My freshman year of college can be summed up with one word: cringe. It’s the year I thought it was a #lewk to wear a bra, leggings, and combat boots to dorm parties; the year I really mastered the art of the peace sign, duck face selfie; and it’s the year I tried my hand at filming my own makeup tutorials. Now, please don’t get me wrong—there is nothing cringeworthy about makeup tutorials in and of themselves. In fact, there have been many a morning when I’ve woken up with “the grumpies” (as my free therapist calls them) and have been seconds from giving up, ordering chicken parm for breakfast, and going back to sleep, only to be saved by my favorite makeup artist, Katie Jane Hughes, and her divine ability to film perfect winged eyeliner tutorials while dancing to ABBA. Makeup tutorials have never been the problem; it was me doing makeup tutorials that were the problem. Me—sitting at a bulky wooden desk, filming on a used MacBook Pro, my twin extra long bed as a backdrop, and the casual cameo from my roommate who did not speak to me—filming makeup tutorials. That was the cringe factor. Needless to say, I took a quick look at the footage from my first 55-minute video, made the Jay-Z yikes face, and decided to permanently retire from the makeup tutorial filming profession. (Okay, you got me—I had every intention of posting that 55-minute video, but my laptop crashed, making the difficult but necessary decision to end my beauty blogger career for me.)
Although my YouTube influencer dreams never came to fruition, my passion for makeup and beauty never stopped. But then again, how could it? Long before I could even spell “going viral,” I had a well-established, indelible, even, relationship to beauty that ran deep. Some of my earliest memories include my mother scrubbing my face every night with Ivory soap and my dad laying down my eyebrows with a thick, nourishing pomade. My parents agreed on very little, but thankfully, they were able to come together on the essentials: skin care. As a teen, I technically was not allowed to wear makeup, so I joined the cheer team to bypass the system, as a glitter eyeshadow was a mandatory part of our getup. But what really solidified my affinity to beauty was my first trip to Sephora. I was a senior in high school touring colleges in New York, and my mother and I had some time to kill (how every great Sephora tale begins). We spent far too many hours and far too many dollars in that black and white striped oasis than I’d care to admit publicly.
All this to say, if there is one thing I know well, it’s makeup and beauty. I’ve always received much joy, confidence, and even peace in discovering new products and new beauty routines. You have your healing crystals, I have my Bobbi Brown shimmer brick (we both should see health care professionals). But as a Black woman, specifically, my passion for beauty discovery has had to be far more intentional than your average (okay, white) consumer. Let’s face it, despite Black women being a majority demographic for beauty brand consumption, very few products are actually made with us in mind. I can’t tell you how many eyeshadow palettes I’ve opened that disappear entirely on my skin; how many skin care products that seek to fight “redness” when very few dark-skinned people encounter that issue. So, after years of being makeup and beauty obsessed, and even more years of being a Black woman, here are some of the beauty products that I swear by.
Every girl has a moment in her life that she’ll remember forever. For some, it’s her engagement day, for others, it’s the birth of her first born. For me, it was the day my roommate asked me if I was wearing makeup when all I’d done was wash my face. What can I say? There is glory in proper skin care! In the last few years, models, influencers, and makeup artists alike have been raving about one universal craze: glow. That sunkissed, radiant bronze that screams “I spent the entire summer on a nude beach in Brazil.” Now, amateurs will try to achieve this look with bronzing powders or shimmering highlights or booking an illegal (COVID, etc.) flight to Brazil, but real radiance experts know: the perfect glow starts with the right skin care.
In all honesty, I first started using this product accidentally. My family lives in California, and whenever I went home to visit, I hated lugging around my entire beauty cabinet. So, I decided to go to Target and randomly select a travel-sized tube of this African Black Soap Facial Scrub and keep it in California. While I was home, I would use this product every day, and would also start saying things like: “Wow, my skin is so much better in California—must be the water!” It took me a couple of trips home to realize that it wasn’t the California tap water that was revitalizing my skin, it was this Shea Moisture Facial Scrub. I then started incorporating this product into my daily routine (the right way, I must add—this is an exfoliant and shouldn’t be used daily, but rather 2-3 times a week max). And, at the humiliating risk of sounding like an infomercial, after using this scrub, my skin feels like legit silk. Not only does my skin feel softer, it is so much clearer. This facial scrub leaves your skin looking clear, feeling soft, and providing you with the perfect canvas for the rest of your skin care routine.
