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Best of Atlanta 2017 Consumer Culture

Consumer Critics Cocoa Main Large


Consumer Culture

When examining Atlanta’s retail and shopping arenas, it seems as if a war has been waging between big-box-style chain stores and small indie shops for, like, forever. And over the past decade, with the spread of large mixed-use developments throughout the metro area, it appeared that the big-box guys were winning that war. That is, until recent years, when business folk seemingly doubled-down on their desire to supply local communities with products made and sold closer to home — and shoppers responded in kind by voting with their cash.

Now, this ongoing war has been somewhat replaced by a stalemate, with consumers and creators realizing stores both big and small play a role in helping people live better lives. And in the Consumer Culture section of this year’s Best of Atlanta, CL gives props to a variety of ATL-based retailers — from multimillion-dollar online brands and corporate-owned entertainment venues to pop-up boutiques and tiny family-run spots. Our goal is to point you toward exemplary businesses in your own backyard, Atlantans worth giving your cash to and spaces deserving of your time. Ultimately, by working together and supporting the full range of entrepreneurs and businesses, we only serve to make a richer and more vibrant city.

Now get to reading — and then, maybe, to dropping some dollars.

— Carlton Hargro


Featured


Best store for made-in-Atlanta goods BOA Award Winner

Coco + Mischa
Small but mighty should be the motto for this Decatur boutique, which opened last year. Products from more than 20 Atlanta artists and designers have found a home inside COCO + MISCHA, which sports a boho-industrial feel with its concrete ceiling and vintage wood furniture for displaying goods. The storemore...

Small but mighty should be the motto for this Decatur boutique, which opened last year. Products from more than 20 Atlanta artists and designers have found a home inside COCO + MISCHA, which sports a boho-industrial feel with its concrete ceiling and vintage wood furniture for displaying goods. The store is especially focused on propelling small makers with sustainable practices; among the local names you can expect are Fossil & Hide (metal jewelry inspired by rock ’n’ roll), Paper Raven Co. (illustration-inspired stationery), and Maum Goods Company (bath and body goods made from essential oils). 245 E. Trinity Place, Suite 1212, Decatur. 470-875-5717. www.cocoandmischa.com

photo by: Lindsey Max

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Best all-killer-and-no-filler used record store BOA Award Winner

Ella Guru Record Shop
ELLA GURU RECORD SHOP doesn’t have the biggest selection of used LPs in town, but it certainly has the best records you’ll find anywhere outside of eBay. Tucked away in a quiet LaVista Road strip mall in unincorporated DeKalb County’s Leafmore Creek Park, owner Don Radcliffe has culled togethermore...
ELLA GURU RECORD SHOP doesn’t have the biggest selection of used LPs in town, but it certainly has the best records you’ll find anywhere outside of eBay. Tucked away in a quiet LaVista Road strip mall in unincorporated DeKalb County’s Leafmore Creek Park, owner Don Radcliffe has culled together one of the most meticulously curated selections the metro area has ever seen. From rare Marion Brown and Wadada Leo Smith compilations to Cecil Taylor’s first record on the Candid label, the jazz records alone are the stuff of dreams. But Radcliffe also keeps the shelves stocked with an ever-shifting supply of no-nonsense rock ’n’ roll, power pop, R&B and indie must-haves from the ’60s through the ’80s and even some ’90s gems. Whether you’re looking to cop a good record by anyone from Dire Straits to Dwight Twilley, Sonic Youth to Nurse With Wound, there’s something in those racks you’ve been looking to scoop up for years. Know your budget, though. The records are fairly priced, the people behind the counter know what you’re looking for, even if you don’t, and there’s enough high-quality merchandise in the crates to break the bank. 2747 LaVista Road, Decatur. 404-883-2413. www.facebook.com/EllaGuruRecordStore. less...

Best salon for one-of-a-kind nail art BOA Award Winner

Treat Your Nails
There’s no shortage of salons that’ll adorn your nails with foils, chrome powder, gel polishes in every shade of the rainbow, and more festive embellishments (like studs and fur), but TREAT YOUR NAILS wins the creativity-meets-cost matrix. At this Buford Highway outpost, customers can choose frommore...

