The correct way to pronounce 9 French brand names

Who hasn’t had one of those slightly embarrassing “seen-it-but-never-said-it” moments with a high-profile foreign brand?

Especially with a French brand.

Brands hailing from francophone speaking countries are tricky for an untrained ear, considering French is a language you can’t really pronounce phonetically.

But be it because of a language barrier or just simple unfamiliarity, below are some of the most frequently mispronounced French brand names accompanied with a Parisian’s pronunciation.

Merci a Lucas Paszkowiak pour la prononciation en Française.

1. Yves Saint Laurent

Yves Saint Laurent

The French fashion house was named after its founder Yves Saint Laurent who started the brand with his partner Pierre Bergé in 1961.

YSL is known for pioneering androgynous styles for women such as, Le Smoking suit, arguably the most classic tuxedo suit for females.

YSL sits alongside elite fashion houses like Chanel, Dior, Prada, and Louis Vuitton.

2. Hermès


In 1837, Thierry Hermès opened his Parisian workshop crafting leather saddles and harnesses for carriages.

Hermès has expanded to specialize in luxury accessories, leather, clothing, and perfumes.

'Just to make sure that our customers are happy we also still dress horses as well as helicopters, cars, bicycles, boats, dogs and the occasional leopard,' the company notes.

3. L'Occitane en Provence

L'Occitane en Provence is an international retailer of skin care, fragrances, makeup, men's products, hair care, and home products.

L'Occitane was founded in 1976 by Olivier Baussan and is based in Manosque, France.

4. Comptoir des Cotonniers

According to the French retailer's website, Comptoir des Cotonniers is described as 'a wardrobe, but also a style and attitude' and 'innate Parisian elegance.'

The retailer opened its doors in 1995 in Toulouse and in Paris.

5. Le Pain Quotidien

Le Pain Quotidien, which translates to 'the daily bread,' is an international chain of bakery-restaurants founded by chef Alain Coumont in Brussels, Belgium in 1990.

Part cafe, part restaurant, Le Pain Quotidien is known for its rustic bread and communal tables.

6. Guerlain

Founded in 1828 by perfumer Pierre-François Pascal Guerlain, the French perfume house created scents for royalty, most notably

French Emperor Napoleon III, earning Guerlain the prestigious title of being 'His Majesty's Official Perfumer.'

In addition to its exquisite fragrances, the luxury brand is known for its cosmetics and skin care.

7. Cartier

Known for being one of the world's most esteemed jewellers, Cartier was founded in Paris in 1847 by Louis-François Cartier.

Cartier's Panthère collection is regarded as an icon of the brand that is both '
predatory and elegant, restrained yet always ready to pounce. Roaming free with emerald eyes, onyx muzzle and diamond-set coat.'

'Today, the Maison is renowned worldwide for its high jewellery creations and watches, perfumes and prestige accessories, symbols of craftsmanship and elegance, quality and excellence,' according to the company.

8. Givenchy


Founded by Hubert de Givenchy in 1957, the luxury haute couture clothing, accessories, perfume and cosmetics brand is known for its 'aristocratic French style nourished by culture, savoir-vivre and opulence,' according to the company.

Givenchy created his first fragrance, L'Interdit, which translates to 'forbidden,' in honour of his glamourous friend Audrey Hepburn.

9. Veuve Clicquot

Founded in 1772 in Reims, France, Madame Veuve Clicquot took the helm of her late husband's small champagne house in 1805, becoming one of the first business women of the modern era.

Clicquot is a French champagne house known for its 'classically styled and full-bodied champagne,' according to the company.

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