As beauty editors, it's our duty (and a fun one at that) to prioritize testing all the new, exciting products from Black-owned and Black-founded brands. And while we work to spotlight brands from the Black community year-round, Black History Month is a time to amplify our coverage and celebrate our favorite brands—as well highlight the contributions these formulas have made in the industry and to our skin, hair, and bodies.
Ahead, our team shares our picks du jour—the brands and products getting us through winter weather, work from home, and everything in between. Keep scrolling for your new favorite products.
Olivia Hancock, editor
"When I want to enhance the radiance of my skin, I use the LYS Beauty Aim High Multi-Use Liquid Highlighter ($19). Applying a few dabs of this highlighter gives me an unbelievably radiant, lit-from-within glow. I also love using it because of the skincare benefits the formula provides. Myrciaria dubia fruit extract helps to even my skin tone, mango fruit extract helps to replenish my skin, and sodium hyaluronate works to revitalize my complexion. Needless to say, this highlighter is a powerhouse product."
"Tracee Ellis Ross. Do I need to say anything more? When Pattern launched in 2019, I knew I had to get my hands on the products ASAP. Since then, Pattern products have been a staple in my hair care routine. From the Leave-in Conditioner to the Curl Gel, I have tried almost every product from the brand, and my curls love them. They’re always left looking "juicy and joyful," as Ross would say. But aside from the products, I love how Pattern authentically celebrates Black hair and culture at every touchpoint. It’s been beautiful to see how Ross has created a community and movement that celebrates individuals with curly and coily hair through Pattern."
"The African beauty rituals Christina grew up with inspired her to launch 54 Thrones in 2016. The brand uses high-quality African-grown ingredients like Ugandan and Ghanaian Shea butter to make its natural skincare products (which range from butters to body bars). I’ve recently been raving about the brand’s African Beauty Butters to anyone who will listen. They’re the perfect cure for my perpetually dry skin and hands, which has only intensified due to the constant hand-washing we’ve all been doing over the last year. In addition to Shea butter, the butters also contain plant botanicals to boost its hydrating capabilities. And if I haven’t sold you on the magic of 54 Throne’s Beauty Butters yet, just know Oprah is a fan too."
Jasmine Phillips, social media editor
"I've been a fan of Whitney White since I transitioned my natural hair back in 2012. I would spend hours watching her YouTube videos learning how to care for and style my natural hair and even attempted to recreate one of her DIY hair treatments. Once she launched her hair care line, I knew it would include some of my new favorite products. Melanin Haircare's Twist-Elongating Style Cream is packed with shea butter and natural oils and offers a long-lasting definition without a crunchy feel. I love how it locks in moisture, keeps my curls bouncy, and is perfect for type four hair. The styling options are endless—you can use it for a wash and go, braid-out, rod set, and more. We love a multi-use product."
Holly Rhue, senior editor
"The Gilded Body Marble Body Brush has been a long time favorite product of mine, but recently I've been reaching for the brand's Supreme Body Balm after a shower. My skin gets very dry and flaky in the colder months, so I keep this jar in my shower and apply while my skin is still wet to lock in all of that moisture. It's unscented (which is my preference for skin products) and leaves my skin feeling plump, soft, and moisturized—not greasy."
Amp Beauty LA
"AMP Beauty LA is the marketplace for discovering Black-owned beauty products, and their mission is this: "We believe that shopping hair, skin, bath, body, and makeup should be easy, convenient, and personalized, for all textures and all shades." Across AMP Beauty LA's platform, you'll find everything from skincare, to haircare, to makeup, to candles, and beyond. Everything is hand-selected (and ships super fast). Right now, the products I'm loving (and will definitely be re-purchasing) are the Flaunt Body Ingrown Hair Mask Treatment and the Soap Distillery Limoncello Bar Soap."
