Beauty brands are starting to play catch up when it comes to women of color (think: extended shade ranges, more pigmented lipsticks, and models of color in advertisements). But beyond the actual products and the people wearing them in ads, there is a rally around companies created by and for women of color. Sure, Pat McGrath Labs, Iman Cosmetics, Carol’s Daughter, and Beauty Bakerie are successes, but there is still a long way to go for most independent, Black-owned companies.

Those yearning to add more variety to their beauty bags (while supporting ventures backed by women of color) need to look no further than the slew of lesser-known collections that made their debut at the 2018 Project Beauty Expo, an event in NYC that celebrates multicultural beauty and the brands that support women of color. Below, we’ve highlighted eight inclusive companies to help you look and feel beautiful.

Pholk Beauty

The founder of Pholk Beauty, Niambi Cacchioli, created the brand after finding herself frustrated with the lack of products that addressed her concerns, even in the age of inclusive beauty.

Ranging in price from $17 to $30, the line has everything you need for a glowing complexion: face wash, moisturizers, masks, and a new fave, H2 Oil Hemp X Hibiscus Night Treatment For All Skin, a perfect overnight treatment to give your face all the things it loves most.


CUE , which stands for Chemistry Uniquely Expressed, was founded by mother-and-daughter chemists Mabel and Aimee Sowu with the intention to provide salon-quality hair care products for both hairstylists and consumers to use. After talking with hundreds of hairstylists and thousands of women on what they were looking for, they created scientifically sound formulas that cost between $7 and $17 and work for all hair types. If you’re not sure where to start with the brand, try the Arioso Light Gloss Polish ($17) to control frizz while pumping up the shine factor.


Blade and Bloom is an apothecary with the desire to create 100 percent natural, plant-based products. Terri Foster, founder of the Chicago-based brand, uses familiar scents to recreate memories from her childhood — like summer camp — that can then be shared with her customers for $50 or less per product.

Beija-Flor Naturals

Image Courtesy of Beija-Flor Naturals Instagram

Launched in 2009 by Stevonne Ratliff, this Bay Area-based brand — featuring products selling for no more than $30 — has all of the self-care goodies you never knew you needed. Offering a collection of body scrubs, face masks, scalp elixirs, aromatherapy sprays, and botanical smudge sticks, you can just think of Beija-Flor Naturals as your one-stop shop for a night of #SelfCare.

Forever Wild Organics

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Forever Wild Organics has effective products (all of which you can snag for between $10 and $22) for happy, healthy hair. Founded by herbalist and licensed beauty professional Chelsea Cannon, this vegan-friendly brand features medicinal ingredients to target everything from hair loss to hyper-pigmentation. What’s more, all of the good-for-you products are actually good for the guy in your life, too, thanks to their unisex formulas. If you want to test-drive the products for yourself, try starting with the Body, Bath, and Massage Oil.

EA Polish

Image Courtesy of EA Polish Instagram

EA Polish provides fast-drying, non-toxic nail polish for women on the go, and all it will cost you is a cool $8. Founder Riane McWain created the brand after giving birth to her daughter and realizing that she didn’t have time for a trip to the nail salon. Formulated with the belief that women should never have to sacrifice their unique style or the ability to treat themselves in the face of a tight schedule, these fast-drying nail polishes are available in shades that range from bright and bold to muted and debonair.

I See You Wellness

Founded by Mariam Guessous, I See You Wellness is a wellness and self-care company that aims to uplift and empower women of color for anywhere between $12 and $100. Guessous, originally from Morocco, started the brand after realizing that, though from the outside she had everything, she felt something was missing within. She launched her non-toxic, organic beauty brand as a form of healing and self care for herself and others. To get in on the magical must-haves, stock up on the Indulge Yourself Complete Self Care Package ($70). Equipped with everything you need for self care, including essential oils and a Palo Santo + Sage Bundle, you can look forward to deepening your journey with not only your outer beauty but also your inner self.

The Luv Scrub

Time to upgrade your loofah! The Luv Scrub ($18) is a traditional West African staple of showering routines thanks to its natural exfoliating power. Caroline Owusu-Ansah, founder of the stretchy shower staple, has been using something identical to it since the age of five and, after noticing her friends using other tools and always asking about where she got hers, she began asking her parents to bring more like it back from Ghana. She soon realized that something that had been used in West Africa for generations could be turned into a business — and so she did.

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