As a woman of color, I love POC-owned beauty brands. In my experience, it means the color in the bottle is the same color that will appear on your face; you don’t have to worry about opacity or color saturation; and you’re practically guaranteed that moisturizing products will actually have enough of The Butters and The Oils to moisturize you, your kids, and your noble ancestors.
Plus, I get to support POC-owned businesses in general, which is always a good thing.
Whether you have dark skin like me, or just want to change up your makeup routine with some seriously fantastic brands that may be new to you, check out these 7 recommendations for POC-owned beauty brands.
Related: 7 amazing beauty products that maximize the ones you already own
Top: Cashmere Nicole, founder and CEO of Beauty Bakerie
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Old School Ride-or-Die POC-Owned Beauty Brands
Red lip, won’t quit
I love Iman’s makeup. I own the lipstick, blush, gloss, and powders. The color payoff is superb and it is a brand that I can always trust in a pinch when I need to order online without having tried the product first.
My ride or die Iman products are Iman lipsticks (great deal at under $10) and the Iman Second To None Semi Loose Powder. That is her name by the way; although I agree that it is second to none. I mean, this powder is AMAZING.
I love that that you can twist up as much or as little as you need, and the cover of the container is deep enough to mix in a few other powders if needed. Plus you can find them right on Amazon.
WHOO LORD. WHERE DO I START? I could write an entire article on Habibi called, “I Don’t Use This The Way It’s Intended, And I Don’t Care.”
I received my first ever Habibi beauty product from my big sister, which I wrote about in my post about beauty tips from my mom. My sister had given me a sample of their body butter and it was too small to use on my body. Since I’d recently gone natural and was trying out various products to see what my hair liked…well, you can imagine what I did next.
Turns out that founder, yoga instructor, and beauty editor Shahada Karim’s Habibi Body Organic Essential Body Balm is the absolute shiz and my natural curls were bouncy and shiny like they’d never been before. Of course the body balm is also amazing on the body, leaving skin soft and supple. I can also highly recommend their Organic Essential Hair and Body Oil and Organic Essentials Body Wash shower gel.
Every time I use my Habibi body products, I pretend I’m Oprah, because I’m pretty sure that’s how Oprah’s skin feels. RICH and LUXURIOUS. Besides, they donate profits to some terrific charities to help uplift women fighting against cancer and provide research and care for children and adults with Type 1 Diabetes.
Related: 5 Black beauty secrets I learned from my own gorgeous mother
My New Favorite POC-Owned Beauty Brands
Feeling my Wakanda self
Juvia’s place is everything I’ve ever wanted in a makeup company. EVERYTHING. And that’s saying something.
Chichi Eburu’s company claims to take you from the office to the Caribbean Islands and everywhere in between which sounds good, right? The shadows are super pigmented and have multi-uses which is a must for me. I can even use one palette for my entire face — eyes, cheeks, and lips. The pan sizes are generous and you get an amazing amount of product for the price you pay.
I currently own the Masquerade Palette (above) and the Nubian 2 Palette, but of course I have plans to buy out the entire line one day when I’m rich. They essentially offer everything I need (well, from a cosmetics standpoint) to live my best Beyoncé life.
Fenty is bae. BAE. I’ve never before been able to use more than one foundation from the same line and that’s just what Rihanna’s blockbuster beauty brand offers. The Pro Filter Instant Retouch Prim’r and Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation feel and smell DIVINE and they last forever. Plus, the foundation alone comes in 40 shades — so this is a POC-owned beauty brand that’s here to work for everyone.
I don’t need multiple powderings after using these, and can set my face with either a quick spray or powder — once — and I’m good to go. It’s also highly buildable, so I can use it for daily makeup or a full glam stage face when I’m performing.
And if you haven’t tried Fenty Gloss Bomb yet? You’ll want to do that, whatever your skin color.
Related: Can you tell which of these crazy beauty trends are real and which are fake?
My Future Favorite POC-Owned Beauty Brands
That time I got glammed up to sing with some kiddos
Cashmere Nicole’s Beauty Bakerie is a POC-owned beauty brand that gets high reviews.
I really want to experiment with their Flour Setting Powders, the Beauty Bakery So Icy Illuminator Highlighter, and their Metallic Lip Whips. I’m a sucker for the packaging, but more than that, I’m a sucker for products that are as highly rated as theirs. Can so many pro makeup artists and models be wrong? Check out their Instagram feed for some gorgeous looks.
Plus founder and CEO Cashmere’s own story (that’s her up top, at left) is a fantastic one; she’s a single mom who put herself through college and nursing school, then built the brand all on her own as a way to give back to breast cancer research — before getting a breast cancer diagnosis herself. Today, she’s a strong, beautiful survivor and continues to give back in major ways while her business thrives.
Now, don’t you want to buy pretty much everything on the website?
Coloured Raine is a five-year old POC-owned beauty brand thanks to Loraine, who wanted to start a line of cosmetics that encouraged diversity and self-expression. I’m in. Especially hearing that she refers to makeup as a “toy for grownups.”
She has some BEAUTIFUL Eyeshadow Palettes (above, the Berry Cute palette) that are highly pigmented, cruelty free, and I want to try all of them!
But this POC-owned beauty brand may be equally loved for their vegan Coloured Rain Liquid Lipsticks that dry matte for extra long wear. The shades range from mauves and metallics to outrageous blues, teals, purples, pinks, and really intense reds like Loraine’s favorites, Cherry Blossom and Red Sea.
Let me tell you, mama can never have too many lipsticks.
I’m a Leo, which means my hair is all of the things. I’ve been eyeing the natural hair extensions and accessories from Kurly Klips for a while now, and am itching for the chance to see what it’s like to rock a mane a la Chaka Khan…. IIIIII’M EVERY WOOOO-MAAAAN….
But seriously, these products, founded by Lana Boone to give women more control (as in, not sitting through expensive, time-consuming, stylist-created weaves), are here to help protect your hair, while giving you options for tons of different looks from “mermaid spirals” to a “shoulder chic fro” that last as long as 12 months, depending on care. I’m here for it.
I hope some of you end up loving these companies as much as I do, and I cannot wait to report back on more favorites! And if you have any favorite POC-owned beauty brands you’d love to share, I’d love to hear about them in the comments. -Ibi
I think my favorite part was your bio! 😉 Great writing sweet girl..I can hear your voice.
Great reviews! Really appreciated learning more about these brands and REALLY loved your writing style!