The extraordinary thing about love is that it comes in many forms. Though this is the month of romance, I’d like to widen the focus to share my love in other ways. In February, we celebrate both Valentine’s Day and Black History Month, so I’d like to take this time to lavish love on businesses owned by black women. As always, I am promoting brands that produce sustainably or ethically through their materials, production, sourcing, and/or giving back. Thankfully, an increasing number of businesses are checking these boxes.
On the heels of the worldwide women’s marches, I have a more tangible sense of what it means to work in solidarity and to advocate for intersectional feminism — to, as a white woman, put my body, words, and actions to work for the equality of all women. It’s a fact that women of color endure the largest and most persistent pay gap in the workforce. There are many reasons for this, but one way to counteract it as a consumer is to consciously patronize businesses owned by women of color. This won't undo the systemic reasons for the gap, but that's work we do outside of consumerism. Women must invest in the success of other women. So, this Valentine’s Day, I want to share the (financial) love with ethical and sustainable businesses founded by women of color (plus one author).
Practice some self-love with vegan and palm-oil free beauty products like cleansing grains or body butter. Invest in a new cruelty-free lipstick from The Lip Bar, which is creating an “inclusive narrative on what beauty is.” Share your love with some cheeky organic body oil from Plant Apothecary. Enjoy the beauty of an art piece, a good book, or handmade jewelry here and here. Wear your support for women with this tee.
For Valentine’s Day, help me spread the love! Give all of these women a boost — follow their work, their social media, and buy from them — not just this month, but anytime.
I want to thank Dominique of Let’s Be Fair for opening up this conversation with me and collaborating on this piece. She is one of the first bloggers I met in this space, and her commitment and action on issues of justice continue to inspire me. See her own Valentine’s Day picks here.
Thumbnail image of artist Kenesha Sneed featured in Kinfolk Magazine.