To call The Body Shop a mere skincare, body care, fragrance, and makeup store is to miss half of what makes it special. Late founder Dame Anita Roddick was a pioneer for ethical business practices; upon opening her first store in Brighton, England, in 1976, she developed company values such as Defend human rights and Protect our planet. She somehow balanced principles and profit, partnering in global campaigns with UNICEF, Greenpeace, Amnesty International, and the United Nations, all while expanding her brand into 2,500 locations in 60 international markets. After her death in 2007, then-British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said, ?She campaigned for green issues for many years before it became fashionable to do so and inspired millions to the cause by bringing sustainable products to a mass market. . . . She was an inspiration.?
Indeed, the Body Shop exhibits an ecofriendliness that's hard to come by in a company of its size. Its products have been fair-trade since 1987, and its Against Animal Testing movement led to a UK-wide ban of animal testing of cosmetics. The products are made from ingredients harvested from around the world: shea butter from Ghana goes into body scrubs and butters, and Indian artisans craft wooden massagers and tote bags that are screen printed by hand. But all that isn't to say the company's production practices overshadow its final products. Skincare treatments, such as the Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil, often appear in Flare, Chatelaine, Canadian Living, and other national publications.
BeautyRex Spa & Healthcare Centre's technicians rely on a combination of scientific precision and aesthetic intuition as they help clients dramatically reinvent their appearances. In addition to performing an array of toning and hydrating facials and body treatments that incorporate everything from cherry blossoms to melted shea butter, the staff also utilizes an arsenal of modern med spa technology. A cosmetic laser system fades unwanted tattoo inks, radio-frequency technology helps contour the skin around limbs and waistlines, and the centre's eLight system uses both intense pulsed light and bipolar radio-frequency energy to remove unsightly stubble and minimize the appearance of blemishes such as age spots and acne scars.
The staff at Union Medical Care specializes in pain relief. Whether through chiropractic, physiotherapy, or massage services, the staff is committed to making clients feel at ease. The center also boasts advanced spinal-decompression treatments, as well as a selection of orthopedic shoes.
“Beauty before comfort” is too often used in the fashion industry. Walk’n Comfort’s staff foot care professionals don’t see a reason to trade one for the other. For more than 20 years, the footwear specialists have designed and sold fashionable shoes that not only bear the details and aesthetics of chic clothing, but also contain orthotic soles and design features that provide unparalleled comfort. The store houses three distinct shopping areas—one for the sale of footwear of all types, a clinic staffed by foot specialists, and an on-site lab for modifying footwear or orthotics. This convenience saves customers the hassle of buying shoes from one store and having to track down the nearest elf cobbler.
Updating its stock of designer shades every week, Eyewear Sunglasses helps protect eyeballs from UV rays and glare by shielding them in style. Aviator and wayfarer frames from Ray-Ban hint at a classically cool sensibility, while wraparound frames from Porsche say, “I've probably been to Europe.” Customers can drop into the brick-and-mortar shop to peruse the eyewear selection or arrange for at-home delivery of prescription and non-prescription glasses.
Pretty Organic Cosmetics nature-nurtures skin with a line of organic, biodegradable, and sustainable products, made without the use of harsh chemicals or animal testing. Heal your head's hide with an item from Pretty's face-care collection, made with plant and herbal extracts. The cedar soap ($8) refreshes skin with a woodsy scent reminiscent of days spent as a mountaintop hermit, and the triple-rose facial tonic ($16) brings misty hydration and rejuvenation to skin that's been schoolyard-bullied by the sun. Pretty's body-care products, crafted from pure essential oils and 100 per cent botanical ingredients, deliver similar dermal decadence. Sheath your skin in the silky serenity of the Flower Goddess soap ($6), infused with rose petals, jasmine flowers, lavender, puppy kisses, and sweet magnolia, or spa up your backyard wading pool with the purifying blend of the sweet cocoa-and-mint mineral bath salt ($12). Other Pretty products include hand butters ($9), facial serums ($39 for a 43 mL vial), and a day-cream moisturizer ($24).