I discovered this product recently, during the height of COVID quarantine. I was depressed and had a promo code that was “expiring soon”—a lethal combination. I’d been looking for a better alternative to the toner I was using at the time and will be forever grateful that this impulse buy was just that. These radiance pads are unique because they are 3-in-1: they tone, but they also exfoliate and illuminate the skin. I use these pads after I cleanse my face, so they also help remove any excess makeup, oils, dirt, etc. And I can honestly say that within days, I noticed my skin became brighter and more radiant. I also love First Aid Beauty products because they’re conducive to all skin types. My skin is very dry and very sensitive, but I’ve been using this product regularly for about four months now, and haven’t had any negative reactions. Who knew that glow could start with your toner? This product is definitely a must.
Full transparency: the first thing you’ll notice when you look up this product is that it is disgustingly expensive. And to address your questions now: no, I do not have a trust fund, I just have a credit card with no real sense of the word “debt.” And that, I get, is a “me” thing. But I do also sincerely believe that if there is one thing to splurge on, it’s your skin. You only get one face, unless you are a Real Housewife, so I choose to take care of mine at all costs. You’ll also notice that this product is a serum. Honestly, I did not start using serums until about a year ago because I “didn’t find them necessary,” but really because I didn’t know what they were or how to use them. After some research, however, I found that serums are attractive skin care aids because they target specific skin care concerns. Truly whatever concern you may have, there is probably a serum for it. My major issue has always been hyperpigmentation, which is a multisyllabic word for dark spots on your skin. I love this Tatcha Serum, in particular, because not only does it eliminate dark spots, but it also, you guessed it, radiates the skin! I’m looking for glow anywhere I can, babe. Pro tip: this was the product I started using when my roommate asked me if I was wearing makeup. Needless to say, it is worth its weight in gold—and is probably a similar price!
While deeply humbling, it’s important that I admit: it has taken me a while to master the “no-makeup makeup” look. If you unearth any of my Instagram photos circa 2012, you might have trouble identifying me, as in most of the pictures I look like a woman in her 50s going through a nasty divorce, painting on blush and eyebrows to mask her pain and be strong for the children. It’s been… a journey. But after much trial and error and watching Rihanna’s 10-Minute Beauty Routine sincerely once a month, I finally have a makeup routine that’s comprised with products that make me look natural and youthful. So now when I look like a woman in turmoil, it’s because my life is in disarray, not my makeup!
Believe me, I tried to narrow this list down to one Fenty product. But asking me to choose only one product from this brand is like asking me to choose between cheese and sauce on a pizza—it’s simply not done. A few years ago, Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty line garnered critical acclaim and traction when it launched foundations and concealers that were inclusive to, dare I say, all skin tones. From the palest to the darkest coverage seekers, Fenty formulated a hue just for you. As such, I simply cannot mention makeup must-haves without highlighting the Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Concealer. This is a full coverage soft matte concealer that can be used on its own or combined with your favorite foundation. I often find that some matte concealers can be chalky and overpowering, but this one provides the perfect amount of coverage while still offering a dewy, natural look. I bought this concealer a year and a half ago, and it has remained in my makeup bag ever since.
While we’re talking Fenty, I also have to shout out their Sun Stalk’r Instant Warmth Bronzer. Bronzers have always been sort of an enigma to me. I loved how they looked on other people, but I, myself, was unsure of how to use them, especially as someone with darker skin. But, after watching the aforementioned Rihanna video, I learned that bronzers are used to warm the face. After applying your foundations, concealers, and powders, chances are you’ve eliminated blemishes, but you’ve also probably eliminated any warmth in your skin along with it. Bronzers bring that warmth back, and this bronzer, in particular, brings it back effortlessly by bringing out the undertones within your skin. I can’t recommend this product enough.
