Ever since January 1st, I have been really thinking in black. Whenever I go into a Sephora store or other beauty boutique, I cannot help but think how amazing it would be to have a black version filled with tons of products made by people who look like me. Every time I see a new on demand beauty app, I think about how cool it will be to see the first one that launches and caters to women of color. Now, whenever I am discussing current challenges with brands that don’t quite have the right products for women of color, I think “we need to make it ourselves”.
The beautiful thing that has been happening is that these brands have started to pop up out of nowhere! Every week I will randomly discover a brand that specifically caters to women of color, and I am so excited to highlight them here!
Now I know that the amount of money women of color and especially black women spend at Sephora is mind boggling. I am pretty positive that if I googled those statistics some astronomical amount would pop up making my stomach hurt. While I enjoy visiting Sephora and other beauty boutiques that are similar, I would love to support a black owned one.
Enter Vivrant Beauty, a Beauty boutique started by a black female former attorney Desiree Verdejo located in Harlem, New York. With amazing brands like Cane and Austin, The Lip Bar , Becca Cosmetics, and Ren, visiting this stores website and brick and mortar to drop a lot of dough would be super easy!
I would love to see Vivrant Beauty expand into other cities to give stores like Sephora, Space NK, and Blue Mercury some good old fashioned competition and also provide folks like me, who do not live in New York an opportunity to support the business in person.
Another major discovery for me in the world of beauty as it relates to STEM (my new obsession) is a black owned chemistry lab located in my home town, and founded by a black woman! Hidden Figures no more!! As I listened to my mom tell me about this woman’s story, my face literally turned into one giant heart emoji!! Linda Boasmond owner of Cedar Labs is responsible for mixing up tons of potions for major companies including Boeing, the company that makes jets.
She also has a mentoring program for young girls that partners them with women in STEM fields which exposes them to tons of different careers and entrepreneurship.
With these two entities, I can not help thinking about all of the major what ifs??!! What if make up artists like me with ideas falling from my ears, nose, mouth, and everywhere could meet with both of these women to create an incubator for folks to create and manufacture from Cedar Labs, and sell at Vivrant Beauty helping these platforms become as big as LVMH, L’Oréal, and Estée Lauder? Can you imagine the shade ranges offered in the cosmetics lines that would come from it?!! A girl can dream!! Ok but seriously, this could happen and in order for it to happen, we as in women of color have to reach out to these business owners and support them financially, and by giving them as much exposure as possible! I plan to make that a personal goal for myself this year, and I hope that someone who reads this does the same.
We are responsible for making us great, and by supporting the amazing things we create we push ourselves forward.