The knowledgeable employees at Nature’s Fresh Health Food Store guide customers toward heightened feelings of wellness by providing informed nutritional recommendations. Plant Fusion's easy-to-digest protein powder ($42.99 for a 2 lb. container) augments a vegetarian or vegan diet or a diet lacking in dandelion brains. Patrons can shed bodily toxins with a Genesis cleanse ($28.50) or unwanted pounds with a 40-day HCG diet kit ($94.95), obligingly packaged with a recipe booklet and tips. The compact grocery also carries a number of Nature’s Plus energy supplements, as well as gluten-free flours and diamond-free carrot cakes.
Wife-and-husband team Theresa and Deward Ray whip up fresh, inventive handheld daily cakes from scratch, and authentic, made-to-order savory crêpes. Cross cultural borders with the Caprese crêpe, or practice conversational French with the chicken cordon bleu, a broad plateau of chicken, ham, and swiss cheese topped with a mornay sauce and wrapped in a crêpe as tight as the bond between a rubber band and its ball. Sink sweet teeth into classic cupcake flavors like red velvet, salted caramel, vanilla, or chocolate, or test out daily rotating cupcake flavors such as white-chocolate almond cupcakes on Thursdays, Kahlua and crème cupcakes on Tuesdays, and maple bacon on Saturdays.
The hair expert behind Braided Barbie has been braiding strands since she was 9 years old. She practiced on family members before moving on to her own tresses—where she felt free to experiment with the latest trends. Today, she and her staff twist hair into exquisite styles and help smooth out cellulite with botanical-based body wraps.
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.
GNC's opulent aisles display a wide variety of vitamin and mineral and herbal supplements, as well as sports nutrition, diet, energy, bodycare, and other health products. The Mega Men Sport multivitamin ($19.99 for 90 caplets) supports muscle recovery and energy levels while aiding speedy male metabolisms without dangling steaks in front of their treadmills. Fuel feats of female strength with the Women's Ultra Mega Active multivitamin ($19.99 for 90 caplets), ideal for vigorous women. Two pounds of Pro Performance 100% whey protein ($35.99) distract taste buds with the flavor of chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry while smuggling 20 grams of high-quality protein into the body in each scoop. Promote healthy bones with a calcium supplement, such as coral calcium, sustainably harvested from the Okinawan Sea to provide a healthy 2-to-1 ratio of calcium and magnesium.