Earlier this year, I was on the hunt for a great highlighter. I researched powder formulas, cream formulas, and finally came across the MAC Cosmetics Strobe Cream. This product is unique because it’s not a typical highlighter, meaning you don’t apply this product to the high points of the skin toward the end of your beauty, like most highlighters. Instead, this product can be combined with your favorite foundation at the very beginning of your routine, providing for a more natural, radiant glow. This is because the deceptively lucent white cream has iridescent undertones. I wear it every day, either on its own for a natural radiance, or combined with a finishing highlight, for even more drama. This product is one of my most prized (and top-secret) products in my toolbox. You’re welcome.
I couldn’t honestly tell the story of my makeup journey without mentioning my personal never-ending plight: trying to find a liquid eyeliner that is very black and easy to use. In my quest, I’ve found tons of eyeliners that have been extremely pigmented, but also extremely hard to use, or a liner that glides on effortlessly, but doesn’t show up on my skin at all. Which is why we simply must give thanks to Pat McGrath and her precision liquid eyeliner. If you don’t know Pat McGrath, she is a prominent makeup artist, and she is a Black woman. If there’s one thing she knows, it’s how to formulate beauty products that are bold, pigmented, and inclusive. And she’s done just that with her perfect liquid eyeliner. Admittedly, I can’t take full credit for discovering this product because I first learned about it from watching Naomi Campell’s 10-Minute Beauty Routine (I watch these videos like most people watch the news). It was good enough for top model Naomi Campbell, and it has been more than good enough for me. When it comes to liquid eyeliners, this product is top-tier.
Beauty products are an integral part of most of our daily lives. At the very basis, they are preventive maintenance agents that work to provide us with healthy and youthful-looking skin for years to come. But beyond that, they’re simply fun—offering so much to play with, discover and explore. Which is why some of us (@ing myself here) decide to throw caution to the wind, foregoing contributions to a retirement plan, and invest in rejuvenating eye serums instead. But believe me, beauty products are far less enjoyable to play with when you don’t feel represented by most of them, when only select products are accessible to your skin concerns and hue. The discussion of beauty inclusivity is a big one and shouldn’t stop here, as there is much work to be done in this arena. And while some brands are making strides to better diversify their products, the work isn’t done until this mindset is adopted widely across all brands. I hope that this list is helpful to you in the meantime.
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Images: Alex Sorto / Unsplash; Giphy; Shea Moisture; First Aid Beauty; Tatcha; Fenty Cosmetics; Mac Cosmetics; Pat McGrath
Before the social justice uprising that has taken place this year, could you name three Black-owned beauty brands off the top of your head? With little accessibility to brands that represent a range of darker skin tones and different hair textures, Black people are often left with limited options to achieve their desired looks. If we have learned anything this year, it is that representation matters. It should go without saying that Black consumers deserve to be acknowledged in the beauty industry. In honor of National Black Business month, we’re turning our attention to three Black women CEOs who have taken the step to catering to Black women’s needs and are making space for more melanin in the beauty industry.
Wilma Mae of DRK Beauty
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Perfectionism is exhausting! It can manifest itself in the way you view yourself, your work, or your ability to achieve your goals. There is far more joy found in embracing what you have and going for it anyway. Tap the link in bio to read @cherylchiew’s latest piece on unlearning perfectionism and how it taught her to see herself as good enough. We hope you are inspired to do the same. What are you letting go off as we move into a new month? Let us know below! #ThisIsDRKBeauty ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #Photo @laurenloncar ⠀⠀⠀ #Model @faithjaggernauth ⠀ #Makeup @deannamelluso ⠀⠀⠀ #Hair @mark.alan.hair ⠀⠀⠀⠀ #Stylist @tarzinichols⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #flawsandall #acceptance #innerbeauty #truebeauty #positivity #affirmations #perfectionism #strongwomen
“DRK Beauty is a digital community that supports and empowers women of color in all their diversity. Through curated content, programming, and community initiatives, DRK Beauty aims to truly empower those who identify as women of color and fix the flawed relationships between brands and women of color.
