Natural Beauty Guide: Charlotte, NC

Since I launched Indigo+Canary in 2011, I’ve planned to share natural beauty guides to a few of my favorite cities—and I’m finally ready to make it happen! What better place to start than my current hometown, the lovely city of Charlotte? Read on for my guide to living and shopping natural in the city.

Charlotte has been all over TV in the past few years, from news coverage of the 2012 Democratic National Convention, to the Emmy-winning show Homeland (which is filmed here), to reality shows including American Idol and The Bachelorette. It’s a great little city, and I think a lot of Charlotteans have enjoyed seeing it in the spotlight. (It’s also fun to have my friends texting me when they see Claire Danes at yoga or spot Mandy Patinkin on the streets uptown.)

A 1920s streetcar suburb about a mile from uptown (we call Charlotte’s downtown “uptown”…it’s a long story), Plaza Midwood is an eclectic neighborhood full of tree-lined streets, cozy bungalows, and some great shopping. Here, you’ll find vegan boutique Eco-Licious, which is a great place to seek out natural beauty products. A few streets away, eco-friendly shop The Greener Apple is nestled into a nook at the front of Book Buyers, the neighborhood’s used bookstore. If you’re a fan of vintage clothing, don’t miss Hong Kong Vintage, which is packed wall-to-wall with pretty vintage goodies. When you’ve worked up an appetite, stop in at Fern, the neighborhood’s vegetarian restaurant, for lunch or dinner. Yum.

South End is another great destination for natural beauty-seekers. Tucked into an old mill building, Atherton Market is a local farmers market that frequently has several booths offering locally-made cosmetics. Next door at Luna’s Living Kitchen, you can pick up juice or sit down for a raw, vegan meal. I love shopping for organic baby gifts, cosmetics, clothes, and other fun things at Boulevard at South End. And if you need a pick-me-up, head to Common Market for a locally-roasted coffee, vegan cupcake, or sandwich from their in-house deli. (Their original location is in Plaza Midwood, but I’m a regular at the South End spot.) And just down the road a little ways is Healthy Home Market, where I like to stock up on cosmetics and ingredients for my beauty DIY adventures.

There are many other places across the city to seek out natural products:

Last year Charlotte finally got a Whole Foods store, and it’s gorgeous.

The Spa & Wellness Center at the Ritz-Carlton Charlotte uses lots of natural products in its treatments—including honey from its rooftop beehives.

Natural grocer Earth Fare is based in Asheville, but there are several locations in the Charlotte area—the SouthPark store is my go-to destination.

Berrybrook Farm is a natural food pantry in Dilworth that offers plenty of natural and organic cosmetics—plus prepared foods, supplements, and a juice bar with sandwiches and salads. (You really can’t miss it; the building looks like a little log cabin.)

Do you have any favorite places to shop for natural cosmetics in Charlotte? Leave them in the comments, or add them to this Google map! (Interested in writing a natural beauty guide to your city? Email me.—Aleigh

(Top image via jacreative cc; Plaza Midwood image via Historic Plaza Midwood; South End image via JulkaG)

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