Treatments We Love: 'The Inner Facial' at The Old Rectory
We have found the next 'superfacialist'. (No kidding.) And she's right on Jo's doorstep. (No kidding about that, either.)
Charlotte Connoley (above) has trained with Nichola Joss – whose A-list clientele and magic hands are pretty legendary. And boy, has she learned well at the hands of the master.
Jo had the signature treatment – The Inner Facial – at The Treatment Rooms, which are attached to an award-winning B&B in ever-so-fashionable-again Hastings, The Old Rectory. (Turns out it's 'inner' in more than one way, as you'll find out.) This is the incredibly effective treatment that's so sought-after by those-in-the-know – and Jo's slightly pinching herself it's now offered so close to her home (along with great manicures, and a wider menu of Decléor treatments).
Let's start with the place itself – because as we all know, the setting for a treatment literally sets the scene. The Old Rectory's owner and resident interior designer, Lionel Copley, has cleverly put together a great mix of antiques, and lined every room with stunning monochrome wallpaper. (It's great to lie on a couch and rather than stare at a blank ceiling, stare up at a super-cool wallpaper which recreates the look of Manhattan-esque vintage metal tiles). It's warm, pampering, a little quirky – and so, so stylish. (Not like any spa you'll ever have visited – and all the more fun for that.)
But a place is only as good as its therapists. And that's where The Old Rectory really scores. Charlotte still works in London, but lives nearby – on-hand when anyone wants to book her for this face-transforming experience.
And it really is. What we will say is: don't expect soft, soothing motions. This is a killer facial. At times, it's excruciating – but as we know, with facial massage it's often a case of no pain, no gain. We don't want light tapping. We want serious, deep massage that stimulates the production of collagen and fibroblasts, and re-contours the face.
And that's what happens. For an hour. No namby-pamby stuff, at any point: just serious, hands-on massage. It's all about lymphatic drainage, and sculpting, and re-shaping.
The 'finale' (and it is optional, though you'd be mad to skip it) is the real 'inner' bit – a massage inside the mouth (gloves are involved), which de-stresses the face. No question, it's a killer – but the results are there in the mirror: an amazing glow, a newly 'sharp' jawline, and (unlike most facials) the results become MORE evident over the next few days. If Jo had to hear one more person going, 'Gosh, you look well...!' (No, of course we always love to hear that. But it was quite repetitive!)
We're not usually ones to drop names, but word is that this is one of Meghan Markle's favourite facials – which at least gives us one thing in common. (And should ensure she's the most radiant bride EVER.)
It doesn't come as any surprise, meanwhile, to discover that the tall, Valkyrie-esque Charlotte was a former model – but she's savvily found a new career with a much longer shelf-life. Talent like this will always be in demand! (Not least by us.)
The B&B is a fabulous destination in its own right – but you don't have to be staying there to have a treatment. (Details are below.)
Yet another VERY good reason to head Hastings-wards. Your face will thank you for it...
The Treatment Rooms at The Old Rectory, Harold Road, Hastings, TN34 5ND/07827-811011