Garra rufa fish pedicures seem to have become the UK spa fad of 2011. It seems that every empty shop front is being transformed with banks of tanks and flippy fish clustered around each willing pair of tootsies.
This Easter I decided it was high time I took the plunge and took my best beloved friend along to Asase Spa in Brighton to see if these fish pedicures are all they're cracked up to be.
Behind the frosted glass was a cool, classy interior with a hushed atmosphere and the obligatory "spa music"; fragmented only momentarily by the shrill shriek of a nervous patron.
We were greeted warmly, and I was pleased to immediately be handed a consultation form to fill in. Infectious diseases we did not have, nor did we suffer from any of the ailments that would have rendered us unsuitable for the procedure.
A basic 30-minute fish pedi will set you back £25, and for that kind of money you can't expect many added extras. No foot massage, but a brief blast with a foot shower and the donning of some delightful disposable slippers, and it was time for the fish!
My word! I can honestly say I have never experienced a sensation like it! Akin perhaps to a ferociously bubbling foot spa, the almost tingly sensation was strange, and both my dear companion and I found we were loathed to look down into the tanks for the first few minutes.
Once accustomed, it really was very pleasant, and more than a little entrancing to watch these little critters dart between your toes. When we weren't staring transfixed at the fish, this was a lovely opportunity to chat and relax – a rare moment in our hectic lives!
The results? In all honesty we were a little despondent that our 30-minute nibble hadn't left our feet perfectly smooth; but we had to manage our expectations. Six months of wellington boots and hefty socks had done little to help our poor tootsies, and the soles of our feet did feel much smoother; even if we didn't notice much change to our hard heels. We concluded that a series of treatments could probably make a real difference.
How was your garra rufa experience? Tell us all about it and the best story will feature here at Behind the Scenes with the Good Spa Spies! Email us now on [email protected].
25th March 2014
Minimalist lines; organic products; facial massage; tranquillity; interesting people-watching.
Discarded towels on loungers; steam rooms that aren't steamy; mobile phones.
Behind the scenes