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SF Beauty: Where Tech and Nature Meet

June 2013

By Anna Acquistapace, San Francisco

With Silicon Valley just down the street, San Franciscans love their technology. But, with the ocean and outdoors also so accessible, people can't live without their nature. So when it comes to health and beauty, it's not surprising that both nature and technology play big roles in what we look to for solutions.

Over the last year, I've seen many of my friends turn to technology to help them manage their health regimes. Some have a goal of losing weight while others just want to be more active. Wearable devices, such as the Fitbit, Jawbone UP and the Nike+ FuelBand, along with their mobile apps, help consumers by giving them eye-opening snapshots of their daily lives, including what they eat, how much they move and how they sleep. I've watched people get not only motivated, but also competitive about improving their habits. Those that don't want to spend the money on the pricey devices have turned to stand-alone apps like Noom to conveniently keep tabs on their activity.

Two more trends are helping bring personal convenience to health. First is the delivery services offered by several local juice cleanse companies. Can-Can Cleanse and Juice Shop make it easier to detox by dropping off fresh-pressed, organic juices on your doorstep. It's a way to start fresh and revive your willpower around eating habits so you can feel good from the inside out. For those the more casual green juice lovers, Sidewalk Juice has a walk-up counter for a quick fix.  A second mobile health option is the surprising, but clever, mobile teeth cleaning and whitening service offered by Polished Dental. Though just launched, the service has been successful with women who prefer to get the hassle of teeth cleaning done in their pajamas at home on a Saturday.

While the services above are bringing health closer to home, some new local brands are sending our beauty and health routines back out into nature. Juniper Track and Captain Blankenship whisk us away to the restorative vitality and harmony of the outdoors with products like Red Rock Canyon Soap and Mermaid Hair Oil, made with ingredients that come straight from the wild. Several local apothecaries, like Homestead Apothecary and Scarlet Sage Herb Co., also provide Mother Nature’s best with tinctures and teas, creating community hubs for finding natural remedies. On the weekend, they offer classes and, with the advent of spring, they're selling potted medicinal herbs to take to your home garden. On the West Coast, we are looking for an alternative to the endless shelves of medicine with undecipherable ingredient lists at the typical corner pharmacy. We know that the quick fix from pharmaceuticals might not bring the deeper balance of health that we seek. 

Health & Fitness
Food & Drink
San Francisco
Blog Issue: 
Oakland's Homestead Apothecary Owner Nic Weinstein
Jawbone UP helps users track health habits
Captain Blankenship's Mermaid Hair Oil

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