I Went All the Way to Monte Carlo for Gwyneth Paltrow’s Favorite Pedicure
OK fine, I didn’t technically go all the way to Monaco just for a pedicure, but my stay at Hôtel Métropole Monte-Carlo was indeed inspired by the promise of experiencing one of Gwyneth Paltrow’s favorite foot treatments. So what makes this haute pedicure so special? Well for starters, it’s performed totally dry. The designer of this treatment, famed French pedicure-chiropodist Bastien Gonzalez, combines both wellbeing and beauty into his technique, giving it a more clinical feeling than most traditional pedicures. But, at the same time, it’s a totally luxurious and relaxing experience that I would highly recommend crossing off your beauty bucket list if you have the opportunity.
This treatment—and others designed exclusively by Gonzalez—are offered at the Pedi:Mani:Cure Studio located within Hôtel Métropole Monte-Carlo’s ESPA (soon to be redesigned and reopened as Spa Metropole by Givenchy). There are a number of private rooms reserved for these treatments, again unlike traditional services where multiple mani/pedis usually take place at the same time in an open environment.
Upon meeting my chiropodist, I entered one of the private rooms and was told to lie down on a reclining bed next to a tray of bizarre looking medical tools. It might sound like I’m describing a trip to the dentist’s office for a root canal—and not going to lie, that’s what it felt like at first—but as soon as she got to work, I immediately began to relax and enjoy the novelty of the experience.
As I mentioned, this pedicure is performed without any water, which gives your technician a more accurate look at your problem areas so they can tailor the treatment. I was told that though my skin was healthy and moisturized, my toenails were rather damaged from constantly coating them with polish. After 50 minutes of intense cutting, filing, multiple rounds of buffing, and a luxurious dry scrub followed by a 10-minute leg and foot massage, my feet were shiny and new with nary a callus in sight. In fact, I don’t think they’ve ever looked so good without nail polish. That’s right—when your pedicure is over, you’re sent on your merry way with totally bare toes. While I can’t promise I’ll go polish-free forever, this treatment did help me see my feet in a completely new light.
All of the products that were used during my treatment—including the incredibly decadent Black Diamond Scrub Mineral Foot Exfoliator—are part of Gonzalez's own line, Révérence de Bastien, created in collaboration between French cosmetology specialists using a formula of natural ingredients and essential oils. If you purchase anything from Révérence de Bastien, though, it should undoubtedly be the Natural Horn Buffer and Pearly Buffing Cream. Used together, these products will give you super shiny nails without polish, a secret passed down from Gonzalez’s grandmother—clearly, an exceptionally wise woman.