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.
Ed DeSouza needed hip surgery, but first, his doctor told him, he needed to lose 100 pounds. A restaurant manager who regularly sampled his kitchen's ribs and steaks, DeSouza at first scoffed at the idea, according to the LA Daily News. But once he started to read ingredient labels and incorporate healthy foods into his diet, he managed to lose the weight in only six months.
Surprised by his success, DeSouza felt inspired to retire and become a certified nutritionist. While exercising and volunteering at the YMCA, DeSouza met Jesse Russo, a nutritionist who also wanted to help people learn to make better food choices. Together they decided to open healthFULL foods Cafe to help make healthy fare and nutrition education more accessible to members of the community.
Each day, DeSouza makes breads with house-milled flour and steel-cut oatmeal from scratch without processed sugars or preservatives. Blenders whir softly in the background, mixing smoothies with fresh fruit, non-fat greek yogurt, and lactose-free milk. Whole-wheat pitas wrap ingredients such as oven-roasted turkey breast with housemade cranberry chutney. DeSouza fills the oven with vegan and gluten-free cookies and muffins packed with an organic blend of fibers high in omega threes and sixes. DeSouza and Russo also advance their healthy-eating agenda with healthy-cooking classes and events.
Featured in numerous television and online media, the Sassy City Chicks Fashion Bash showcases trendy apparel from more than 50 designers, as well as accessories from chic lines such as Jay Clay Jewelry, Divine Sole Boutique, and Frederick's of Hollywood. Style mavens descend on the event to sample cocktails and relax in an onsite spa lounge. Visitors also take advantage of discounts on handbags and accessories from locally based brands. At the end of the day, select attendees go home with eco-friendly, reusable tote bags, which are filled with coupons, certificates, and at least $30 worth of beauty products from brands such as Pureology and TanTowel, including lip balm, compact mirrors, and envy balm to apply directly to the eyes of coworkers jealous of your ensemble.
Earthly Body's collection of natural, vegan, and paraben-free skincare and bodycare products has caught the eye of an array of media outlets, such as Allure and Lucky magazines, with its hydrating hemp-oil bases and cruelty-free lineup. Candles melt into a candle pot with wax that can also be used as a warm massage oil, postcleansing moisturizer, or elbow cream for dry pet elephants. Earthly Body’s haircare line, Marrakesh, infuses each tendril-smoothing solution with Moroccan argan oil and three signature scents (original, High Tide, and Dreamsicle) to bolster frizz-free manes. Mineral-based makeups dust across facescapes without the harsh chemicals or pore-clogging guilt found in animal-tested products.
Winemakers Steve Lemley and Nate Hasper know that you can’t make interesting wines from uninteresting grapes. That’s why the creative duo behind Pulchella Winery actively sources all of the winery’s Paso Robles grapes from small vineyards that exhibit singular characteristics often overlooked by high-production wineries. These rare traits lend a depth of flavor complexity to the boutique wines that has resulted in a strong cult following.
Fermented either from single varietals or blends of grapes that have proven they play well with others, each small-batch vintage has a limited production of 100 cases or fewer. Visitors to the winery can sample these rare ferments in a dragonfly-themed tasting room managed by a certified sommelier and often frequented by the winemakers themselves.
In 1962, the Richards family began a surfing expedition, outfitting explorers of the Pacific waves under the banner of Val Surf. The shop has remained a family-owned haven of board-sports gear and apparel ever since, boasting bragging rights as the first-ever dealer of Quiksilver products and a partner with Burton Snowboards from its inception in 1977. Like beavers with master's degrees in woodworking, the staff?s passion is its profession, with surf-, snow-, and skate-enthusiast employees ready to match guests with proven brand-name gear from Volcom and Billabong or lesser-known offerings from up-and-comers such as Fourstar Clothing and RVCA.