DRK Beauty Healing is one of our first community initiatives in response to COVID-19 and the BLM movement. When we first launched DRK Beauty Healing on May 15th of this year—before George Floyd’s murder—we had only conceived the idea two weeks earlier as a response to the impending mental health fallout from COVID-19. Having never worked in the therapeutic space, our first step was to speak to therapists. We had back-to-back Zoom calls five days a week for the first month. We also spoke to mental health associations such as Mental Health America to learn more about the space and researched other initiatives in our community. We effectively educated ourselves as quickly as we could.
What we discovered is that there are precious few clinicians of color in the U.S. (Black/African psychologists make up only 5% of the total in the U.S.) and the free initiatives that are out there required prospective clients to fill out online forms and share their data and then wait to be approved to receive the free therapy. This added yet another barrier to entry, not to speak of the cultural stigma of therapy in the Black community. In addition, when you are depressed, traumatized, and/or paralyzed with anxiety, you don’t have the mental bandwidth to fill out forms and wait for an answer. You need the help now! We felt that the need was urgent and we wanted to make the process as seamless as possible. Also, we wanted to make sure that we didn’t breach any privacy rules. So my developers built an online directory and within two weeks we launched with a few hundred hours of therapy donated by clinicians we had spoken to. We asked them to share with their clinicians as well. So they continued to donate hours and within a month of launch, we had 1,000 hours of free therapy to give away. We’ve now raised over 2,000 hours of free therapy and we are now one of the leading platforms for free therapy for women of color in America, covering 27 states with approximately 100 clinicians.”
Brittney Ogike of BeautyBeez
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@vickyunfiltered did not come to play with us!😍 She is rocking @sensationnel_hair Rule Breaker Lace Wig sold both in-store @beautybeezstore and online BEAUTYBEEZ.com 🥰 • • • • • • • • • #melaninmagic #kinkycurlyhair #4ahair #sensationnelhair #melaninpoppin #4chair #teamsensationnel #naturalhair #sensationnel #protectivestyles #bsshair #3chair #lacefrontwig #blackgirlmagic #naturalhairjourney #naturalhairdaily #naturalhaircommunity #rulebreaker #bighair #kinkycurly #blackhair #curlyhair #naturalista #melanin
“BEAUTYBEEZ was created to fill a gap in the retail industry. What many people outside of the African-American community do not realize is that ethnic hair care and beauty products are traditionally sold in small local retailers called beauty supply stores. Every Black woman has memories—both fond and unpleasant—of going to the local beauty supply store with our mothers and shopping for those nostalgic “Black girl hair” products. It was a space specifically for us! The larger retailers didn’t (and still don’t) carry these items. Due to various laws and regulations over the past several decades, ownership in ethnic beauty largely transferred to the Korean-American community. Traditionally, they own the stores, the products, the hair manufacturing, and the distribution. And, unfortunately, people of color are oftentimes discriminated against in all areas—most notably in the beauty supply stores. We are followed, harassed, and left to fend for ourselves.
BEAUTYBEEZ is a modern beauty retailer prioritizing beauty for women of color. I founded the brand after my own dissatisfaction shopping for beauty. As an entrepreneur creating success in a field where I’m the minority, I’ve had to be resilient, resourceful, and stand out. There were several challenges that came my way, and I faced them head on. I took the time to equip myself with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in an industry that capitalizes off of me. I used my experience as a consumer and infused it in all aspects of BEAUTYBEEZ—from the products and services we offer to the customer experience. My identity and experiences as a Black consumer have single-handedly been the most effective attribute I’ve brought to the business and enabled me to thrive in an industry that is dominated by people who do not look like me.
BEAUTYBEEZ provides an inclusive beauty experience where women of color can shop, explore, and play in a world full of beauty. The brand was created because nothing like it exists and we wanted to be a complete departure from the typical beauty supply. Our mission is to celebrate Black beauty in every way possible—a curated collection of hair care, skin care, and beauty products; selling inclusive beauty brands; promoting minority owned brands; hiring diversity in our team members; tailored services for our unique needs; and most importantly, the creation of a community reflective of our brand’s values and ideals. We’ve been able to successfully create this space because we possess a passion for and knowledge of our consumers and their needs—an approach many of our predecessors have neglected.”
