The many cultural contributions the Black community has made throughout history deserve to be celebrated year-round, and one of the easiest and most effective ways to do so is by supporting Black-owned businesses. There are over 2 million Black-owned businesses in the United States, but despite steady growth in recent years, these businesses enjoy less than 1% of the reported $2 trillion in reported gross revenue nationwide.
The expression "vote with your dollar" comes to mind. Every time you spend your hard-earned cash, you send a message about the kind of world you want to live in and the sort of people and industries you want to support. Here are 20 Black-owned businesses we're excited to shop this month and beyond. (Pro tip: bookmark this page to reference anytime you've got some extra money burning a hole in your digital wallet!)
Rihanna took the concept of a celebrity-owned beauty line to new heights when she launched Fenty Beauty in 2017. Boasting an impressive 59 shades of foundation that suit an impressively wide skin tones, Fenty kicked open the door of inclusivity in the makeup industry, even inspiring more established brands to reconsider the diversity of their own product formulations and marketing strategies. Today, Fenty's offerings have expanded to include a skincare collection and an all-gender eau de parfum. My favorite is the Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer in $weet Mouth.
If Rihanna changed the game, Pat McGrath invented the sport. Dame McGrath is the most influential makeup artist of our time (and the very first to be awarded the DBE title.) In her 25 years in the beauty industry, she has created some of history's most iconic runway and print looks, emphasizing drama, playfulness, and theatricality in her designs. Although she's collaborated on makeup lines since the late-'90s, it wasn't until 2015 that McGrath launched her eponymous brand. It was only a single product - the GOLD 001 pigment - but it broke the Internet. A whole collection followed, and by 2019, Pat McGrath Labs had become a $1 billion company.
Natural personal care products made with love since 1993: that's the Carol's Daughter story. Of course, a lot has changed since those early days - namely, that the company's astronomical success has led to, among other things, an Oprah seal of approval and their inclusion in the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture for their contributions to the natural hair care renaissance. But at its heart, Carol's Daughter is still committed to their original goal of bringing their customers the highest possible quality products using the most carefully selected ingredients on Earth. Whether your hair is the tightest 4-c or fine and straight, Carol's Daughter has a formula for you.
OUI the People is a shave care brand for the 21st century. With emphasis on sustainability, OUI's products are formulated without the use of synthetics, fragrances, parabens, or phthalates, and their packaging is either 100% recyclable or refillable. Their award-winning safety razor is made to last from weighted stainless steel and the cold-forged blades stay sharper, longer. This makes for a happier planet and happier, razor burn-free skin. Be sure to check out the Cheat Sheet Resurfacing Body Serum, which won Cosmopolitan's 2022 Holy Grail Beauty Award.
When Jasmin Foster was working as a buyer for Target, she looked around at their design-y journals, planners, and home goods and noticed something was missing: her. So she set out to create a brand that would reflect the culture and beauty of women of color and in 2020, Be Rooted was born. With their colorful stationery, pens and pencils emblazoned with words of affirmation, and gifts that celebrate and inspire, Be Rooted rocketed to success. It was even named one of Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential Companies in 2022!
In the middle of the Venn diagram of excellent design and responsible impact, you'll find Goodee. This company curates their offerings directly from artisans all over the world, ensuring that a maximum amount of profit makes it back to the people who created the goods. It's a tastemaker marketplace where you'll find gorgeous gardening tools that help reduce global poverty, ultra-stylish decor made from recycled materials, and bath and body products that support marginalized communities.
Who would you trust most in the world to head up a brand of extremely chic, highly functional athletic wear? If your answer is Venus Williams, you're in luck! EleVen by Venus Williams melds style and substance in a collection of activewear and athleisure that works on or off the court. With a focus on fun colors and patterns, flattering cuts, and forward-thinking fabrics, these pieces will get you out of your ratty workout tee shirt and sweats and into a true performance ensemble.
Husband-and-wife duo Darryl and Jessica Sharpton gave up their respective high profile careers to pour their energy into furniture passion project, Edloe Finch. Inspired by the sleek lines and rich colors of mid-century modern design, Edloe Finch's pieces have a timelessness to them that suit a variety of aesthetics. Best of all, their direct-to-consumer approach has allowed them to keep costs down. (Peep the gorgeous Park armchair in luxurious velvet colors!)
Cookies, cake, and brownies are a childhood right, but if your kiddo has food allergies, it's not as easy for them to enjoy such treats with the reckless abandon to which they should be entitled. That's where Partake Foods comes in. Every product they offer - from chocolate chip cookies to confetti pancake mix - is free from the top nine most common allergens: wheat, milk, fish, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, sesame, soy, and shellfish. But here's the kicker: they actually taste good! Partake has been featured on CNN, CBS News, in Forbes, Dwell, The Kitchn, and Delish. And not only are they creating a more inclusive snack time with their allergy-friendly goodies, but the company also donates a portion of their proceeds to the fight against food insecurity. Now that's sweet.
