Paramount social unrest and protests spanning the globe this year have commanded massive media attention and has sparked, yet again, the discussion surrounding racial inequalities and injustices in the US.
But the truth is, while many Americans are taking the initiative to educate themselves on the issues, awareness simply isn’t enough to facilitate real change.
As a woman entrepreneur, I recognize the importance of supporting other women-owned businesses as we are so often marginalized. As a black woman entrepreneur, I recognize the necessity — as we too often get not only marginalized but undervalued and overlooked altogether.
The gap between black women-owned businesses’ average revenue and all women-owned businesses is the greatest of any minority. And so, one of the most significant ways we can help foster change goes beyond liking and sharing posts social media.
Black Women-Owned Fashion Brands
Just as we appreciate the importance of supporting small businesses and local businesses being integral to our communities — I want to encourage my readers to also support black women in our various business ventures.
In addition to helping close the racial wealth gap and strengthening local economies, here are 6 reasons why you should support black-owned businesses.
I’ve put together this resource of 12+ fabulous black women owned-fashion companies and fashion brands to help you do just that.
I’ve tried to curate a list of black-owned fashion brands that are affordable and functional as opposed to couture designer brands. These brands are inclusive of plus size women and include stateside brands in the USA and some international brands as well including Jamaica and Nigeria.
1. JaeJolly: Black-Owned Swimwear & Resortwear Brand
Headed by Jamaican designer Janel Jolly, here’s a little about a recent collection from the boho chic swimwear and resort wear fashion brand.
The Collection is inspired by Afro Caribbean-ism, in particular the Palenqueras, the colorfully dressed Afro Columbian women selling fruits in the main squares of Cartagena, Columbia. The name of the collection “San Basilio” was inspired by a small village located in south of Cartagena, ‘San Basilio de Palenque‘ which was ruled entirely by runaway slaves from Congo, Africa.
2. CASTAMIRA: Black-Owned Swimwear Brand
Jamaican-born model, Chantel Davis, has an insider’s view to what works and what doesn’t work when fitting a swimsuit on a woman’s body. CASTAMIRA makes luxury swimwear that enhance the beauty and sensuality of your body. Founded by former Wilhelmina model Chantel Davis.
The swimsuits are well constructed and affordable. They empower you to be bold, confident and sexy. We design with the woman’s form in mind – highlighting the small of your back, supporting your bust, elongating your legs and embracing your curves.
3. Xhale Swim: Black-Owned Swimwear Brand
Jessica Wong is the owner and creative force behind XhaleSwim and prides herself on manufacturing luxurious swimwear.
XhaleSwim collection is designed to complement, flatter, and support women of all shapes and sizes including curvy and plus size. XhaleSwim’s swimsuits vary from conservative to risqué but always classy. XhaleSwim caters to all women with its luxurious one-piece and two-piece swimsuits.
4. Prayers & Plans: Black-Owned Sleepwear & Lingerie Brand
Inspired by faith, culture and travel, Prayers and Plans is a Luxury Lifestyle brand for the modern-day woman.
Prayers and Plans was Founded in 2017 by Amaka Ikpeazu with the vision to curate a lifestyle brand to encourage and remind women that they are capable of extraordinary things and that their dreams are valid with the right support.
5. Lasette: Black-Owned Transitional Lingerie Brand
Transitional lingerie designed for day to night lifestyles — to be worn as seen fit. In early 2017, fed up with the idea of lingerie only symbolizing sexiness for intimate activities, being reserved for special occasions, and/or designed to be hidden, Designer & Founder Shiara Robinson decided it was time to shake things up.
LaSette, was designed with you in mind, to create your own storyline for lingerie. Wear to work for back to back meetings, mix, match and layer with your favorite pieces to create the perfect “meeting up for drinks” look, drop it like it’s hot at the club, or wear around the house. Designed for day to night lifestyles, inspired by my life in New York City over the past 6 years, and the sidewalk fashionista’s making any and everything work!
6. Anya Lust: Black-Owned Lingerie Brand
A pretty girl pulled open her drawer to discover that she was missing the most luxurious lingerie. She decided to scour the boutiques in her city to see what she could find. After an exhausting search, she came home, poured herself a glass of wine, opened her laptop, and then discovered the world of Anya Lust.