There’s no shortage of salons that’ll adorn your nails with foils, chrome powder, gel polishes in every shade of the rainbow, and more festive embellishments (like studs and fur), but TREAT YOUR NAILS wins the creativity-meets-cost matrix. At this Buford Highway outpost, customers can choose from binders upon binders of floral, geometric and galaxy-inspired patterns — or come with their own designs for the manicurist to replicate. Basic manicures start at just $14, while a gel manicure runs you $30. From there you’ll pay extra based on how complex your nail art wishes might be. Foils, for example, start at $5 a pair, but the price drops per unit if you want more. The last time we visited, we walked out with a custom design with regular polish for $25 — or about the same price you’d pay for a plain manicure at more high-end spots. 5938 Buford Highway N.E., Suite 106, Doraville. 770-458-1756. www.treatyournailsatl.com.

photo by: Joeff Davis

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Best makeup store BOA Award Winner

Those looking for over-the-counter mainstays or the newest lip kit from a Kardashian sister need not visit VICTORIA COSMETICS. This unassuming store, tucked in the middle of a strip mall, is a haven for cheap and delightfully weird beauty goods, like snail gel or a sake yeast mask, most of which costsmore...

Those looking for over-the-counter mainstays or the newest lip kit from a Kardashian sister need not visit VICTORIA COSMETICS. This unassuming store, tucked in the middle of a strip mall, is a haven for cheap and delightfully weird beauty goods, like snail gel or a sake yeast mask, most of which costs less than $10. Some of the makeup seems to be geared toward Asian shoppers — like double eyelid tape or whitening creams and washes — but anyone with an appreciation for quirky beauty products will find something to like in this shop. 5150 Buford Highway, Doraville. 770-457-1413.

photo by: Lindsey Max

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Best locally based online fashion retailer BOA Award Winner

Zuvaa
Kelechi Anyadiegwu started her online retail shop, ZUVAA, in 2014 after finding it was often difficult to get her hands on African-inspired clothing and accessories. Fast-forward three years later, and consumer appetite for designs from the Motherland has only increased, fueling the growth of Anyadiegwu’smore...
Kelechi Anyadiegwu started her online retail shop, ZUVAA, in 2014 after finding it was often difficult to get her hands on African-inspired clothing and accessories. Fast-forward three years later, and consumer appetite for designs from the Motherland has only increased, fueling the growth of Anyadiegwu’s company — which is currently based in Atlanta — into a multimillion-dollar venture. Folks interested in snagging pattern-drenched headwraps, dresses, jackets and other gear from Zuvaa can purchase items from its website or from the series of traveling pop-up shops it mounts at locales around the U.S. (including the ATL). www.zuvaa.com. less...

Best place to buy a rock BOA Award Winner

CRYSTAL BLUE’s cosmic rays radiate from the heart of Little Five Points. There you can get all the stones you need for worship, for healing or just to savor the Earth’s beauty. With a huge amount of inventory in the 75 cent-$6 range, Crystal Blue is a great place to purchase meaningful, soul-nourishingmore...

CRYSTAL BLUE’s cosmic rays radiate from the heart of Little Five Points. There you can get all the stones you need for worship, for healing or just to savor the Earth’s beauty. With a huge amount of inventory in the 75 cent-$6 range, Crystal Blue is a great place to purchase meaningful, soul-nourishing gifts at affordable prices. Popular items include amethyst, rose quartz, citrine and selenite, and products on display feature a karmic description of their healing properties. Other items at Crystal Blue include chimes, gongs, sage ($1 an inch) and Tibetan singing bowls (starting at $40). Opened in 1985 in the same storefront it currently occupies, Crystal Blue is onto the third generation of the founding family working in the store; now that’s good karma. 1168 Euclid Ave. N.E. 404-522-4605. www.facebook.com/crystalblue1168.

photo by: Joeff Davis

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Best spot for bespoke suits (and bourbon) BOA Award Winner

Just a heads up: SID MASHBURN isn’t the place you’re going to shop for an everyday suit. No, the Westside retailer is the place you go for the suit you’ll own for a lifetime — or the better part of it, since they start at $1,500. What’s more impressive than the quality and timelessness of themore...

Just a heads up: SID MASHBURN isn’t the place you’re going to shop for an everyday suit. No, the Westside retailer is the place you go for the suit you’ll own for a lifetime — or the better part of it, since they start at $1,500. What’s more impressive than the quality and timelessness of the threads is the peak service customers can expect when they walk in. That even includes a liquor cabinet so shoppers can sip bourbon (or other spirit of their choice) while shopping. 1198 Howell Mill Road. 404-350-7135. www.sidmashburn.com.

photo by: Eric Cash

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Best yoga instructor BOA Award Winner

Rutu Chaudhari
For too many people, yoga is seen as affluent white women wearing expensive pants indulging in pain-inducing poses. RUTU CHAUDHARI, however, is on a mission to change that perception. Through her All Life is Yoga studio, Chaudhari works to return the practice its self-referential roots by embracing mindfulnessmore...

