Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month may have ended on October 15th, but that doesn't mean we can't highlight some amazing Latinx-founded brands and small businesses! Fair warning though: if you're a habitual online shopper like me, you're bank balance may be a bit lower by the time you finish this article. From booze to sustainable bags to makeup, you're bound to be more than a little tempted by at least one of these amazing brands!
SANTOS BY MÓNICA
Santos by Mónica was founded by Mónica Santos Gil, a Puerto Rican designer who fuses different disciplines and philosophies such as fashion, design, and sustainability. The brand’s vision is to produce vegan leather handbags at a slower pace and process to challenge the current state of the fashion industry.
EL CHOLO'S KID
Since 2008, El Cholo's Kid has shown the world the beauty of Mexican traditions and the talent of their artisans. Their handwoven bags are designed in California and made in central Mexico by a family of weavers who has, through generations, perfected the the art of weaving that make their bags long-lasting unique pieces of art. The bags are made from recycled plastic with care and love, from their family to yours.
READ MORE: To see some more of our favorite brands, check out our article on twelve Native-owned brands we love!
YO SOY AFROLATINA
The mission at Yo Soy AfroLatina is to empower Black women within the Latin community. Founded by a Black woman, YSAL, celebrates Afro-Latinidad in the Americas and validates Afro Latino experiences as Afro-Latinidad is more than a trend or a movement. It is a celebration of a culture that is just as diverse as it is rich in pride.
This Mexican-American mezcal business hires mostly women to distill, bottle and sell their product. Founder Yola Jimenez, began the company when she took over her grandfather’s agave farm in Oaxaca, Mexico, and staffed it with only women. Not long after, she met her business partners Gina Correll Aglietti and singer-songwriter Lykke Li — and Yola Mezcal was born. The three women are working on expanding the brand’s reach with live events and philanthropic initiatives.
LA VIDA POMPOMS
Yaquelin Hernandez is a Los Angeles Latina who took her love of bold and colorful designs and turned it into a brand with La Vida Pompoms. She gets inspired by the textiles of her culture which have patterns and colors and show a bit of her culture. In addition to her signature fruit earrings, the shop also carries t-shirts and tote bags that are just as vibrant as her earrings, all available for purchase via direct message through Instagram.
Selva Negra celebrates personal identity through their Latina heritage with color vibrancy, expressive design, and ethical practices. Founded in 2016 in a tiny Brooklyn apartment in Crown Heights, designers, Kristen Gonzalez and Sam Romero, found an immediate connection. Expressing design through their Latina heritage, Kristen and Sam revere big individual personalities and conceptualize through engineered comfort, contemporary shapes and multi-use silhouettes. The brand is rooted in the use of ethical practices and is committed to ethically sourced materials, honest production, zero-waste packaging while picking up new ways to reduce their carbon footprint.
READ MORE: Interested in sustainable fashion? Check out our article outlining some cheap ways to be an ethical consumer!
THE LINE BY K
The Line By K originated when Latina fashion blogger-turned-designer, Karla Deras, felt the need to share her personal designs with other women. Since its launch in spring of 2015, The Line By K has been a voice of self-love by providing high-quality pieces for any occasion without sacrificing the comfort to accomplish any task. Ethically made in Los Angeles, The Line By K offers elevated basics, crafted from premium textiles with distinctive details, made to accentuate the female figure.
Vive Cosmetics is a Latina-owned and operated beauty brand created after the realization of the lack of representation of the Latinx/Latina community in the beauty industry. To combat offensive and tone-deaf campaigns that are often meant to be inspired by Latin culture and other communities of color, Vive Cosmetics creates a way of recognizing the importance of the Latinx community and rejecting a stereotypical narrative. Vive Cosmetics wants Latinas and all Latinx to realize the power of their community and truly embrace the beauty that comes from within.
Karla Gallardo, co-founder and CEO of Cuyana, started the brand alongside co-founder Shilpa Shah with the vision of creating a global design house that inspires intentional buying through pieces that are crafted with integrity. Founded on the philosophy of fewer, better, Cuyana encourages customers to purchase fewer but better quality pieces that they will love and treasure for years to come.
If you are looking for beautiful art that nods to Latinx culture and identity, look no further than Etsy shops like Vivid Vidal, created and ran by Afro-Dominicana Stephanie Vidal, in New York. Her art is vibrant, detailed, fiercely feminine, and totally Latina.