Over the past few years I’ve spent a good amount of effort trying to phase out any reliance on Am*zon. I love my Prime and I find it useful in a pinch and for things like Whole Foods, but for the most part I prefer to shop locally. I’ve made an effort in 2020 to get as many things as possible through local businesses. So many small businesses have struggled this year, some have moved forward, others changing their business models and offerings, and some have closed. It’s easy in our haste to get things done to shop at big retailers.
It’s also a privilege to be able to shop small sometimes and not take the discounts offered at big retailers. Those discounts usually come at the cost of working conditions, benefits, pay, etc. Shopping small means more money in your community along with more money and better working conditions for the people in your community. I don’t begrudge people who only have the money to shop those deals, it’s important everyone have access to the things they need and the comforts they want. But for those of us who are privileged to have a stable income and life, we should make every effort to give money back to our communities.
I have lots of small businesses I love near and far. There’s a section for Saint Louis businesses and one for businesses based elsewhere and e-commerce only. I love that it’s easy to support small businesses anywhere that are making great products or services.
I’m sure there are some I’ve forgotten, so if there are any small businesses we should add to the list, leave them in the comments! If you own a small business please let me know, leave it in the comments or feel free to email me! I’ll keep this updated going forward so it’s an inclusive list of all our favorites.
One small note, for disclosure none of the links in this post are affiliate links. (I did link to my Bookshop which does include some affiliate links. All money I receive from Bookshop (a very small amount) is donated to a different charity each payout.) Generally speaking, small businesses don’t partner with affiliates because that is a large expense when many are having an already difficult time in 2020. As a matter of principle, I never use affiliate links with small businesses even if they offer them. As a community we want as much money in the hands of small businesses and our communities as possible.
Favorite Saint Louis Small Businesses
Descendant | Webster Groves
If you love slow fashion and vintage finds, Descendant is one of my favorite spots. They opened their store in February 2020 and have such a gorgeous website. If you’re looking for small home items or gifts they also have a great selection.
Skin Spa | Creve Coeur
Focused on non-toxic skincare, Skin Spa is one of the best places for facials in St. Louis. I’ve been going for a few years and their treatments have helped my skin a lot. They also have incredible knowledge of clean skincare products, so you know you’re getting the best from them.
Holliday | CWE
Great for getting most gifts in one stop. Everything in the shop is gorgeous and so well curated.
Lusso | Clayton
I think of Lusso as similar to Anthropologie, but local and women-owned. They have luxe home stuff and great clothes.
Cheree Berry Paper Studio | Ladue
Cheree Berry’s cards and stationary are some of my favorites. The RBG note set would be a great gift for any occasion.
Pastaria Deli & Wine | Clayton
In response to the pandemic, Pastaria Deli & Wine took over Sardella. They have deli sandwiches daily, but they also are a wine and provisions shop. The wine selection is five stars, highly recommend picking up a new bottle and some pasta for a night in or a gift basket.
My love for reading is second only to my love for food. Left Bank Books has been such a big part of my life for years and places like Am*zon have made it so hard for bookstores. You can order online for pickup if you’re local or they ship. You can also shop through bookshop.org and select Left Bank Books so that they receive the profits.
Favorite Small Businesses
I have been following Jamie’s work as a photographer and artist over the last few years and she continues to be such an inspiration. Her life in Provence looks so magical, yet real and attainable. Her photographs are like paintings and she does incredible tutorials on her Instagram Stories. During lockdown in March, she began the #isolationcreation series. Her photographs documenting this time are beautiful and her stories everyday behind shooting them were such a bright spot in an anxious time. She turned her photographs into phone cases, one of which I just got for my new phone and love.
Launched this year, Goldune is website with all things sustainable and lots of zero-waste products. They’ve quickly become a go-to for household things. They have lots of gift guides for every budget and person.
A few years ago my sister and her business partner launched The Erin Edit (both of their names are Erin!). It has lots of clothing and home decor options. If you’re looking for gift ideas, they have lots from great scented candles to zodiac necklaces that I love.
My friend Whitney is an artist who opened her first shop this year! She has lots of cute home decor and gift ideas. She also had her art licensed by Homegoods for holiday items this year! Her watercolors are incredible and make for great gifts.
Wildbloom has become one of my go-to non-toxic skincare lines over the last year. My favorite in particular is the seasonal pumpkin enzyme peel. It gives you glowing skin and literally smells like pumpkin bread.