Jamila Powell, Owner & Founder, Maggie Rose Salon
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“When I first entered the beauty industry, I didn’t really have a clear understanding of all of the nuances and disparity that existed. I am a salon owner and do not do hair. I was primarily interested in the salon being a second stream of income. I started the salon geared towards extension work, and then transitioned into curly textured hair. As the business grew, so did my desire to become more known in the industry and be recognized as a salon of curl experts. That is when I discovered that salons and stylists of color are put in a box and not given the opportunity to shine on an international platform. Even more surprising, most salons that are recognized for specializing in curls are not Black-owned.
I initially tried to reach out to many of the well-known industry publications, but the feedback was pretty much non-existent. Typically, a handful of stylists of color are chosen to be representatives in the hair world, but new talent is not sought-after. I decided with the access we have to the internet and social media, I would create a lane for myself. I have created a global following for Maggie Rose, along with an educational platform called Texture University, and am in the process of launching a hair system for curls called Naturally Drenched. It has been a journey, but I have realized it is better to create your own platform versus depending on others.”
Images: Cottonbro / Pexels; thisisdrkbeauty, beautybeezstore, maggierosesalon / Instagram
In addition to reading books on racism, listening to podcasts on the history of white supremacy, following Black activists and educators, and holding those close to us accountable, one of the ways we can support Black people right now is by buying from Black-owned businesses. I’ve chosen 20 (of the many) incredible Black-owned beauty brands to purchase from that create amazing products for people of all skin tones. Your next makeup haul might just be sooner than you think.
1. Beauty Bakerie
If you haven’t heard of Beauty Bakerie, you’re missing out. This fun, creative brand has a food theme, and all products are vegan and cruelty-free. Founded by Cashmere Nicole, this brand is built off of strength. A young mom, breast cancer survivor, and entrepreneur, Nicole is your modern day superwoman. Personally, I’m a big fan of the Flour Setting Powder. The packaging is cute AF, and the product works wonders for setting your face and keeping it in place all day.
2. Juvia’s Place
I personally was introduced to Juvia’s Place from YouTube tutorials, and was instantly blown away by the colors in their eyeshadow palettes. It was created by Chichi Eburu to pay homage to the birthplace of beauty, Africa, and celebrate the rulers and queens whose techniques are still used today in makeup. It’s no surprise that Juvia’s Place is famous for their rich and vibrant palettes, perfect for any occasion. Patchy shadows are the enemy, but despite the bright colors, Juvia’s Place has you covered for a smooth, flawless application.
3. Mented Cosmetics
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Lipsticks worth capturing 😍😍. Our #CAPSULECOLLECTION allows you to get the best nudes out! 📷: @vanessaxcamille __ #mentedlipstick #lipstick #lippie #lippies #nudelippies #nudelip #nudelipstick #mentedcosmetics #makeupforwoc #brownskinpoppin #melaninmakeupdaily #brownskingirl #brownskingirls
Mented Cosmetics was founded with one goal in mind: find the perfect nude lip. Founders KJ Miller and Amanda E. Johnson came up with the idea over a glass of pinot (iconic), and have since produced makeup that actually works for women of every skin tone. That being said, the must-have product here is of course, the semi-matte nude lipsticks, which come in nine shades.
4. Fenty Beauty
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Mask OFF 🙅🏾♀️ #PROFILTRSOFTMATTEFOUNDATION is all bout dat undetectable, skin-like base so you always look like you! ✨💅🏻 Get flawlessly filtr’d skin in a bottle for 25% OFF 😱 during our Friends & Family sale this weekend only on fentybeauty.com! 🎉🎉 Also, available at @sephora, @bootsuk, @harveynichols, and #SephorainJCP.
