Owen left a job in publishing for a higher — and healthier — calling: to open her own juice and plant-based food concept. Called Owen + Alchemy, the storefront debuted in 2014 with a modern apothecary vibe and chef-driven menu.
Owen is now on the cusp of a new venture and next month will launch a line of functional botanical beverages — both sparkling waters and concentrated tinctures.
“I try to always keep sustainability in mind. We have a lot of power as consumers, so being thoughtful and informed makes a true impact,” says Owen.
She’s also found a way to form even more meaningful and inspired connections with wellness seekers. Owen and Mott St. restaurant owner Vicki Kim have created WKND, a series of wellness retreats for “womenkind.” A recent retreat whisked a group to Parchment House in Sawyer, Michigan, where they enjoyed wellness workshops, acupuncture, meditation, custom tincture blending, and chef-inspired meals. The next event will take place in September. Follow @wethewknd details.
As a busy attorney trying to slip in a workout, Patel grew tired of gym hopping. She ditched her multiple memberships and opened her own studio in Lincoln Park in 2013. After testing various classes there, the golden ticket turned out to be aerial fitness (core-building poses done suspended in stretchy fabric).
On the heels of Air, which has grown to 11 locations nationwide, Patel created her next concept: MudbuM (cleanyourdirtyface.com), a River North skin care studio specializing in 30-minute facials. The most popular is Glow, which uses sandalwood for brighter, youthful skin. Accessible pricing (just $79 for two facials a month, or drop-ins for $50/facial) is key. Now with franchises in Atlanta; Los Angeles; Denver; Austin, Texas; and Charlotte, North Carolina, MudbuM could also soon have third local outpost in Streeterville.
Patel also developed a Clean Your Dirty Face product line that includes a Goddess Cleanser, Warrior Scrub, and more. “We’re here to educate people about their skin and what’s best for it,” she says.
It never crossed Meers’s mind to use CBD products, much less create and sell them. But when she met her now-business partner, Marci Capron Vermillion — who suffered from pain, depression, and panic attacks — and saw the life-changing effects of CBD, Meers knew the power of hemp flower oil was worth exploring.
Meers immersed herself into intensive CBD research and product testing and launched Equilibria (equilibriawomen.com), custom CBD routines delivered to your home. She wasn’t a stranger to startups; Meers is a longtime angel investor, and previously founded PrettyQuick, offering digital spa-service booking, which she sold to Groupon in 2015.
Meers credits much of Equilibria’s success to her bioscience farm partner in Colorado, known for medical-grade growing; and dosage advisers helping clients at every step. Therapies include Daily Drops, Softgels, and Relief Cream. The core offering is a monthly box membership (starting at $89). Boxes, Meers says, are “beautiful and luxurious.” But, ultimately: “It’s about changing lives.”
Photos by Heather Talbert Photography (Coco Meers); Violet Dominek (Shama Patel), Sapan Ahuja (Goddess Cleanser)