Best of Columbia 2016: Health, Wellness & Cosmetic

Best Tattoo Artist Shannon Purvis Barron, owner of Best Tattoo Studio-winning Indigo Rose Tattoo, gives Patient 1203 some ink featuring her favorite snack. Photo by John Carlos.

Best Fitness Club

Müv Fitness

Runner-up: Planet Fitness

The Gold’s Gym locations around Columbia, consistent Best of Columbia winners, were rebranded under the name of Spokane, Washington-based Müv last year but remain under the same ownership.

Best Hair Salon

Studio O2

Runner-up: Robin Gottlieb Studio

The first new winner in this category in four years, the Vista’s Studio O2 also offers massages and oxygen treatments.

Best Hair Stylist

Gregory Garrett —Metropolis Salon and Dry Bar

Runner-up: Lydia Catherine — Vivid Salon

Garrett, owner and stylist at this Taylor Street salon, is beloved by Columbia hipsters and high society types alike for his on-point cuts and magical color services.

Best Day Spa

Urban Nirvana

Runner-up: OCCO Skin Studio

Given our ever-busy schedules, a trip to the massage parlor might be just what the doctor ordered. With different types of massages, waxing options and facial treatments, Urban Nirvana is a great place to pamper yourself.

Best Massage Therapist

Jen Brown — Bliss

Runner-up: Heather Ferry — Heavenly Hands

Shop owner Jen Brown knows her stuff. She served in the Air Force as a victim’s advocate for sexual trauma survivors for eight years before specializing in deep tissue massage. Her goal? “To provide a safe, therapeutic experience for survivors to be able to heal and thrive with healing and caring touch.” To that end, Brown provides a free hour-long session for trauma survivors and regular massage sessions that can last for up to four hours.

Best Yoga Studio

City Yoga

Runner-up: Bikram Yoga

You want to perfect your downward dog, yes — but you also want to enrich your heart and mind and community, right? City Yoga is the place for you.

Best Tattoo Artist

Shannon Purvis Barron — Indigo Rose Tattoo

Runners-up (tie): Shane Anderson — Animated Canvas Custom Tattoo; Darcy Del Priore — Sickle & Moon

Shannon is versatile, but her style is also unmistakable — and that’s the mark of a great artist. She also works with P.ink, an organization that brings together tattoo artists and breast-cancer survivors who want to adorn their mastectomy scars.

Best Tattoo Studio

Indigo Rose Tattoo

Runner-up: Animated Canvas Custom Tattoo

Naturally, Columbia’s best tattoo artist owns Columbia’s best tattoo studio. Check out one of Indigo Rose’s fine artists next time you want some ink.

Best Piercing Studio

Immaculate Body Piercing

Runner-up: Knotty Headz

Immaculate Body Piercing, located in Five Points, has a slogan: “Safe. Beautiful. Gentle.” When you are planning to have a part of your body pierced, those are very, very welcome words. The shop says its piercer training exceeds state requirements in a number of areas, including anatomy, wound care, piercing techniques and bedside manner. Plus, they’ll make you look cool.

Best Hospital

Lexington Medical Center

Runner-up: Palmetto Health Richland

Free Times readers continue to love Lexington Medical Center, which broke ground this year on a new $400 million, 10-story tower that will include 71 new beds.

Best Urgent Care

Lexington Medical Center

Runner-up: Doctors Care

Look, sometimes things happen in life. Like say, just as a completely random example, maybe you get bitten by an unseen bug and your left leg rapidly swells up to cartoonish levels. When something like that happens, you can count on Lexington Medical Center’s urgent care staff to address the problem and get you back on the road to good health in short order.

Best Pediatric Care

Palmetto Pediatric and Adolescent Clinic

Runner-up: Sandhills Pediatrics

With five offices across the Midlands, Palmetto Pediatrics also offers education for new mothers who want to nurse and help to manage care for special-needs children.

Best Dentist

Dr. Adam Brantley — Devine Dentistry

Runner-up: Berger Dental Group

Dr. Brantley touts that he keeps his treatments up to date by continuously incorporating new technology and education into his Columbia practice.

Best Eye Doctor or Group

Columbia Eye Clinic

Runner-up: Sansbury Eye Center

The Midlands’ largest ophthalmology practice wins for a third straight year.

Best Chiropractor

The Joint

Runner-up: Dr. Rick Sanford Chiropractic

With three Columbia-area locations, The Joint offers monthly and multi-visit plans that include discounts.

Best Orthopedic Practice

Midlands Orthopedics

Runner-up: Moore Orthopedic Clinic

Sometimes you tweak your knee with just 20 seconds left in your running routine. When that happens, Free Times readers back Midlands Orthopedics as the place to get some TLC.

Best Physical Therapy Practice

Carolina Physical Therapy

Runner-up: Pinnacle Physical Therapy

After hurting your knee so close to being done with your running routine, you might need some help recovering. With a half-dozen Midlands offices, Free Times readers suggest hobbling over to Carolina Physical Therapy.

Best Dermatology Practice

Columbia Skin Clinic

Runner-up: Carolinas Dermatology Group

Feel better about the skin you’re in. Columbia Skin Clinic has two Columbia-area offices offering a full-range of services.

We're improving out commenting experience.

We’ve temporarily removed comments from articles while we work on a new and better commenting experience. In the meantime, subscribers are encouraged to join the conversation at our Post and Courier Subscribers group on Facebook.