We’ve all had a pedicure, whether it’s at home or at a beauty spa, this common treatment is all about pampering your feet and keeping them looking fit for public viewing. I play a lot of netball and if it wasn’t for regular pedicures to sort my toes and feet out I’m not quite sure I would be brave enough to wear strappy sandals or bare my feet to the world. But today I’m asking you to forget everything you know about pedicures because I’ve found the very best pedicure in Cape Town … maybe even the world … and it’s waterless! That’s right, this fabulous pedicure designed by world famous French podiatrist, Bastien Gonzalez doesn’t involve any water and is all about focusing on the health of your feet and nails. Bastien refers to the treatment as a ‘true pedicure’ and I’ve got to agree! Here’s why everyone needs to splash out and experience this unique treatment at least once in their lives.

The Bastien Gonzalez Pedicure is by far my favourite treatment at the One&Only Cape Town spa – I’ve visited the spa previously and while a trip to this spa is absolutely incredible it’s the mani-pedi room that gets me most excited. The spa at the One&Only Cape Town is the only spa in Africa offering this treatment and there’s no doubt that it is something oh-so-special. Bastien Gonzalez is internationally famous for his unique approach to foot treatments as well as manicures. The treatment leaves your nails naturally shiny, even more than it would with a coat of nail varnish and eliminates any nail problems or signs of skin rigidity that could lead to corns, calluses or other painful skin thickening.

One&Only Cape Town Bastien Manicure

The Bastien Gonzalez pedi process.

Every treatment starts with a fresh, sterilised and sealed pack of tools and instruments. This is opened in front of you, so you know it is one hundred percent clean. As I said, the unique treatment uses no water at all and it all starts with a reconditioning of the nails and a nail treatment to prep the nails and adds moisture to nail bed. This is because your nails absorb the water like a sponge and the water often works to dry the nail out and you want the opposite! A healthy nail is a hydrated nail and this treatment helps to put moisture back into often hydrated feet and nails. From there nails are gently buffed and a small blade is used to remove dead skin from the feet, not the cuticles! Bastien believes that the cuticles are integral to nail health and doesn’t believe in cutting them or pushing them back but rather aims to treat the cuticle and bring it back to optimum health. Even the skin removal from the feet is gentle and there’s no rough buffing like at other spots. After the dead skin is removed the feet are gently polished and buffed to leave the skin silky smooth.

Once your feet are looking great again you’re treated to a wonderful foot massage that focuses on promoting muscular flexibility, joint mobility, blood circulation and skin elasticity. And, that’s it! Bastien believes in leaving the natural nail shiny and healthy – no polish needed. You might think it’s a little odd but you’ve never seen your nails quite this beautiful so chances are you won’t even miss the polish. Of course, you can ask for nail polish to be added to the treatment at an extra cost. Another plus is that a Bastien Gonzalez pedicure is completely pain-free. We’ve all experienced the pain when nail therapists cut and push back cuticles – heck I’ve even left a beauty salon bleeding before! With this treatment there is no cuticle cutting and the treatment is super relaxing.

Bastien Gonzalez pedicureDuring the treatment, the client is also given loads of tips on how to best care for their feet and nails at home. Some tips that stood out for me were to ensure that you remove nail polish every 3 days. This is because your nails are porous and the varnish will begin to discolour and damage the nails if left on for too long. Bastien also recommends that you massage the fatty tissue of the feet often to soothe and treat after a long day on your feet (think of it as fluffing your pillows). In terms of shape, Bastien recommends that clients cut the nails square and buff the corners for optimum nail health.

The WomenStuff team got the chance to experience the royal treatment from Bastien himself and while the mani-pedi king isn’t based at One&Only Cape Town full time you can tell that the full-time team at the One&Only Cape Town have been well trained by the man himself. Bastien has a passion for educating people and sharing his knowledge and it’s clear that the ladies in the One&Only Cape Town spa have soaked it all up!

You can visit the spa at any time to experience this unique treatment! If you want to go for a mani-pedi experience then Bastien’s Pedi:Mani:Cure Duo (60 minutes) will usually set you back about R1395. Find out more about this treatment here and for our full review on the One&Only Cape Town spa click here