As a mixed Puerto Rican-Jamaican-Chinese woman, I firmly believe it’s always a great time to celebrate your unique identity and heritage, no matter what background you come from. However, Latinx Heritage Month (also referred to as Hispanic Heritage Month) recently began on September 15, and I’m reminded that now is a special time to honor and recognize Latinx joy in all its forms.
One of my favorite ways to celebrate this exciting month is by supporting Latinx-owned businesses and entrepreneurs who pour their creativity — and their hearts — into their products and services. Purchasing a product from a Latinx-owned business may not seem like a huge gesture at first, but supporting Latinx creatives (especially women!) can be a meaningful way to show appreciation for our vibrant and diverse community. Below are 10 incredible businesses that you can support this year during Latinx Heritage Month, whether you’re looking for cute greeting cards or a birthday gift for your roomie.
If you haven’t heard of Vive Cosmetics yet, trust me, you are about to fall in love with this beauty brand. Vive Cosmetics was founded in 2016 by Joanna Rosario-Rocha and Leslie Valdivia, two first-generation Latinas with a mission to combine their love for all things beauty and cultura. With no connections in the beauty industry, and motivated to create a brand focused on honoring Latinx stories, skin tones, languages, and origins, they created Vive Cosmetics, and it’s safe to say I’m obsessed. From vegan, cruelty-free lipsticks and lip balms to accessories and more, you’ll want their products in your beauty cabinet ASAP.
2. Xicana York (@xicanayork)
Evelyn Martinez is a queer Xicana photographer, creative director, and jewelry maker from the Bronx. In her powerful photo series, 100 Women of Color, Martinez documented over 100 women of color in New York City, showcasing the beauty and diversity that exists within the Latinx community and beyond. Not only are her professional prints stunning, but the multitalented entrepreneur also makes online jewelry, and the products are everything to me. With names like Mami’s Pearls and Ojitos Angelitos, each of Xicana York’s jewelry pieces remind me of my own heritage — and makes me proud to be Latina.
3. Descalza (@weardescalza)
Descalza, which translates to “barefoot” in Spanish, is a reminder that no matter how far away from “home” you are, you never forget where you came from. Born in El Salvador and raised in North Carolina, Lisbeth Carolina Arias started her clothing brand as a way of honoring her family’s immigrant story and creating a space within the fashion world where hard work wouldn’t go unnoticed. I love how you can read about the artisans and seamstresses who create the vibrant, handwoven fabrics, and the way every item is unique. I especially love Descalza’s new bridal collection, Para Siempre, which features custom, mix-and-match items for the big day.
House of Intuition is a center for mysticism, spirituality, and magic that was co-founded in 2010 by Latinx couple Marlene Vargas and Alex Naranjo, who are both of Mexican, Colombian, and Indigenous heritage. As an LGBTQ couple raised in traditional, religious homes, the pair built House of Intuition as a safe haven for anyone who wants to explore spirituality. Their online store includes crystal sets, tarot cards, candles, bath and body products, and more, plus, you can shop their Love Wins Collection, where five percent of all proceeds are donated to The Trans Justice Funding Project.
5. Lights Label (@lightslabel)
Cuban YouTuber and influencer Kathleen Fuentes, also known as @kathleenlights on social media, is the founder of Lights Label, a brand with adorable apparel, jewelry, bags, accessories, and more. I love how the products feature groovy patterns, Spanglish sayings, and items that speak to Latinx culture in a clever way, like this nail polish trio inspired by coffee. Whether you’re looking for a new phone case, a comfy t-shirt, or a gift for your coworker, you’ll love Lights Label and the way it celebrates Latinx heritage.
Not only do I love a good tongue-in-cheek company name, but I appreciate brands like this one that recognize the idea of a “cultural crossroads” — something that many mixed Latinx women (myself included) feel on a regular basis. As Patty Delgado, the 29-year-old founder and CEO, states on the website: “Hija de tu Madre caters to Latinx who bravely question everything, while reconciling our complicated history, culture, and identity. The brand is an ode to mujeres who are unapologetically Latina.” From jewelry and apparel honoring Latinx heritage to desk items, coffee mugs, and accessories featuring empowering messages, you’ll love this brand. You also get a free “Latina” necklace with the purchase of any jacket on the site.
While working as a legislative aide in healthcare, Éva Goicochea noticed that many sexual wellness products consistently looked confusing, outdated, and not inclusive. In 2018, she founded maude, a modern sexual wellness company “built on quality, simplicity, and inclusivity” that’s also on a mission to make intimacy a better experience for all. Not only is the brand aesthetic on point, but its products — which include vibrators, lubricants, massage candles, and bath soaks — are designed with safety, simplicity, and inclusion in mind. Goicochea is one of only 10 Latinx designers in consumer goods to receive over $10 million in venture funding, and Dakota Johnson (yes, from 50 Shades) is an investor and the brand’s Co-Creative Director. Casual.
8. Ceremonia (@myceremonia)
Ceremonia is a clean haircare brand celebrating the Latinx community that was founded by Babba Rivera, who grew up as a Latin American immigrant in Sweden. Her father was a hairdresser who set up shop in their living room, and Rivera remembers the way he would braid her hair as a child. When she turned 18 and eventually moved to the United States, Rivera reconnected with her Latinx heritage and eventually created Ceremonia, a brand inspired by the rituals she grew up with. Ceremonia offers everything from shampoo and conditioner to oil mists, heat protectant sprays, headbands, and more.
9. Nopalera (@nopalera.co)
Raised by Mexican immigrant parents near the U.S.-Mexico border, Sandra founded Nopalera to celebrate the beauty and richness of Mexico. Nopalera takes its name from the nopal cactus, which is an ancient symbol of Mexican culture, one of the most resilient crops in the world, and a crop Sandra used as an ingredient in her bath and body products growing up. Today, the brand makes vegan soaps and exfoliants that are clean and cruelty-free, and you can even find Nopalera products at Nordstrom.
10. Sincerely Not (@sincerely.not)
As a writer and editor, it’s no secret that my love language is words. So, when I discovered Sincerely Not, a stationery and lifestyle brand that sells sarcastic greetings cards, wall art, aromatherapy sprays, and more, I couldn’t help but start filling my online shopping cart. According to San Diego-based founder Faby Alvarado, Sincerely Not is meant to help you “shop your thoughts and feelings” and unapologetically share them with those you care about. Personally, I love the minimalist wall art and this cute greeting card that says “thanks for all the orgasms.”
While Latinx Heritage Month runs from September 15 to October 15, it is always a good time to celebrate Latinx-owned businesses and their heartfelt work. Of course, these are just a few of the many amazing Latinx businesses to support this heritage month, and I hope you’ll tell me which brands you’re loving, too! Whether you identify as Latinx, Latina, Latine, Hispanic, all of the above, or any other term that captures our beautiful heritage, I hope you find a reason to celebrate yourself this month. Don’t forget to spread the love to others around you, too — after all, isn’t that what Latinx culture is all about?