Black-Owned Businesses in Health and Wellness to Support Now and Always
By Katy Lindenmuth
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Businesses around the world have found new ways of serving their customers due to social distancing mandates and other safety protocols brought on by the coronavirus pandemic -- and after nearly a year of unprecedented changes, owning a business looks entirely different than it did before.
For Black business owners, everything that comes with keeping a business afloat -- not to mention the stress of day-to-day life -- has been compounded by the outcry against police brutality, racial injustice and systemic racism following the tragic deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor along with too many others. You can show your support for Black business owners by working with or shopping from Black-owned companies whenever possible.
Of course, there are plenty of Black-owned companies in the fashion and beauty industries. But with so many people focused on self-care and their personal well-being during this time of staying at home, the popularity of the wellness and health space is on the rise. Luckily, this space is full of brands that are founded and run by Black women and men. Whether they're selling aromatherapy candles, producing fitness-minded podcasts or shattering stigmas of what it means to be "well" for Black women, each of these companies was once just a dream and is now a hard-earned reality.
But don't just shop these Black-owned businesses today. Support them regularly, engage with them on social media (you'll be surprised at the impact your likes, follows, and comments can make!) and spread the word to your friends, family and peers. Then seek out other minority-owned companies -- apps like Black Nation, Official Black Wall Street and and EatOkra make this easy -- and repeat. (In addition to committing to discovering and supporting Black-owned businesses and minority entrepreneurs, you can also donate to causes that move you, educate yourself through reliable sources and simply make your voice heard.)
Below, meet some of the Black-owned health and wellness companies we support and the inspiring women and men behind them.
Plants as therapy? Grounded Plants cofounders Mignon Hemsley and Danuelle Doswell say yes. Their brand new online shop is packed with varieties like golden pothos and aloe vera to help you decompress and disconnect, resulting in a healthier and happier you. (Also, their three-month subscription service is simply genius.) Check for restocks soon.
Business in bloom! Los Angeles–based Black entrepreneur Talia Boone used the early days of the pandemic to launch a completely genius farm-to-table flower delivery platform. Postal Petals works much like a produce delivery service, shipping handpicked boxes of fresh, seasonal flowers and greenery that you can arrange -- or learn to arrange -- to perfectly suit your home and style preferences. Boxes come in three sizes and include six to 15 bundles of fresh flowers from carefully chosen farm partners, as well as care and design tips. (You can also seek out ideas on Postal Petals' Instagram feed.) Find calmness in arranging the flowers solo or grab up to five friends and book a Petal Party virtual workshop, where you'll all design your own masterpieces from the same bundles.
Reggie "Jefe" Smith and Angela "AJ Boomin" Jennings founded Washington, DC-based Boombox Boxing Club as a way to offer both boxing-inspired group fitness classes and a strong, teamwork-minded community. Boombox is navigating the coronavirus pandemic with $10 virtual classes that anyone can join -- and continuing their mission of making boxing-inspired training accessible to all.
Sinikiwe Dhliwayo founded Naaya with the purpose of redefining "wellness" into a term that centers on Black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC). Her video on why we need to have difficult conversations is a must-watch.
Writer Yasmine Jameelah created this wellness collective by curating digital content, a Transparent Talk series, apparel and more. Jameelah says, "I believe that wellness like people of color is multifaceted and it should be free to take on as many forms as it sees fit. Here, we embrace it all."
Angela Richardson isn't just PUR Home's founder and CEO -- she is also the formulator and product developer for the company's line of natural household and skincare products. From organic castile soap to lavender-grapefruit laundry detergent to waterless all-purpose bar soap, PUR Home's products are proudly plant-based, biodegradable and low toxic.
Look, there's no reason you shouldn't have more hand sanitizer on you. And this medical-grade, FDA-approved and registered option features vitamin E, emollients and moisturizers to keep your hands from feeling too dry.
Founded by Brooklyn-based Nya Kam, Love Notes hand-pours custom blended aromatherapy candles in heavenly scent combos like lemon verbena-ginger-mint and black amber-lavender-pear. Love Notes also sells Self-ish body teas, for those seeking an extra-luxurious bathing and soaking experience.
With notes of lemon verbana, ginger and mint, this will be the essential candle to add new life to your home. Plus, when you've burned through the candle, you can reuse the glass container for something else.
Trinity Mouzon Wofford is the powerhouse behind Golde, a Brooklyn-based vegan company that makes superfood-boosted wellness and beauty essentials. Their latte blends and face masks are filled with ingredients like turmeric, matcha and spirulina, and their Instagram feed is filled with recipes, tips and inspo.
BLK+GRN is all about community. The company's website is an all-natural marketplace that connects Black people with high-quality, toxic-free brands like Dirt Don't Hurt (pictured above), and the weekly BLK+GRN podcast spotlights Black female artisans, their stories and their products.
What does it mean to be the first plant-based feminine care system on the market? For Honey Pot CEO Bea Dixon, it's personal -- she suffered from bacterial vaginosis for months before starting her herb-powered line of products to cleanse, protect and balance the vagina.
Muniq is a line of science-based nutritional shakes that feed your gut with natural prebiotic resistant starch fibers to promote a healthy gut microbiome, help manage blood sugar and strengthen immunity, among other health benefits. The shakes were formulated with the diabetic community in mind but are a match for anyone wanting to improve their health from the inside out -- there's even a vegan chocolate option. CEO Marc Washington founded Muniq in honor of his later sister, Monica, as a nutrition solution that would have empowered her to take greater control of her health.