Here are my two boys:
This is my mustard gas betta, Aura. He's my little shark. It's a good thing he's not any bigger, or he would have taken my hand along with his dinner on several occasions.
And this is Rorschach. I found him at my LFS (which is normally very good, if not stellar) with less than an inch of water in his container. I thought "Oh no, he's dead. And he's so pretty--" However, when I picked up the cup and tilted it, he started swimming!
ETA - Yes, his tail has a tear. I don't know exactly how he did it. He's being treated with Melafix and it's growing back well so far.
Both tanks are Eclipse System Threes - 3 gallons each. Two of the plants in Aura's and all of the green plants in Rorschach's are real. The substrate is coarse-grained sand - a little coarser than the playsand I have in my hermit crab tanks. So far I haven't added heaters - in my experience, the tanks stay at 77-80 without them. I think the acrylic does almost too good a job holding in the heat from the light. I'd eventually like to add a small bottom feeder or two, but I'm afraid ghost shrimp would end up on the menu (with Aura, anyway) and snails are probably out with the live plants.