For too many people, yoga is seen as affluent white women wearing expensive pants indulging in pain-inducing poses. RUTU CHAUDHARI, however, is on a mission to change that perception. Through her All Life is Yoga studio, Chaudhari works to return the practice its self-referential roots by embracing mindfulness over athleticism. And by focusing on training a new generation of instructors via her nonprofit organization the Dharma Project — i.e., people color, folks from the LGBTQ community, of all shapes and sizes — she further challenges exclusionary notions and moves forward her philosophy that yoga is a way of life, not a luxury. 27 Waddell St., Suite D. 404-491-9027. www.alllifeisyoga.com.

photo by: Joeff Davis/ CL File

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Best bookstore BOA Award Winner

Against all odds, A CAPPELLA BOOKS has persevered the winds of change that Amazon and the internet hath wrought upon the land. Since 1989, owner Frank Reiss has maintained the small and seditious bookstore by keeping close ties with the community. From the folks behind the counter to the compelling titlesmore...
Against all odds, A CAPPELLA BOOKS has persevered the winds of change that Amazon and the internet hath wrought upon the land. Since 1989, owner Frank Reiss has maintained the small and seditious bookstore by keeping close ties with the community. From the folks behind the counter to the compelling titles that line the shelves, A Cappella is, as the website boasts, “the smartest bookstore in town.” It’s that word quality that keeps the operation moving in strides, as the small but well-stocked Inman Park shop doesn’t offer a whole lot of elbow room while negotiating the aisles. But when dust jackets boasting tales about the life and times of jazz provocateur Sun Ra, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, the myriad problems defining America’s sordid politics, and loads of top-shelf fiction practically jumping into your grasp, it’s impossible to walk out empty-handed. When everyone from local and up-and-coming touring authors to David Sedaris needs someone to sell a whole bunch of their books at their signing events, A Cappella is on speed dial. The shop is woven into the fiber of city’s literary culture, and one of few remaining, truly independent institutions keeping intown Atlanta well-read. 208 Haralson Ave. N.E. 404-681-5128. www.acappellabooks.com. less...

Best skin and hair care products BOA Award Winner

Yamerra
When artist/artisan Maryam Moma relocated from New York to Atlanta, she brought YAMERRA, her growing line of hair and skin care products, with her — and boy are we glad she did. Her proximity gives folks the chance to get their hands on her fragrant shea butter-based soaps (in flavors like lemon grass,more...
When artist/artisan Maryam Moma relocated from New York to Atlanta, she brought YAMERRA, her growing line of hair and skin care products, with her — and boy are we glad she did. Her proximity gives folks the chance to get their hands on her fragrant shea butter-based soaps (in flavors like lemon grass, honey vanilla and tangerine grapefruit, among many others), hair and body oils, moisturizers and more at pop-up shops and markets all over town — not just on her website, where she sells her wares to shoppers all over the world. Yamerra products are advertised as being made from “traceable natural and organic ingredients,” and you can feel that sentiment when you use the gentle-to-the-touch items for yourself. And, on top of that, it’s all sold at prices that are gentle to your wallet, as well. www.yamerra.com. less...

Best place to shop and do some good BOA Award Winner

Bigmouthben Convenience Store
Benjamin “Bigmouthben” Graham battled drug addiction, mental illness and homelessness for almost two decades before getting his life back on track. Once he did, Graham dedicated himself to his art (a style of rap known as “hope-hop”) and, with the help of his wife Tanya Graham, opened the BIGMOUTHBENmore...
Benjamin “Bigmouthben” Graham battled drug addiction, mental illness and homelessness for almost two decades before getting his life back on track. Once he did, Graham dedicated himself to his art (a style of rap known as “hope-hop”) and, with the help of his wife Tanya Graham, opened the BIGMOUTHBEN CONVENIENCE STORE on Auburn Avenue. The shop, located three blocks from where he used to sleep under a bridge, not only sells groceries and souvenirs but also serves as a resource for Atlantans in need, providing free water, clothes and a helping hand. So by shopping with the Grahams, you not only support a worthy local business — you help support the community at large. 370 Auburn Ave., Suite A. 404-331-3973. www.bigmouthbenstores.com. less...

Best way to catch blockbusters at the multiplex BOA Award Winner

Regal Atlantic Station Stadium 18
If you’re a regular moviegoer in Atlanta, you undoubtedly know there are plenty of swanky options available when it comes to where and how you watch films — from theaters with gigantic plush seats to spots with fancy food and more. But the best VIP viewing in town can be found at REGAL ATLANTIC STATIONmore...
If you’re a regular moviegoer in Atlanta, you undoubtedly know there are plenty of swanky options available when it comes to where and how you watch films — from theaters with gigantic plush seats to spots with fancy food and more. But the best VIP viewing in town can be found at REGAL ATLANTIC STATION STADIUM 18. Sure, Atlantic Station can be a bit of a tourist trap, but tucked in the back of its busy multiplex is a surprisingly chill cinematic retreat, complete with adult beverages, private bathrooms, super-comfortable screening rooms with tons of room and more. Plus: It’s a 21-plus zone, so you don’t have to worry about rubbing shoulders with any of those pesky tweens. 261 19th St. N.W., Suite 1250. 404-347-9894. www.atlanticstation.com/movies. less...

