Lots of people are asking us (as BIPOC women) how to commit more resources to supporting businesses owned and operated by black entrepreneurs. In response, we’ve curated lists of dozens of luxury brands and businesses founded and owned by members of the Black community. In this edition of our ongoing series, our correspondent Julie Chang Murphy has curated a list of some of the best black-owned luxury beauty brands and products, including nail care, hair care, skincare, makeup, scented candles and more. There’s no time like the present to check them out.
The Best Black-Owned Luxury Beauty Brands and Products to know Right Now
In the past two weeks, citizens all over the world have been actively listening and learning, and engaging in bringing real change to combat the systemic racism that black people in America and many other nations face on a daily basis.
As our Founder & CEO and many of our correspondents here at Dandelion Chandelier are BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color), we’ve made our coverage inclusive from the start. Based on our lived experiences, we weave diverse voices and brands throughout everything we do. That’s part of our promise to help everyone see luxury in a new light.
However, in light of the global protests over police brutality, lots of people are asking for suggestions on what to buy in the luxury sphere that’s being created by black-owned businesses and brands. (They’ve also asked for reading lists to better understand the black experience in America. And we’ve obliged).
We’re happy to be a resource at this time – and we hope that as people continue to question the status quo and educate themselves on this urgent topic, it will become utterly normal for all luxury editorial to include black-owned brands – and art, books, and other black achievements – on every list, on every topic. That’s the future we’re working toward.[white_box]
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But in the meantime, if you’d like to know what else can one do beside marching, reading and having honest and open discussions about race in America, we have one specific suggestion.
Support black owned businesses.
According to Forbes, the U.S. is home to roughly 2.5 million black-owned businesses. So in addition to donating to worthy causes, redirecting your economic resources and “voting with your pocketbook” is another direct way to effect change in our capitalist culture.[white_box]
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We’ve previously featured a list of the top black fashion designers and NBA sartorial stars to know. And below is a list of over 20 must-have beauty products from black-owned independent brands to start supporting today and always.
The Best Black-Owned Luxury Beauty Products Right Now
Each scent from LA Based company, elle west, is hand-poured with intention- bringing good energy to your safe spaces. May we recommend “Ethereal Being,” ($30) a coconut and veggie wax blend that smells of pomegranate, teak wood and hemp. Glow Candle Bar’s “Melanin Goddess” ($20) seems like the perfectly named scent for our times.
Filled with essential oils such as Patchouli, Jasmine, Musk, Amber, Sandalwood and Vanilla and then topped with gold flakes, this candle has a warm scent that is sure to remind one of their inner goddess. Canary Ave is passionate about using natural and sustainable ingredients in all of their products to bring an extraordinary sensory experience. Case in point- “Merlot Me,” ($13)- a boozy yet sophisticated blend of red wine, apples & black cherry. Yum![white_box]
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If you’re in search of a signature fragrance, consider checking out Rich Mess ($120 50ml spray) from a new luxury brand based in NYC and founded by fashion insider, Ryan Richmond. The brand’s eponymous unisex scent is the winner of the 2019 Art and Olfaction Award for Best Independent Fragrance and contains a spritz of citrus and bubbling champagne, enveloped by sensual leather and woody notes. We love a light, scented oil in the summer time. Mishal’s roll on is a lovely way to apply delicate oils in a range of scents: comforting azalea; rich amber and bergamot; sultry black lilium; robust coconut sienna; and spicy “interlude.” ($25)
Another luxurious fragrance brand we were excited to discover is World of Chris Collins. In addition to his former life as a model and brand ambassador for Polo Ralph Lauren, he has been a go-to source of luxury lifestyle in publications like GQ, Fortune, and Gotham Magazine. “Sweet Taboo” is part of his Dark Romance collection and is composed of spicy cardamom of Guatemala, vanilla, cacao abs, coffee roast extract and incense of Somalia ($225 for 50 ml).
3. Bath & Body
If you have a love/hate relationship with body scrubs, this one from Butter by Keba ($20) is the perfect formula. Not too oily and too dry and made with fine grade all natural Dead Sea salts lightly soaked in a proprietary hand blend of essential oils and grape seed oil that leaves a light scent.
