Taking their name from the 18% chromium and 8% nickel that transform regular steel into stainless steel, the staff of 18|8 Fine Men's Salons master grooming services to transform their clients into chiseled gentlemen. A greeter waits at the salon entrance with a complimentary beverage for each client and guides him to his stylist's booth or to a private or semiprivate treatment area for facials, massage, and other grooming sessions. Stylists carefully cut and color the hair of their clients, finishing Executive cuts and styles with five-minute shoulder massages and Bay Rum hot towels.
Technicians groom hands with MANicures and faces with straight-edge blade shaves and hot lather eos moisturizing shave cream. Guests can relax during 20-minute therapeutic massages to finish their visit and ease any tension built up in hands and forearms by excessive whittling.
New York Hardware's knowledgeable staff outfits builders and tinkers with an ample array of new and used decorative hardware, door and cabinet hardware, and vintage hardware. Soft lights reflect off the polished surfaces of cabinet knobs ($4–$125), distracting eyes as they trace the simple geometric designs on other bits of door hardware ($50–$4,000). Switch-plate covers ($20–$200) arm light switches with handsome suits of brushed metal, and heater vents and registers ($100–$5,000) dress up interior climate-control shafts in stylish new duds.
Family patriarch Nordy Rockler opened the doors of his first store in 1954 to supply his fellow craftsmen with knowledge, friendly advice, and a large selection of tools for at-home woodworking projects. Now, the chain of retail outlets brims with more than 20,000 tools and specialized woodworking equipment. Next to a steely rainbow of hinges, casters, and screws, a supply of lumber and exotic hardwoods provides planks for building tree houses or just leaving around as a warning to uncooperative trees. The tenor buzz of power tools operated by newly knowledgeable guests drifts from educational sessions on operating equipment and woodworking.
Lawn Doctor's roots lead back to the mid-1960s, when friends Bob Magda and Tony Giordano took on the endeavor of reviving uncared-for lawns in their hometown of Matawan, New Jersey. Their local business has since blossomed into a national franchise with more than 500 locations across the United States, each adhering to the mission of enhancing lawns' allure with time-tested techniques, dedicated customer service, and dabs of foundation makeup.Before Lawn Doctor's assiduous staffers unleash expertise on swards, they arrive at the client's home for a complimentary consultation to gauge each lawn's specific needs. Grass gurus can thicken turf with their patented Turf Tamer power seeder and foster healthy growth for grass, trees, and shrubs with fertilizer. Uninvited lawn assailants—such as crickets, ants, and grazing neighbors—shudder at the sight of Lawn Doctor's pest-control experts. The company also helps to preserve Mother Nature's receding hairline with organic lawn treatments and natural, eco-friendly products.
Tinted windows grant cars an air of mystery generally reserved for movie stars or spies. The window experts of Astro Eclipse can give any car this mystique with a spectrum of shades of window tinting. Owner Jim Collins has tested more than 50 different tints over the course of his 30-plus-year career, and uses only his hand-picked favorites. Besides boosting privacy, the darkened windows help filter out up to 99% of harmful UV rays.
Juicy tidbits of chocolate-dunked fruit arrive on the doorsteps of family and friends, done up in colorful bouquets and candy boxes by the skilled fruit arrangers at Edible Arrangements' more than 1,100 franchises worldwide. The company's in-house chocolatiers drizzle albion strawberries and daisy pineapples in a trio of chocolate flavors. Once properly chocolated, the workers organize the preservative-free sweets into lush arrangements that resemble flowers in bloom. Customers can choose to plop their bouquets in a variety of vessels, including vases, mugs, and sports- or holiday-themed containers that add a personal touch to the edible gifts. Alternatively, customers can opt to adorn gifts with the cheery, red lids of candy boxes, nestling 12 chocolate-dipped morsels inside to build anticipation and determine if loved ones have x-ray vision as they guess whether fruit will come dusted in shredded coconut or drizzled in white chocolate.