Sephora currently works with 290 brands in the United States, and up until now, has only sold nine Black-owned brands. With this new pledge, the company will now offer at least 44—more than triple what they’ve previously had on market shelves. And that exposure will do so much more for Black-owned brands than support their revenue; “Real investment will start happening in black businesses which will subsequently be paid forward into our black communities,” James writes in her Instagram post. Meaning, the black voices and creatives will finally receive their proper due—a long-lasting change that stems beyond a one-time donation to the cause.
It’s something Kristian Henderson, DrPH, professor of public health at George Washington University, a natural lifestyle enthusiast, and the founder of BLK+GRN believes in as well. She tells mbg in a Q&A: “Every time I spend money, I’m deciding what I invest in…I also see that investment beyond the product I’m purchasing. Not only do you get the product, but you’re investing in someone else’s dreams.”
In terms of Sephora committing to the cause, it’s quite the influential industry giant to kick off the initiative, and the 15 Percent Pledge team is optimistic about getting other retailers on board. “We commend [Sephora’s] early leadership and look forward to working with them on their accountability and commitment as we join together in the mission to put billions back into the Black community,” the organization shares on Instagram.
We certainly have much more to do to end systemic racism, but buying Black is a great way to keep the momentum strong.