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What to Wear in Paris: Outfit Ideas & Packing List

Last Updated on 4th February 2022 by Sophie Nadeau

When it comes for packing for Paris, the ideas and information out there can be more than a little daunting. Luckily for you, whether you’re going to the French capital during the summer or in the winter, I’ve put together this local’s guide on what to wear in Paris.

dress like a parisienne

Safe for two golden rules, the Parisienne knows no fashion rules; she breaks and creates every rule simultaneously. She is the rulebook. There is no ‘orange is the new black’ here; black is always the colour of choice and red lipstick is forever on-trend.

Parisian fashion staples

There are a few pieces I make sure to always pack in my carry on suitcase. These include a trusted pair of black jeans like these ones that can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.

Parisian fashion isn’t just limited to Louboutins and lace. Oh no, it’s so much more than that. Plus, when you visit the city of lights, you’ll soon realise that wearing six-inch heels on cobblestone roads is just not feasible! Or, at least I found it wasn’t…

A Statement Handbag

Parisians are all about the accessories. While a monochrome capsule wardrobe is favoured by many French women, this allows them to be a lot more creative when it comes to accessories.


The scarf is perfect no matter what the weather. I always find a scarf is even useful on overnight public transport when I’m feeling sleepy and want a blanket to feel cozy.

Signature Lipstick

And no, it doesn’t have to be red.

How to dress in Paris by season:

Spring: The Parisienne knows that with spring comes not only the promise of Summer but that of Spring showers. She always has an umbrella to hand in the case of sudden downpours. Any fool knows that a raincoat simply flattens your ‘just got out of bed’ hairdo.

Summer: While the rest of the World may be trying to perfect that ‘just got out of bed’ hair look, the Parisienne needs to make no effort. The Parisienne really just got out of bed.

Autumn: The days may be warm but the nights certainly aren’t and the Parisienne is no idiot. She always brings a jacket. Who knows where the cool night may lead her: a rooftop escapade, a stroll down the Seine?

Winter: The Parisienne knows that while a poorly chosen scarf can destroy an outfit, well-chosen one can make an outfit. She chooses wisely and makes sure to keep warm: no one wants a runny nose ruining their makeup.

Do Parisians wear jeans?

If you’re wondering whether Parisians wear jeans, then the resounding answer is yes. The simple truth is, most people dress as in the rest of Europe. Jeans are a staple in many people’s wardrobes, and while I wouldn’t recommend them for taking a Seine dinner cruise, they are comfortable and practical for exploring the city on foot.

What accessories to pack for Paris

The accessory is always the Parisienne’s favourite weapon of choice.

Handbag: Large enough to carry all she needs, yet small enough that she doesn’t look like she’s going on a month long backpacking trip to Australia, the handbag is a staple, a necessity.

Sunglasses: The Parisienne knows that sunglasses are not only the perfect protection against the sun, they also provide great hangover camouflage.

Makeup: The Parisienne does as she pleases. She is her own woman. If she wakes up and doesn’t feel like wearing makeup that day, she won’t. She knows that she is flawless either way.

Perfume: Much like her je ne sais quoi attitude, she has a signature scent. If she forgets her perfume she will not borrow her friend’s. Ah, non! Her signature scent is her trademark, a logo smelt on her skin and she would rather go au naturel than wear any other.

Shoes: The shoes must be aesthetically pleasing yet practical at the same time. No one looks sexy twisting an ankle because they haven’t factored in walking over cobblestones.

The single most important thing that we can learn from Parisiennes is that they are confident in their own skin. If other people don’t like the way she dresses, then tant pis. The Parisienne will always be Parisienne and Paris will always be Paris.

how to dress like a parisienne when you visit Paris, France

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Friday 4th of March 2022

Summer: While the rest of the World may be trying to perfect that ‘just got out of bed’ hair look, the Parisienne needs to make no effort. The Parisienne really just got out of bed.

- you call this an advice? what a fluff piece of article.

Pam Kumar

Monday 25th of February 2019

Love your article. I always been my own woman and it makes me more confident. Thanks

Somu Banerjee

Thursday 27th of February 2020

Thanks and regards


Saturday 23rd of July 2016

[…] over.  And it’s not just the city either- it’s the residents too. From the way that Parisians dress, to the way that they are in romantic relationships, there’s just something so special and […]


Saturday 12th of March 2016

Love this article x


Thursday 10th of March 2016

Loved the article! There's a lot of inspiration here.

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