10 Black-Owned Clothing Brands That Are Making a Difference
Where was the last place you shopped at?
Can you remember what their message was? Or who founded that brand?
During the Black Lives Matter movement, a lot of brands have shown us what they are about.
Brands that have stayed silent have made us rethink where we want our money to go because you’re not just buying a piece of clothing, you are buying the brands message and everything they support.
2020 has become the breaking point of what white privilege does to the black community and it’s time to make a change.
Supporting black owned businesses is a great way to show your support, especially if you can’t join protests for fear of the pandemic.
Here are 10 black-owned businesses that you should start supporting right now:
HSTRY features streetwear collections and collaborations about black history and a passion for change. These collections and collaborations include BLACK HSTRY 2020, HSTRY x ALPHA INDUSTRIES, HSTRY x HOUSE OF MANDELA, and THE SINCERE COLLECTION. Each one of them with a different message. This brand has been using their message on their Instagram page as well by showing their support for the black lives matter movement. Using their platform to promote petitions and bring to light the problems in our society.
Hanifa focuses on creating contemporary ready-to-wear clothing for the natural curves of a woman from sizes 0-20. They design for the women who have class while also setting their own rules. Founder, Anifa Mvuemba, was set to showcase her first collection to be featured in New York Fashion Week until Covid-19 cancelled those plans. However, she then turned heads with her 3D virtual fashion show that she did over Instagram live to showcase her Pink Label Congo collection. Pink Label Congo is inspired by the painful but beautiful history of Congo. She hopes to inspire women with this collection to stand tall in their power and use their history, painful or beautiful, to redesign their future.
The founders of this "Born in New Orleans" brand, Nicholas Clark and Marlon Watts, both came from humble pasts and wanted to move forward from their experiences to make a change. These self-taught designers have a vision and want to share it with everyone. Their brand was born in 2010 when they were only 14 years old and have been working on their brand ever since. They hit many bumps along the road but knew that they had to keep going. WRLDINVSN is for the dreamers, creators, and leaders.
MELI seeks to promote unity and equality. Founder, Monty Matuka, wants to provide opportunities to spread positivity, inspire others, build confidence, and explore the unknown. The purpose of MELI is to bring the community together while also bringing mindfulness through their clothing. Matuka creates streetwear style as well as high fashion. However, the message will always stay the same: "More Equality, Less Ignorance."
5. Beautiful in Every Shade
This brand seeks to bring empowerment and are committed to decolonizing beauty, building solidarity, and uniting women of color. They want to transform the way people look at themselves. They are the sister platform to Black Men Smile which is about self-love, learning from each other, and encouraging one another. It is about changing the way men see themselves and accept that they can have emotions. Both were created by Carlton Mackey, and both have a powerful message: To inspire people to love themselves.
6. Undefined Clothing
Undefined Clothing, created by Dyesha, is designed to encourage the black community, people of color, and members of the LGBTQ community to live outside of the box that society has placed them in. They seek to empower those who wear their clothing and express the most important aspects of their identity, culture, and beliefs. Dyesha created this brand from her own experiences as a Black, gay, women and spent many years researching diversity and the strength that minorities possess. Through this process she reached the point of living undefined.
7. This is Cultured
Cultured was created to celebrate black culture and give a platform to people of color so that they have a voice. Founder, Jeremy Seeden, created this brand for people who walk into stores and aren't able to find clothing created for them. He wanted to bring more awareness to black culture to show the world that they are more than just their color. That the black community is full of creatives, hard workers, artists, trendsetters and so much more. It is more than a clothing brand, it's a movement.
8. The Right Side of History
After Syrus Anderson attended a protest in his college town, he was quickly inspired to create an online store where all the profits made go to Black Lives Matter Campaign through ActBlue Charities. He wanted to create a platform for people to choose what side of history they are on. Each design was created by him and was influenced by the protesters he interviewed. You can find the word "History" on the right sleeve of each garment to represent "The right side of history". On Anderson's online store he makes the simple, but strong, statement "Stand for something or die for nothing".
9. Shue Clothing
Shue clothing is about embracing the vibes. They have many different pieces to fit anyone's style. They feature jackets, hats, T-Shirts and even face masks to keep those around you protected while also keeping you fashionable. With their newly released collection for the Black Lives Matter movement, they will be donating all profits to BLM Indy Chapter and the National Bailout fund. While Shue is embracing the vibes, they are also making a change.
2EZE is dedicated to the empowerment of design and how it used to inspire people. Founders Josh Sims and Nate Robert-Eze both come from humble pasts and wanted to create a brand that represented unity, faith, a good work ethic, respect, and resilience. With all these qualities, you can turn a tough situation into a much "easier" process. These two like to go beyond their brand and help others achieve their goals in life. One way they do this is by putting on a unity themed fashion show each year which has even featured MELI and Shue Clothing. They believe that if they inspire the world, they can change the world.
Even after justice is found and we have all made a change, we should always care about where our clothes are coming from and who we choose to support.
What will you decide to do?