By Serena Kim 

@goserenakim

For way too long, women of color have perceived themselves as less than beautiful because they don’t match arbitrary Eurocentric aesthetic standards. One of the first steps towards fighting racial injustice is to begin within, by recognizing one’s own ethnic beauty, no matter how different it is from what big corporations say is the gold standard. 

By uplifting and celebrating African American beauty, and supporting black-owned brands, consumers can show their support with the almighty dollar. 

Mented Cosmetics

KJ Miller and Amanda E. Johnson started out as two professional African American women looking for the perfect nude lip color to enhance their everyday 9-5 look. But they found that nude lipsticks on the market were often too pink to complement their lips, so they decided to start their own company. Check out their lipsticks, eyeshadow palettes, and blushes with its wide range of skin tones. 

Crayon Case 

I just adore the bright and colorful school-themed packaging of Crayon Case. Wuzzam Supa is the owner and founder of this line developed for “amateur makeup artists”. With its highly pigmented neon shades, it’s the perfect line for playing with makeup, whether you’re a MUA in training, or an artistic free spirit. 

Polish&Co

Nail expert and cosmetologist Theresa Williamson created Polish&Co for the “beauty bombshell with the aesthetics of the Southern belle.” I love the clever names for her $12 nail polishes, like “Bless Your Heart,” “Accept It and Move On,” and “Young Cougar.” 

Sienna Naturals

According to Sienna Naturals founder Hannah Diop, your hair wash day should be a sensual, pampering experience with wonderful scents and nourishing products. That’s why she developed Sienna Naturals, “a clean beauty company for textured hair.” 

XOXO Virgin Hair

Founded by Stephanie Nolan in 2014, XOXO Virgin Hair prides itself on ethically sourcing hair from the women of China and Vietnam. Fans of her luxury extensions and wigs include Normani, Solange, Jackie Aina, and others. 

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