Ah, the 314 — known for baseball, beer, and the arch. Having lived in both the suburbs and the city, I have a great appreciation for this city and all it has to offer. Working with The Scout Guide Saint Louis this past summer seriously opened my eyes to the talent and businesses STL has to offer (follow their Instagram here to follow along with all things small biz in stl).
Due to my college-student-nomad lifestyle, I’m only home for a month or two at a time these days. Fortunately, thanks to Instagram and a bad online shopping habit, I’m still able to support my favorite St. Louis businesses from Des Moines and beyond.
The following are some of my very favorite products and stores. Try ’em out yourself, regardless of where you call home. And remember, when you buy from a small business, an actual person does a little happy dance.
1) Summersalt Swimwear
You may have heard of Summersalt, the female-founded brand offering size-inclusive, high-quality swimwear, loungewear, and activewear. This digitally native company is based in St. Louis and growing fast. They have recently been dubbed “Instagram’s favorite swimsuit” due to their recognizable styles and impressive influencer marketing. My mom, sister, and I all love our Summersalt pieces. Their bodysuits are my go-to with jeans and sneakers or under a blazer. Visit summersalt.com to grab a kini you can feel good about.
2) Lark Skin Co.
Just three years ago, Lark founder Lisa Dolan was inspired by her own mother and her son to create a clean line of skincare to empower women. The brick-and-mortar location features Holistic skincare and custom facials in a bright, sleek atmosphere. Lark’s products can all be purchased on their online store. The website also features a skincare quiz to recommend products for those who couldn’t tell the difference between a serum and an oil (no shame, we all start somewhere). I have been using Lark’s products since Christmas when I got the Purifying Toner and Cleansing Balm in my stocking. I have offically been converted to this cleansing balm and it’s safe to say these will be staples for me from now on!
3) Collections by Joya
Another female-founded brand, Joya creates handmade artisan pieces that are sure to grab compliments every time. Founder Betsy Blancett Nacrelli relied on her love for art and travel to inspire Joya. I wear my Joya rings almost every day (in fact, I’m admiring them now as I type) and the brand has become my go-to for gifts. Oh, and did I mention a percentage of every Joya purchase is donated to women’s charity? Joya has supported organizations around St. Louis and the world that help improve women’s lives. Follow their drool-worthy Instagram here and shop here to score some bling that gives back.
These are just a few of the many female-founded gems based in STL. Happy (small) shopping!