28 brilliant black-owned fashion and beauty brands you can support
2 June 2020, 16:03 | Updated: 19 June 2020, 09:49
While corporations lap up the #BlackLivesMatter movement amid George Floyd protests worldwide, here are some actual black-owned brands that are worth spending your money with.
Whether you're familiar with it or not, there's a deep-rooted problem in most industries with black creatives being exploited for their work, and with the #BlackLivesMatter movement shining a light on this issue, there's no better time to look at your spending habits, and educate yourself on supporting black-owned fashion and beauty businesses.
While some larger corporations that have problematic histories when it comes to supporting BAME employees and creators, or in some cases stealing designs from smaller black designers, here are just a few of our favourite brands created by black people that deserve more recognition.
Pat McGrath Labs
It's no secret that Pat McGrath is one of the most influential makeup artists of all time. The go-to glow-up master for the likes of Celine Dion, Madonna and Sarah Jessica Parker, she launched her own makeup brand Pat McGrath labs in 2016 - and outpaced Kylie Jenner who was announced as billionaire by Forbes (now retracted) just days before.
Pat's line, aside from containing actually incredible products, focuses its campaigns around making makeup more accessible for black women, by using black models and a pretty respectable 36-shade spectrum, as well as shades and pigments that compliment everyone's skin tone.
And if that wasn't enough, you can also catch the mogul herself over on Instagram Live pretty regularly, sitting down with her favourite BAME celebrities to talk all things beauty and tutorials.
*Adds to cart*
One of the few non-fashion-school designers and hailing from Queens, New York, where he used his grandmother's hand-me-down sewing machine to create his first clothes, LaQuan Smith has conquered the industry with his signature street style - and being one of the few to actually be accessible to everyone.
Ok, that's not to say he doesn't boast a £2,000 dress here and there, but what else are his celebrity clientele supposed to wear? In 2018 and still readily available today, he launched a high street-priced collection with ASOS that allows us all a little taste of the high life. Beyoncé and Rihanna trust him, so we do too.
In A Sea Shell
Summer is firmly in swing, and while we may not be going anywhere soon, Little Mix's Leigh-Anne Pinnock, along with co-founder pal Gabrielle Urquhart, have secured our lockdown wardrobe staples with their brand In A Sea Shell.
Founded from scratch by two WOC and accessible to all body types, we may just take to wearing a bikini round the house.
Founded by the legendary Tracee Ellis-Ross, Pattern is the go-to destination for curly girls looking to keep their hair in check. With products to suit curl types 3b, right through to 4c, and is one of the few mainstream brands tailored specifically with the hair of black girls in mind. Spoiler alert: not all hair can take a supermarket-brand basic shampoo.
Talking to Allure when the brand launched, the Blackish star commented, "I was dreaming about doing this all through high school,"
"I had logged hours and hours in the trenches with my hair. Many of us can chronicle the journey of our self-acceptance through the journey of our hair. I think, in all honesty, the timing is perfect."
The products have some seriously great reviews, and even if you don't have the hair type to use some of the more specific products, they sell accessories, including hair ties and silk scrunchies to keep every kind of mane in check.
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@badgalriri gave y'all a lil tease of our #SLIPSHINE Sheer Shiny Lipstick at our mascara event in March 😍Get ready to slip in to ‘$uga Kiss', a creamy bubblegum pink with a hint of shimmer, for fuller looking lips to finish off your looks!✨ Find all 10 shades on June 5th at fentybeauty.com, @bootsuk, @sephora, and @harveynichols (check local retailers for availability)
When RiRi speaks, we listen. And lets be honest, the world went wild when she came out with Fenty Beauty and its bar-raising FIFTY shades of foundation. Other beauty brands, take notes.
To mark #BlackOutTuesday, Fenty will also be stopping all trading for the day to "reflect and find ways to make a real change" and have made a monetary donation to independent charities that help black communities. They've already blown everyone away with their mission to make "women everywhere be included" - and this may be the perfect excuse to switch up your entire makeup back.
In need of more inspiration? Here are some other incredible black-owned brands we can't get enough of...
Blink Beauty (Nail, lash and brow bars)
Beauty Bakerie (cruelty-free makeup)
HyperSkin (skincare for hyperpigmentation)
Uoma Beauty (makeup)
MTF Cosmetics (makeup)
Danessa Myricks Beauty (makeup)
Vera Moore Cosmetics (makeup)
Taya Marin (makeup brushes)
Hue Noir (makeup for WoC)
Nagi Cosmetics (makeup for sensitive skin)
MDM Flow (makeup)
GIRL + HAIR (natural haircare for curly hair)
Eden Bodyworks (wellness)
The Mane Choice (haircare)
Jane Carter Solution (haircare for all types and textures)
Love, Vera (lingerie)
Lola Ade (jewellery)
Yep, we're officially broke too. We'll take the lot.