Best of 2013

Best of 2013
Credit: Shutterstock

Every year, thousands of startups defy the odds and turn a tiny budget and a great idea into a thriving business. Here at BusinessNewsDaily, we speak with and write about successful entrepreneurs who have done just that, and in the process, we've discovered numerous companies with incredible, inspiring stories. Here are 10 of the best businesses we wrote about in 2013.

Armorteria

Armorteria
Credit: Armorteria, LLC

Children pick up germs just about everywhere they go, and no place has greater potential to get them sick than their school. Teacher and father Gregory Francois teamed up with his wife to start Armorteria,a health-conscious company dedicated to teaching children about health and personal hygiene with its flagship product, Halo Sani-Cuffs. This colorful, stylish wristband allows kids to sanitize their hands with the push of a button. [Learn more]

Canceled Weddings/I Do Now I Don't

Canceled Weddings/I Do Now I Don't
Credit: Runaway bride image via Shutterstock

It was a match made in heaven: Canceled Weddings and I Do Now I Don't, two startups specializing in reselling canceled event contracts and wedding jewelry and attire, respectively, formed a partnership earlier this year to help couples whose matches may not have been so perfect. Whether it's a broken engagement or simply a desire to elope and avoid wedding planning stress, couples who are canceling their wedding can recoup their financial losses with these companies' services. [Learn more]

Clothing Arts

Clothing Arts
Credit: Clothing Arts

When travel enthusiast Adam Rapp was visiting Xian, China, he narrowly avoided being robbed by a group of pickpockets. After this experience, he was inspired to design a pair of travel pants that were stylish and offered the protection he needed for his valuables. Through his company, Clothing Arts, Rapp created the Pick-Pocket Proof Pants, or "P^3 Travel Pants." The cut-resistant nylon pants feature numerous pockets with multiple layers of zippers and buttons to protect your passport, wallet and other important items while traveling. [Learn more]

Dirtball Fashion

Dirtball Fashion
Credit: Water bottle image via Shutterstock

This quirky company saves countless plastic water bottles from landfills by turning them into men's apparel. Dirtball Fashion's 100-percent-recycled clothing and hats are made of a unique fabric spun from ground-up, melted water bottles and cotton scraps. In addition to creating recycled clothing, the eco-friendly company also accepts one of its products, the "Dirt Short," back from customers who have worn their pair out to be re-recycled into new shorts. [Learn more]

Earth Starter

Earth Starter
Credit: Nourishmat.com

This Kickstarter success story began when Earth Starter's founders won $50,000 in a business competition. This money was enough to get the company's flagship product, the Nourishmat, designed and produced, but Earth Starter turned to crowdfunding to bring its home gardening tool to a national audience. With this planting grid mat and the company's seedballs, all you need is a 4-by-6 space and some soil to start growing your own herbs and produce. [Learn more]

healthy mama

healthy mama
Credit: Pregnant belly image via Shutterstock

During her first pregnancy, Rachel Katz Galatt learned that the Internet can be a confusing place when it comes to information on safe medication for expectant mothers. After her frustration with this experience, she decided to launch her own line of natural over-the-counter remedies for common pregnancy ailments. Katz Galatt's brand, healthy mama, is part of her company, Maternal Science, Inc., and aims to set pregnant and nursing women at ease about their over-the-counter choices. [Learn more]

LegalForce

LegalForce
Credit: Raj Abhyanker

What do you get when you combine a bookstore, a tablet retailer, a speaking venue and a law firm all into one location? The answer is BookFlip, a brick-and-mortar store that stemmed from online trademark registry website, LegalForce. The brainchild of trademark lawyer Raj Abhyanker, LegalForce BookFlip provides walk-in legal advice, educational events and books to serve as a "full-service center for law education." [Learn more]

Limelight Extensions

Limelight Extensions
Credit: Limelight Extensions

The city of Detroit may have filed for bankruptcy over the summer, but that didn't stop one of its ambitious, college-aged residents from launching a hair extensions business. With the help of her mother, Miranda Jade Plater founded Limelight Extensions as an e-commerce company when she was still in school earlier this year. Today, she's selling her high-quality hair pieces online as well as in a newly opened retail location just outside of her home city. [Learn more]

Unite US

Unite US
Credit: UniteUS.com

After their time in the armed forces, military veterans and reservists have a lot of adjusting to do to get back to "life after the uniform." Unite US is a new tech platform founded by three veterans and a civilian military supporter to help fellow vets find military-friendly resources in their home communities. Launched just before Veterans Day, Unite US utilizes hyperlocal mapping and community management to connect current and former military members with the support, job opportunities and organizations they need to transition into civilian life. [Learn more]

WET

WET
Credit: WET Enterprises

Have you ever been mesmerized by beautiful water displays like the famous Bellagio fountains in Las Vegas? The designer of this and numerous large-scale fountains across the globe is a company called WET, which was co-founded by designer, engineer and former Disney Imagineer Mark Fuller. Fuller's firm holds multiple patents on water-related technology, and its staff is always looking for new ways to push the boundaries of this natural element. [Learn more]