"I'm lucky to have fairly long natural lashes, but they're extremely straight. Even when I use a lash curler, they typically don't hold a curl for longer than an hour or two. This is the only mascara that actually lifts and curls my lashes with a hold that lasts all day. That, and it doesn't leave my lashes feeling dry or brittle when I take it off. The formula contains nourishing ingredients like castor, avocado, and jojoba oil for a smooth application and healthier lashes over time (so it's basically a lash serum and mascara in one). I highly recommend giving it a try if you have straight lashes that could use a little lifting and fanning out."
Angela Trakoshis, commerce review editor
"While I know how wrong it is, I just cannot stop picking at my skin and popping my pimples (don't tell my dermatologist.) And while I dread the redness a blemish can bring, I loathe the dark spot that comes after. Hyperpigmentation lasts on my skin for weeks upon weeks, and it's a struggle to find a treatment that actually works—enter Faded. The formula tones down pigmentation without lightening my skin, thanks to tranexamic acid, which keeps the cells that produce melanin in your skin. Keep in mind this product does have a bit of a sulfur scent, but hey, since it works, I don't care what it smells like."
Eden Stuart, associate editor
"I had the pleasure of meeting Mented founders KJ Miller and Amanda E. Johnson at an event, during which the duo mentioned they were so familiar with their products they could recommend anyone the perfect nude lipstick on sight. I had to take them up on the challenge, and sure enough, Johnson’s suggestion for me–Peach Please–has become the only warm nude I’ll ever need. I like to tell that story because I think it exemplifies the brand’s commitment to celebrating the diversity within skin of color."
"I spent years searching for a blush palette that A) had an appealing color story, and B) didn’t contain a single shade that wouldn’t show up on my medium-tan skin. I had all but given up when I discovered OPV Beauty's Born to Shine Palette on Instagram; now, it’s the only powder blush I wear. The brand was founded by Bukola and Opeyemi Adeyemo, London-based Nigerian sisters who saw a dearth of colorful, cruelty-free products compatible with all skin tones."
"Seriously, I’m probably Hyper Skin’s biggest unpaid promoter. As someone whose main skin concern is hyperpigmentation, I go through vitamin C serums at a rapid pace; as someone who isn’t a Rockefeller, that has historically proven to be a very expensive habit. Not only does the company’s first product, the Hyper Even Brightening Dark Spot Vitamin C Serum, come loaded with vitamins C and E—it’s also a very wallet-friendly $36. Plus, the formulation is as smooth and elegant as that of some of my pricier skincare products. I’m excited to see what the brand does next."
Hallie Gould, editorial director
Oui the People
"I've always been a sucker for beautiful brand imagery—so that's admittedly what first drew me to this brand (think: glossy skin and sun-drenched products). Then, the brand's mission struck a chord with me. Karen Young, Oui the People's founder, says of her decision to create beauty products: "Brands inform culture and language, as beauty has done for decades. We believe beauty shouldn’t come at the expense of our psyche. Rather than pursuing flawlessness, we aim to build efficacious products, designed thoughtfully, that help you feel great in the skin you’re already in." More than all of it, though, trying the Sensitive Skin Razor had me practically shouting about Oui the People to anyone in earshot. The razor is an entirely new experience for anyone, like me, who was using a disposable. It's a weighty, single-blade straight razor that offers the smoothest shave you can possibly imagine. I relish in the extra few minutes it takes because I know the results are outstanding. Post-shave, apply Oui the People's Featherweight Hydrating Body Gloss for a long-lasting glossy glow."
"I was first introduced to Hanahana Beauty's founder, Abena Boamah-Acheampong, on an Instagram live. As she spoke about her brand, I knew I'd fall in love with the products. Immediately afterwards I ordered some of my own. All of the products are all-natural and homemade (and I'm not joking when I say you can feel the love mixed into each of them). One of the key ingredients in the line is shea butter, which the brand sources directly from the Katariga Women's Shea Cooperative in Ghana. It's a really beautiful collection of skin-loving formulas. My favorites lately are the Eucalyptus Shea Body Butter and Exfoliating Body Bar to help soothe my dry, winter skin."