Best store for antiques and estate-sale gems BOA Award Winner

David Kowalski is a master at curating old and new at his store, BRICK + MORTAR, which began as a pop-up at Paris on Ponce before becoming a full-blown shop at Westside Provisions District. Inside, blouses by local designers like Megan Huntz sit alongside home décor items, such as the boutique’s eponymousmore...

David Kowalski is a master at curating old and new at his store, BRICK + MORTAR, which began as a pop-up at Paris on Ponce before becoming a full-blown shop at Westside Provisions District. Inside, blouses by local designers like Megan Huntz sit alongside home décor items, such as the boutique’s eponymous line of candles. But the antiques and estate-sale finds are what truly shine — and hearing Kowalski’s tall tales about them is part of the fun. He recently acquired an antique model steamboat from Natchez, Mississippi, formerly used in theatrical productions that retails for $1,500. But you can find more affordable gems, like vintage road maps, for a mere $5. Kowalski checks out 10-15 estate sales a week, mostly in the Southeast, so you can always expect to find new, old treasures. 1170 Howell Mill Road, Suite 106. 404-492-9207. www.thisisbrickandmortar.com.

photo by: Lindsey Max

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Best OG comic book shop BOA Award Winner

Oxford Comics
The metro Atlanta area is rife with comic book shops, both old and relatively new, but when it comes to sheer selection and diversity of products, OXFORD COMICS is the leader of the pack. Pop in the shop on any day of the week, and you’ll see for yourself: tons of brand-new comics from mainstream andmore...
The metro Atlanta area is rife with comic book shops, both old and relatively new, but when it comes to sheer selection and diversity of products, OXFORD COMICS is the leader of the pack. Pop in the shop on any day of the week, and you’ll see for yourself: tons of brand-new comics from mainstream and indie publishers, old-school back issues, trade paperbacks and hardcover graphic novels, hard-to-find action figures, trading cards, DVDs, T-shirts, posters and even snacks. And there’s more comic-related stuff where that came from in stock for both hardcore fans and casual customers. 2855 Piedmont Road N.E. 404-233-8682. www.facebook.com/oxfordcomicsandgames. less...

Best store for your all your occult needs BOA Award Winner

ATL Craft
Witches take note: Nestled on Edgewood Avenue (next to Sister Louisa’s Church Murch store), ATL CRAFT is a shop that owner Haley Murphy boasts is stocked with “everything you need for spell work”: we’re talking oils, crystals, ritual bath supplies, meditation masks, jewelry and more. Along withmore...
Witches take note: Nestled on Edgewood Avenue (next to Sister Louisa’s Church Murch store), ATL CRAFT is a shop that owner Haley Murphy boasts is stocked with “everything you need for spell work”: we’re talking oils, crystals, ritual bath supplies, meditation masks, jewelry and more. Along with the magical aides, the spot also sells work by a number of local healers and artists — like Kat Shaw from Herbalista, Orion Crook and Maddy Barreto, among others — and, perhaps most importantly, provides a one-of-a-kind space for learning, support and fellowship for people whose belief systems typically fall outside of the status quo. 489-B Edgewood Ave. S.E. www.atlcraftshop.com. less...

Best boutique for discounted couture BOA Award Winner

Labels
LABELS has so many discounted goods for sale — with four different locations on the same street, by category, for your bargain-hunting needs: Separates; Dress and Shoe; Children; and Men’s. Each of the four collections is housed in an English-style cottage, and you can park at one shop and easilymore...
LABELS has so many discounted goods for sale — with four different locations on the same street, by category, for your bargain-hunting needs: Separates; Dress and Shoe; Children; and Men’s. Each of the four collections is housed in an English-style cottage, and you can park at one shop and easily walk to the others. Brands range from high-end designers like Chanel, Prada and Jil Sander to contemporary favorites such as Theory, Alice + Olivia and Rag & Bone. You’ll also find a wide variety of clothing up for grabs, from everyday button-downs and trousers for work to more elaborate fare, like a decadent Dior gown or costume jewelry. 3202 Paces Ferry Place. 404-841-8444. www.labelsrb.com. less...