Fenty Beauty needs no introduction, created by living icon Rihanna. I feel like I could write a short essay here about how every single thing Rihanna touches turns to gold, but if you don’t already know that by now, I can’t help you. Fenty Beauty made waves when they launched with 40 foundation shades, setting the new standard for the makeup industry (which was, quite honestly, long overdue) and encouraged brands to be more inclusive. My personal favorite is the Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation, and given the 3,300 five-star reviews, I’d say I’m not alone.
5. Coloured Raine
Coloured Raine was founded with the promise of a line that encouraged self-expression and diversity, and included shades specifically made for people of color. Founder Loraine R. Dowdy left the financial industry to pursue her passion, and as beauty lovers know, it sure paid off. Whether you like to go bold and or subtle, the eyeshadow singles are must-haves, giving you the option to build your own color story without having to purchase a full-sized palette.
6. Pat McGrath
Pat McGrath’s namesake brand is one of the most famous in the industry, with good reason. She’s been said to be the most influential makeup artist in the world, and her products follow suit. If you haven’t tried a Pat McGrath lipstick, you ARE missing out. I can say with confidence I’ve never had a lipstick work as well as the MatteTrance™ line, and as someone who probably owns 200+ lipsticks, that is saying a lot. It operates almost like a liquid lip, in the sense that it allows for all day wear and no budging, but sits on the lip more comfortably, avoiding the dry feeling that liquid lips often cause. If you aren’t sure about color, the Mini Lipstick Trios give you the chance to test out the brand and retail for only $25.
7. Range Beauty
Range Beauty is “clean beauty for the forgotten shades” and right off the bat I can tell you that this message is simple yet powerful. The beauty industry has come a long way, but we still see a lack of makeup for people of color, and founder Alicia Scott decided to take matters into her own hands. From the “fairest of fair to the deepest of deep”, Range Beauty is known for their foundations, formulated with sensitive skin in mind. While makeup so often causes more irritation, these foundations have antibacterial properties to treat and prevent eczema and acne, control oil, soothe the skin, and prevent clogged pores. Consider this your skin care-friendly must-have foundation.
8. Nyakio™ Beauty
Nyakio Beauty is a clean and green skin care line, allowing you to never question your ingredients. Founded by Nyakio Grieco, who started her skin care business using lessons from her Kenyan family, Nyakio Beauty is best known for their Sweet Almond Cleansing Balm, which literally melts away all your troubles (and dirt, and impurities, and all of the other gross things that linger on our skin). The balm-to-oil texture feels like a spa experience in the comfort of your home.
9. Base Butter
I can’t even explain why, but something about the word “butter” in products and brand names gets me every time. Lip butter, face butter, body butter? Give me all the butter. I love seeing women come together to succeed, and that is exactly what Base Butter founders She’Neil Johnson and Nicolette Graves have done. With the mission to help women feel more comfortable in their skin (and literally make their skin feel more comfortable), Base Butter has products like the Aloe vera Face Jelly that revitalize and rejuvenate your skin. A healthy balance of aloe to protect the skin, evening primrose to boost elasticity, and lavender and tee tree to calm and disinfect, this moisturizer is one that keeps me coming back for more.
10. Epara Skincare
Luxury skin care that uses African botanicals? Yes please. Founded by Ozohu Adoh, Epara Skincare is a “brand born out of a need to provide luxury skin care products to women with dark skin tones.” Adoh, who received her MBA from Oxford University, made the decision to develop her own products after seeing a lack of products that could treat her own skin concerns. The Intense Hydrating Mask in particular is nourishing and creamy; the mask softens, cleanses and purifies the skin, leaving it hydrated, bright, and even in tone.
11. Hyper Skin
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Our Hyper Clear Vitamin C Serum is a gentle but hardworking formula packed with active and natural ingredients to heal skin, treat #hyperpigmentation and enhance glow like: ✔️Vitamin C (15%) ✔️Vitamin E ✔️Kojic Acid ✔️Arbutin from Bearberries ✔️Seabuckthorn Oil ✔️Licorice Root We’re all about results! #hyperresults
Goodbye dark spots, hello Hyper Skin! Founder Desiree Verdejo conceptualized Hyper Skin after dealing with aggressive breakouts during pregnancy. The brand launched with the popular Hyper Clean Vitamin C Serum, working to smooth fine lines and rough texture, and dramatically clear dark spots from hyper-pigmentation.
