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5 Designers to Shop This Black History Month (& Always)

February is a time when we give Black culture and Black history its much-deserved spotlight, so what better way to show your support for your beautiful Black sisters than sporting clothes and accessories designed by them! Here are five fashion brands owned by Black women that you need to check out rn (and also the rest of the year, because celebrating people shouldn’t have a monthly limit).

1. Phenomenal Woman

Unless you live under a rock, there’s no way you haven’t seen these unapologetically woke shirts on social media. By getting any of their many designs, you’re not only making a bold statement in support of women everywhere, but you’re also supporting the critical work that’s being done for women’s rights on the ground by fearless organizations every day. Proceeds from their “Phenomenally Black” line benefit Black Futures Lab.

The company also offers other “phenomenal” lines, like t-shirts supporting Latinas and other benefitting Indigenous peoples. Try this awesome brand out because woke looks good on everyone.   

2. Simply Cecily

Black History month obv means celebrating African culture, and this clothing brand does just that and more. Simply Cecily, founded by Cecily Habimana, creates show-stopping pieces that take the intricately bold patterns of African fashion and mix them with modern American style. The brand features stunning dresses and skirts with colorful designs that channel the beauty of African wear while keeping things casual. Simply Cecily’s pieces are perfect gifts for the beautiful African-American sisters in your life who want to illuminate their rich heritage. 

After earning her MBA, Cecily stayed in Senegal, Africa to teach and fell in love with the culture as well as the elegant outfits that Senegalese women wear. Cecily’s love for design and African heritage really translates into each piece, making her whole line a beautiful sight to behold (and buy, like ASAP).

3. HGC Apparel

HGC Apparel is arguably the most popular Black-owned clothing brand on the market, with our queen Zendaya sporting one of their. Founded by Marcia Jones, HGC Apparel channels ’90s Black pride through its funky street-wear for both women and men.

HGC is best known for their color blocked T-shirts and sweatshirts with the empowering messages like, “Respect, protect, love the Black woman” and, “I’m an educated Black queen.” The colorful yet simple graphics and designs on HGC’s pieces make them both bold fashion statements but also accessible and perfect for everyday wear. Try HGC out for an outfit that shouts out your support.

4. Cierra Lynn Collection

This is the closest you’ll get to wearing literal artwork on your body — it’s that beautiful! Founder and designer Cierra Lynn used her fine arts degree to design a wide range of clothes and accessories with painting-like graphics that’ll make your outfit get confused for a fine art piece. Cierra uses her own alternative paintings as the motifs on the dresses she sells, and also creates simpler tees with more inspiring words on them like “Love Yourself Facts” and many more. She also designs her own sunglasses with gorgeous sharp edges and colorfully patterned frames, as well as arty handbags.

The Cierra Lynn Collection is a true treasure trove of one-of-a-kind clothes and accessories, so go and discover all the wonderful items she has to offer and try them for yourself.

5. Kashmir.VIII

Celebrities like Spike Lee and Angela Bassett can’t get enough of the Black-owned brand Kashmir.VIII. Kashmir Thompson created her brand as an outlet for all her beloved art creations and expression of her love for Black pop culture. Kashmir took all her passions to make extraordinary clothes, accessories, home decor, stationery and so much more. Her clutch purses are one of the most fun pieces to wear, with their hilarious images with a gorgeous pop art feel. Not to mention, she also sells Black Panther merch!

Kashmir’s art is powerful and expressive while also fun and in your face, so if you want some real statement pieces that make both a fashion and social statement, definitely check out Kashmir.VIII.

These Black women designers really poured their hearts into their work; all the details in their products show their talent and care for creating clothing that doesn’t just look good, but also sends an important message about culture and the way our country writes the Black narrative. 

Iesha Ismail studied as a double major in English and Women's Studies at the University of Florida. Iesha is the High School/Her Future editor, a Feature Writer, and Style Blogger for Her Campus National. She was also the senior editor for Her Campus UFL and senior content editor for UF's Sparks Magazine. She is currently working in editorial for a financial research publication firm, and a guest contributor for Muslim Women Professionals. Iesha loves to observe nature and fashion as inspiration for all kinds writing she's into. Fashion, culture, drawing, and animation are just a few of the passions she plays with on the daily. Whether it's writing colorful stories or sketching in her worn out sketchbooks, Iesha always dabbles in anything art.