Business, Features, Weeklies

The Bizzies: Boston’s best stores

If you go to Boston University, you are lucky enough to live in one of the best cities in America. It’s about time you started to take advantage of it! We have some suggestions, in the second part of our local business awards.

Best Affordable Clothing: H&M
100 Newbury St.
With ethically made clothing ranging from $3 to $40, H&M always has a fashionable selection of both men and women’s casual, career and party apparel. It is debatable if their designs are “borrowed” from designers or not, but this can be a positive thing for the underpaid college student. Go early on a weekday to avoid long queues for the dressing rooms or registers.

Best Vintage: Second Time Around
176 Newbury St.
Not every store on Newbury Street is meant to blow your budget. With more than three locations on Newbury Street alone, Second Time Around is the best boutique for designer, pre-worn clothing. Prices vary from $10 to over $100 dollars depending on the item, but no matter the price, clothing usually costs about half as much as its original retail price.

Best Shoes: The Tannery
711 Boylston St.
Oh my god – shoes. Over 50 brands of footwear compose The Tannery’s extensive collection of shoes. Designers include Sperry, Birkenstock, Hunter and Geox. Expect to pay upwards of $50 to $100, but look out for sale items in the $20 to $40 range.

Best Accessories: Mint Julep
1302 Beacon St.
When it comes to cute, classic jewelry and other accessories, Mint Julep has a fabulous collection of colorful inventory. Items cost about $10 to $50. Merchandise is on the preppy, pastel end of the color spectrum, so have a seersucker blazer at the ready to pair with Mint Julep’s accessories.

Best Music Venue: The Paradise
967-969 Commonwealth Ave.
Boston’s legendary rock club hosts performances every night of the week and ticket prices range from $15 to $30. Conveniently located in the heart of West Campus, The Paradise has standing space for concerts on two floors as well as its own lounge. It specializes in indie rock, as well as the occasional eccentric cover band.

Best Bookstore: Commonwealth Books
9 Spring Lane
Bibliophiles of all types will find an engaging piece of literature in Downtown Crossing’s quirky Commonwealth Books. The bookstore is “literally” a hidden gem as it is pocketed away in the nook of a narrow alley. The store is the home to publications of art, literature, architecture, history and philosophy as well as antique books. Say hi to the cat we see hanging out among the stacks.

Best Record Shop: In Your Ear! Records
957 Commonwealth Ave.
Drop by In Your Ear! for over 100,000 CDs, cassettes, 8-tracks and records (among other things). Prices average at about $5 to $10 for an eclectic mix of new and used music. In Your Ear! puts other proclaimed “hipster” music stores in Boston to shame.

Best Nails: Luiz Hair Salon
177 Brighton Ave., Allston
Manicures at $12 and pedicures at $18 cannot be beat. With quality nail services for half the price of salons in the Back Bay neighborhood, Luiz Hair Salon makes travelling to Allston worth the seedy adventure.

Best Hair: Shag Boston
840 Summer St.
Sick of going to Newbury Street for haircuts amid pseudo Real Housewives of Boston? Priding itself on creating “rock star hair,” Shag Boston is the salon to try when going for a bold new look. Men and women’s haircuts go from $40 to $80. Shag hairdressers even styled the hair for a designer in New York Fashion Week.

Best Tanning: Perfect Tan
1030 Commonwealth Ave.
Bronze perfection is a tricky task when resemblance to Snooki is at risk. However, Perfect Tan offers tanning beds, spray tanning and custom airbrushing as well as a stocked inventory of various tanning lotions to achieve the perfect color. Come out sun-kissed for about $20 depending on the treatment.

Best Yoga: Sweat & Soul Yoga
1032 Commonwealth Ave.
Anyone who wants to turn themselves into a pretzel should try Sweat & Soul Yoga. Classes are only $10 per session, but come early, because they are walk-in only. Sweat & Soul is the home to several of Boston’s Best yoga instructors, so anyone who is looking for a good stretch or uplifting experience should check it out.

Best Make-Up: MAC Cosmetics
112 Newbury St.
Even though MAC is an international chain, it offers the highest quality cosmetics and most knowledgeable staff. Makeovers at MAC will not transform you into a drag queen, but will instead create a beautiful, inspired look for all faces. For high-end cosmetics, stop at MAC to receive a complimentary makeover after spending $50 on products.

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