#BlackXMAS: Black-Owned Beauty Brands for Everyone on Your List

12:32 PM

It’s holiday time, which means beauty stores like Ulta and Sephora will be rolling out their discounts. Instead of spending your money on companies with histories of racism like Kat Von D, Jeffree Star, L’Oreal, here is a list of my favorite Black-owned beauty brands to satisfy every makeup fanatic on your list.

By politics editor, Cameron Price
Rihanna’s beauty brand was a game-changer when it hit the shelves late 2017. Its 40 shades ranged from very light to very dark, and its models were as diverse as the real world. Fenty’s famous foundation had sold out in most stores almost immediately after its release. Fenty Beauty now has a wide variety of products and is projected to outsell Kylie Cosmetics for 2018. Rihanna’s makeup brand has a cult following and a wide variety of glowing reviews from some of the most well-respected beauty gurus on the web. Rihanna’s brand has perfect holiday gifts, including her gift sets-- featured under “Rihanna’s Picks” on the Sephora website. 

(My personal fave is the ever-famous Gloss Bomb, which now comes in three shades.)


Pat McGrath is a world-renowned makeup artist known for her innovation in makeup artistry and ability to take risks. She has worked with brands like Versace, Miu Miu, Prada, and many more. In 2013, she was even put on Queen Elizabeth’s New Year Honors List. In 2015, she decided to use her knowledge of the makeup world to start her own makeup brand. She first debuted a small kit called Gold 001, which had a limited release of 1000. She slowly began to add products, each one unable stay on the shelves long. Her desire is to “break the status quo” in the beauty industry. Pat McGrath Labs is currently worth over $1 Billion, the first Black-owned beauty brand to do so. You will become the fav in your beauty lover’s life when you gift any one of her products.

(My wishlist: Pat’s amazing glitter lipsticks.)

Debuting in 2011, Beauty Bakerie gained a small following which has grown exponentially larger in the past few years. The idea for the brand came to the CEO, Cashmere Nicole, while she was battling breast cancer. She decided upon the brand’s motto-- “Be better, not bitter.”-- as a personal mantra to help her through one of the most trying times in her life. Beauty Bakerie’s goal is to empower other dreamers like herself. All of the products are based on sweet puns and come in the most adorable packaging. Any beauty fan would be sure to love unwrapping any of their merch, from their famous Lip Whips to their widely loved 30-shade foundation.

(My recommendation is the Flour Setting Powder, which Huda Kattan has been accused of copying.)

Founded by the world-famous model Iman, Iman Cosmetics is one of the most easily accessible Black-owned beauty brands on this list. It is sold at stores like Target and Walgreens, and their prices are actually pretty affordable. According to the Iman Cosmetics website, “The IMAN brand philosophy holds that women with skin of color represent many races, cultures, and ethnicities. IMAN Cosmetics are designed for African American, Asian, Latina and multicultural women with skin tones in a myriad of shades.” Her products make a fairly cheap and great quality gift. 


Inspired by Africa, Juvia’s Place provides vibrant color in all of their products and an artistic rendering of Queen Nefertiti on all of their packaging. Chichi Eburu, the company’s founder, is a Nigeria native inspired by its heritage and culture. She is also a firm believer in Black Power and Black Girl Magic. “Most of our palettes are very vibrant and colorful. Anytime I have to create a new palette or new product I think of culture, the food, the spices, everything. That’s what inspires me creatively. African festivals, music, clothing, the artwork, the environment.” The brand boasts its affordability to all makeup lovers and is now available at Ulta.

(What I’m wishing for this Christmas: the vibrant Zulu Eye shadow palette.)

Coloured Raine was founded in 2013 with the intention to give women of color options in their beauty purchases. Their founder, Loraine R. Dowdy still stands behind her firm belief in diversity and self-expression. Her products were added to Target’s shelves earlier this year. Coloured Raine’s eyeshadow palettes offer a wide array of hues, and their highlighters are suitable for every skin tone.

(The perfect stocking stuffer: their pigmented lip gloss.)

The founder of this brand debuted her product on Shark Tank, hoping to get an investment for her startup. While on the show, Melissa Butler’s products were referred to as “colorful cockroaches” and the founder was subsequently laughed off the show for attempting to sell lipsticks. The brand was soon picked up by Target and has become so successful that celebrities like Taraji P. Henson proudly rock their lipstick on the red carpet. Her lipsticks come in every color you could think of, and range from $10-14, making them a fantastic stocking stuffer. 

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