. We were having a regular party here!  By the time I was finished, the entire staff and I were just about dancing around the salon!

My experience at Franck Provost was remarkable.

Geant. Franck Provost. This small salon works wonders.

This tiny little salon worked great big hair miracles!

My roots were completely covered and as I waited for the color to set in, I was able to observe the goings on at this tiny salon just feet from my beloved hypermarché.  I watched a young girl with a gorgeous head of hair get her hair trimmed and blown out to tousled perfection.   Older women with various shades of dyed hair entered for touch ups. Apparently women on the Cote d’Azur aren’t into the gray look! I fit right in!

The staff was incredibly friendly and kept coming up to me to see if everything was ok.  I was in heaven!

With all due respect to American hair stylists, Irene shampooed my hair so gently that I almost fell asleep.  Rather than a rough shampoo scrub, it was more like a gentle shampoo massage.  In addition, it took my YEARS to find Adam–he knows how to blow dry coarse hair. I cannot begin to tell you how many USA stylists do NOT know how to give a great blow dry job!

 The final cost for the shampoo, deep conditioner, color and blow out came to 75€. Tipping wasn’t allowed on the credit card and tipping is much different than here, I gave a 5€ tip—and it didn’t make me look cheap either.

Let’s do math.  The 80 euros I spent in total for my hair came to the USD equivalent of $88.12.   I normally pay $140.00 for the same services here in the States.

Theoule. Me. French blow out.

Does this hair not look fabulous?  I hope Irene is back next summer! She’s my hair bestie!

Happy with my hair. I can’t wait to see Bonaparte’s dad Dany tomorrow. But now—it is aperitif time!

Here’s a cute song I found from The Hot Sardines: “French Fries and Champagne”!

About Catherine

Far from perfect, but enjoying life as a non-perfect and flawed individual at 60 years young. I'm still wondering what I'll be when I grow up! The characters in my life's screenplay include my better half. He is a refined Frenchman who grew up in Paris and summered in St. Tropez. I grew up in Long Island and summered in Long Island. I am not refined. My three grown children are also a big part of my life. For their sake, they happily live where their careers have taken them! But I can still mother them from a distance! I write about the mundane. I write about deeply shallow issues. But whatever I write or muse about--it'll always be a bit on the humorous and positive side! It's all good!
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44 Responses to Love Is In The Hair–A French Blow Out!

  1. theturtle says:

    Oh the stress of handing our beautiful/difficult/crazy hair into the hands of strangers 😉
    Glad you found Irene 🙂
    Turtle Hugs

    • Catherine says:

      Oh Turtle. She was greatness! It freakin’ takes me ALL DAY to do my hair because I have to color then wash it out then set my hair in rollers and take the rollers out when almost dry then blow dry each section of hair–I’m getting tired already! XOXOXO!!

  2. lorigreer says:

    I had my hair cut and blown out in Paris. The man did a wonderful job for a very reasonable price. Loved my new look and the experience! Nice post!

    • Catherine says:

      Thanks Lori. There’s a great salon in Paris over in the 6th. Josselin Bernard over on Rue Dauphine. I used to get my hair blown out there all the time and they did a stellar job. I think overall, the hair salons in France really stress the art of the blow dry. Here in the States, I’ve had stylists that “gave up” drying my hair because it is incredibly porous and takes forever to dry. That’s why I love Adam so much. He takes his time. I’m rambling–sorry! XOXOXOXO!!!

  3. The saussicon…oh how I miss that sight! I can spent hours in Auchan. Nothing like it. Had many wonderful experiences at Franck Provost in Val d”Europe, both quality of cut and color and half of what I pay here…your blog posts are making me wonder yet again why we live here and not there…oh yeah, that’s right. A job.
    Be well!

    • Catherine says:

      Maribeth. Ain’t it the truth?? How come we can’t get a decent saussicon here in the States? Even NYC is devoid of decent saussicon. Yeah. The French know how to keep excellent hair styling at a lower cost. I’m wondering the same……XOXOXOXO!!!

  4. doodletllc says:

    So glad I found your blog – very funny – very real – very, well very. Your Hair Looks Fabulous!

    • Catherine says:

      Hi doodlet! Welcome aboard. I hope you are having fun reading these misadventures of mine! Thanks for the hair compliment!! XOXOXOXO!!!

  5. Great hair news! And what a nice distraction from the book / disease / arm pits!

  6. Helena Zenia says:


    Yes, yes your hair looks shiny and beautiful! I’ve traveled with half a suitcase full of hair color! I live in fear of walking into a hair salon that’s a complete unknown. A bad outcome could ruin a vacation, non? So, congrats on your courage – in my opinion a leap not much less than Mt. Everest!

    Thanks for your blog…it’s fun!

    All the best, Helena

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Helena. You. Are. Brave. to travel with hair color. Just my luck, the color would explode in my suitcase and there would be a fine mess. Then TSA would think I was up to no good and I would be arrested. Then …… are right, a bad outcome could definitely ruin a vacay. But I have to say, I was observing all the salons in that galerie and the women leaving Provost were looking mighty fine. However, I would NEVER let anyone touch my hair with a scissor except Adam!!! XOXOXO!!! Glad you are enjoying the blog–thank you!

  7. calensariel says:

    How in the hell do you get your hair to look so good after sleeping on it. THAT’S what I want to know!

  8. Soul Gifts says:

    I’m left wondering why you don’t nail the books you hate to the ceiling ? Oh wait, it’s not your place! Landlord may have something to say about that….

