A New Kind of Health
If you’re interested in trying something new, The Detox Market at King St. W. and Peter St. may be worth your while. The store was originally founded and launched in California where it now has two permanent locations. But when a local naturopathic doctor, Bita Doagoo, fell in love with the concept while travelling, she decided to team up with one of the founders, Romain Gaillard, to bring a temporary version to Toronto. Doagoo actually managed to sway Gaillard from his original plans of opening a third store in New York and convinced him, instead, to open one here in Toronto. Many of the products such as the Hurraw lip balm and Honore des Pres perfume are actually being launched for the first time in Canada and could not be found in the country prior to The Detox Market’s opening.
A New Kind of Health - Article Contents
1. Careful Selection
2. An Unique Experience
2.1 Not For Everyone
3. How Does It Compare?
3.1 Be Nourished Juices
3.2 Odacité Skin Care
3.3 Candles by Ria Ray
3.4 Rahua Hair Care
3.5 Acquarella Nail Polish
3.6 Clean by Alejandro Junger
3.7 Kusmi Tea
3.8 Simply OatShakes
3.9 Taza Stone Ground Chocolate
3.10 Pure Provence Soaps
3.11 Honore Des Pres perfume
3.12 Mini Organics
4. Customizing your visit
Original founders Valerie Grandury and Romain Gaillard stick to strict rules when selecting what products they will carry. Every product on their shelves must meet four elements of criteria. Each product they select must be clean (i.e. zero toxicity), must work, must have good people behind it and must look good. They work with small companies that they can count on to produce products that are genuinely organic, toxin-free and effective. Gaillard explains it is also crucial that they “perform even better than their toxic equivalent.” Grandury agrees, stating
“so many people have been disappointed with natural products; there is nothing worse than wanting to go green and ending up with a product that doesn’t deliver.”
The pair are undeniably focused on ensuring their products are the perfect combination of ethically sound and aesthetically appealing. And they also fill their stores with staff members who are studying to be naturopaths themselves so you have immediate access to educated advice. When you’re in the store itself you’ll find small signs next to the majority of the products which answer the questions “Where is it from?”, “Why it’s good for you”, “What is not in it” (i.e. toxins, fragrances, etc.), as well as which in the line is the founders’ favorite and why. This really helps you get a sense of what the benefits of each item on their shelves.
According to Doagoo, what differentiates The Detox Market from other health-focused stores is the experience. It is “the experience behind the product, the experience of purchasing it and the experience of it performing” that counts. The store itself is beautifully laid out and all the products are elegantly displayed. When women want to cut out toxins from their beauty products for health or personal reasons, many return to the basics that worked for their mothers and grandmothers (i.e. olive oil, baby powder, etc). But for many women, not being able to use attractive products can be disappointing and can leave them feeling less beautiful. Doagoo explains that the products at The Detox Market provide women with luxurious all-natural alternatives which allow them to finally look and feel like themselves again.
Undeniably, the intentions behind The Detox Market are great. But there are a couple of negatives to be prepared for. Doagoo describes The Detox Market as a “health food store meeting a high end department store.” This is a combination many Torontonians have likely been waiting for. But for others, the high end prices and smaller selection may be disappointing. The founders pride themselves on only providing customers with what they feel is the best of the best. For those who prefer the experience of walking in and picking up something they have been assured will work — this is a great asset. But those who prefer to shop around may not find what they’re looking for.
Some of the prices at The Detox Market are quite reasonable considering the quality of the products. For example, their Hurraw lip balms are $4.99 which is on par with natural lip balms available at drug stores. But there are products where comparable alternatives are available. Here are some of the main products and lines they carry, as well as cheaper alternatives that may be worth checking out.
The Detox Market features a line of detox juices called benourished. They’re made in Canada with local, organic ingredients and are always corn, dairy, egg, gluten, peanut and soy free. But with one day’s worth of juice ringing in at $80.00, it certainly isn’t a particularly budget-friendly way to detox. A better option may be to invest in a juicer and try creating your own fresh beverages out of organic, locally-grown, produce for yourself. Sure you might not be able to get a hydraulic press juicer like the ones benourished depends on — but it’s certainly worth trying. Or if you don’t feel like doing the work yourself, check out Bolthouse Farms’ 50/50 Juices. A 946 ml bottle retails for $3.99 at grocery stores such as No Frills.
If you have sensitive skin or simply want to apply less chemicals to your body, you’ll be happy to learn Odacité contains no preservatives or harmful chemicals and is made using only pure organic highly-concentrated botanical ingredients. But $40.00 for the cleanser and $75.00 for the day moisturizer might be a little too steep for you. If you’re in need of a cheaper option, check out an Australian Natural Skincare line called Sukin. Their products are made from active botanicals and essential oils found in nature and are sold at a lower price-point. There are plenty of health stores carrying the line all over the GTA. Use the Sukin website’s search tool to find a retailer near you.
At $45.00 a pop, Ria Ray’s line of soy candles is pretty pricey. Instead, check out Essence of Life Soaps and Candles’ online store where you can order candles made of soy and essential oils from the comfort of home. A 12 oz jars in a variety of shapes is just $14.99. And you can pick from a huge selection of scents. They’re hand poured and 100% soy based.
