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Macron’s exorbitant make up bill and hairy chest snaps: ‘He knows exactly what he’s doing’

Marine Le Pen grills Macron over energy cuts during election debate

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Emmanuel Macron went face-to-face with presidential rival Marine Le Pen last night in the only debate before France goes to the polls again. The French will cast their vote in Sunday’s second-round run off to decide on their next president, with millions still undecided. The debate was immediately dominated by France’s spiralling cost of living crisis, something that Ms Le Pen has focused on heavily in her election campaign.

As the debate began, Ms Le Pen claimed 70 percent of the French population believed their standard of living had fallen since Mr Macron came to power five years ago.

With Sunday’s run-off, both candidates are pulling out all the stops in a bid to turn heads.

Mr Macron’s official photographer posted an Instagram carousel of his client’s campaign trip to Marseille on Sunday, which includes a picture of the incumbent lounging on a light brown sofa.

The French President is seen beaming in an unbuttoned shirt, revealing a carpet of thick, brown chest hair.

Unearthed accounts reveal Mr Macron is no stranger to keeping up his appearance, having spent a small fortune on makeup in the early stages of his presidency.

Le Point, a French weekly political magazine, revealed in August 2017 that Mr Macron had splurged €26,000 (the equivalent of £24,000 at the time) on makeup in his first three months in office.

The 39-year-old had settled two bills from a personal makeup artist called Natacha M, one for €10,000 and another for €16,000.

His makeup artist ensured he looked his best during his travels and ahead of press conferences.

An Elysée Palace spokesperson said in response: “We called in a contractor as a matter of urgency.”

An anonymous presidential aide told journalists at the time that future cosmetic bills would be “significantly reduced”.

The aide said: “The sum covers various services including press conferences and foreign trips where the person concerned has to travel with him.”

They added that while the bill was “high”, it was “less than his predecessors”.

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François Hollande, French President from 2012 until 2017, forked out a reported €30,000 on makeup, alongside a monthly €9,895 bill for a personal barber to cut and dry his hair, Le Monde reported in 2016.

The Elysée attempted to justify the expenditure by saying the hairdresser had to “get up early and fix the President’s hair every morning… and as many times during the day as necessary”.

Mr Macron’s apparent obsession with his appearance has turned heads across the world, as did images of him wearing a hoodie last month, much like those released by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Journalist Samantha Brick said this week that Macron revealing his chest hair might just sway some of the French electorate.

Writing in the Daily Mail, she described the photo as a “master stroke”.

She explained: “Did I zoom in on the image? Mon Dieu! Guilty as charged.

“‘Good Lord, have you seen the Macron pictures?’ I texted one of my French friends.

“‘I can’t stop looking — he’s got my vote!’ she replied.

“This was no off-guard snap as his campaigners would have us believe. Macron knew exactly what he was doing when he released that photo.”

Ms Brick added: “He needs the female vote, and the simple truth is that French women adore a hairy chest — and secretly many British ladies do, too.

“They don’t just find it masculine and sexy; they find it safe and reassuring — everything you want in a leader.”

Mr Macron is currently leading opinion polls with a margin varying between three and 13 percentage points, though last night’s debate is expected to play a huge role in which way millions cast their vote.

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