  9. KaboodleMum says:

    All sounds lovely, except for the book! Nothing worse than having a book you don’t like! Your hair looks fab! Beautiful as always xx

  10. MELewis says:

    I admire you for finishing even books you don’t like. I have a long list of ‘could not finish’ now to remind me that life is too short to waste time with books that stink. Love, love, love finding other people’s vacation treasures to read! I always try and leave something wonderful for the next person. Some of my best holiday reads were found that way! Great hair BTW. 🙂

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Mel. It is rare that I don’t finish a book that I’m not thrilled with. I always have hope that the book will get better. Unfortunately, there was no hope for this one!! I think its great that you also leave something for the next person too! XOXOXO!!!

  11. Jenny says:

    Looking gorgeous after your mammoth hair session. I hate going to the hairdressers at home and can’t imagine trying to describe what I want in a French salon. Your French is obviously much better than you pretend it is!
    It makes me laugh when you call it a blow out. In the UK that term is used to describe when you eat rather too much, in other words, stuff yourself – something I like to do regularly at the curry house.

    • Catherine says:

      Oh Jenny. I was going to write “blow job”–but then my blog would have turned into a porn readers delight! I have a food blow out practically every night. Curry? I’ll take ten dishes please! XOXOXOXO!!!

  12. Lest we not forget the importance of Cassis..oui un kir s’il vous plait en plus de ça je viens dans prendre un. Au revoir.

  13. Judy says:

    Catherine, that hair is beyond gorgeous – for one terrible moment when I saw the headline I thought it was going to be a disaster story when I saw the words “blow out”. What a relief to find all was very well indeed!

  14. JulietC says:

    Your hair is gorgeous – very shiny and sleek but bouncy. I am very jealous (I have curly hair that isn’t really curly and isn’t really wavy – just very fine and confused, so it has to be kept short or I look woolly), and I am officially part of the Bonaparte fan-club if he is caring enough to take an interest in your wellbeing and looks, my other half complains and mentions I need a hair cut when he is trying to sleep next to me and my hair starts going up his nose (27yrs of marriage – so romance is over by now).

    Well done on getting through that book – it was awful wasn’t it. Here is a link to the Perfume book that I really enjoyed (and hopefully it is a better read), it is certainly relevant – see what you make of the blurb and maybe you’ll like it or maybe not – and I have to admit a funny (well I thought it was a funny) hypochondria story … Many years ago when I was just pregnant with Nr1 child I had terrible morning sickness, at the time I was working in a research team as part of a university and it was my first pregnancy and I was a long way from home so wasn’t sure how well things were going… Therefore I explained my obvious spewing to concerned colleagues as a “little something I think I caught from my husband” which technically was correct. However the crazy thing was, most of the doctors (family physicians, medical physicians) also had the same bug – and funnily enough they were ALL male…..

    I know this is greedy but (please) keep the posts coming – travel, gorgeous photos and now hair/make up stuff – this is heaven on a plate

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Juliet! Sorry I didn’t respond sooner to you but retail hell calls. (actually, I have an upcoming post about a surprise). I’m laughing over your pregnancy story. I have a similar one. I thought I had a tumor because I hadn’t gotten my period so I thought something was blocking the blood. Gross but true. A baby was blocking. Oh the things we think.
      Now about my hair. You need to go back to the beginning of my blog. I suffer from hair loss and it is becoming increasingly worse. I’ve been to doctors who become annoyed with me. I’ve had blood work because I swear I have thyroid issues but nothing. My hair just falls out. (I’m doing another post soon on this). I use disguises like Toppik and lately a couple of extensions that I received when I returned from France. I have that weird hair that isn’t wavy nor does it curl beautifully on its own. It isn’t straight either. Most days I wear it pulled back. I was lucky to find Adam.
      But, I will say the the French hair stylists are much better at certain skills sets than here. Over in France, the stylist isn’t in a rush to get customers in and out. It isn’t about the numbers–it is about the happy ladies!!!
      I’m keeping the posts coming and hoping you continue to enjoy them! XOXOXOXO!!!

      • Gudrun says:

        Hi. Re. Thyroid issues, the best resource I have found for information is “Stop the Thyroid Madness”, it´s a book but also a website and on Facebook. It´s always good to go prepared to the doctor. Good luck.

      • Catherine says:

        Hi Gudron. Thanks for the heads up. I’m going to check out that website and FB page. Thank you for the information–I appreciate this very much! XOXOXO!

      • julietC says:

        well I love your hair, and as for the doctors getting annoyed – pfft if it was them or their partners/wives/whoevers I am damn sure they’d care


  15. junedesilva says:

    Another fab French post; cassis and saucisson sec, what’s not to love?! However, I won’t be reading ‘The Little Paris Bookshop’ anytime soon; a character with a disease – absolutely no way. However, I can really recommend the Perfume novel mentioned in an earlier comment. I enjoyed the film too but not sure it would be for everyone…
    But your hair – looks amazing. I also enjoy a visit to the Coiffeur when in France, I wrote a post about it too:
    but I’ve never been brave enough to have it cut or coloured – yet. Maybe next time…

  16. Catherine says:

    Hi June. BTW, I just followed your blog AGAIN. For some reason, they are not showing up in my email feed. I’m now stressing! I have that Perfume novel on my list. It’s going to come home with me on my next visit to Barnes and Noble!!
    I’m heading over to your blog right now. I need to read about your hair experience!!!!!

  17. junedesilva says:

    Thanks for following my blog – again!!! I wonder why my posts aren’t showing up in your email feed. I don’t want you stressing 😳 But I do always enjoy your comments. Xx

  18. mareymercy says:

    The hair does look great!

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