7 Black & POC Owned Brands We Need To Support Now- And Always.
Hello, how is everyone? This last week, I have been thinking of what to share in light of the movement #blacklivesmatter, how I can use my voice to educate others and inspire my followers on supporting the black community. I have always been one to share the message of kindness, especially when those need it. I feel like it is a subject that you don't know what to share, what is right or wrong. What is important is that we support, listen and educate. I have seen so many other bloggers, influencers and friends making statements, sharing information on petitions, and helping to educate others. We need to continue to use our voices, this change can not end now. It is important we take this time (and continue to) to educate and support one another, both online and offline. As Lesley Thornton, of Klur Skincare said 'A post is not enough. Do the research. Do the work. Do better.'
In response, I wanted to share my new found love of black owned fashion, beauty and lifestyle brands, to support them now- and always. I have focused on smaller independent brands as I know that we need to make a change in how we shop as a society. Yesterday was World Environment Day, and we need to fight for environmentalism for both the planet, and the people.
The first brand is Nyla Rei, created by Vanessa Daniels in 2019. This is a slow fashion brand, producing womenswear and accessories that encourage you to be different. I really like their ethos, and I believe this mirrors the black lives movement we are supporting; 'Nyla Rei can be translated into “beautiful winner”, supporting our belief that we are all beautiful and capable of achieving anything we set our minds to.'
I would describe their womenswear as a mixture of street and instagram style, and I love it. Any influencers dream. The prices ranging from £25-£90, however all fabrics used are sourced locally, focusing on biodegradable fibres, industry offcuts or deadstock fabrics. Moreover, their collections are seasonless and timeless, something that many big brands are and will be looking to change after Covid 19.
Website- https://www.nylarei.com. Follow on instagram @nyla.rei.
The second brand is AffandJam, created by two London grown artists who are on a journey of exploration through art, clothing and identity. This brand is uber unique as they are focused on wearable arts; their pieces are hand printed and painted. They are honestly beautiful, and very natural.
They are also sustainable by selling vintage and recycled items which are recreated individually and they promote the reduction of waste, something that is becoming more important in society. I would definitely wear this on a summer break due to the tones of white, and brown (I love the co-ord below.) The prices range from £100-£20 (and under), giving you the option to financially support a black owned brand however you can.
Website- https://www.affandjam.com. Follow on instagram @affandjam.
The third brand is Jentl (pronounced gentle), a skincare brand by Kiana, and is focused on fostering a sense of learning, growth and consistency through vulnerability. They also focus on the ethos of slowing down and be present, something we have all had to cater to whilst living through a global pandemic. Importantly, this brand is Vegan, organic and cruelty-free.
I love that the Jentl products are hand whipped and made in small batches, giving the consumer a connection to the products. There are different ingredients used, which are all unrefined and natural, including the Original line, Milk and Honey, Lavender, Pomegranate, Citrine and Vanilla, giving you choice what you want to buy. The prices start from £16 depending the size, and it is a worthy purchase.
Website- https://www.jentl.com. Follow on instagram @jentl.co.
NAKED CLAY CERAMICS
The fourth brand is Naked Clay Ceramics, a minimal style tableware created by Carla Searly, and handmade in Bedfordshire. The tableware is inspired by the natural colours and textures of the earth, and they are beautiful. I wanted to share this brand whilst we are spending time in our houses more, interiors are a must. Moreover, minimalism is a trend that keeps the world turning. The prices range from £10-£90, they are beautiful and so unique. Another thing this brand offers are 'make your own' workshops, which is such a fun idea. I will definitely be checking this out.
Lastly- I wanted to share this from the creator Carla, as it really spoke to me whilst researching into this brand, ' I hope that tactile connection brings an opportunity to pause, breathe and savour a small moment in the hustle and bustle of life. From my hands to yours, I hope the natural feel of fired earth in your hands gives you a moment to pause and enjoy.'
Website- https://www.nakedclayceramics.com. Follow on instagram @nakedclayceramics.
The fifth brand is KÍLĖNTÁR based in London and Lagos, launched in 2019 and created by Michelle Adepoju. Focuses on empowering women worldwide in exclusive, limited and durable pieces curated ethically. The name KÍLĖNTÁR comes from KI LEN TA which is Yoruba for “What are you selling?”. The clothing is absolutely B E A U T I F U L, and is such an aesthetic. The prices range from £30-£120, which is 100% worth it, as is all created by Michelle and the finish products looks very luxurious and focuses on female identity.
Bella Nanja Style wrote in an article: 'Meet KÍLĖNTÁR: The Nigerian Brand It Girls Will Flock To For An Elevated Aesthetic Post Quarantine' and I would agree, I would definitely wear both the corset tops and two pieces out for dinner and cocktails when lockdown is over.
Website- https://www.kilentar.com. Follow on instagram @kilentar.
The sixth brand is Epara, created by Ozohu Adoh and is a premium high quality skincare brand, with scientifically-proven products derived from the rich soils of Africa that will wrap you in an all-natural luxury. Epara means "to cocoon oneself" in the Nigerian dialect of Ebira, and I love this as this mirrors the meaning of self care. The products include cleansers, masks, moisturisers, serums and tonics, with prices ranging from £40-£150. And they look insanely moisturising and hydrating, with all ingredients being natural.
On their website they have a blog, which I obviously love. Whilst educating myself, I had read a couple of the posts and found out that the brand also sells at Harrods, they have had a guest blog post by a Epara ambassador; Shirley’s Wardrobe, whilst also giving guidance to the readers about skin types, science behind the skincare, I love the inspiration here.
Website- https://www.eparaskincare.com. Follow on instagram @eparaskincare.
EARTH TONED COLLECTIVE
The seventh brand is Earth Toned Collective, which is a sustainable and ethical women’s apparel brand. Designing with the Earth in mind via eco friendly, and revived materials. In the owners words 'Our form of luxury is meant to liberate, celebrate and connect you to Nature.' They have two collections so far- ETC Eco and ETC Revive, and I love the colours and style used throughout their products (especially the Teal two piece), with prices ranging from $280-$60.
Moreover they reiterate the concept Intersectionalism Environmentalism, focusing on both planet and people; 'when we take care of the Earth, we take care of ourselves and each other.' All garments are produced locally by hand, and are made from from organic/raw or recycled/dead stock textiles. ETC designs to sustain life.
Website- https://earthtonedcollective.com. Follow on instagram @earthtonedcollective.
Thank you for reading, continuing to educate yourselves on how we can continue to support the black community, support sustainable and eco brands, and support small and independent brands. Please continue to show support whether it sharing posts, reading books, talking to others, watching documentaries or signing petitions. It is a privilege to support such amazing and worthwhile brands. Let us continue this movement.
Remember to be kind, stay safe, support each other. Thank you. x