Who doesn’t want to look and feel their best? Everyone, of course, but some segments of the LGBT community are known to raise this pursuit to an art form. Whether it’s the hottest outfit just off the runways of Milan, or a carefully constructed outfit obtained via Herculean thrift store adventures, we’ve shown we have the will to construct our look carefully. And just check our gym membership records! Here’s where Nashville’s LGBT community goes to shape, alter, and cover their bodies, and to find a little furry happiness.



Place to Shop for New ClothesH&M

Last year, Opry Mills won this category in no small measure due to the arrival of Nashville’s first H&M store. Since then, H&M has opened another location in Cool Springs, and the LGBT shopping community couldn’t be more pleased. They’ve shown their appreciation by overwhelmingly choosing H&M as Nashville’s Best Place to Shop for New Clothes. And what would we expect—Nashvillians slept in their cars to be ready to get in line when the new location opened in May.



Place to Shop for Used ClothesGoodwill

Like game hunting, thrift shopping isn’t for everyone, but for the intrepid deal-seeker, buying used (not vintage, thrifty) clothing offers the thrill of the hunt combined with the satisfaction of knowing you didn’t pay dozens of times more than cost for what you’ll be wearing. Even better is the sense of satisfaction that comes from knowing that, if you do your job really well, no one else will realize that your $500 suit only cost $19.99 at your local Goodwill. Unless you utilize the Goodwill rewards punch-card, in which case it might have been free! Plus, when you shop at Goodwill, you know that you’re funding training and employment opportunities for people who have trouble finding work.



Tattoo ShopBlack 13

With last year’s winner, Lone Wolf, relocating to Cool Springs, who could fill the void in Nashville? Turns out that Black 13 filled the bill. Located in Historic Cummins Station, Black 13 is an amazing tattoo parlor with a classic ambiance and elegant design. This is surely your destination for professional tattooing in a beautiful and clean environment.

According to their website, the most sought-after tattooers in this eight-artist shop can have a month’s long waiting list—some are so booked they aren’t currently taking new appointments at all—so if you want it done, you might need to be prepared to wait! But by all accounts it’s worth it. As one customer wrote, it’s “the most professional, talented and friendly tattoo parlor out there. I'll never get a tattoo anywhere else! I drive two hours, one way, to get there and it's worth every second!”



GymPlanet Fitness

This year Planet Fitness bested the YMCA handily, after last year’s tie!



Pet ServicesThe Dog Spot

The Dog Spot, which has also been named “Best of” by the *Nashville Scene* (2012–14), offers professional dog grooming, daycare, and boarding services. With three locations—East Nashville, West Nashville, and Mount Juliet—there’s a good chance they’re relatively convenient. And for you overprotective parents out there, their facilities are fully equipped with webcams so you can look in on your pooch when you can’t be home with them! 




Hairstylist Derrick Lachney, Fresh Salon

This year’s GayFaves Best Hairstylist, Derrick Lachney, a seasoned stylist working at Fresh Salon on Demonbreun. Derrick has worked with celebrities including Kelly Pickler, Kacey Musgraves, and Hillary Scott.

“Fifteen years this month I’ve been doing hair,” he said. “I went pretty much straight from high school to doing hair. I started doing it here in Nashville, and though I moved to D.C. for a while most of my career has been here.”

For the four years since he moved back from D.C., Derrick has worked solely at Fresh Salon. In fact it was that opportunity that brought him back: “I moved back from D.C. when my girlfriend was opening it to work there for her.”

Derrick is a cheerleader for his salon’s products and services. “We use Davines and Kevin Murphy products, both of which are great quality—I’ve worked with Davines longer than any other product. In fact I used to be an educator for their product line.”

Coloring is Derrick’s specialty. “Hair color is about 80% of my business,” he said. “It was all I did in D.C. I won Nashville Lifestyles Best Colorist this year too!” Then he joked that, “Living in the South I made my name doing highlights and making blonds. Down here, that’s one thing that just never goes out. I joke that I built my house on highlights.”

Liz J. of Chicago, Illinois wrote about Derrick that “he is a genius with the foils. I was a client of his when he was in D.C., and I have traveled all the way to Nashville just to have him work his magic on my hair.... Well, actually, I used to live there so I was visiting friends. Regardless, it was a wonderful treat to also get to see Derrick! He was the best in D.C., and I am certain he is the best in Nashville. My next trip down to Nashville will be planned around my hair, and I will be sure and book an appointment with Derrick. He truly is the best colorist I've ever worked with!”

Derrick loves his job: “I really enjoy being with and working with different people every day. Some of my clients have been with me over ten years and building that relationship is one of my favorite things. I try to keep my personal life off the table—my clients know the basics—and just try to leave that time open for them to talk.”








Photo courtesy of Red Bull

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Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville

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Who would have thought that we would have to get through a pandemic in order to appreciate the small things we have, such as the ability to simply pack our bags and hit the road?

For two years, there’s been nothing left for us travel junkies to do but sit at home and try to find new destinations that we will conquer once we defeat what appears to be the biggest villain of the 21st century. But once that happens, hold your bags tight because we will be up for some of the most interesting travel experiences. Take a look at some ideas for your post-COVID traveling plans:

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