It may be Black History Month, but I'm Black every.single.day. And while it remains an important tradition to remind the country of our accomplishments, sacrifices, and to shine a light on the injustices this country often tries to overlook.. real change, progress, education, and awareness, cannot be achieved in a single month. One simple way to support the community is by buying from Black owned brands. Whether that be hair care, skincare, clothing, food, books, art, blogs, podcasts, you name it - there is a Black person doing it that needs your support. Since you clicked on this article, I'm assuming that's exactly what you plan to do more of this year, so I've made it a little easier for you by listing some of my favorite Black owned brands and organizations to support not just this month, but year round.
When the founder, Jasmine Lawrence, was only 11 years old, she started her own line of beauty and hair care products(Can you say Black Excellence!). She had experienced hair damage that resulted in hair loss at an age when appearances can make or break a young girl's confidence. However, she bounced back by creating her own hair care concoctions from her kitchen. With a strong following of curlies who have faced similar hair care concerns, EDEN BodyWorks is now celebrating a decade of creating high-quality hair care solutions for the curly hair community. NaturallyCurly editor Gerilyn is always raving about this brand, so I had to try it for myself. I absolutely love the "Butter" which is for hair and body. It's creamy, thick, and SO moisturizing, which my dyed blonde hair needs. I also love the coconut shea leave-in conditioner.
I only recently tried this brand while doing the NaturallyCurly 100 products in a month challenge, and now I don't want to try any others! The hair dew is amazing, and the co-wash smells divine. Founded in 2001 by lifelong naturalista Jamyla Bennu, Oyin hair products use natural ingredients of the highest grade. Oyin expertly blends them together to give you care that embraces the beauty of your natural texture!
Mielle Organics founder, Monique Rodriguez, who holds a degree in registered nursing, has tested and proven the effectiveness of the Mielle Organics product line. And my co-workers and I can tell. After hearing Alex rave about their styling gel, I decided to give it a try. Usually my hair doesn't like gels because they leave my hair sticky or crunchy, but this gel had a soft hold and a lovely scent. I've added it to my rotation after wash day. And since Mielle Organics' products are paraben-free, and no harsh chemicals or harmful preservatives are ever used, I can feel good about using the line in my hair.
With their attitude of empowerment through high-quality hair care formulas, Soultanicals products bring a new, soulistic concept to the marketplace. A fresh, new approach with a distinct earthy flavor. They do not just plan to deliver just another hair cream to the marketplace; they strive to produce goodies that awaken the spirit in the process. My favorite from the line is the Soultanicals Aqua Mane Instant Moisture Potion Leave-In Conditioner. The spray bottle evenly distributes moisture throughout my hair, which is perfect for mornings I don't wash my hair and need some added definition.
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Cara, my poreless friend
I bring this brand up every time I can because it is truly my Holy Grail skincare brand. Foxie Cosmetics is a vegan and handmade line by Kayla Phillips that encourages healing, self-care and aiding in chronic illness and pain. One of my favorites is the Imperial 24k Mask, which leaves my skin unbelievably soft, clean, and moisturized after. The mask has real specks of gold in it, so I always use it when I need a little confidence boost. I also have the Green Tea Body Butter, which exfoliates then melts into my skin, leaving my legs so soft and smooth. Kayla is currently taking a break from taking orders, but follow her on Instagram because she should be opening up again soon!
I found out about this brand through MelanGlow, a blog that explores the skin care concerns of the brown beauty novice & enthusiast. The brand is not only Black owned, but prides itself in using plant-powered ingredients to help you maintain a natural and healthy glow. The line carries powder masks, facial oils, cleansers, and super cute mask mixing ceramic bowls for all your face care needs.
We received this brand for our Editors Choice Awards this year, and have since been raving about several different products. My favorite is the eye/lip moisturizer. I use it at night and wake up with de-puffed, bright eyes and soft supple lips. I also really like the cleansing oil for taking off makeup easily and quickly. It leaves some residue, but nothing a light cleanser can't fix.
With more vitamin A than carrots, more calcium than milk, more protein than eggs, and more iron than spinach per serving, Moringa leaves may just be the healthiest superfood under the sun. Moringa oil comes from the seeds of Moringa Oleifera Tree, and is getting more and more popular in the beauty industry due to its excellent anti-aging, dark-spot reducing, acne fighting, and moisturizing benefits.
Beauty Bakerie caters to us makeup lovers who don't have hundreds of dollars to drop on our product junkie habits. Their bakery-inspired line includes best-selling products that range from liquid lipsticks, setting powder, and illuminators to eyebrow gel, eyeshadows, and eyeliners. For color that pops on every skin color, head to Beauty Bakerie right now. Just do it.
Black Opal offers some of the most affordable and easy to use foundation sticks for all your coverage and contour needs. The shade range is great for women of color, and even fits my hard to blend reddish tan-hued skin. The finish somewhere between matte and dewy and looks great year round, regardless of the weather. At less than $10 a pop, it really can't hurt to try.
For super bright eyeshadows and lipstick that STICKS on all skintones, try Magnolia Makeup.
