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Natural Alchemy in New York

Over the past couple years, I've discovered that there are many people interested in trying natural personal care products, who also find the search for these products inconvenient and time-consuming. These people (are you one?) generally continue to frequent the same department stores and uber-pharmacies...and I want to change this! For a while now, I've been visiting natural alchemy retailers in New York. Believe it or not, this concrete jungle has droves of healthier options for us, and for the environment. I'm sure there are even more than those on this list!

While each of these retailers might not carry ONLY natural products, a great majority of their products are free of the bad stuff (sulfates, parabens, pthalates, chemical fragrance, etc.). My goal is to help you find a retailer or salon that is convenient and within your price range. I've created a list, divided into three categories: Salon, Luxe, and Organic Grocer. If you usually shop for products at department stores or Sephora, try the Luxe list, and if you're more of a pharmacy or grocery store product shopper, try the final (grocer) list. If something is missing, please let me know. Hopefully in the future I'll be able to delve into further detail and coverage of these retailers, but for now, without further ado, I give you the New York Natural Alchemy List!!!

SALONS and SPAS

Erbe Spa
Soho; 196 Prince Street @ MacDougal
A highly knowledgeable and experienced staff performs the totally herbal and aromatherapeutic treatments with the Erbe line of products imported from Italy

Georgia
Nolita; 89A East Houston St, between Elizabeth & Bowery
Funky and unique beauty boutique and old-school hair salon that carries brands such as Duchess Marden and Butter London

Great Jones Spa
Noho; 29 Great Jones Street @ Lafayette
Salon, spa, water lounge and juice bar that uses and sells natural and biodynamic brands such as Jurlique, Dr. Alkaitis and Naturopathica, where you can relax in the "water lounge" before, after and between treatments

Ion Studio
Soho; 41 Wooster Street, between Broome and Grand
High design, eco-friendly hair salon that uses organic Davines products, hosts art openings, and styles for magazines and Fashion Week events

John Masters Organics
Soho; 77 Sullivan Street, between Spring & Broome
New York's only clean air salon that is home-y, peaceful, and where the owner, John Masters, can be found with his beautiful dog Maya on weekdays; exclusively uses John Masters Organics product

Sakura
Upper East Side & East Village; 1709 2nd Ave. @ 88th St. & 35 East 1st St. @ 2nd Ave.
Inexpensive yet relaxing natural nail salon and basic spa that uses all organic products, including Pangea Organics, EO Organics, and Priti Organics polish

Sweet Lily
Tribeca; 222 West Broadway @ White Street
Shabby chic, spacious and luxurious upscale nail salon and basic spa that uses and sells only organic products and 3-free polishes

Valley
Nolita; 198 Elizabeth Street, between Prince and Spring
Kitschy and fun nail salon and basic spa that uses and sells only holistic and vegan products, and is known for their waxing

LUXE RETAIL and CHEMISTS

ABC Carpet & Home
Union Square; 888 Broadway @ 19th Street
Beautiful upscale apothecary that carries highly researched, natural luxe lines such as Amala, Kahina and Hamadi, inside the entrance of the city's interior design mecca

Arcadia
Chelsea; 228 8th Avenue @ 22nd Street
Traditional natural brands such as Dr. Hauschka and Ahava sold inside this day spa and curiosity shop, which also carries candles, oils, greeting cards, and small gifts for nature lovers

Aedes de Venustas
West Village; 9 Christopher Street @ Greenwich Avenue
You're transported to another world and blown away by the scents in this teeny, gilt and mirrored shop that carries a few unique European brands such as Susanne Kaufmann and Found

Avignone
Greenwich Village; 281 6th Avenue, between Carmine & Downing
Very professional and friendly staff in this pharmacy that has been around since 1932 and carries traditional natural lines such as Dr.Hauschka and Ahava

Bigelow's
Greenwich Village; 414 Sixth Avenue @ West 9th Street
Old-school apothecary whose eponymous products are now owned by the Limited, but who've managed to stay cool, carrying many natural lines such as Clark's Botanicals and Weleda, but also many non-natural brands - so be sure to ask a salesperson!