Best beauty bargain BOA Award Winner

Nail Mall
If you want to bring the nail salon experience home, there’s no better place to start than NAIL MALL, a Buford Highway shop featuring rows upon rows of manicure goods. Brand-name polishes, such as Essie and OPI, line the walls in every shade (and opacity), and go for $4 and $4.75, respectively —more...
If you want to bring the nail salon experience home, there’s no better place to start than NAIL MALL, a Buford Highway shop featuring rows upon rows of manicure goods. Brand-name polishes, such as Essie and OPI, line the walls in every shade (and opacity), and go for $4 and $4.75, respectively — or about half of what they’ll cost you at the corner drugstore. Plus you can pick up wholesale-size bottles of lotion and cuticle oil, or even salon-style chairs and nail-drying machines (typically only found in wholesale-only stores) at discounted prices. 5338 Buford Highway, Doraville. 678-547-0098. www.nailmall.com. less...

Best place to get your car fixed at an affordable price BOA Award Winner

Roger Jordan Garage
ROGER JORDAN GARAGE was opened in 1943 in the same Inman Park location it currently operates out of by the Roger Jordan — who later passed it down to his two sons. One son, Don, still works there, along with nephews and even more family. “I don’t pay myself much and don’t work very hard,” Donmore...

ROGER JORDAN GARAGE was opened in 1943 in the same Inman Park location it currently operates out of by the Roger Jordan — who later passed it down to his two sons. One son, Don, still works there, along with nephews and even more family. “I don’t pay myself much and don’t work very hard,” Don says. The place is everything you always wanted in a car repair shop. One of the Jordans (or a tattooed mechanic) will listen to your sob story, empathize and then give you a great deal. You might have to wait a little bit to get it done — the disclaimer displayed at the garage’s entrance flat-out states that they make no promises on when your car will be finished — but it’s worth the wait. 1152 DeKalb Ave. N.E. 404-688-2692. www.rogerjordangarage.net.

photo by: Joeff Davis

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Best natural hair salon BOA Award Winner

The Good Hair Shop

Best nail salon BOA Award Winner

Lark and Sparrow

Best spa BOA Award Winner

Best gym BOA Award Winner

The Rack Athletic Performance Center

Best liquor store BOA Award Winner

Green's Beverages

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Bliss Farm

Best veterinarian clinic BOA Award Winner

Tucker Animal Hospital

Best caterer BOA Award Winner

South of Heaven BBQ

Best barber shop BOA Award Winner

Freedom Barber

Best crossfit BOA Award Winner

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Love is Love Farm

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Fresh Harvest

Best car wash BOA Award Winner

Mammoth Hand Car Wash & Detail Salon

Best auto shop BOA Award Winner

Johnny Fuller's Master Muffler

Best thrift store BOA Award Winner

Lost-n-Found Thrift & Consignment Store

Best kids clothing BOA Award Winner

The Little Nest

Best laundromat BOA Award Winner

Blusion Wash and Dry

Best wax studio BOA Award Winner

Sweet Peach Wax Studio

Best massage therapist BOA Award Winner

Anita Youngblood

Best holistic health practicioner BOA Award Winner

Amy King

www.doctoramyking.com

photo by: Joeff Davis

Best yoga instructor BOA Award Winner

Swami Jaya Devi Bhagavati

Best local clothing designer BOA Award Winner

Rabble and Rouse

Best aesthetician BOA Award Winner

Amy Shufflebeam

Best yoga studio BOA Award Winner

Kashi Atlanta

Best martial arts studio BOA Award Winner

Sung Ming Shu Dojo: Cuong Nhu Martial Arts

Best craft beer store BOA Award Winner

Hop City Craft Beer and Wine

Best jewelry shop BOA Award Winner

Worthmore Jewelers

Best local craft market BOA Award Winner

Indie Craft Experience

Best dry cleaners BOA Award Winner

Sig Samuels

Best head shop BOA Award Winner

Starship Enterprise

Best spin class BOA Award Winner

Flywheel

Best tattoo studio BOA Award Winner

photo by: Lindsey Max
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Best natural hair salon BOA Award Winner

The Good Hair Shop

Best nail salon BOA Award Winner

Lark and Sparrow

Best spa BOA Award Winner

Best gym BOA Award Winner

The Rack Athletic Performance Center

Best liquor store BOA Award Winner

Green's Beverages

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Bliss Farm

Best veterinarian clinic BOA Award Winner

Tucker Animal Hospital

Best store for made-in-Atlanta goods BOA Award Winner

Coco + Mischa
Small but mighty should be the motto for this Decatur boutique, which opened last year. Products from more than 20 Atlanta artists and designers have found a home inside COCO + MISCHA, which sports a boho-industrial feel with its concrete ceiling and vintage wood furniture for displaying goods. The storemore...

