To call The Body Shop a mere skin and body care 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 The Planet." She somehow balanced principles and profit, partnering in global campaigns with UNICEF, Greenpeace, Amnesty International, and the United Nations, all while ultimately expanding her brand into 2,500 locations in over 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 eco-friendliness and social consciousness 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 an EU-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 screenprinted by hand. But all that isn't to say the company's production practices overshadow its final products. Skincare treatments such as the brand?s iconic body butters, facial products, and gift collections often appear in Allure, Marie Claire, Lucky, Seventeen and other national publications.
The friendly team at Metro Optics is dedicated to the ocular wellness of everyone who steps into their welcoming clinic. Here, doctors Reznicow and Tuttle inspect eyes to guard against health concerns and assess sight, employing advanced technology instead of asking patients to read letters from bowls of alphabet soup. Once they've determined a prescription, the practice's opticians craft lenses using their in-store lab. The specialists then outfit eyes with frames from a selection of over 1,000 styles, which includes brands such as Gucci, Armani, Rayban, D&G, Guess, and Prada. Should clients find themselves unable to choose a look, they are welcome to take home up to three pairs to test-wear before making their final decision. The staff also supplies patients with contact lenses, and can provide prescription sunglasses to shade eyes year round.
Situated in the shopping district on Robert Street in West St. Paul, Twin Cities Magic & Costume stocks a collection of tricks, makeup, and costumes that have enlivened parties, magic acts, and movies for the past 27 years. Knowledgeable professionals and industry insiders guide visitors through the forest of lifelike costumes and awe-inspiring light and fire effects, helping to create eerie costumes for Halloween parties or convincing getups for period plays and films. DVDs and instructional videos teach budding illusionists how to impress crowds with linking ring and coin tricks, and fog machines and strobe lights add a touch of Vegas glamour to magicians' sets. Twin Cities Magic & Costume puts its expertise to the test as the headquarters of the Zombie Pub Crawl, a festival of gore and horror brought to life with the selection of professional-grade makeup and more than 15,000 wigs.
Hudson Optical adorns oculars with a range of budget and high-end eyewear for men, women, and children. Visitors can choose from an extensive selection of brands, such as Kashiyama Japanese eyewear, Dolce & Gabbana, and Ice Cream French Eyewear, as they seek to pair elegant frames with eligible lenses like a Victorian matchmaker. Frames designed by Kennith Cole ($159), BCBG ($189), and Cole Haan ($199) comfortably perch on bridges of noses, while eye-opening bifocals range from the Crizal Avancé bifocals ($290) to the Varilux Progressive Transition lenses ($375). Hudson Optical can perform eye exams on-site but welcomes outside prescriptions as well. Groupon customers will also receive a complimentary deluxe case, cleaner kit, and portable fire hydrant to keep the spectacles spick-and-span.
For more than half a century, the opticians at Graf Optical have been helping to correct vision and combat ocular illness with health and wellness checkups and stylish eyewear. The center stocks frames from Kenneth Cole, Ralph Lauren, and Versace, many of which are eligible for upgrades such as anti-reflective coatings or impact-resistant, polycarbonate lenses. And for those who prefer to wear invisible frames, Acuvue Oasys also carries contact lenses and sometimes offers unsolicited advice about the importance of mime schools.