12. skin BUTTR
Hello I’m back for more butter brands. skin BUTTR, founded by my ANTM idol Tatiana Elizabeth Price (!!!), is made of natural body and skin care products. The body line consists of whipped shea-based body butters and scrubs, and the skincare line is an all-natural, step-by-step hydrating system. The scrubs and body butters are equally amazing, but if you’re stuck inside and dry at the moment, the Cocoa Vanilla will hydrate your life and leave your skin glowing. You’ll also smell delicious. You’re welcome in advance.
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Our clay-based masks are formulated to address a variety of skincare concerns, from improving skin texture and elasticity, to detoxification and moisture retention. Marshmallow is a hydrating mask to smooth and repair. For dry and sensitive skin, this healing mask stimulates blood circulation to repair, provides gentle cleansing and exfoliation, helps the skin to retain moisture. ✨ #pieceofkaike #skincare #selfcare #plantbasedbeauty #greenbeauty #cleanbeauty #veganbeauty #blackgirlbeauty #naturalbeauty #indiebeauty #naturalhair #blackowned #blackgirlmagic #melanin #shopblack #shopchicago #shopsmall #chicago
You had me at marshmallow. Kaike (pronounced like cake!) was founded by Keli Smith with a belief in celebrating your skin. Kaike is plant-based and made up of multi-purpose products for a more practical skin care routine. With yummy products like Frosting, you can moisturize your body and hair simultaneously. Plus, it literally smells like frosting, so you’ll smell amazing.
14. The Honey Pot Company
Designed for ~ down there ~, The Honey Pot Company is plant-based feminine care. They are the first complete feminine care system powered by herbs, and for that, we are thankful. The Honey Pot Company was founded by Bea Dixon, who is open with the fact that she made her own line simply because she was suffering and couldn’t find vaginal relief. The line varies from organic tampons to feminine wipes.
Briogeo. Where do I even begin? I so genuinely love this brand. Literally every single product is great, and my bathroom cabinets are flooding with favorites from the line. Founded by Nancy Twine, who casually formulated her first product at age five (yes, literally), Briogeo is my favorite clean hair brand on the market. It’s actually hard for me to select a favorite product (I’m being dramatic, but idc), but having naturally curly hair, I always opt for the Curl Charisma line, which helps tame my lion’s mane every morning.
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Y’all ever been so stressed out about trying out new deep conditioners? YA know……You check the ingredients, Start applying to your hair and start thinking, “I hope this moisture I’m feeling while applying will still be there when I wash it out!” ☁️Well have no fear ladies and gentlemen, because the moisture was STILL there and REMAINED there after using this deep conditioning mask from Girl + Hair! ☁️Not only was the moisture still there but this product also contains pimento oil! If your not familiar with the benefits of pimento oil keep watching! —————————————————————- Products available Online @sallybeauty and @target ☁️#curlcloud ☁️#girlandhair #underhaircare #teamnatural #naturallycurly #naturalhairtips #protectivestyles #sallybeauty #sallybeautysupply #curlyhair #boxbraids #twistout #hairextensions #naturalhaircare #naturalhairproducts #washday ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #skincareroutine #selfcare #acnescarring #darkspots #wellness #skincare #dermatology #womeninwellness #skincarejourney #selfcare #healthyhair #healthyskin #hairregimen #skincareregimen
GIRL+HAIR is dermatologist-designed, founded by Dr. Camille H-Verovic. Targeting growth, itch relief, and odor relief, this line was designed for the hair and scalp. You’ll absolutely want to get your hands on their newest product, Curl Cloud, a hydrating pimento and castor oil hair mask. Heavenly.