Small but mighty should be the motto for this Decatur boutique, which opened last year. Products from more than 20 Atlanta artists and designers have found a home inside COCO + MISCHA, which sports a boho-industrial feel with its concrete ceiling and vintage wood furniture for displaying goods. The store is especially focused on propelling small makers with sustainable practices; among the local names you can expect are Fossil & Hide (metal jewelry inspired by rock ’n’ roll), Paper Raven Co. (illustration-inspired stationery), and Maum Goods Company (bath and body goods made from essential oils). 245 E. Trinity Place, Suite 1212, Decatur. 470-875-5717. www.cocoandmischa.com

photo by: Lindsey Max

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Best all-killer-and-no-filler used record store BOA Award Winner

Ella Guru Record Shop
ELLA GURU RECORD SHOP doesn’t have the biggest selection of used LPs in town, but it certainly has the best records you’ll find anywhere outside of eBay. Tucked away in a quiet LaVista Road strip mall in unincorporated DeKalb County’s Leafmore Creek Park, owner Don Radcliffe has culled togethermore...
ELLA GURU RECORD SHOP doesn’t have the biggest selection of used LPs in town, but it certainly has the best records you’ll find anywhere outside of eBay. Tucked away in a quiet LaVista Road strip mall in unincorporated DeKalb County’s Leafmore Creek Park, owner Don Radcliffe has culled together one of the most meticulously curated selections the metro area has ever seen. From rare Marion Brown and Wadada Leo Smith compilations to Cecil Taylor’s first record on the Candid label, the jazz records alone are the stuff of dreams. But Radcliffe also keeps the shelves stocked with an ever-shifting supply of no-nonsense rock ’n’ roll, power pop, R&B and indie must-haves from the ’60s through the ’80s and even some ’90s gems. Whether you’re looking to cop a good record by anyone from Dire Straits to Dwight Twilley, Sonic Youth to Nurse With Wound, there’s something in those racks you’ve been looking to scoop up for years. Know your budget, though. The records are fairly priced, the people behind the counter know what you’re looking for, even if you don’t, and there’s enough high-quality merchandise in the crates to break the bank. 2747 LaVista Road, Decatur. 404-883-2413. www.facebook.com/EllaGuruRecordStore. less...

Best salon for one-of-a-kind nail art BOA Award Winner

Treat Your Nails
There’s no shortage of salons that’ll adorn your nails with foils, chrome powder, gel polishes in every shade of the rainbow, and more festive embellishments (like studs and fur), but TREAT YOUR NAILS wins the creativity-meets-cost matrix. At this Buford Highway outpost, customers can choose frommore...

There’s no shortage of salons that’ll adorn your nails with foils, chrome powder, gel polishes in every shade of the rainbow, and more festive embellishments (like studs and fur), but TREAT YOUR NAILS wins the creativity-meets-cost matrix. At this Buford Highway outpost, customers can choose from binders upon binders of floral, geometric and galaxy-inspired patterns — or come with their own designs for the manicurist to replicate. Basic manicures start at just $14, while a gel manicure runs you $30. From there you’ll pay extra based on how complex your nail art wishes might be. Foils, for example, start at $5 a pair, but the price drops per unit if you want more. The last time we visited, we walked out with a custom design with regular polish for $25 — or about the same price you’d pay for a plain manicure at more high-end spots. 5938 Buford Highway N.E., Suite 106, Doraville. 770-458-1756. www.treatyournailsatl.com.

photo by: Joeff Davis

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Best makeup store BOA Award Winner

Those looking for over-the-counter mainstays or the newest lip kit from a Kardashian sister need not visit VICTORIA COSMETICS. This unassuming store, tucked in the middle of a strip mall, is a haven for cheap and delightfully weird beauty goods, like snail gel or a sake yeast mask, most of which costsmore...

Those looking for over-the-counter mainstays or the newest lip kit from a Kardashian sister need not visit VICTORIA COSMETICS. This unassuming store, tucked in the middle of a strip mall, is a haven for cheap and delightfully weird beauty goods, like snail gel or a sake yeast mask, most of which costs less than $10. Some of the makeup seems to be geared toward Asian shoppers — like double eyelid tape or whitening creams and washes — but anyone with an appreciation for quirky beauty products will find something to like in this shop. 5150 Buford Highway, Doraville. 770-457-1413.

photo by: Lindsey Max

less...