"Magnolia Makeup, based out of New Orleans, Louisiana, is a company devoted to color. We are trying to fill a void in the cosmetic industry and our tool is the spectrum."
We LOVE Fenty in the NaturallyCurly offices, with shades for everyone, highlight that pops, gloss that shines bright like a diamond (sorry I'm so corny), and coverage to hide even the most annoying zits, Rihanna really lived up to the hype. I usually only wear this foundation on weekends, as it can cause me to breakout if I wear it too much like many heavier foundations, but honestly its worth it for glowy, smooth, and natural looking skin. My faves from the line are the matte lipstick and foundation. Have you tried Fenty yet?
A HI-larious webseries created by Nickclette and Fum Fum Ko, and the first season is out now. The show stars Nneka: who is described as "the oldest, and a Harvard graduate, (who) was on track to follow her mother's dreams and attend medical school and become a doctor. Now, she's an Uber driver. And mom's found out. And so have her twin siblings. As she comes to terms with not being the "perfect" Nigerian-American, she is forced to look for what her true purpose in life may be. Nneka is on a journey of discovering her truth and is taking steps towards loving herself. Part of her growth is learning that she has to follow her heart and let go of trying to appease others."
The card game of all card games. You may lose a friend or two while playing but it will be worth the fun. You can watch Grace, Evelyn, and Nikki play on the NC YouTube channel here!
Imma keep this short because you should know this already. Go see it. Go support Black actors, writers, directors, producers, etc. There is natural hair, strong women kicking butt, Michael B. Jordan, Kendrick Lamar produced the soundtrack, Angela Bassett, Lupita Nyong'o, and also MICHAEL B JORDAN. Sorry but have you seen him? Anyways go watch it. I already have three tickets for different days.
Me in my Adorned by Chi Tee :)
I found this brand in Highschool back in my Tumblr days and ordered a laptop decal with the same print I'm wearing above. Today, the brand has expanded and creates graphic tees, pillows, mugs, accessories (pins & patches, hats, and totes), as well as stickers. The site truly has a collection for everyone, from anime and comic book lovers, to Migos appreciation and Melanin pride, Adorned by Chi has a Tee for you. T-shirts average around $30, making them the perfect and unique holiday gift for a friend or family, or yourself!
Philadelphia Printworks was founded in 2010 by Maryam Pugh and Ruth Perez. It was born out of a love for DIY culture and social justice. The site features several collections of tees, patches, zines and has developed into a space for creative collaboration around activism. My picks from the site are the Cats Against Catcalling collections, which is a collection of 3 designs illustrated by Alaina Ewins that addresses street harassment (10% of the profits are donated to Pussy Division, a group of feminist activists based in Philadelphia) and the "Embodied" Collection. The latter was created by Black Yogi and collection co-designer, Jean-Jacques Gabriel, to honor and inspire and represent POC engaged in self-care practices. The line is rooted in the words of Audre Lorde, "Caring for myself is not self-indulgent. Caring for myself is an act of survival." 10% of the profits will be donated to the Black Yoga Teacher's Alliance Scholarship Fund.
Created by Skylar Marshai, As You Are Intimates is a New York-based intimates brand, providing handmade lingerie that hugs your body in all the right places. "We strive to produce lingerie that not only allows for intimate comfort, but that allows women to embrace who they are, as they are, from any shape, shade, or size. Through detailed lace and design, our goal is to regenerate the usual perspective of lingerie, providing pieces for women seeking lingerie that can be bought as a reminder to themselves." You deserve to feel sexy, cute, pretty, and beautiful! Indulge in some self-care and body-positivity, and buy yourself some lingerie.
I found her on Twitter after she posted a photo for our #TextureTuesday, and saw that she made incredible candles. They come inside coconuts, how cute!
Their motto is "It's lit" a proverb for millennials (drag me). Each candle is hand poured, packaged, and shipped from Brooklyn with the highest quality ingredients. The line is made with 100% natural soy wax and scented with the finest of fragrance oils.
"One of our goals is to support other small southern businesses. With that in mind, we searched high & low for the best suppliers in the south.Our fragrances, so incredibly lush & luxurious, come from South Carolina and Georgia. Our wax, wicks, and containers come from (almost) right down the road here in North Carolina. We know that our customers appreciate our doing our best to help keep business local."
Instead of your buying the standard Barbie or American Girl dolls, support a doll maker that caters their designs to black and brown kids. Shoot, I'm 25 and I want one. Harper Iman dolls can be custom-made from the hair, skin complexion, and clothing, or you can buy a pre-made doll. Click Harper Iman Dolls above to find the site!
A Freelance Illustrator based in Philadelphia from Washington,DC., Loveis Wise has a collection of art that is unique, beautiful, and affordable. You can buy her work and support her on Etsy or Philadelphia Printworks.
Known for her watercolor art, Cartwright creates to represent Black women in all of their beauty. What I love most about her work is how she depicts not only the female form as soft and delicate, but their hair as well. You can purchase her work at her store.
Now get to shoppin' and supportin'! What are some of your favorite Black owned brands? Share in the comments below!