Nordstrom is stepping up on its commitment to improve representation in its beauty aisles. In a category dubbed "Inclusive Beauty," which Nordstrom defines as "a curated assortment of products created for everyone — regardless of skin or hair type, tone, complexion or texture, in-store and online," a slate of incredible new beauty brands are being added to the roster. The new platform launched back in October, and put the spotlight on Black-founded brands like Baby Tress, Beauty Bakerie, Beauty Stat, Bomba Curls, Briogeo, Epara, and MANTL.
Though the department store has not yet officially signed the 15 Percent Pledge, (a movement founded by Aurora James of Brother Vellies to increase Black-owned business representation in retailers), James herself told Business Of Fashion, "I do believe that Nordstrom wants to do the work in the right way.” President Pete Nordstrom said he is “very confident” that the company will join the pledge by the end of April, in the same BofF article.
In the meantime, there are five new inclusive brands, and fun new products to discover.
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Jamika Rose, 24 started Rosen during her own acne journey — in her college dorm room. Now, just five years later, the brand is making its Nordstrom debut. The label is known (and loved) for its affordable prices and efficacious acne-fighting products — try the Paloma Serum, an alpha hydroxy and beta hydroxy acid blend to help address dullness, dark spots, and pigmentation.
Sharon Chuter, founder of Uoma, and Pull Up For Change (a campaign to address diversity behind the scenes at beauty brands) has been a fierce advocate for equity in the beauty industry — far beyond the bounds of her own brand. The Say What?! Weightless Soft Matte Foundation is a multi-award-winning favorite available in 51 shades.
54 Thrones founder, Christina Funke Tegbe, named her brand, which is made using African-grown botanicals, in honor of the continent's 54 countries. The ingredients come from African artisans, and each product is meant to shed light on the continent's immense beauty. The line includes body oils, butters, and masks, but it's their 'Beauty Butter' that receives a ton of attention (look at that cute gold tube). It comes in various flavors including Egyptian Lavender + Moroccan Mint, Kenyan Hibiscus + Moroccan Rose, and Ugandan Vanilla + Ethiopian Honey—to name a few. It can be used as a full-on body product or to nourish dry spots — think: lips, elbows, cuticles.
Katonya Breaux (aka Frank Ocean's mom!) founded Unsun in 2016, after being left frustrated by the options for SPF for darker skin tones. As you may already know, mineral sunscreens (which use ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide) often leave a pale, white cast on darker skin tones. Her Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30 acts as a primer, color corrector, and your daily SPF — and comes in two tones — beige and dark tan — so there's a match for everyone.
Founded by Hannah Diop — and, as of September, co-owned, and fronted by Issa Rae — Sienna Naturals makes "clean," efficacious hair care for natural hair at attainable prices. The collection is free of harsh sulfates, parabens, silicones, phthalates, petroleum, mineral oil formaldehyde, and artificial fragrances. The Dew Magic Leave-In Conditioner is a favorite, which works to leave hair soft and shiny thanks to ingredients like baobab and shea butter.