Natural light spills through a large window in Inspire Yoga's practice space to warm and illuminate students as they balance on bare feet and gracefully sweep poses. These students work their way through the studio's four signature classes, which offer challenges for newcomers and experienced practitioners alike. Beginners often start with Spark, mastering the foundations of vinyasa flow with poses that can even challenge those already familiar with yoga. Renew's slow-flow hatha postures also lay the groundwork for further practice, letting students stretch away tension and boost flexibility.
Inspire Yoga's schedule also includes Empower and Inspire, two classes that showcase the movement-based vinyasa tradition. Empower builds upon the foundations learned in lower-level classes, equipping students to transition between intermediate and advanced poses. The studio's most advanced class, Inspire challenges even seasoned students, integrating breathing exercises, physically challenging poses, and mind-centering meditations into a single practice.
In addition to hosting classes seven days a week, Inspire Yoga also brings workshops and advanced training events to the community, hosts private small-group sessions, and offers life coaching.
The Lash Lounge's founder Anna Phillips—an advanced certified eyelash-extension trainer—once traveled the nation to impart the art of semipermanent eyelash application to scores of fellow lash artists. Now, at all of Lash Lounge's locations, such artists work to ensure that every guest returns to their day-to-day activities batting fuller, darker lashes. They meticulously apply each synthetic strand to a natural lash with medical-grade glue, imbuing peepers with a customized, natural look that can last up to two months with proper care. Applying lashes of varying lengths, thicknesses, and degrees of curl, they have earned the praise of publications including Allure magazine and Women's Wear Daily.
They also strive to eliminate lengthy daily makeup applications with permanent-makeup services. After a complimentary consultation, a staff of licensed aestheticians and permanent-makeup artists precisely applies permanent eyeliner, lip color, or third eyebrows. For those who prefer makeup that washes off, Anna has concocted her own line of mineral cosmetics, brushes, and primers.
Named Best Honey in 2008 by the Dallas Observer, Round Rock Honey's 100% natural local wildflower honey is harvested from more than 90 sites by owners Konrad and Elizabeth Bouffard and their crews of trained beekeepers. With precision, they remove the liquid gold from hives by centrifuge, ensuring that pollen, trace minerals, and complex sugars are never compromised during the honey harvest. They then pour the honey through a stainless-steel sieve to remove potential bee legs and wings, wax caps, and miniature tiaras before bottling it and selling it to specialty stores, farmer's market visitors, and online customers.
A similar procedure happens in other parts of the country at Round Rock's beekeeping schools. During classes, Konrad Bouffard and Beekeeping Academy teachers impart their beekeeping knowledge upon suited-up students while they extract honey from a live beehive. Along the way, novices learn about the finer points of raising bees and keeping them healthy, as well as bee handling and lullaby-buzzing.
Ben & Jerry's came from humble beginnings—in 1978, its eponymous founders served ice cream out of a renovated Burlington gas station, and delivered pints of their now-classic flavors to grocery stores out of the back of Ben's VW Squareback wagon. Today, its myriad shops dispense cups, cones, shakes, and smoothies brimming with a variety of quirky flavors, including Phish Food and Cherry Garcia, named for famous revolutionary Cherry Garcia. The duo is also famous for their social responsibility, which is evident in their community activism and in their use of fair-trade products, such as cage-free eggs and sustainable, growth-hormone-free dairy.
High-backed leather banquettes break up the smoked-salmon red expanse of Sushi Fugu's walls, which are gently illuminated by slender hanging lamps. Artwork peppers the walls, the abstract crimson swirls serving as a pleasant distraction from a meal, unlike an airplane copilot with uptight ideas about when it is appropriate to make a hoagie. Sleek wooden tables serve as a minimalist stage, where the food shines; platters showcase colorful sushi rolls and thin slices of super-white tuna and eel. Meanwhile, hot pan-Asian dishes emerge from the kitchen, where thai spices mingle with kebabs, thick udon noodles simmer in flavorful broths, and soy sauce dapples dumplings.
Each of Tangerine Salons' four locations operate under a charitable ethos and the nature-based tenants of Aveda. Aveda's environmentally conscious, naturally derived products infuse all of Tangerine's salon services. Seven tiers of hairstylists—ranging from Protégé I to Master III—handle the hairstyling duties by snipping, highlighting, and conditioning locks. At the Coppell and Cedar Hill locations, the staff dedicates space to an array of spa services, including massages, facial treatments, mani-pedis, and back facials that help eliminate crow's feet on people with eyes in the back of their heads.