Black History Month is an important part of the year because it’s time set aside to celebrate culture and acknowledge the accomplishments of Black people. But it’s much more than that. It’s the perfect time for people to learn about Black history while encouraging understanding between people across the world.
However, Black History Month shouldn’t be the only time people support others. That’s why we’ve created a list of 10 Black-owned businesses for you to support year round.
When you can’t find products that suit your needs, create your own! That’s the stance Denise Woodard took as she searched for delectable goodies for her daughter who has multiple food allergies. She found it quite difficult to find foods that her young daughter would like that were free of the most common allergens impacting the world today. Now, her company Partake Foods offers cookies, baking mixes, and breakfast mixes that are certified gluten-free, non-GMO, vegan, and free of wheat, tree nuts, peanuts, milk, eggs, soy, fish, shellfish, and sesame. The cookies are so good even people without food allergies can enjoy them.
While many watch companies seek to blend in with the “norms” of other luxury watch companies, Talley & Twine was created to ignore the mainstream. They speak to an audience typically ignored by the watch industry gatekeepers and create quality, attention-grabbing timepieces for their customers. This proudly Black-owned company started by Randy D. Williams and Eric Heyward gets its name from an intersection in a formerly crime-ridden neighborhood in Virginia that was completely revitalized. So for them, the name represents a dark past transforming to a bright future.
Creating a solution to a personal issue has been a great way of building a successful company and the founder of Grace Eleyae can attest to that! A trip to Kenya that resulted in extreme hair damage led to her creating a stylist protective product called the Slap that has changed the hair game. Many women have struggled with choosing between protection and style when it comes to their hair. But that is no longer the case. The company is dedicated to creating modern protective products that women, men, and children can be happy to adorn.
Founded by Dr. Isfahan Chambers-Harris, Alodia has a strong focus on hair and scalp health through a variety of natural hair products, including healthy oils, shampoo, and even hair masque. You can go through their product offering based on your hair type or take their haircare quiz to help you pick the ideal products for your hair.
Started with the intention of changing our standard of beauty, The Lip Bar was created by Melissa Butler in her Detroit kitchen. Lauded for its ease of application, these vegan and cruelty free make up products come in a range of shades to accommodate different skin tones. In addition to representing Black people of all shapes, sizes, skin textures, and looks, what’s also admirable about this brand is the tenacity of its founder. After being shut down on the popular TV show Shark Tank, she persisted and the company has continued to blossom exponentially.
Set out with the intention of selling “mood enhancers and joy bringers”, HOAM Candle Company was started by Derek DeAndre. Creating the right vibe in your space means different things to different people. But candles are a go-to for many. These hand-poured, non-toxic candles are offered in a variety of scents to fit your mood, like Cereal Milk, Head Space, and Me Time to name a few. They also offer room & body mists and travel tins if you’re on the go. And if you don’t know which scent you want to try, you can take their HOAM scent quiz.
Of course, we had to include ourselves on the list! Our founder, Addie Elabor began D’IYANU as a way for people to express themselves and represent their roots with style. We add a modern twist to African fashion for men, women, and kids with exclusive prints, elevated fits, and chic details all designed by our staff based right outside of Philly. With regular collection launches throughout the year, including our latest Black History Month collection, we continue to give our loyal customers and those new to D’IYANU something to look forward to. This includes both casual and formal wear, so you can find something for any occasion.
“Black don’t crack” has long been a popular adage floating around the Black community. But the reality is our skin is still susceptible to sun damage, hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and melanoma. Deeper skin tones tend to be overlooked by popular sunscreen companies, but our melanin deserves to be protected without the white residue these other sunscreens leave. Shontay Lundy, founder of Black Girl Sunscreen created a product that has quickly become a crowd favorite because it knows just how to protect & serve with its 30 SPF lotion made with natural ingredients without creating an unwanted “ashy” film.
Believing there is more to be told and experienced in African art than what is commonly available to the public, Expedition Subsahara founder Sofi Seck set out to celebrate Senegalese culture and craftsmanship. The authentic, handmade Sengalese goods include various home items, but most notably the beautifully crafted and colorful baskets.
Ade + Ayo is a beautiful children’s brand with an African aesthetic created by Temidayo Adedokun. When preparing for her first child, Temidayo noticed a gap in what was available in the market to families looking to bring culture into the lives of their children from the very start. What was normally available was African-inspired or Safari themed children’s goods, but nothing truly authentic. Ade + Ayo was born to fill that void. Carrying a wide variety of baby clothing, accessories, toys, and necessities, Temidayo’s vision has made it possible for babies to grow up rooted in culture.
Of course, there are millions of Black-owned businesses, big and small. We encourage you to make the effort to support these businesses not just in the month of February, but also beyond. Supporting the vision of a Black-owned business directly impacts the founder, family, employees, and communities involved. However, making a statement with your dollars allows these businesses to thrive and inspire the next generation of Black entrepreneurs to believe their dreams are valid and possible.