Shopping & Services

  • Readers' Poll Winners

    Best Adult Toy Store Good Vibrations Best Tattoo Shop Black and Blue Tattoo Best Auto Repair (tie) Emerald Auto and Brake, Don's Auto Body Best Bookstore Green Apple Books Best Women's Wear Store Ambiance Best Men's Wear Store Macy's Best Dentist (tie) Dr. Matthew C. Keyser, Washington Square Park Dental Best Doctor One Medical Group Best Dry Cleaner GreenStreets Cleaners Best Eyewear Store Eyedare Optometric Best Farmers Market Ferry Plaza Farmers Market Best Marijuana Dispensary Sparc Best Massage Kabuki Springs & Spa Best Record Store Amoeba Music Best… More >>
  • Best Reason to Believe in Ride Sharing

    Homobiles

    Homobiles, the ride-sharing organization originally started for drag queens and the LGBTQ community, is staying true to its roots. While other companies practice "surge pricing" and quietly switch from donations to mandatory fares, Homobiles remains a pay-what-you-can service. "When you get in a Homobile, you can donate or not, depending on your budget," says founder Lynn Breedlove. "This creates a… More >>
  • Best Local Business Comeback: Le Video

    By Devin Holt The lines in Le Video's battle to stay open couldn't be clearer. On one side is the type of unique, personal business that makes San Francisco great. On the other is a Goliath-sized dose of technological inevitability, and the simple fact that most people won't go across town for something they can get at home for a few… More >>
  • Best Place to Buy Jewelry That Kind of Scares You

    Modern Relics

    The handcrafted pieces by jeweler Alix Bluh draw from nature and history, and we covet her intricate designs. But while some of them incorporate the softer side of nature, like pearls and coral, others are a little darker. Don't expect friends to say how cute your new locket is — it contains a sort of creepy lock of cat hair… More >>
  • Best Reason to Go All Out for a Holiday

    Terrasol Boutique

    Terrasol is worth a visit any time of year, but really shines on special occasions. "We're always showcasing whatever holiday there is," says Stephen Trimble, who co-owns the store with his husband, Alberto Rojas. Each year, Terrasol creates a themed store for Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Easter, Pride, the Fourth of July, Halloween, and Christmas. When SF Weekly stopped… More >>
  • Tal-Y-Tara

    Best Place to Shop for your Real (or Pretend) Horse

    Tal-Y-Tara

    If you know what's going on during a polo match, then you likely know this shop. This store has everything a polo player would need, plus everything her horse would need too — saddles, bridles, crops, and whips! Don't have a horse? You don't need one to enjoy looking through the various supplies and apparel. Also, make sure you give… More >>
  • Best Place to Stand in Awe of the Glory of Malt, Water, Yeast, and Hops

    City Beer Store

    A lot of stores in San Francisco sell beer, but then, a lot of stores sell condoms and toilet paper, too. City Beer Store is the place to go if you want a retailer that revels in beer, that really loves the stuff. The modernist space on Folsom Street is practically a temple to the glory of water, yeast, hops,… More >>
  • Best Place to Buy Classic Literature for Burrito Money

    Aardvark Books

    You want books. Not book-like files for your AndroPadTab, but sheets of paper printed with ink bound together into a pleasant-feeling volume. Are you really going to read Walden on a screen? Not unless you want old Henry David turning in his sparsely appointed grave. And while San Francisco is blessed with an abundance of good-to-excellent bookstores, many of which… More >>
  • Best Gathering of the Bay Area's Music-Minded Multitudes

    Bay Area Record Label Fair

    The irony of a city with music coming out of every orifice is that one scene often doesn't know what the other scenes are doing. So this year, the folks behind Father/Daughter Records and production outfit Professional Fans assembled the first Bay Area Record Label Fair — B.A.R.F. for short — to bring the disparate corners of the city's music… More >>
  • Best Store for Audiophiles

    Dijital Fix

    Duck inside for a quick visit to the photo booth, but stay for hours pampering your eyes and ears with gorgeous speakers, record players, headphones, and a sprinkling of home décor. The store clerk will probably get tired of you asking, "Wait, is that a speaker?" because yes, it is, and no, it doesn't look like one at first glance… More >>
  • Best Coffee With Tchotchkes

    Hollow

    A dose of whimsy can be hard to find in the Avenues. Harder still is a predictably solid Americano, and an unpredictable collection of playful iterations of everyday items to peruse while the caffeine enters your bloodstream. You may have to duck in order to enter this tiny first-floor cafe without scraping your head on the exposed wood frame above.… More >>
  • Secession Art and Design

