Monday, March 24, 2014

Bordeaux Diaries: DURANCE - Art de vivre - Art de la terre

 I love my daily evening strolls in Bordeaux! With the curiosity of a child, I keep walking for as long as possible soaking my eyes with the serenity that this city has to offer. While it's a very personal and spiritual experience on various levels, as a blogger I am also on a look out for an inspiration worth sharing with all of you lovely readers. Based in France, my intention is to focus specifically on those marques which are "authentically" French with their products or services having an exclusive standing in the market based on their distinct qualities. This is my way of being true to my French lifestyle and cultural experience.

Organic products from Provence

The balmy interior of DURANCE allured me into stepping inside. I was embraced by a pleasant & sweet smelling wave of welcoming fragrance. This moment had such an influence on me that I heard myself saying, "Ça sent tellement bon!" out loud to the boutique manager. I was encouraged to ask and inquire about the products and the history of DURANCE by the friendly demeanor of the lady manager. The things I discovered about DURANCE allowed me to check the entire criteria I had for writing a review on this blog.

Organic products from Provence
Tradition of Marseille
DURANCE is an authentic French brand with its root lying in the beautiful French region of Provence. The Ruth family was inspired by the beauty and spirit of the region and using the gifts bestowed by the nature in this Provençale land, they established a company back in 1986 which soon became a well known brand for organic and natural care products. DURANCE has stayed true to it's inspiration through the years and even today, their products are produced and packaged in the "Grignan" workshops located in Drôme Provençale. The organic raw material is not just a claim that they make as one can actually trace their source back in Provence. The images of the silvery olive groves and the Provence famed blue lavender fields kept appearing in my head as I walked around the boutique learning and discovering DURANCE.

Going through the 2014 DURANCE catalog, I learned that 95% of the ingredients used in DURANCE products are naturally sourced. They are free from chemical based preservatives and they do not test their products on animals. The products are treated within two hours of being picked, especially the Roses, to preserve their beneficial nature and freshness.

Organic products from Provence

The range of DURANCE includes organic skin and body care products, anti-aging products, bathing gels, perfumes, essential oils for aromatherapy and healing, decorative incense diffusers for home and so much more. They also have a range of products dedicated to men. The beautiful candles bring with them not only their fragrance and light but also the sense of delightful awareness that each one of them comes with hand-tied raffia ribbon around them. Overall, each DURANCE product strives to bring you closer to the nature and helps you become more aware of yourself and your surroundings. It's a different feeling altogether I tell you, to know the story and ingredients of the products that you use on yourself or around you.

At one point of this visit, I was fascinated to learn that one of the DURANCE range of products is based on poppy flowers. It includes soaps, body milks, shower gels, beautifying oils and perfume. Why fascinated? Because the boutique manager told me with a smile that poppy flowers are naturally odorless! My immediate question was: "But then how?" and she enthusiastically replied "DURANCE has created an exclusive fragrance to associate the poppy flower with!"

Organic products from Provence

The traces of moon flower orchid perfume that I tested still linger on me subtly as I am writing this. The products aside, their promotional literature also justify their environmental conscious attitude. For me, it wasn't just a shop but an entire experience that took me back in time and allowed me to learn about the various natural ingredients, their benefits, their real characteristics and the importance of the implementation of the Art of taking care of oneself.

The DURANCE boutique in Bordeaux has made it to my list of places from where I will purchase the presents for my friends and family back in Pakistan. Not only would they have an authentic French experience with all its organic benefits, they will also enjoy learning about the history which lies in the core of these products. If you are planning to visit France this year for your summer holidays, I strongly recommend that you visit a DURANCE boutique in your vicinity. You will definitely find that right French souvenir to bring back home for yourself and your loved ones. Those who already have an interest in organic lifestyle as well as those who are new to this concept, DURANCE is the place to go to. Reasonable prices and frequent discount deals on products will allow you to enjoy the benefits of nature while staying in your budget.

Organic products from Provence

For those who aren't coming to France, the great news is that DURANCE is established in many countries all over the world. I won't recommend you my favorite products because visiting DURANCE is an experience you will have to live in order to discover what it is that you will love the most about Provence.

A special thanks to Mrs. Catherine Fender, the DURANCE boutique manager in Bordeaux for sharing with me all the knowledge and for giving me the permission to take the photos for Bordeaux Diaries.

You can visit their website at to learn more and locate a boutique near you. You have the option to switch from French to English or any other language that you prefer.

If you are using any DURANCE products, we would love to hear from your experience.

Disclaimer: Bordeaux Diaries is the author's personal initiative to write about French brands/products/services in Bordeaux. All these reviews are based on the author's personal experience and are not paid or influenced by the featured brand.