By Amy Rana
*Click here for the Black Owned Business Listing*
We are living in a world that is operated by the whirlwind of fast fashion and mass consumerism is at an all-time high. We’ve become impatient and although we’re probably too embarrassed to admit it, desperate at the same time. Whatever we need, whenever we need it - not only are we able to get to the checkout in just one click of a button… we want it instantly. More often than not, we’re returning to the same old ‘trusty’ companies, brands, and huge global corporations that sadly, are the ones who are also responsible for everything that is wrong with consumerism in society. Hands up how many of us are guilty of going straight to ASOS every time we need a new outfit for our next night out or going to the same old supermarket chains to stock up on some branded hot sauce? I know I’m guilty and a lot of you will probably be agreeing right now too.
It’s never too late to start shopping more consciously, sustainably and ethically. But you’re not alone, we’re all in this together.
It’s been a difficult year for all of us, to say the least. Not only has the entire world been trying to survive a global pandemic, but we’ve also seen battling systemic racism around the world.
According to government statistics, 90% of small businesses in the UK are majority-led by white people. In a 2018 report, Sandra Kerr, race equality director of Business in the Community said that ‘BAME employees often find they are not able to progress in traditional work environments so may choose to start their own business’. Think about it. How many Black-owned businesses do you hear about in mainstream marketing? The answer? Let’s just say, it’s very, very, very low. These big companies have a long history of not only oppressing small businesses but also putting a heavy burden on low-income communities.
So what now? Well, Swiss, one of the founding members of the iconic music group So Solid Crew took the issue into his own hands and came up with a genius solution-focused idea. This is something that we can all participate in to help lift the spirits (both emotionally and financially) of small black-owned businesses and finally show them the support and representation they deserve. The 27th June 2020 saw the world’s first-ever #BlackPoundDay in the UK. So what does this actually mean and how can you personally support it?
From luxury fashion, statement jewellery and real nude tights (no 50 shades of beige here thank you) to Moscato wines, sweet treats, and handcrafted candles… there’s such a beautiful, amazing diverse range of businesses out there to be discovered.
So, next time you make a purchasing decision - why not take a quick moment and ask yourself…who do I want to support right now? And if your answer is a Black-owned business, you’re in the right place! To make things 100 times easier, you can find a list of Black-owned small businesses you can choose to support with your money HERE covering food, fashion, beauty, home & lifestyle. Don’t forget to add in your own recommendations and reviews too!
And just think, not only will it make you feel good, imagine that smile you are putting on the face of the person that has put everything into their product or business. Plus, you avoid spending money at other companies that may not celebrate Black culture, but that’s a whole other conversation for another day ;)
And as Swiss says don’t forget…”it’s a movement, not a moment.”
TIPS: How to support Black-owned businesses today and always:
1. The obvious - buy from Black-owned businesses (don’t forget to check out the LIST!)
2. Take a photo of the purchase or business
3. Share a post on social media tagging the brand and using their hashtag
4. Big up your experience on your Stories
5. Recommend the business to a friend or family (and leave your review/feedback in the doc!)