Jet-set hands with Le Couvent des Minimes [classic article]

When you’re headed to some really enviable global destinations, you’ll often find yourself at New York’s JFK airport, Terminal 4, for a late-night flight. The stores stay open late, because jet-setters like to have things when they want them! At the L’Occitane store, of which Le Couvent des Minimes is a subsdiary, I love to get a little trial size product for moisturizing during my long flight. This company was inspired by a convent hundreds of years old and has wonderful hand creams. I was happy to be hosted to experience it!

Other than I can’t explain why “convent” in French has the grammatical “le” instead of “la”, here’s some information about the company:


Le Couvent des Minimes is named after a convent located in Mane, in the south of France.

To perpetuate the long tradition of simplicity, care and generosity that has been the tradition of the Mane Convent since its creation.

Tradition of Care: Our recipes are inspired by the food recipes that the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary used to prepare. We choose natural ingredients with time-proven benefits, perpetuating their tradition of healing.

Simplicity: We use simple, well-known ingredients, focusing on what is really necessary and excluding what is not. We don’t over-promise: our products are efficient and easy to understand and we make sure our product presentation is of simple and good quality.

Generosity: We give back 1% of our total sales to the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary’s association to support childhood and health education projects.

Built in 1613 in the village of Mane, in the South of France, the Convent of the Minims was turned into a hospice in 1862. In 1909, a community of Franciscan Missionaries of Mary moved in, inhabiting the convent for almost a century and opening its doors wide to the destitute. They took care of the hospice residents with boundless generosity, good cookery recipes and excellent ingredients that they grew at the convent.

Le Couvent des Minimes was created in 2004 to perpetuate this tradition of care, simplicity and generosity. Our skincare recipes combine generous textures with ingredients known for their beneficial properties. We give our recipes the same attention, the same love, the same smiles that the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary give to others, all over the world.

They currently accompany and support local populations in over 80 countries worldwide. To help them in their aid missions for children and healthcare, and pay tribute to their actions in the Convent, we give back 1% of our annual sales to their association. The first projects we are supporting are a kindergarten and a nursing college in the South of India.

Le Couvent des Minimes aims at being everyone’s daily partner, and proposes a complete range of natural skincare recipes

There’s a wide range of hand creams (and cuticle creams) with different qualities and scents; I tried a few, but not all of them. They’re available in sizes perfect for 3-1-1 carry-on travel bags. Morning hand cream has a light herbal-fruit scent, absorbs right away, non-greasy. It’s good for warmer weather hand needs. Here’s what they say about it:

Inspired by the morning sun awakening the fresh dew on the fruit trees of the Convent’s grounds, the Botanical Cologne of the Morning Moisturizing Hand Cream helps to moisturize hands.

Thanks to its Original Recipe combining Orange and Lemon with Basil and Cedar in a nourishing Shea Butter base, its light and non-sticky formula helps to soften and moisturize dry hands.

Who wouldn’t like some more love in their life? Recipe of Love Hand Cream has orange blossoms, wild roses, wild nasturtiums: classic flowers of love.

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