Best locally based online fashion retailer BOA Award Winner

Zuvaa
Kelechi Anyadiegwu started her online retail shop, ZUVAA, in 2014 after finding it was often difficult to get her hands on African-inspired clothing and accessories. Fast-forward three years later, and consumer appetite for designs from the Motherland has only increased, fueling the growth of Anyadiegwu’smore...
Kelechi Anyadiegwu started her online retail shop, ZUVAA, in 2014 after finding it was often difficult to get her hands on African-inspired clothing and accessories. Fast-forward three years later, and consumer appetite for designs from the Motherland has only increased, fueling the growth of Anyadiegwu’s company — which is currently based in Atlanta — into a multimillion-dollar venture. Folks interested in snagging pattern-drenched headwraps, dresses, jackets and other gear from Zuvaa can purchase items from its website or from the series of traveling pop-up shops it mounts at locales around the U.S. (including the ATL). www.zuvaa.com. less...

Best place to buy a rock BOA Award Winner

CRYSTAL BLUE’s cosmic rays radiate from the heart of Little Five Points. There you can get all the stones you need for worship, for healing or just to savor the Earth’s beauty. With a huge amount of inventory in the 75 cent-$6 range, Crystal Blue is a great place to purchase meaningful, soul-nourishingmore...

CRYSTAL BLUE’s cosmic rays radiate from the heart of Little Five Points. There you can get all the stones you need for worship, for healing or just to savor the Earth’s beauty. With a huge amount of inventory in the 75 cent-$6 range, Crystal Blue is a great place to purchase meaningful, soul-nourishing gifts at affordable prices. Popular items include amethyst, rose quartz, citrine and selenite, and products on display feature a karmic description of their healing properties. Other items at Crystal Blue include chimes, gongs, sage ($1 an inch) and Tibetan singing bowls (starting at $40). Opened in 1985 in the same storefront it currently occupies, Crystal Blue is onto the third generation of the founding family working in the store; now that’s good karma. 1168 Euclid Ave. N.E. 404-522-4605. www.facebook.com/crystalblue1168.

photo by: Joeff Davis

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Best caterer BOA Award Winner

South of Heaven BBQ

Best barber shop BOA Award Winner

Freedom Barber

Best crossfit BOA Award Winner

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Love is Love Farm

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Fresh Harvest

Best car wash BOA Award Winner

Mammoth Hand Car Wash & Detail Salon

Best auto shop BOA Award Winner

Johnny Fuller's Master Muffler

Best spot for bespoke suits (and bourbon) BOA Award Winner

Just a heads up: SID MASHBURN isn’t the place you’re going to shop for an everyday suit. No, the Westside retailer is the place you go for the suit you’ll own for a lifetime — or the better part of it, since they start at $1,500. What’s more impressive than the quality and timelessness of themore...

Just a heads up: SID MASHBURN isn’t the place you’re going to shop for an everyday suit. No, the Westside retailer is the place you go for the suit you’ll own for a lifetime — or the better part of it, since they start at $1,500. What’s more impressive than the quality and timelessness of the threads is the peak service customers can expect when they walk in. That even includes a liquor cabinet so shoppers can sip bourbon (or other spirit of their choice) while shopping. 1198 Howell Mill Road. 404-350-7135. www.sidmashburn.com.

photo by: Eric Cash

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Best yoga instructor BOA Award Winner

Rutu Chaudhari
For too many people, yoga is seen as affluent white women wearing expensive pants indulging in pain-inducing poses. RUTU CHAUDHARI, however, is on a mission to change that perception. Through her All Life is Yoga studio, Chaudhari works to return the practice its self-referential roots by embracing mindfulnessmore...

For too many people, yoga is seen as affluent white women wearing expensive pants indulging in pain-inducing poses. RUTU CHAUDHARI, however, is on a mission to change that perception. Through her All Life is Yoga studio, Chaudhari works to return the practice its self-referential roots by embracing mindfulness over athleticism. And by focusing on training a new generation of instructors via her nonprofit organization the Dharma Project — i.e., people color, folks from the LGBTQ community, of all shapes and sizes — she further challenges exclusionary notions and moves forward her philosophy that yoga is a way of life, not a luxury. 27 Waddell St., Suite D. 404-491-9027. www.alllifeisyoga.com.

photo by: Joeff Davis/ CL File

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Best bookstore BOA Award Winner

Against all odds, A CAPPELLA BOOKS has persevered the winds of change that Amazon and the internet hath wrought upon the land. Since 1989, owner Frank Reiss has maintained the small and seditious bookstore by keeping close ties with the community. From the folks behind the counter to the compelling titlesmore...
Against all odds, A CAPPELLA BOOKS has persevered the winds of change that Amazon and the internet hath wrought upon the land. Since 1989, owner Frank Reiss has maintained the small and seditious bookstore by keeping close ties with the community. From the folks behind the counter to the compelling titles that line the shelves, A Cappella is, as the website boasts, “the smartest bookstore in town.” It’s that word quality that keeps the operation moving in strides, as the small but well-stocked Inman Park shop doesn’t offer a whole lot of elbow room while negotiating the aisles. But when dust jackets boasting tales about the life and times of jazz provocateur Sun Ra, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, the myriad problems defining America’s sordid politics, and loads of top-shelf fiction practically jumping into your grasp, it’s impossible to walk out empty-handed. When everyone from local and up-and-coming touring authors to David Sedaris needs someone to sell a whole bunch of their books at their signing events, A Cappella is on speed dial. The shop is woven into the fiber of city’s literary culture, and one of few remaining, truly independent institutions keeping intown Atlanta well-read. 208 Haralson Ave. N.E. 404-681-5128. www.acappellabooks.com. less...