Silver & Riley is a premium leather goods brand founded by self-proclaimed "global citizen" Lola Banjo in 2019. Built by master craftspeople in Italy from richly pigmented, full grain leather, these handbags, totes, and wallets are made to stand the test of time both in terms of durability and style. Plus, 5% of each sale goes toward a program that helps female entrepreneurs start, grow, and scale their small businesses!
Diversity is a beautiful thing. That's the message at the heart of Thirteen Lune, an e-commerce sanctuary for Black and Brown-founded beauty brands. The website is a one-stop-shop for folks of all colors to put their money where their mouth is. Thirteen Lune is guided by a "90/10 Rule" that dictates that 90% of the brands on the website are BIPOC-founded while the remainder are companies that "exemplify allyship to incite meaningful change beyond beauty."
Africa's 54 countries are home to over 1.2 billion people and thousands of unique, vibrant tribal cultures. The highest peak on the continent is Kibo, which sits like a snowy crown atop Mt. Kilimanjaro. Those two facts are the inspiration behind the name 54kibo, an online marketplace that brings contemporary, luxury African design to the world. The decor showcased on 54kibo is the creative fruit of the labor of over 50 magnificent designers. Stunning beaded light fixtures, geometric handmade rugs, and fine art prints are just a few of the site's offerings. Personally, I've got my eye on this South African throw pillow.
In the ever-ballooning herbal supplement market, Peak + Valley is remarkable for being headed by an actual neuroscience researcher, Nadine Joseph. Her blends of adaptogens - herbs, roots, and mushrooms that have been used in Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries, and recently have become rather buzzy here in the West - are in a league of their own for the simple fact that Joseph strives to procure her ingredients as directly from the sources as possible. Supply chain transparency! What a concept! Peak + Valley's collection of adaptogen powders support brain, skin, and sleep health and contain no synthetic fillers, no sugars or sweeteners of any kind, and no artificial colors.
Golde's superfood latte mixes and wellness elixirs are an easy (and delicious) way to incorporate good-for-you ingredients into your daily routine, one spoonful at a time. Target gut health, glow up your skincare regimen from the inside out, or beat stress and sluggishness. Whatever your needs, Golde has a 100% vegan, cruelty-free blend for you.
Quality, affordable self-care and grooming products for men are all Scotch Porter does, and they do it very well. From an everything-you-need-but-the-whiskers beard care collection to skincare and haircare bundles, Scotch Porter's offerings have grown a loyal and effusive customer base since the company's inception in 2015. Founder and CEO Calvin Quallis's goal was to give men a space to find products that would have them looking and feeling their very best, and based on the thousands of five-star reviews, I'd say he succeeded.
Menstruation shouldn't put a person's life on hold and Ruby Love believes that a period day can be just like any other day! Their line of undies, activewear, and swimwear features patent-pending technology that uses five layers of ultra-absorbent materials to wick away moisture and keep the wearer comfortable for hours. The goal is secure, leak-free protection that's safe for people and the planet. Ruby Love even offers a Monthly Period Kit subscription box full of panties, self-care items, and fun surprises aimed at making a young person's first periods a little less miserable.
Ten Wilde's gorgeous jewelry has been featured in Vogue, Refinery 29, Essence, and Glamour and for good reason: it's pure gold. Literally. Their gold filled, gold plated, and solid gold pieces are timeless yet current. Of course, I'm partial to their Zodiac pendant necklaces, but the collections range in style from classic and understated to bold and trendy.
Grace Eleyae's silk- and satin-lined accessories are thoughtfully designed to both shield hair from excessive friction and look cute enough to wear outside the house. Eleyae's first product, the Original Slap (satin-lined cap), launched it all and now she counts a wide variety of headwear among her collection, including baseball hats and wide-brim fedoras. With over 400,000 sales, she's been written up in Vogue, Cosmopolitan, and Marie Claire.
100% linen sheet sets handmade in the United States? That's Linoto's specialty. Their bedding has garnered rave reviews for the quality of the fabric and wide variety of bold colors available. Jason Evege founded the company in 2007 after the search for affordable linen sheets proved fruitless. Not only were his findings prohibitively expensive, but European linen goods had a weeks to months long turnaround time. So Evege, who has a background in fashion design, took matters into his own hands. He bought some linen, busted out the sewing machine, and Linoto was born. If you're in the market for quality, American-made home goods, Linoto's got you covered.
What if the daily ritual of lighting a scented candle could be elevated to a multi-sensory mindfulness experience? That's exactly what founder Shavaun Christian set out to accomplish with her company, Spoken Flames. Her line takes the calming aromatherapy of candles and kicks it up a very tech-y notch using augmented reality. The dual woodwick luminaries are hand poured using a proprietary, long burning coconut wax blend and premium, phthalate-free essential oils. To take it to the self-care next level, simply open the Instagram app and scan the lid of the candle using the Spoken Flames filter. Like magic, your candle will share with you an uplifting affirmation or poem plus a fun visual scene. Sit with the words as you enjoy the fragrance and crackle, or share with a friend to brighten their day.