A perfect gift set for a loved one or yourself, Iyoba’s Balance set ($30) includes Lemongrass + Coconut Massage and Bath Oil, Lemongrass + Coconut Soap Cube, and a Lemongrass + Coconut Bath Bomb. Founder Efiya Asabi concocts all the formulas herself when she’s not working as a Transformational Health Coach. In search of a luxurious hand sanitizer? Us too. Say goodbye to Purell and hello to Organic Bath Co.’s hand sanitizer ($8) which is 63% alcohol-based (above the CDC recommended amount) and blended with glycerin to help to keep your skin from drying out. It’s scented with organic Moroccan Rose Essential Oil for a luxurious experience with each spritz.[white_box]
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Expert esthetician to the stars, Shani Darden, has a passion for simple, yet effective solutions. Her Retinol Reform® ($88) has become the go-to serum with 2.2% encapsulated retinol (a miracle worker for fine lines and blemishes) and 2% lactic acid, which helps to brighten and smooth skin. Academic turned beauty activist, Niambi Cacchioli infuses Pholk with her love and knowledge of the African Diaspora’s healing and herbalist traditions.
This detox face wash ($20) is formulated with Kalahari Watermelon Seed Oil which dissolves acne-causing sebum and dirt from pores and Somali White Frankincense which restores balance to irritated or inflamed areas. The Fresh Glow Vitamin C Serum from Marie Hunter Beauty ($54) is packed with citrus stem cells from oranges which enhances the skins elasticity and increases hydration. It’s the brightener you need for the summer days and beyond.
Range Beauty emerged out of a need for more diverse shades and less toxic ingredients. Their foundation ($21) not only comes in a wide range of “forgotten colors” but is also formulated with calendula and cornflower extracts that have antibacterial properties to treat and prevent eczema and acne.
Mented Cosmetics was created by two friends who could never find a perfect nude lipstick. The Matte Duo ($28) comes with a velvet matte nude lip shade and a long-wearing lip liner. Everyone wants that summer glow and Beauty Bakerie’s Milk & Honey Highlighting Palette ($38) goes on buttery and soft and gives you that buildable glow for day into night.[white_box]
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6. Hair Care
Summer hair needs special care and Sienna Natural’s intensely deep hydrating treatment mask ($28) is the salve you need for heat-damaged, color or chemically treated hair. The vegan formula is made with the restorative power of plants: pea and baobab protein, blue tansy oil, and butter made from murumuru fruit.
Mielle Organics was created by a former nurse, Monique Rodriguez, who used her background in science to focus on beauty and hair products with natural and organic ingredients. Her conditioners are best sellers like the Babassu Oil & Mint Deep Conditioner ($13.99) which infuses hair with protein and moisture. Winner of multiple best of beauty awards, British brand, Charlotte Mensah’s hair oil (£48) uses a unique blend of organic, sustainably sourced Manketti Nut and Ximenia oils to save dull, dehydrated hair and add shine and strength.
7. Nail Lacquer
Bernadette Thompson has created trend-setting nail art for luminaries such as Beyonce Knowles, Madonna, Jennifer Lopez and Lady Gaga. We think this “Mint Condition” color ($18) is perfect with a summer tan and tennis whites. Mischo Beauty is a pioneer of clean luxury, offering award-winning, richly hued and high performance nail lacquers. “Good Kisser” ($20) is a modern, classic red that is also 10 free: no formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluene, formaldehyde resin, camphor, ethyl tosylamide, xylene, triphenyl phosphate or parabens.
The Best Black-Owned Luxury Beauty Brands and Products
There you have it – black-owned brands in luxury skincare, nailcare, scented candles and more. Over 20 black owned beauty brands to add to your medicine cabinet and cosmetic pouch!
join our community
For access to insider ideas and information on the world of luxury, sign up for our Dandelion Chandelier Newsletter here. And see luxury in a new light.
Crediting her training as a cultural anthropologist at Wellesley College, Julie has immersed herself in various industries in the last 15 years including fashion design, event planning, and fitness. Julie lives in New York where she loves trying every ramen and dumpling restaurant with her husband and three children. She finds joy in bold prints, biographies of fierce women, kickboxing. And spending way too long finding the perfect polish color to express her mood.