The killing of George Floyd and countless other Black people by police has sparked global protests, moved the city of L.A. to drastically cut its LAPD budget, and inspired many to educate themselves and take action in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. Beyond donating to nonprofit organizations (like NAACP, BLM, Know your Rights Camp, and White People 4 Black Lives, to name a few) and speaking up against discrimination online and offline, it's important to show up and amplify Black voices in our community.
A great way to do so is through your wallet.
The economic shutdown due to the coronavirus has put a halt to many small businesses. But even in non-pandemic times, Black-owned entrepreneurs are more vulnerable financially than others. Now, more than ever, they need our help to stay afloat. We've compiled a list of local Black-owned brands, services, and businesses that you can support now and beyond.
Do you know a brand that we've missed? Let us know in the comments below as we'll be regularly updating this list.
Main photo: @wardrobedepartmentla
After traveling the world styling music artists like the Black Eyed Peas and Lil Wayne, Dechel Mckillian launched Gallerie.LA to present a tightly curated selection of brands with a shared philosophy. The contemporary fashion and lifestyle boutique is stocked with sustainable vegan brands and accessories, such as L.A.'s own MisterMrs, Accoutrements L.A., Neococo, and Triarchy, among many others.
Founded by legendary costume and wardrobe stylists April Roomet and Arell Hughes, Wardrobe Department offers luxury products with a stylish edge. Located off stylish shopping stretch West Third Street (the online shop is coming soon), the boutique stocks a mix of luxury womenswear, reconstructed vintage, custom-made creations, and up-and-coming designers, and also offers private appointments for stylists.
Wardrobe Department, 311 1/2 South Sweetzer Ave., L.A., 90048; Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, closed Sunday and Monday; (323) 653-5492
On the lookout for the perfect minimalist-chic bag? Agnes Badoo has you covered with her eponymous unisex line of handmade leather bags and accessories ($125 to $650). Handmade in L.A., Badoo's leather goods are the ideal accessories for jet-setters.
Curated in the heart of Los Angeles, NL THE LABEL brings out the sophistication and confidence that all women have within them. The brand offers modern concepts of classic wardrobe pieces, such as deconstructed denim and oversized power suit and shorts sets.
Located at the corner of Inglewood's Market Street, Philthy Ragz was founded by owner and designer, Gaynelle Winston White. Her boutique is stocked with trendy dresses, colorful drop-crotch jumpsuits, and White's own hand-made pieces.
Philthy Ragz, 201 South Market St., Inglewood, 90301; (310) 910-0891
The New York-based, L.A.-made eco-friendly swim label was founded by former Marie Claire market editor Brittany Kozerski Freeney, who created the luxury brand when she saw a need for minimalist and multi-functional pieces. Jade Swim's bikinis and one-pieces ($90 to $245) offer UV protection and are resistant to chlorine and suntan lotion and oils, too. — Danielle Directo-Meston
Fear of God
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standing in solidarity with other independent and minority owned businesses, in honor of George Floyd, the life lived and in support of the generation after him, we're donating all money raised by the sell of this t-shirt to the Gianna Floyd Fund (George Floyd's Daughter). more importantly than raising money, we encourage you to raise awareness and influence positive change at a heart level.
Designer Jerry Lorenzo is behind cult-favorite, edgy-luxe streetwear label Fear of God, which just debuted a charitable shirt in memory of George Floyd that will benefit the Gianna Floyd Fund. — Danielle Directo-Meston
L.A.-based interior designer Breegan Jane's eclectic collection of handmade jewelry ($10 to $135) is inspired by the Maasai tribe and benefits World Vision's Child Protection Through Education in Kenya campaign. — Danielle Directo-Meston
Fashion Mamas' Black Mamas Market
L.A.-based members-only creative community Fashion Mamas (which has over 600 members worldwide) has curated over 60 Black mother-owned brands offering clothing, jewelry, footwear, kids apparel, accessories, home goods, wellness, beauty, and more as part of its online Black Mamas Market from June 5 to 7. — Danielle Directo-Meston
Stylist and developmental health advocate Manny J. is the founder and creative director of Thread Haus, an L.A.-based line of globally-inspired apparel such as kimono jackets, reconstructed denim outerwear, and more globetrotter-friendly staples. The brand is also offering upcycled face masks ($15 to $18) and is also providing masks to the Los Angeles Westside Regional Center. — Danielle Directo-Meston
Elle B. Zhou
The L.A.-based modest luxury label was founded by designer Elle B. Mambetov, who relocated to the City of Angels after being freed from false imprisonment in London. She's set to debut her first U.S. pop-up shop at the Beverly Center in July. — Danielle Directo-Meston
Created by Compton-bred founder Krystyl Wrights, Lot XI is a community-conscious urban apothecary that sells soaps, candles, body products, and home essentials.
This Inglewood nail shop has you covered for all of your beauty needs. From lashes and brows to amazing nail designs, Nail Dega will be ready to serve stylish clients when the city of L.A. allows personal care businesses to reopen.
Nail Dega, 8460 Crenshaw Blvd., Inglewood, 90305; (323) 487-2806
Founded by Nigerian beauty executive Sharon Chuter (who's based in L.A. and London), Uoma believes that "beauty starts the moment you decide to be yourself." The cosmetics brand is known for its Say What? foundation, Stay Woke concealer, its vibrant eye shadow palettes, and other makeup bag must-haves for every skin tone.
Beneath Your Mask
After being diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE), Dana Jackson moved to L.A. and created Beneath Your Mask, a cruelty-free, vegan, and non-toxic label known for its Heal hand cream. Her products accentuate the natural beauty of the skin, all without damaging the immune system.
Kyra's Shea Medleys
When she noticed the lack of products for her curly hair, Kyra Nicole started making shea butter creams as a UCLA undergraduate. Her brand, Kyra's Shea Medleys, is powered by a mission is to empower women to embrace their natural curls and love their skin.
We discovered Anové's luxury skincare at Indie Beauty Expo earlier this year and fell in love with the L.A.-based brand's clean, plant-based formulas. Founder Evonna Kuehner created the inclusive label to serve all skin types and tones, and we're fans of the label's Perfecting Oil and pepperminty Cooling Mist. – Danielle Directo-Meston