If you live or work in Asheville, you surely have heard the slogans, ‘go local’ or ‘buy local.’ Catchy phrases that sound good. Clearly, it feels good to support our local business people and places as they are part of the community in which we live work and play. But ‘going local’ and ‘buying local’ have benefits much more concrete than just making us feel good.

Studies have shown that when you patronize local, independently owned businesses, more of your purchasing dollar stays within the community supporting other businesses and workers.

Local businesses help to keep the character of your community unique and since they are owned by local people, they are more invested in the community, participating in the civic life of the town through adopting streets, supporting local non-profits and service agencies and encouraging local prosperity by attracting other entrepreneurs. A locally owned store you frequent may be owned by your neighbor or your friend! Did you know that local businesses are the largest employers nationally and that they locally, provide the most jobs to residents?

Additionally, many local businesses locate within a downtown or town center, thus decreasing sprawl, congestion, habitat loss and pollution. They put less demand on a city’s infrastructure such as roads sewers and safety services and generate more tax revenue per sales dollar.

When huge stores move into a community, they can put locally owned shops out of business and change the character of an entire town. Many communities have seen their town centers become ghost towns when mega stores move in. Plus the money these stores make flows out of the community.

Spa Theology is proud to support Asheville’s ‘go local,’ ‘buy local’ efforts. In fact, if you have a Go Local Card, you can receive 10% off any 60 minute or longer service. Our spa’s retail area features products made by local crafts people from jewelers and candle makers to potters. The Privai Skin Care line is formulated and marketed by local skin care professionals. Not only do we offer local products, but we pride ourselves in providing local treatments as well! Spa Theology partners with local companies to handcraft services such as the Asheville brewing Company Treatment and the French Broad Chocolate Lounge Treatment. Spa Theology’s owners, Ilana Alberico and Christina Stratton both call Asheville home. The spa professionals who serve you live in and love this community and contribute to it both ‘on and off the job.’

It’s clear that ‘going local’ builds stronger more resilient communities that develop their own unique character. Next time you’re thinking of going to that big box store on the edge of town, why not stop and think if there’s a locally owned business who can offer you just what you need instead?