We visited the Om Yoga Show on Friday and to say it’s overwhelming is an understatement. As soon as you walk through the door, there’s the noise of yoga classes taking places, juicers whirring, and people everywhere. Lots of likeminded people, many decked out in colourful yoga gear. After all, we’re at a yoga show, right? So which brands should you make a beeline for if you’re short of time? We chose our Top Ten, based on friendliness, values and amazing product or service.
In no particular order (we love you all!):
1. Boxing Yoga [STAND 132]
Founded by Matt Garcia (of Total Boxer) and Kajza Ekberg (dancer and yoga instructor), Boxing Yoga is a class that’s taking the world by storm. Designed to support athletes, fighters and those with an active lifestyle, it’s a delicate mash-up of the different values that rule each activity, and improves mental and physical strength, maximises performance, prevents injury and maintains health.
2. Lululemon [STAND H15]
We’ve been a fan of this Canadian clothing brand pretty much as soon as we stepped foot in their Islington showroom. Their clothes are functional (they have the best smart black trousers that you can totally wear to work AND jump straight into a yoga class in they’re FANTASTIC), their staff are knowledgeable and most of all, passionate. Community is at the heart of their brand and it shows – they offer free yoga sessions at weekends and often do crazy little events, such as one-day yoga crawls (we went, it was tiring but so amazing) and candlelit outdoors yoga. Plus, they have labels on their clothes that tell you specifically why they made them. Genius.
3. Hello Fresh
We’ve seen Hello Fresh around for a while (last year at the Yoga Show, in fact, except they were placed in the Mind, Body, Soul section near to where demons were being released. I’m not sure how good that was for their zen…) but we’d not actually spoken with them. Until recently. Catering for busy Londoners, they send you the exact ingredients you need to make home-cooked meals, all within 30 minutes. It’s for those who want to eat well, but don’t have the time to go shopping or even think. Hello Fresh makes is easy. So easy in fact, that Amy decided to sign up then and there. Watch out a for her thoughts on them soon.
We have to admit it, we’ve tried a fair few coconut oils in our time (we should really turn this into a blogpost) and Coconoil have never let us know. With a choice of normal or organic, their coconut oil is so good we have to stop ourselves scooping it out the jar. Use it for roasting, frying, baking, in your tea, coffee, for oil-pulling or even on it’s own. This stuff doesn’t get grainy like some of the other brands and it’s a staple in our cupboards.
Stock up on yours at their show prices (we’re already regretting not getting more…)!
5. Five Feathers [STAND H10]
We first about these guys through Instagram. Where were people getting these cute and delicate gold feather tattoos? We followed the trail which led us to Sarah Thompson and her team. They also had the best way to get people to sign up to their email ever – write and pin your intention (with your email address) on their dreamcatcher and in return you get feathered-up! Winner. This activewear brand has values rooted in sustainability and giving back to those who are most in need of it; every Five Feathers garment sold goes directly into the tuition of a child at a JAAGO school.
6. The Vegan Society
Vegans can be a bit like religious people – over pushy, dramatic and lecturing, however the people we met at The Vegan Society are anything but. We found them to be full of knowledge, understanding and there was no righteousness around it all, even when I mentioned I was eating death every day. People are becoming more clued up about what they’re eating and it’s important that we do know what goes in our slaughterhouses, abbatoirs and animal farms – it is sickening and heart-breaking when you discover how our meat and dairy products are produced. Regardless of what decision people make, having that knowledge in the first place is key to being able to make the best decision for you. We had some lovely chats with a guy who (as well as giving us some crackers – thank you!) told us he’d been vegan from birth but had also had some honeymoon periods with fish and other things. And that’s ok.
7. Fierce Grace [STAND G23A]
With their ‘Go FG Yourself’ humour, hairy biker quirkiness, this is a brand for those who like to have fun. In fact, Amy has already tried and tested their classes and is one of the converted. With evening candlelit sessions at the end of the week and a host of super friendly and lovely teachers, these guys score top marks for making people feel welcome.
If you go and visit their stand, take a photo of yourself in a yoga pose and post it to their Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, you can receive one free lesson. We’ll see you there!
8. Will Williams Meditation
If you’ve ever suffered, like we have, from an unbridled fear of ‘I CAN’T MEDITATE’ then you should have some chats with Will Williams. He’s young, calm and full of quiet enthusiasm about how meditation can really help people with all aspects of their life – from health, to relationships, to career and more. Indeed, we’ve been on one of his weekends so we already know how good he is and it’s a great introduction for those who want to know more about meditation and indeed, how to meditate – so many apps and other classes just don’t really tell you HOW. You’ll leave with skills that you’ll use for the rest of your life.
9. OmBar Chocolate [STAND A26]
Using raw cacao for maximum taste and goodness, OmBar’s ‘chocolate enlightenment’ comes in many different and unusual flavours. Whilst Coco Mylk seems to be a favourite, that shouldn’t stop you trying the other ones. It’s organic, sustainably sourced and bursting with flavour – whether you’re a chocolate fiend or not, this is sure to get your taste-buds going.
10. Unoco Drinks
Made of pure, unadulterated coconuts from islands in the Pacific, this coconut water stands out from the rest – it’s pink. And that’s because it’s packed with antioxidants! One of our favourite coconut waters, this is refreshing and tastes like coconut water should – clean and simple.