In celebration of Black History Month, it’s a great time to recognized Black-owned businesses. I have divided the list into those that are national and businesses that are locally owned in my home state of Minnesota. Some of the businesses I have supported and note the products I’ve purchased. I’ll start with 10 excellent nationally Black-owned businesses:
Alexandra Winbush Spa Products – alexandrawinbush.com
Alexandra Winbush products offer a fabulous and unique spa experience that is also affordable. Known for luxury candles, the company also offer spa sets that include: a scented candle, accompanying loose tea, and curated playlist. Items are also available separately. I just purchased one of the sets for a friend’s birthday.
AVEC Drinks – avecdrinks.com
Good friends and co-founders, Dee Charlemagne and Alex Dorman, were tired of having drinks ruined with tasteless mixers, so they created their own. AVEC drinks come in five flavors for a completely unique beverage experience. Made from real juices and natural botanicals for delicious low calorie and low sugar beverages. They are tasty enough to be mixed with spirits or sipped alone. I love the mission statement: Never compromise your spirit.
Ayele and Company – ayele.com
Ayele (pronounced eye-yell) is a skincare brand for everyone and every skin type. As the site notes: When it comes to the skin, ignorance isn’t bliss. Understanding your skin is super important; it isn’t a one-size-fits-all situation! Shopping categories include: skin concerns, skin routines, products, and sale items. The site also provides some pretty impressive before and after photos showcasing the healing powers of the skincare line. There is a clay mask I’m planning to try.
Celsious – celsious.com
Founded by sisters Corinna and Theresa Williams, Celsious is probably the coolest and most energy efficient laundromat in New York. There is also an online store offering a sustainable line of garment care, accessories, and the in-house Celsious Line.
Gwen Beloti Jewelry – gwenbeloti.com
Brooklyn native Gwen Beloti’s experience with fashion wasn’t always great, and her dilemma of finding clothes that fit well led her to fall in love with jewelry. Her fashion experience and love of accessories led her to create her own line. She taught herself the art of design in both apparel and jewelry before being formally trained. The brand’s signature product is the Golden Stories Box, a seasonal collection of gold jewelry accessories. Like many women, I have had difficulty well crafted gold jewelry, so I’m looking forward to trying out the Golden Stories Box.
Kaike – shopkaike.com
Founded in 2015 by Keli Smith, Kaike (pronounced cake) this plant-based skincare line espouses the idea that less really is more. Kaike is all about celebrating healthy skin, and as the website notes: like the decadence and happiness found in enjoying actual cake, Kaike is sweet on products with an ingredients list that reads (and smells) like a delicious recipe good enough for your skin to eat. You can have your cake and eat it too!
McBride Sisters Wines – mcbridesisters.com
I have featured the McBride Sisters before. Not only are they the largest Black-owned wine company in the U.S., sisters Robin and Andrea are breaking down barriers in the predominantly male-dominated field. Their wines are lovely and I am partial to the Black Girl Magic Collection. For Christmas, I gifted my mother with a McBride Sister wine collection.
Nude Barre Underwear – nudebarre.com
Nude Barre undergarments grew from professional dancer Erin Carpenter’s frustration at not being able to find underwear and hosiery that matched her skin tone. In 2009, she founded Nude Barre, providing Intimates made in 12 shades of nude to match every skin tone. It is durable enough for active performance and stylish enough for everyday fashion. Today, Nude Barre sells intimates and hosiery for both adults and children. Another goal was to provide affordable undergarments for performers and the general population.
Octave Jewelry – octavejewelry.com
Octave Jewelry offers stunning sterling and hand-cut stone jewelry that is handmade. For every occasion, from casual to the most elegant. Made in Brooklyn, New York the owner describes her company as being “inspired by the balance between sharp geometry and soft organic form”. The results are breathtaking. The company also works with clients on custom-made jewelry.
Partake Foods – partakefoods.com
As the saying goes, “The mother of invention is necessity”. That is how the Woodards of New York City, came to found Partake Foods. When her daughter, Vivienne, was born with severe food allergies, Denise was frustrated by the lack of available options. The statistics for having a food allergy are striking: 1 in 13 children across the U.S. are affected by food allergies, and according to Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE), Black children are at a significantly higher risk of developing these allergies. Suffering from a food allergy myself, this is important information. Partake is centered on Denise’s passionate for providing healthy, safe, and delicious food, and she is also dedicated to raising awareness and increasing entrepreneurship opportunities for women and people of color. I’ve tried the Chocolate Chip cookies, which were wonderful.
In my text blog, I’ll share some of my favorite Minnesota-based Black-owned businesses.