Meet the black-owned UK beauty businesses Glossier is supporting

By Julia Wray | Published: 2-Jun-2023

A textured hair care brand for active lifestyles and a vegan nail colour label are among the inaugural Black Girl Fest Black Beauty Grant Programme’s grantees

Glossier has revealed the recipients of its first UK grant programme for black-owned beauty businesses. 

Announced in April, the Black Girl Fest Black Beauty Grant Programme is a partnership between the beauty brand and Black Girl Fest, the UK’s first arts and culture festival dedicated to black women, girls and non-binary people.

It follows the introduction of Glossier’s first such grants programme in 2020, which has so far supported 30 founders across 26 brands in the US. 

The 2023 UK grantees are: 

  • Koba: Koba is a skin care brand with results-driven routines and naturally active ingredients. Koba means ‘turtle’ in Lingala, a nod to founder Therese M’Boungoubaya’s Congolese heritage. 
  • The Glowcery: This brand uses enabled AI technologies to develop a range of plant-based, superfood and sustainably-focused skin care. Founder Roshanne Dorsett launched the brand after becoming vegan in 2020. 
  • Ashe London: A luxury vegan nail colour brand, Ashe London’s formulations are 77% plant-origin. Ashleigh Alli, CEO and founder, has worked in the beauty industry for more than 20 years.
  • Airfro: Airfro creates healthy hair care solutions for those with textured hair and active lifestyles. With 45% of people with textured hair avoiding physical exercise due to time-consuming hair needs, co-founder Nneka Flemming launched with a single product designed to refresh curls between washes and exercises. 
  • Tru Skin: This cosmetics brand aims to increase diversity and inclusion within the industry. Founded by Elizabeth Ola, it uses beauty and tech to create specifically formulated pigmented products that can create a universal shade. 

The five grantees will take part in a 12-week learning programme to take their businesses to the next level, gain expert advice and connect with experienced founders. 

They will also receive a £10k equity-free cash grant.

“We were so impressed with the number and quality of the applications that came through for our inaugural UK programme,” said Kleo Mack, Chief Marketing Officer of Glossier Inc.

“The final five grantees really stood out for us and we, along with Black Girl Fest, are delighted to be able to support them on their business journey.”

Black Girl Fest’s founder and CEO, Nicole Crentsil, added: “We’re so excited to be working with Glossier to bring this programme to the UK. 

“At Black Girl Fest, we’re super passionate about creating an economic impact for black women that directly sparks the change we want to see in the black beauty industry. 

“Super honoured to work closely with the wonderful team at Glossier to turn this vision into a reality. 

“Congrats to all grantees, we’re thrilled to be on this journey with you.”

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