A facial with Jocelyn Petroni is never just a facial. It’s a spiritual experience. The diminutive darling of Sydney’s salon set, Jocelyn has magical hands and practices Buddhist meditation daily, a mindset that she manages to infuse into her facials (in a totally non-hippy-dippy way.) She’s also a dab-hand at doing hands – and is the official manicurist for Chanel in Australia, tending to both the talons and complexions of everyone from Delta Goodrem to Miranda Kerr. Her French-influenced Woollahra salon is a little oasis on buzzing Queen Street and, with its chic décor, is testament to her exacting sense of style and dedication to quality.
Whenever I walk up the wooden terrace staircase for my facial with Joss, I can feel the stress of the day receding into unimportance. I know this is my time. No interruptions – the phone goes off – and it’s so incredibly precious. Joss is an old friend, I’ve known her for over 10 years – when she did a beautiful facial on me at the top of a hair salon in Paddington, where she had a little room. I knew immediately that she was a beauty superstar in the making, and I wrote about her every chance I got.
Stepping into the reception room Joss hands me a coconut water and offers me a cup of tea (it’s all about hydration here). Joss, who has an eye for design, has furnished her space with a beautiful array of homewares and antiques that give the room a bespoke feeling – it’s French country fused with a quiet luxury. There’s a grand, marble fireplace and a coffee table piled with expertly curated coffee table books and magazines containing breathless mentions of Jocelyn along with French wicker storage baskets and a manicure table set with Phillip Starck ghost chairs.
In her facial room next door, a giant chandelier hangs over the treatment bed, which is contoured and covered in the finest linens, with an electric blanket that heats it to the perfect temperature before you climb in. There’s a second manicure table in here, positioned by the window, where you can watch the world go by as you have your fingers soaked and expertly buffed by Jocelyn or one of her incredibly talented 2IC’s.
Today is extra special as Joss has booked me in for her amazing facial and mani doubly whammy with Diandra. During this sublimely incredible experience both Joss and Diandra do a massage of your hands and face in tandem that is simply magic – and then you walk out with a flawless manicure. Apart from being beautifully relaxing it appeals to the time-poor multi-tasker in me.
An hour and a half goes by in a sort of suspended alternate reality bliss and I come-to groggily feeling as if I’ve been meditating for days. My nails are painted the most perfect Chanel shade of nude, and, as I examine my plump, beaming complexion, I’m ready to face the craziness of the day again. It really is the ultimate indulgence – but a necessary one, I’ve decided.