    Best Place to Get that Last-Minute Gift for Your Mom, Girlfriend, or Wife

    Secession Art and Design

    Whether or not women are easier to shop for than men is fodder for a panel debate. But, this much is true: Many more women have pierced ears, wear bracelets, or enjoy broaches, than their male counterparts. So there's that. Men looking for those last-minute gifts for mom or the women in their lives may be a bit envious after… More >>
  • Best Comic Book Shop

    Mission Comics & Art

    Leef Smith, the friendly proprietor and the curator of this cool store, wanted a comic book shop in the Mission that fit the Mission. Besides the latest books and action figures from DC, Marvel, Archie, etc., Mission Comics & Art boasts a gallery where local artists can display their works, custom-made T-shirts you won't find at Target, and a couch… More >>
  • Best Place To Buy Back Your Old Starter Jacket

    New Jack City

    There was nothing like the bright puffy nylon pullover sporting the colors and logo of your favorite team, especially after your middle school (and then the mall) banned them. Turn back the clock and channel your inner Seifert with the kind of look last seen on an old NFL Films reel. Face it: Throwbacks are the new forward pass, and… More >>
  • Best Place to Get Plants You Won't Kill

    Sunshine & Succulents

    There are few S.F. apartments that wouldn't be instantly hipper with a collection of succulents, ideally housed in some sort of attractively rusting tin spice box or wheelbarrow or maybe in a seashell you found on a camping trip up to the North Coast, though really any old terrarium will do the trick. The alien-looking plants have become the set… More >>
  • Best-Looking Cannabis Dispensary

    Barbary Coast

    South of Market has seen a lot of change — from marshy inlet to Skid Row to playground for twentysomething tech titans. Somewhere along the line someone had style. Turns out it was the Victorians. Imagine a leafy fern bar Henry Africa would recognize, with a taste of an Old West saloon, and a feather-headressed girl sitting on top of… More >>
  • Good Vibrations

    Best Solid-Gold Orifice-Fillers

    Good Vibrations

    There is no shortage of items of every price range to cram up one's every orifice at Good Vibrations. But, for those who've always desired to internalize an object priced higher than a Korean hatchback, look no further. The chain's Kearny Street branch houses a quartet of gold-plated LELO sex toys — under lock and key, mind you — with… More >>
  • Best High-Tech Matchmaker

    Coffee Meets Bagel

    In a city so tech-savvy — and dating-app saturated — that everyone's next soulmate is just a swipe away, it's surprising we haven't done away with the notion of soulmates entirely. But even within the industry driving these changes, some companies still subscribe to old-fashioned ideals of romance: If the right partner is a needle in a haystack, it's better… More >>
  • Best 3D-Printing Innovator

    Bespoke Innovations

    Of all the novelties to emerge from San Francisco's blossoming 3D print economy — busts, propellers, chocolate sculptures, perforated walls, and desktop curios — the most promising are also among the least flashy. SOMA-based company Bespoke Innovations, which was acquired by 3D-print behemoth 3D Systems in 2012, has attached humanitarian impulses to the new design revolution by introducing a line… More >>
  • Best Sleazy Occupation

    Selling Used Panties Online

    Okay, we get it — San Francisco is goddamned expensive. Of course, you could always stop complaining and start selling your used panties online. It appears some female college students have learned the basics of running a business without ever having to take a business course. Go to Craigslist and you will find plenty of young women auctioning off their… More >>
  • Best New Vintage Store

    Pretty Penny

    Although Pretty Penny has been a vintage heaven for years in Oakland, the company recently opened a San Francisco location to save retro babes a trek to the East Bay. Tucked off the beaten path of Valencia, Pretty Penny has racks that are less beaten down too, with mint-condition vintage duds (including a number of adorable dresses) at surprisingly affordable… More >>
  • Best New Décor Store

    Aggregate Supply

    Aggregate Supply was founded by those who know design — the fashion designers behind Turk + Taylor, the skincare gurus of Heliotrope, and décor newbies Acacia combined forces to create a store that offers all the comforts of home. Since opening in December 2012, Aggregate Supply has grown into a chill escape from the bustle of Valencia Street. You'll want… More >>
  • Best Place to Buy Sexy Outfits