7. Fe Noel: Black-Owned Womenswear Fashion Brand
Eat well, travel often, and dress to inspire!”… In other words make life beautiful. This is the philosophy behind the Brooklyn based, womenswear brand Fe Noel.
The label’s founder, Felisha “Fe” Noel, is deeply influenced by her Grenadian heritage and has mastered the ability to bottle up culture and glamour infused with sensibility and sensuality.
8. CUSHNIE: Black-Owned Luxury Ready-To-Wear and Bridal Brand
CUSHNIE is a luxury women’s ready-to-wear and bridal brand designed by Carly Cushnie. Established in 2008, the label was founded on the desire to serve the modern woman. Artfully crafted with clean, sculptural lines, the collection is precisely tailored to achieve the perfect fit for the female form.
Defined by the balance of proportion, structure and fluidity, the aesthetic embodies a refined sense of cosmopolitan minimalism and femininity.
9. Style Pantry/FKSP: Black-Owned Womenswear Brand
A Nigerian, woman-owned business, every single garment is developed from concept to delivery in our office and factory, located in the heart of the LA Fashion District. We strive for the utmost quality in fabric, craftsmanship, and finishing. FKSP prides itself on frequent, exclusive collections, helping our customers build a wardrobe of unique and classic pieces you can find nowhere else.
Stylish, accessible clothing produced in Los Angeles, CA for the everyday woman, that is our commitment. Folake Kuye Huntoon has been designing eye-catching pieces for 10+ years and has doubled down on her signature look with the eponymously named FKSP | Folake Kuye Style Pantry.
10. Rebecca Allen: Black-Owned Shoe Brand
As a black woman working in finance I always wanted to look professional without sacrificing clean, sophisticated style. I love color, but I never wore it because I couldn’t find the perfect nude pump to complete my outfits.
Frustrated by the lack of options, I scoured swatches and borrowed my friends’ feet to find five nude shades to complement women from dark to light, particularly all my brown ladies. You can, of course, wear any and all shades you choose!
I developed the New Pump to be timeless and wearable all year long. It’s also wearable all DAY long, with a cushioned insole and a 75mm heel.
11. Bridgette Sandals Jamaica: Black-Owned Shoes & Sandals Brand
Bridget Sandals have been described as “wearable desserts” and things of beauty so perfect they should be “hanging on a gallery wall or from a socialite’s ear lobe”.
Starting her design journey in 1980, by 1982 Bridget was learning about making sandals until she finally opened Bridget Sandals in 1987, by then creating original designs for the young company’s fashionable customers who not only returned for new styles but told two friends.
Twenty years later, the Bridget Sandals brand has grown to be one of the most recognized fashion brands from the Caribbean with a fiercely loyal client base throughout the region and wherever fashionable Caribbean women live.
12. Salone Monet: Black-Owned Shoe Brand
A lifelong passion for shoes turned this political PR girl into an entrepreneur. After receiving a degree in Communications from American University in Washington, DC, she created digital content for the federal government and trade associations while working in shoes and accessories. Salone learned shoe making in Brooklyn NY, there she made her first pair of nude heels from scratch.
Bonus Black-Owned Fashion Brands
Looking for a shop where you can find black-owned styles from various designers? What about some fashion and style inspiration from a fabulous fashion and style blogger?
Black-Owned Fashion Retailer: The Folklore
The Folklore is an innovative online retail concept based in New York City. The Folklore stocks high-end and emerging designer brands from Africa and the diaspora, and serves as a cultural hub for contemporary brands, artists and creatives to showcase their personal stories.
Our carefully curated product-line reflects the diversity of Africa’s contemporary urban landscapes and design aesthetic. We deliver apparel, accessories, shoes, bags, and homeware that can live in cities around the world, and be enjoyed by men and women who appreciate luxurious, thoughtful, clean and boundary-pushing design.
Black Fashion Blogger: Paola Mathe
Haitian by birth and an artist at heart, Paola Mathe uses her inspiring style to encourage others to live unapologetically. In her formative years, the self-taught photographer nurtured the dream of living within full creative expression and upon moving to New York City, Mathe began chronicling her adventures with bold colors and style on the lifestyle blog, Finding Paola.
What are your favorite black women-owned fashion brands? Who are some of your favorite black women fashion bloggers? Tell us in the comments below.
It’s my goal to make this page a growing resource. Stay tuned as I add more black women-owned businesses doing the damn thing that you can support today.