The global pandemic has taken a heavy toll on businesses across the country. Many have suffered financially as a result of the Covid shutdown, while others have had to close their doors forever. Like many things in our society, which businesses remain open and which close reflect larger trends of racial inequities. More than half of Black-owned businesses were wiped out by the middle of 2020, while a mere 17% of white-owned businesses closed for good.
Now that it’s Black History Month, more people are showing support for both small and well-known businesses that are founded by Black folks. However, supporting Black-owned businesses shouldn’t just happen every February; we should be supporting these companies all of the time.
Here are nine Black-owned businesses to support not just right now, but always. And in case you want a little help narrowing down the items in your shopping cart, I’ve also shared some of my favorite products for each. Happy Shopping!
Courtesy of Organic Loven
Organic Loven was founded by Taylor Sparks, who handpicks every sex-positive product for her online shop. She is a sex educator who believes in the power of improving lives through the use of sex toys, lubrication, and arousal oils. Every item in her store promotes sexual health, and there really is a little something for everyone.
My Personal Pick: Crave Pocket Vibrator
Crave’s Pocket Vibrator is a sleek and discreet vibe that is designed for anyone looking for a compact yet powerful sex toy that increases the intensity of orgasms.
Courtesy of Topicals
The two young women of color who founded Topicals realize that there is no such thing as perfect skin, but their business is rooted in the belief that daily skincare routines are essential. The mission behind Topicals is “transforming how you feel about your skin,” because that’s what really matters, right?
My Personal Pick: Faded Gel Serum
If you’d like to freshen up the look of your skin, check out Faded, a gel serum that minimizes the appearance of scars, dark spots, and sun damage.
Zack & Zoë
Courtesy of Zack & Zoë
Kam and Summer Johnson tried an endless amount of natural options in hopes of finding an effective remedy for Zack, their youngest son’s asthma and allergies. Zack experienced notable improvements after consuming raw honey, which led his parents to begin beekeeping so they could guarantee that their honey is nothing but raw and pure. They also launched their own honey farm and shop, Zack & Zoë, named for their first two children (they welcomed their third this summer).
My Personal Pick: Lavender Wildflower Honey
The abundance of stress everyone experienced in 2020 is lingering into the new year. Lavender Wildflower Honey is a holistic treatment for stress, and also insomnia.
Courtesy of London Grant
Tiffany Staten wanted to find a solution for stretch mark prevention during her pregnancy. She started making small batches of fragrance-free body butter with clean ingredients in her kitchen. She felt inspired to create her business, London Grant, after hearing her friends and family rave about the formulations she crafted. Her body butter helped ease their dry skin, eczema, psoriasis, scars, and stretch marks. Now, her skincare brand has been featured on prestigious publications like Elle, Cosmo, and Poosh.
My Personal Pick: Cocoa & Jojoba Body Soufflé
The brisk winter air is notorious for drying out our skin, and Cocoa & Jojoba Body Soufflé, a whipped body butter enriched with unrefined oils and butter from London Grant’s collection, is ultra hydrating.
Muxe New York
Courtesy of Muxe New York
In 2017, Kadeem Alphanso Fyffe launched Muxe New York, a Black- and LGBTQ-owned streetwear label. The founder, who is also a designer, creates unisex garments with meaningful graphics that comment on gender, culture, and politics. The primary inspiration for this brand is “the muxes of the indigenous Zapotec culture of Oaxaca,” who defy the typical categories of male and female, feminine and masculine.
My Personal Pick: Break Free Tee
Since the Break Free Tee features a symbolic graphic, a nod to empowering other BIPOC folks to break free from the chains of systemic oppression, it’s the perfect garment to wear for celebrating Black History Month.
Courtesy of Frigg
The amount of stress in Kimberly Dillon’s life led to insufficient sleep, hair loss, and troublesome skin. Her inspiration for bringing Frigg, a CBD beauty company, to life was knowing that more than half of the population suffers from chronic stress, too. Statistics show us that less than 5% of cannabis businesses are owned by people of color, with even less being owned by women of color. Frigg is changing that trend, and bringing CBD beauty products to a new level.
My Personal Pick: Attuning Face Potion
Joe + Monroe
Courtesy of Joe + Monroe
Joyaa Cole’s love of candles inspired her to launch Joe + Monroe. She sells a collection of luxury candles in three different sizes in a variety of fragrances. Each candle is crafted with coconut apricot wax which is sourced from soybeans and hand-poured into a reusable container so customers can create less environmental waste. Her business is named after the two people she values most: Her grandfather Joe, and her daughter, whose middle name is Monroe.
My Personal Pick: Minimalist Vanilla Cashmere Candle
Joe + Monroe’s Minimalist Vanilla Cashmere Candle produces a sensual scent of vanilla with subtle notes of woody cashmere and citrus.
Zen by Esnavi
Courtesy of Zen by Esnavi
Zen by Esnavi is a botanical skincare line created by the recording artist, Esnavi. Believing that everything our skin needs can be sourced from nature, she now formulates her products with plant-based, vegan, and organic ingredients. Esnavi handcrafts every item herself in made-to-order batches, ensuring nothing other than the finest quality.
My Personal Pick: Purely Radiant Face Oil
Purely Radiant Face Oil is one of Zen by Esnavi’s best-selling skincare products, partly due to the fact that this oil soothes eczema. The colder months are known for causing flare-ups, and Purely Radiant might help people who are seeking a holistic, alternative treatment.
Courtesy of Haus Urban
Haus Urban is a cult beauty brand that was originally developed to meet the skin and body care needs of professional performing artists. Hassan Sayyed, the founder, creates products which are Broadway and ballet’s best kept secret. However, fans of the brand—nicknamed the ‘Haus Bunnies’—range from professional athletes to busy moms.
My Personal Pick: Glaze Black Love Edition
Most people don’t like feeling greasy after applying body oil. Glaze Black Love Edition is a dry body oil that is readily absorbed while still helping the skin retain moisture.