Blue Mercury
Upper West Side; 2305 Broadway, between 83rd & 84th
One of the first of it's kind outside of NYC, the Upper West Side outlet of this Washington, DC-based high-end apothecary carries lines such as Caudalie and REN, which are thoroughly researched by the talented female CEO

Clyde's
Upper East Side; 926 Madison Ave., between 73rd & 74th
Feels like you've been transported to a foreign city, in this large upscale beauty retailer with a huge selection of high end products, many of which are European and some of which are great natural brands

Honey in the Rough
Lower East Side; 161 Rivington, between Suffolk & Clinton
Small apothecary inside of a very intimate downtown chic clothing boutique, which carries amazing lines such as SCO, Tracie Martyn and Lulu Organics

LAFCO
Soho; 285 Lafayette @ Jersey St.
The city's clubby-feeling upscale apothecary and exclusive dealer of Santa Maria Novella products, which are still handcrafted by monks in a Florentine church (have been so since the 1200's!)

New London
Chelsea; 246 8th Avenue, between 22nd & 23rd
Regular-looking neighborhood pharmacy until you take a closer look at the extremely extensive natural product lines from all over the world, such as Amazon Beauty, Kama Ayurveda, and Aesop, which will come by recommendation from the attentive and friendly staff

Space NK
Soho; 99 Greene Street, between Prince and Spring
Cult beauty apothecary from London that carries many European upscale natural lines like Nuxe, Elemental Herbology and Lubatti, and which also has locations in most metro area Bloomingdales stores and offers facials with any of the products carried in store

Willner
Murray Hill & FiDi; 100 Park Ave. South & 253 Broadway
Known for their extensive selection of vitamins and health books, this pharmacy focuses on nutrition and homeopathy, has a friendly and knowledgeable staff, and carries many of the organic grocer brands, such as Kiss My Face, Burt's Bees and Borlind

NATURAL GROCERS & GENERAL STORES

Most of these natural food markets carry the same reasonably-priced brands, such as Burt's Bees, Alba, Jason, Dr. Bronner's and Kiss My Face. Some carry higher end brands such as Weleda and Borlind, and almost all of the stores have at least one knowledgeable employee to assist you with the product lines. Integral Yoga, Live Live, and Organic Avenue will all help you lean toward the rawest skin care available (as they will with their food).

A Matter of Health
Upper East Side; 1478 1st Avenue @ 77th Street

Commodities Natural Market
East Village; 165 1st Ave, between 10th and 11th

Earthmatters
Lower East Side; 177 Ludlow, between Stanton & E. Houston

Elm Health
Upper East Side; 1695 1st Avenue @ 88th Street

Food for Health
Upper East Side; 1653 3rd Avenue @ 93rd Street
West Village; 470 Hudson Street, between Grove and Barrow

Health Nuts
Upper West Side; Midtown East; Upper East Side
2611 Broadway @ W. 99th; 835 2nd Avenue @ 45th St.; 1208 2nd Avenue @ E. 64th St.

Healthfully Organic
East Village, 98 East 4th Street, between 1st and 2nd Avenues

High Vibe Health and Healing
East Village; 138 East 3rd Street @ Avenue A

Integral Yoga Market
West Village, between 7th and 8th Avenues

Life Thyme
Greenwich Village; 410 6th Avenue, between West 9th and West 10th

Live Live
East Village; 261 East 10th Street, between 1st Avenue and Avenue A

Natural Frontier
Upper East Side & Gramercy; 1424 3rd Avenue @80th & 325 3rd Avenue @ 25th

Organic Avenue
Lower East Side & West Village; 116 Suffolk @ Rivington & 43 8th Avenue @ Horatio

Sustainable NYC
East Village; 139 Avenue A @ 9th Street

Westerley
Midtown West; 139 8th Avenue @ 54th Street

Whole Foods (Whole Body) and Trader Joe's Locations

 

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