One year ago, we all saw the rise of the black lives matter movement during the George Floyd Protests. Fashion and beauty brands were scrambling to show their support for black people as their customers called them out on their lack of it. Some brands showed their genuine solidarity by making changes to diversify their company. For example, the British Fashion Council vowing to make a change to tackle systemic racism within the fashion industry by creating programs to hire black talent & donating to charitable organizations or Alexis Ohanian stepping down from his position from his company, Reddit, in hopes to hire a black candidate for the role and donating his future gains to a charity that helps the black community. But, some brands miserably failed. For example, Dolls Kill, and its owner being rightfully called out for their statements and past accusations of racism during the protests. We saw a lot of notes app apologies and performative “black squares” from companies as a PR marketing move during that time, unfortunately.
The lack of support from very popular brands that so many people were very loyal to, brought attention to the black-owned brands that were suffering during this time. Along with the pandemic, black-owned brands were struggling and being paid less attention to compared to other thriving companies. To combat this, many people on social media began creating documents and lists of every black-owned company that specialized in everything from fashion, beauty, accessories, home items, and even grocery stores. Everyone came together to help these brands that were in need and encouraged others to shop from them instead of other brands. Soon, their popularity and sales began to soar. Now, I have made it my mission to support these brands whenever I can.
So, here are my top 5 favorite black-owned brands! These brands range from fashion & beauty brands that have both high and low-end items. Hopefully, you will get some inspiration to shop from these brands too! Also, remember to shop from your local black-owned businesses! And if you can’t afford to buy anything, there are also many other ways that you can support them too!
My Favorite Black-Owned Brands:
This is one of the first brands that I started to use when I was learning about makeup! Founded, in 1994, this brand had a goal to prioritize the needs of Black women. Although it was not always black-owned, as of 2019, Desiree Rogers and Cheryl Mayberry McKissack bought BLK/OPL, making this iconic brand Black and women-owned for the first time. Over the years, I have begun to love this brand and its products. It is very affordable and can be found in your local drugstores like Walmart. Also, as of recently, actress/singer Ryan Destiny has become the brand’s ambassador. This is amazing since she is one of my makeup inspirations. I can’t wait to see what new products this brand releases in the future!
Teflar is another brand that gained immense popularity during 2020. This brand was founded by Telfar Clemmons in 2005 while he was just a student at Pace University. This is a unisex brand that has the motto, “It’s not for you — it’s for everyone.” But what has made this brand popular is their signature it-bag. This bag is made of vegan leather, branded with the signature “T” Telfar logo. It became so popular that it began selling out in minutes of being released. Everyone from AOC to Solange was supporting this brand. Telfar Clemmons even won accessory design of the year at the CDFA fashion awards in 2020. Because Telfar was made to be an affordable luxury and accessible to everyone, he has created a “Bag Security Program” so everyone will have a chance of pre-ordering this bag before it sells out. They have also had many collaborations including, UGG and Converse. Hopefully, one day I’ll be able to “secure” this bag and make it a staple in my wardrobe!
This is another makeup brand that caught my eye last year. I loved how all of their products had a bakery theme. From baking spray, lip whips, flour setting powder, coffee & cocoa bronzing palette, organic eggs beauty sponges, and more! I thought this concept was very innovative and unique. This brand was founded in 2011 by Cashmere Nicole. During her fight againist breast cancer, she became extremely health conscious and research-driven about the products we put in and on our bodies. The Beauty Bakerie brand is a direct reflection of Cashmere’s perseverance and passion for high-quality, healthy ingredients that enhance the beauty in everyone, every day. Because of that, this brand is cruelty-free and all-inclusive. And to add to that, the brand created, “Sugar Homes“, which supports the needs of orphaned children worldwide. They have been called “activists in makeup” for several other injustices too including the Black Lives Matter movement. Their products are very affordable and have nothing but amazing reviews and positive support!
This brand caught my attention after going viral on social media last year. Founder, Anifa Mvuemba, created a fashion show with 3D technology on Instagram Live during New York Fashion Week. This idea was developed after she realized that she could not travel or shoot during the pandemic. This show had over 144,000 viewers. What makes this show even more special was that it featured invisible models with curves. This line that was featured was called the “Pink Label Congo Collection” referencing the designer’s home country celebrating both its culture and bringing awareness to the issues involving its mining industry. Hanifa was launched in 2012. They specialize in luxury ready-to-wear collections from sizes 0-20 with captivating designs, bold colors, unique textures, and feminine designs illuminate natural curves. Since that iconic runway show, this brand has seen nothing but success. Celebrities including Zendaya, Ciara, and Tracee Ellis Ross have all been seen wearing their pieces. Their Instagram now has 355k followers and continues to grow every day!
5.) UnSun Cosmetics
Sunscreen is one of the most important components of your skincare routine. Unfortunately, there is a misconception the black people do not need it as we do not get skin cancer as much as other races. This is just simply not true. Although black people do not get it as much as other races, our mortality rates are much higher. This is why I admire UnSun Cosmetics. Founded by Katonya Breaux in 2016, she was frustrated by the lack of options within the world of clean sunscreen products for women of color after visiting a dermatologist for concerns regarding her skin. She disliked how most products would leave you with a white residue on your face. This is a major concern with most sunscreen wearers with darker skin. Therefore, UnSun Cosmetics was born. They have developed a mineral tinted sunscreen that ranges in shades from light, medium, and dark. Their mission is to provide clean, no-residue options that were kind to the person using it as well as the environment it’s being used in for women and men of every ethnicity and skin tone. Since this award-winning sunscreen was released the brand has created many other wonderful products as well such as hand cream, face & body highlighter, and more. Katonya has also been a wonderful advocate for the health of black people and their skin, debunking skincare myths, and encouraging everyone to use their sunscreen every day!
There are so many more black-owned brands that I support but I wanted to keep this list short.
So, what are some of your favorite black-owned brands? Comment Below!
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