Best skin and hair care products BOA Award Winner

Yamerra
When artist/artisan Maryam Moma relocated from New York to Atlanta, she brought YAMERRA, her growing line of hair and skin care products, with her — and boy are we glad she did. Her proximity gives folks the chance to get their hands on her fragrant shea butter-based soaps (in flavors like lemon grass,more...
When artist/artisan Maryam Moma relocated from New York to Atlanta, she brought YAMERRA, her growing line of hair and skin care products, with her — and boy are we glad she did. Her proximity gives folks the chance to get their hands on her fragrant shea butter-based soaps (in flavors like lemon grass, honey vanilla and tangerine grapefruit, among many others), hair and body oils, moisturizers and more at pop-up shops and markets all over town — not just on her website, where she sells her wares to shoppers all over the world. Yamerra products are advertised as being made from “traceable natural and organic ingredients,” and you can feel that sentiment when you use the gentle-to-the-touch items for yourself. And, on top of that, it’s all sold at prices that are gentle to your wallet, as well. www.yamerra.com. less...

Best thrift store BOA Award Winner

Lost-n-Found Thrift & Consignment Store

Best kids clothing BOA Award Winner

The Little Nest

Best laundromat BOA Award Winner

Blusion Wash and Dry

Best wax studio BOA Award Winner

Sweet Peach Wax Studio

Best massage therapist BOA Award Winner

Anita Youngblood

Best holistic health practicioner BOA Award Winner

Amy King

www.doctoramyking.com

photo by: Joeff Davis

Best yoga instructor BOA Award Winner

Swami Jaya Devi Bhagavati

Best place to shop and do some good BOA Award Winner

Bigmouthben Convenience Store
Benjamin “Bigmouthben” Graham battled drug addiction, mental illness and homelessness for almost two decades before getting his life back on track. Once he did, Graham dedicated himself to his art (a style of rap known as “hope-hop”) and, with the help of his wife Tanya Graham, opened the BIGMOUTHBENmore...
Benjamin “Bigmouthben” Graham battled drug addiction, mental illness and homelessness for almost two decades before getting his life back on track. Once he did, Graham dedicated himself to his art (a style of rap known as “hope-hop”) and, with the help of his wife Tanya Graham, opened the BIGMOUTHBEN CONVENIENCE STORE on Auburn Avenue. The shop, located three blocks from where he used to sleep under a bridge, not only sells groceries and souvenirs but also serves as a resource for Atlantans in need, providing free water, clothes and a helping hand. So by shopping with the Grahams, you not only support a worthy local business — you help support the community at large. 370 Auburn Ave., Suite A. 404-331-3973. www.bigmouthbenstores.com. less...

Best way to catch blockbusters at the multiplex BOA Award Winner

Regal Atlantic Station Stadium 18
If you’re a regular moviegoer in Atlanta, you undoubtedly know there are plenty of swanky options available when it comes to where and how you watch films — from theaters with gigantic plush seats to spots with fancy food and more. But the best VIP viewing in town can be found at REGAL ATLANTIC STATIONmore...
If you’re a regular moviegoer in Atlanta, you undoubtedly know there are plenty of swanky options available when it comes to where and how you watch films — from theaters with gigantic plush seats to spots with fancy food and more. But the best VIP viewing in town can be found at REGAL ATLANTIC STATION STADIUM 18. Sure, Atlantic Station can be a bit of a tourist trap, but tucked in the back of its busy multiplex is a surprisingly chill cinematic retreat, complete with adult beverages, private bathrooms, super-comfortable screening rooms with tons of room and more. Plus: It’s a 21-plus zone, so you don’t have to worry about rubbing shoulders with any of those pesky tweens. 261 19th St. N.W., Suite 1250. 404-347-9894. www.atlanticstation.com/movies. less...

Best local clothing designer BOA Award Winner

Rabble and Rouse

Best aesthetician BOA Award Winner

Amy Shufflebeam

Best yoga studio BOA Award Winner

Kashi Atlanta

Best martial arts studio BOA Award Winner

Sung Ming Shu Dojo: Cuong Nhu Martial Arts
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