Supporting Black-owned businesses and product lines can help put $14.5 billion back into Black communities, according to 15PercentPledge.org, a movement urging retailers to pledge 15% of their shelf space to Black-owned businesses.
Black entrepreneurs are twice as likely than their white counterparts to be rejected for a loan, according to a study from the U.S. Federal Reserve; they have less access to start-up and other kinds of capital. This means they are missing earnings that could be going towards "helping Black families, helping their communities, [and] allowing them to have the wealth and the resources to be able to live an abundant life," Chan-Denise Budhoo, co-founder of Black Nation, an app featuring Black-owned businesses around the world, told Grow earlier this month.
However, it's becoming easier for consumers to spend money at Black businesses. National retailers realize the potential to reach more shoppers, says Linda Ripoll, chief marketing officer at The Honey Pot Company, a plant-based, chemical-free feminine hygiene system: "Many consumers of color have demanded their favorite big-box retailers carry their favorite brands, and this has opened the door for Black-owned businesses to get their place on the shelves across the country."
Video by Mariam Abdallah
While people may assume Black-owned businesses only make products for people of color, this isn't the case, Ripoll adds: "Outside of certain hair care or beauty products, there are countless Black businesses that are for all consumers."
You have an array of brands to choose from — and many are sold at mainstream chains near you, like Target, Walmart, Whole Foods, and more. From hair care to food, here are five brands you can support at your local retailers.
Keisha Smith founded Sanaia Applesauce to transform an industry normally aimed at children. She created a line of dairy-free, all-natural applesauce for adults and incorporated her Bahamian heritage, with flavors like guava, blackberry, ginger, and tamarind.
After two years of research, Bea Dixon launched The Honey Pot in 2014, with a 100% natural, plant-based feminine wash. Today, the line has grown to include chemical-free and environmentally friendly washes, wipes, pads, tampons, and other herbal products.
In 2017, the line launched in 1,100 Target stores, Ripoll says. The products are sold online and can be found at Whole Foods, Walmart, Kroger, and Target stores across the U.S.
J.I.V.E. Juice (Juice Is Very Essential) was founded by health coach Tamala Austin in Houston, Texas. After being diagnosed with high blood pressure, Austin turned to juicing and healthier nutrition practices. She created a line of organic cold-pressed fruit juices, teas, and smoothies along with vegetarian and vegan options.
In 2018, J.I.V.E. Juice became the first Black-owned juice brand to launch in Whole Foods.
Her goal is aimed at helping people "learn how to transition to and maintain a healthy lifestyle that is both pleasurable and sustainable," Austin said in a press release.
Wendi Levy Kaaya and Kim Etheredge founded Mixed Chicks after they struggled to find hair products that worked for their curly and kinky hair types. They created a line of lightweight, alcohol-free products that aim to define curls and lock in moisture at the same time.
The line includes shampoos, conditioners, and a range of styling products. You can find them at Target, CVS, Walgreens, and Rite Aid stores across the country.
"I didn't come from a retail background, I didn't come from a beauty background, certainly not a manufacturing background," Butler says. "I was working you know 55, 60 hours a week but then coming home and making lipstick."
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