As the U.S. embraces Black History Month, we often look at the achievements of many great African-Americans of the past, and deservedly so. There have been many trials and tribulations that these iconic figures had to overcome to fight for their rights. But, along with celebrating the history of black people in America, this month is also a time for celebrating the contributions of black Americans today.
One of the best ways we can all do that is by shopping at Black-owned businesses. Black entrepreneurs face different challenges than their counterparts, particularly when it comes to funding. These businesses instead rely heavier on support from their local communities and customers.
Shopping at these e-commerce businesses isn’t just something Americans should do this month. From black innovators to highly skilled craftsmen, these businesses sell excellent products that cater to everyone’s needs year round.
To give some examples, we spoke with some of our favorite Shippos on what they sell and how their businesses came to be.
Vontelle Eyewear: Prescription Glasses Featuring African, Caribbean, and Latin Designs
Founded in 2019 by Tracy Vontélle Green and Nancey Harris, Vontélle is a female and Black-owned business that satisfies the demand for better-fitting, vibrant, and fashion-forward eyewear. For years leading up to this moment, the two were unable to find eyewear that was well-fitted for their faces. Many of the brands they encountered were not sized properly, the bridges were not made to fit them, the temples were not long enough and caused headaches, and the glasses would leave indentations.
Tracy and Nancey came to realize that this was not a problem they faced alone – there was a clear gap in the market and they wanted to make a difference for all African, Latinx, Asian, and other indigenous communities. This inspired Tracy and Nancey to design their eyewear products with traditional colors and patterns that channel their African, Caribbean, and Latin heritage to pay homage to their respective African ancestries.
As the first African American–owned and –operated eyewear company to offer ethnic and cultural patterns, Vontelle wants to give customers confidence while representing their culture in a new way.
Vontelle now sells a diverse brand of eyewear (optical and sunglasses) as well as accessories for everyone to enjoy and look beautiful in at the same time. Partnered with Nickelodeon, Vontelle also offers Baby Shark, SpongeBob SquarePants, and Rugrats eyewear for little ones.
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Vontelle is now also offering a 25% coupon with code BHM23 in honor of celebrating Black History Month this year. The offer is valid until 03/01/2023.
Everything Just Baked: Cake Mix, Baking Supplies, and E-guides
Located in Northern New Jersey, Everything Just Baked is a black-owned bakery founded by Justin Ellen. He started his business at just 16 years old and currently runs it with his younger sister, Brianna Ellen.
Both are older now but are still young entrepreneurs chasing a dream and inviting everyone along for the ride. Everything Just Baked now sells products such as premium and natural cake mix, vanilla and chocolate buttercream, offset and rubber spatulas, edible images, custom cakes, and more.
But, beyond selling products, Everything Just Baked also offers classes on how to build cakes, perfect baking techniques, and even classes for business owners, such as how to build your business structure and credit building. Empowering others to chase their baking dreams is at the core of Justin’s business.
This passion for baking has even landed Justin on one of the biggest stages in the game. You may have seen him on the hit Netflix game show, Is It Cake?
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Everything Just Baked is just starting and has expanded to in-person classes. If you’re ready to level-up your baking skills and baking career, be sure to check out them out!
Lizzie’s All-Natural Products: Simple, Plant-Based Products For Healthy Skin From Head to Toe
Founded in 2017 by Christen “Lizzie” Funderburk, the start of Lizzie’s All-Natural Products stemmed from Christen’s lifelong battle with eczema. Those who suffer from eczema know that it can be much more than just irritated skin. Waking up to new scars, sleepless nights, and the overall self-consciousness that come from eczema can severely affect a persons quality of life.
Over-the-counter treatments and even prescription treatments are often just steroid creams, water-based products, and toxin-filled products that can have little to no effect at all. Lizzie’s all-natural and plant-based products are a great alternative to treating and nourishing skins of all types.
Some the most popular skincare products available at Lizzie’s online store include eczema butter, artisan bar soap, organic body wash, body oil, and laundry detergent, to name a few. Those with sensitive skin know that anything that touches their skin (including their clothes, bed sheets, and deodorants) should be free of any harsh chemicals.
Lizzies All-Natural products is also more than just an e-commerce brand. There is also a retail storefront located in Winston-Salem, NC, where you can see the products in person and ask about which products would be best for your skin care needs.
And, if that’s not enough, you can also book a spa service where you can try the products out in a relaxing and calming environment with a licensed esthetician, including Lizzie herself!
These are just a few of the many black-owned e-commerce businesses that you should consider shopping at this month and beyond.
Starting your own e-commerce business? Sign up to Shippo for free today and get access instantly to more affordable shipping labels and an easier shipping process. Or contact our sales team to learn more about how Shippo can empower your business to sell and ship anywhere.