The Toronto store’s hair care line, Rahua, involves products that contain a beauty extract found in the Amazon mixed with luxurious organic ingredients. Unfortunately, the shampoo and conditioner will each cost you over $30.00. If you don’t think you can make that work, there is an alternative. Northern American Hemp Co. makes a line of beauty products from hemp seed oil which are cruelty free and vegan. Their hair products are all-natural and free of DEAs, parabens and sulphates. Plus you can find both the shampoo and conditioner online at well.ca for $9.99 each. Or you can track their line down at your local Loblaws or Rexall PharmaPlus.
At $16.00, their line of nail polish, Acquarella, is certainly more expensive than the ones you’ll find at the drug store. However, it also happens to be the only nail polish available that is water-based and toxin-free. That means you don’t have to worry about chemical smells or drying out your nails. If you’ve noticed your nails seem yellow, dry or brittle with the nail polish you’re currently using, this may be a good switch for you. If your nails seem to be doing well and you don’t mind the chemicals, anything from Sally Hansen to O.P.I. will do. But if you’re in need of something with more hydration that you won’t have to worry about your toddler opening and playing with — this is the only way to go.
Celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow swear by Dr. Junger’s book that focuses on restoring your body’s health naturally. But you don’t have to buy it at its full price at The Detox Market. Instead, get it online at indigo.ca for $14.43.
The front of the store has a section dedicated to Kusmi Tea. The 4.4 oz containers go for $19.50 which is a very reasonable price for high-quality loose leaf tea. If you’re new to tea and want to make sure you’re getting something good, this is a good place to start. But if you’re interested in more variety, you can also consider checking out a Canadian-owned chain of stores called David’s Tea. Their staff are very helpful and can find you unique, organic, all-natural teas such as Gail’s Organic Cold Remedy or the herbal tea, Bravissimo. Or if you want to create your own natural beverages, consider stopping by some of the bulk herb and spice stores in Chinatown at Dundas and Spadina. You will certainly find rare, organic, herbs there that you can feel good about — at incredibly low prices.
What’s nice about Simply OatShakes is they’re soy-free, dairy-free and gluten-free and the oats come from small Scandinavian family farms where GMO-farming is not allowed. But an equally tasty and far less pricey option is to make a homemade version yourself. Simply get a large bag of rolled oats from your local bulk food store, place a few scoops in a blender with some frozen fruit and a splash of water and you can create your very own at a fraction of the cost.
If you aren’t too worried about whether your chocolate is stone ground or not, you don’t have to pay the $5.50 that a disc of Taza Chocolate will cost you. Instead, head over to a store such as Cabbagetown Organics at 443 Parliament Street to pick up a bar of Camino chocolate for $3.99. Camino Chocolate Bars are made of organic ingredients from environmentally responsible family farmers and they come at a slightly lower price point.
Pure Provence Soaps are crafted in the South of France with no preservatives, colorants, or chemicals and they include organic essential oils from botanicals grown in the region. But these exotic qualities cause a bar of soap to go for $6.90. An alternative, is to check out Etsy.com and take a peek at some handmade soaps created right here in Toronto. The ingredients might not come all the way from France but you’ll be supporting small, local businesses and save yourself some money in the process.
It’s great to know that the line of Honore Des Pres perfume is free of colouring agents, phthalates, and synthetic perfumes. But at $84.00 for 1.7 fl. oz. — that kind of luxury is out of many people’s budgets. If you’re in need of a natural fragrance without a high price tag, consider checking out the H & H Health Centre at 567 Yonge Street. They carry bottles of 100% pure distilled floral water by The Aromatherapist for just $12.99. And there are plenty of other all natural scents and essential oils there for you to experiment with.
Of course you want your little one to grow up with products that are free of toxins or hazardous chemicals. But you don’t necessarily need to pay $32.00 for Mini Organic’s baby wash or $28.00 for their infant moisturizer to do so. Instead, consider heading over to Baby on the Hip at either 969 Queen Street East or 786 College Street. Their stores are completely green powered and their products are selected based on sustainability, non-toxicity and quality. Their organic baby washes, diaper creams and bum sprays all sell for around $13.00 so you can get a fair bit more for your money.
Some of these less costly alternatives are equal to the ones you’ll find at The Detox Market. But with others you will lose some of the assurance that can come from knowing you’re getting the product through a smaller, organically-driven company. If you do decide to purchase a lower-priced alternative, don’t be afraid to ask the store owner or contact the company to find out more information about what you’re buying. The best thing you can do is know all the options available to you so you can pick and choose what works best for your unique needs.
The biggest benefit of The Detox Market is being able to go in there and know that every product you pick up has been selected as the best of the bunch by trained naturopaths. But that also means you’re only being offered one brand of each type of item and if that particular brand isn’t what you’re looking for or is out of your price range, you’ll have to go elsewhere to find what you need. And of course it’s important to keep in mind that just because a product is at The Detox Market, it doesn’t mean you can’t find something comparable elsewhere for less. Whether you will find the store to be right for you completely depends on what you’re looking for. Those looking for a high end experience and luxury products will feel right at home at The Detox Market. But those who are budget-conscious or enjoy having more options to choose from may not be entirely satisfied by what they find. It is nevertheless, a great starting pointing in terms of educating yourself on what standards to look for in your health and beauty products so you can make the best possible choices for your body.
Address: 367 King St.
Phone number: 416-548-9879 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday-Friday: 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sunday: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.