Karli Bendlin, senior editor
The Luv Scrub
"I have two very different shower routines depending on the time of day. There's my rushed, five-minute morning shower, and then there's my lengthy, indulgent nighttime shower experience when I do all of the skincare steps I'm often too lazy for. The Luv Scrub Mesh Body Exfoliator is without a doubt the star of my evening shower routine. It makes exfoliating feel like a self-care moment, and it leaves my skin unbelievably smooth and soft to the touch. The brand's founder, Caroline Owusu-Ansah, grew up using mesh body exfoliators—like West Africans have done for generations—but realized there was nothing on the market like it here. She launched the Luv Scrub to give consumers an all-in-one bath product that lasts much longer than the traditional loofah (you can use the Luv Scrub for up to 18 months). I can attest—mine still lathers as well as the day I got it."
Aimee Simeon, senior beauty editor
"Maya Smith created The Doux as an ode to her love for natural hair and Hip-Hop. The two blended together resulted in a magical line of effective hair products with equally catchy names and packaging. If you've seen the Big Poppa Defining Gel all over social media, it's for a good reason. The massive tub (which is a godsend if you're heavy-handed with products like me) gives even the tightest curls great definition without clumping or flaking. A true must-have for any hairstyle from wash-and-gos to slick buns."
"Dr. Chaneve Jeanniton, a board-certified oculofacial plastic surgeon, created Epi.Logic, a line of skincare inspired by her diverse patients. Each product has a specific function and efficacious ingredients that can be used alone or combined with other Epi.Logic formulas. My personal favorite has been the Double Feature Retinol + AHA Overnight facial, which has helped manage my hyperpigmentation. I slather some of this on a clean face and neck before bed and wake up noticeably smoother and glowier. I follow up with the brand's Total Package moisturizer to keep my skin from drying out."
Star Donaldson, senior social media editor
"I love an eyeshadow that gives a lot of color pay off with zero effort, so if you're like me, get your coins ready. Danessa Myricks really delivered with her line of Colorfix Cream Pigments. You need the tiniest drop of product, and you have enough pigment to cover both lids in a rich, glittery, dreamy color. As the name suggests, the formula starts as a cream but then dries down to a sparkly satin finish depending on the color. It's super long-wearing—seriously, it doesn't budge at all once applied and is even waterproof. It makes a bold eye super easy."
"I like a product that doesn't force me to add more steps to my routine when it comes to body exfoliation. This African Exfoliating Net from Cece's Closet is the perfect tool to use when you're already in the shower to get off dead skin, improve circulation and scrub yourself clean. I usually add my favorite soap to the net, lather up, and then scrub down my whole body. The net is super long, so you can easily reach your back, and it isn't super porous, so it dries quicker than a traditional loofah. It lasts for up to two years and, because of its structure, prevents bacteria build-up (but you can still throw it in the wash when necessary). If my praise isn't enough, this product has gone viral on TikTok as well."
Araziel Jackson, assistant social media editor
"TGIN's Miracle Repairx Protective Leave-in Conditioner is filled with hair-loving ingredients like black castor oil, coconut oil, biotin, and more. This formula helps reduce breakage, prevents split ends, and repairs damage. My hair is typically dry, and I suffered from breakage recently, so I started using this conditioner. I apply a generous amount to small sections of my hair, and it instantly leaves my type four coils feeling moisturized and hydrated. Plus, I can't get enough of the long-lasting smell."
Jesa Marie Calaor, editor
Bread Beauty Supply
"After a steamy bath, I reach for a particular bottle of liquid gold: The Bread Beauty Supply Macadamia Nut Oil is a vial of the aforementioned ingredient (and that ingredient only). The emollient oil deeply moisturizes without being greasy or messy and adds shine. I like to comb it through the lengths of my hair and massage it onto parts of my body that always end up extra dry, like my elbows and knees."