    New York Apparel

    So it's Bay to Breakers, SantaCon, or Folsom Street Fair, and you've suddenly realized that your closet is devoid of the perfect slutty-yet-breathable lingerie required for cavorting drunkenly through the streets of San Francisco. Rather than borrowing something of questionable cleanliness from your sketchy roommate, pay a visit to New York Apparel, where you'll find all the sexy clothes, stripper… More >>
  • Best Local Beauty Supply

    Beauty Company SF

    Founded in the city by California girl Sherri Zeische, this boutique source of local beauty brands always satisfies. With a chic nail salon, cute displays, and a waxing vault (which has a big ol' bank door to keep your bikini wax feeling ultra-private), Beauty Company holds down Polk Street for beauty needs in a pinch, never offers an ounce of… More >>
  • Best Place to Manscape Without Raising Eyebrows

    Landing Strip Wax Studio

    Nancy Tamashiro can really clean up any man, and does so with a touch that isn't emasculating but empowering. We recommend her for "Manzilian" waxes, but she does an amazing job at unibrows and errant nose hairs as well.… More >>
  • Best Place to Get Metrosexy Threads and Outfits

    Unionmade

    This menswear mecca is really one of the few independent shops with a comprehensive selection of casual and fine clothing that's timeless with a slightly modern twist. Whoever your style icon is from decades past, this shop will have the perfect shoe or Henley to echo that era.… More >>
  • Best Place to Get Eyewear To See and Be Seen In

    Optical Underground

    This shop, whose logo pays homage to the London Underground metro system, also carries a wide selection of frames that are all about European style. You'll find eyeglasses and sunglasses that feature unique colors and shapes with a nod to perennial standards, but catering to American tastes.… More >>
  • Best Place to Purchase Your Satchel, Messenger, Murse, or Whatever You Call It

    Timbuk2

    The modern man is always ready for everything and carries all he needs on his back. In San Francisco, the vast majority of men are sporting a messenger bag for their laptops, books, and/or change of clothes. With the option to create your own bag, and with 18 total locations in San Francisco, this local brand lets people express their… More >>
  • Best Tourist Shop for Locals

    Thidwick Books

    It's always fun to giggle at tourists who thought they would be vacationing in Sunny California™ (rather than foggy, freezing San Francisco) and ended up having to buy bulky gray sweatshirts with the Golden Gate Bridge embroidered on the front. But sometimes, we want some souvenirs of our own — tasteful ones, of course. Enter Thidwick Books, which, in addition… More >>
  • Best Salon for Curls

    Madusalon

    Every curly-haired woman has had this experience: In the salon, blow-dried and coifed, her new haircut looks flawless. But after a shower, her natural curl returns, devastating the once-even lines of her hairstyle. She doesn't have time to blow dry and style her hair every morning, and with the added wind and fog of San Francisco, managing her curls becomes… More >>
  • Best Community Holdout

    Viracocha

    Viracocha is what you wish your house looked like — a sunlit, airy space, filled with enough trinkets and treasures to keep a guest occupied for hours. The glossy red clawfoot tub sure would look good in your bathroom, too. But Viracocha is more than a home goods store. There's the library in the back, where visitors can while away… More >>
  • Best Bookstore on the Brink

    Marcus Books

    Marcus Books has occupied the same Fillmore Street Victorian since 1960, where it has served as a pillar of the black literary community — it's the oldest continuously run black-owned bookstore in the nation. However, financial troubles have pushed the historic bookstore to the brink of closure. A recent fundraiser by the store's owners to help them buy back the… More >>
  • Best Only-in-S.F. Tchotchkes

    African Outlet

    Hayes Valley is packed with fancy boutiques, so it can be a little jarring to suddenly catch a strong whiff of incense while wandering down Octavia Street. The smell wafts constantly from African Outlet, an eclectic shop packed with masks, art, and apparel. Without the protection of commercial rent control, the small store is facing the daunting pressure of rising… More >>
  • Best Rising Record Stores

    By Derek Opperman Certain record stores are kind of like coal mine canaries: When they start dying off, it's an early sign that the health of a city's electronic dance music scene is in jeopardy. Following such logic, San Francisco's scene was almost near death in the late aughts, when nearly all the smaller shops folded, leaving only larger retailers like… More >>
  • The Metrosexual Male

    By Juan de Anda They flex. They wax. They Spanx. They're the heterosexual men of San Francisco. The past decade has seen the meteoric rise of these stylish, metrosexual men in urban centers like S.F. and New York, though several pundits at the time critiqued it as a passing fad. But it's held on to become a mainstay in society. "Metrosexual" was coined by… More >>
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