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Miracle Babe Spotlight: @kels4kurls rocking this adorable style with amazing curl definition! 🤩🤩 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ She achieved this look with our new Curls N’ Roses line! And the results are a dream!🌷 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Curls N’ Roses is exclusively sold at @ultabeauty (restocking in progress). Sign up for our newsletter to get updates on restocks, discounts, and other perks via our website!✨
If you haven’t noticed yet, I am a sucker for brand names, and TGIN may be in first place: Thank God It’s Natural. As someone who generally tries to keep my products clean, this name tells me off the bat we are good to go—love that. On top of running a successful business, founder Chris-Tia Donaldson is a successful author. Her book Thank God I’m Natural: The Ultimate Guide to Caring for Natural Hair is a #1 Amazon bestseller—yes, big deal! TGIN has a full rose water line that includes leave-in conditioners, hair masks, and styling products, all to enhance your hair’s natural beauty.
18. Miss Jessie’s
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Happy #TextureTuesday, curlfriends! Tell us which Miss Jessie’s product makes your texture pop. 💖 📸: @naturalcurls.sa #missjessies #multiculturalcurls #harmmeknot #multiculturalclear #babybuttermilk #honeycurls #coilycustard #curlymeringue #jellysoftcurls #pillowsoftcurls #quickcurls
Miss Jessie’s was founded by sisters Miko and Titi Branch who wanted to give curly haired women a reason to look forward to trying new products. Too often, brands miss the mark when advertising the “perfect” hair, showing straight, thick, shiny hair that’s not the most inclusive. The line was inspired by their grandmother, Miss Jessie Mae Branch. When they were children, Miss Jessie would create all sorts of formulas at her kitchen table to help tame and style her granddaughter’s beautiful curly hair. Some winners include the Curly Buttercreme (which hydrates hair) and Curly Pudding (which relaxes natural curls).
Sheamoisture was founded on the belief that the best in personal care and beauty should not belong to the few, and their accessibility comes compromise-free. Built off the legacy of his grandmother, Sofi Tucker, Richelieu Dennis has created a line of natural, sustainably produced products. Their creamy, dreamy leave-in conditioner provides relief, and is a must for anyone who regularly destroys their hair with heat and color.
20. Camille Rose
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Tangled and unmanageable hair can turn wash day into an absolute nightmare! 😫⠀ ⠀ That’s why we’ve packed our Rose Cleansing Milk with powerhouse ingredients – Flaxseed and Rose Powder! 💐Naturally enriched with omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins B and E, our sweet and delicious cleanser seals in the hair’s cuticle to prevent tangled unmanageable hair while maintaining natural strength.🥛⠀ ⠀ What are the benefits?⠀ ⠀ ✨ Definition⠀ ✨ Volume⠀ ✨ Added Shine⠀ ✨ Moisture⠀ ⠀ Available now at @Target @CVS_Beauty @WholeFoods and @MeijerStores⠀ ⠀ #CamilleRose #StraightOutOfPlant #VeganMilkInfusions #premiumblends #HandcraftedWithLove
And for the grand finale, Camille Rose. Founded by Janell Stephens, who has been an iconic trendsetter within the beauty space, Camille Rose was too built on the foundation of inclusivity. Their “about me” section reads: “We seek to share the purest and warmest joy, happiness, trust and gratitude to each and every person who experiences our products,” and if that doesn’t make you a customer, IDK what will. With products to cleanse, define, and bring life to your hair, Camille Rose embraces the natural gift of curls. I recommend the Aloe Whipped Butter Gel (butter again!), crafted to provide moisture and light styling hold.
These 20 lines are in good company with 100s of other Black-owned brands, and I encourage you to purchase, support, and comment more brands below! Check out this Instagram post that highlights Black-owned brands that are also cruelty-free.
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Images: SofikoSShutterstock; Beauty Bakerie, Juvia’s Place, Mented Cosmetics, Fenty Beauty, Coloured Raine, Pat McGrath, Range Beauty, Nyakio Beauty, Base Butter, Epara Skincare, Hyper Skin, skin BUTTR, Kaike, The Honey Pot Company, Briogeo, GIRL+HAIR, TGIN, Miss Jessie’s, SheaMoisture, Camille Rose / Instagram