What day is Christmas? Wednesday? Friday? Who knows. It's 2020.
After a difficult year, the people we love deserve a little something special to keep their spirits lifted. There’s a reason why gifts are one of the five love languages. Although many of us are unable to celebrate with loved ones this holiday season, a gift in the mail and a little note goes a long way. If a pandemic isn’t enough a reason to keep you away from the mall this year, then the opportunity to support small, BIPOC-owned businesses should be. Check our hand-picked gift guide below— we promise there’s something special for even the pickiest gift-receiver.
001. For your friend known for their signature ring stack:
This gold ring could make the most butchered at-home manicure look good. Check out Kleed’s jewelry that is just as affordable as it is gorgeous.
The Bouclé Ring, $25
002. For your friend in pursuit of looking like a dewy, glazed donut:
Base Butter’s Radiate Face Jelly is an aloe-based gel moisturizer for oily, acne-prone skin, making a natural glow achievable —sans the oily residue. Skip another trip to Ulta and support this sister duo’s skincare line.
Radiate Face Jelly, $21
003. For your friend who spends too much money at Starbucks:
Nothing is better than a hot chai latte on a cold December morning. Except supporting Paunchy Elephant, a Seattle family-owned business specializing in organic teas.
Organic Vanilla Bean Almond Milk Chai, $36
004. For someone who deserves a truly unique piece of jewelry:
This tropical necklace would definitely bring some much-needed color into someone’s life. Not to mention, Serendipitous Project is dedicated to affordable, sustainable, up-cycled jewelry. Think of them as the cooler, unique older sister to trendy, cheap, mass-produced jewelry.
005. For your friend who does Euphoria makeup looks on the daily:
This vegan, cruelty-free makeup palette, filled with a rainbow of bright colors, is perfect for makeup lovers, especially those bored of neutrals. If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that life is too short to not wear fun makeup for no reason.
Juicy Boost Pressed Pigment
Book Palette, $52
006. For the book-lover in your life:
Give the gift of a virtual stroll through this Brooklyn bookstore. Check out their amazing selection of must-reads, such as Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness.
Sister's Uptown Gift Card, $20-100
007. For your friend who never leaves the house without a tote bag:
House of Aama is more than a fashion line — it's the work of mother-daughter design duo Rebecca Henry and Akua Shabaka. Their designs explore “the folkways of the Black experience by designing timeless garments with nostalgic references informed by historical research, archival analysis, and storytelling.” While their clothing pieces are definitely on the pricier side (one can expect to pay a high price for high quality), this tote bag tells a story, a design referencing the tradition of silhouettes from antiquity to the Postbellum South.
Southern Girl Green Tote, $45
008. For your friend who stunts even at the grocery store:
Let’s face it. We’ve all had urges to dress up with nowhere to go this year. Sadé + Shaniya’s signature bag, however, offers a compromise: a versatile, chic bag, perfect for grocery store runs or nights out post-pandemic.
The Mora, $60
009. For your anti-jean friend:
If someone you love has retired jeans from their wardrobe this year— I don’t blame them. But who wouldn’t want to stay inside in style with this cozy set from Sadé + Shaniya?
SSleep Flare Pant, $26
010. For your friend who curates their wall-art as if it were MoMA:
This year feels like we’ve spent too much time staring aimlessly at our walls. So why not at least look at some art? Etsy is a treasure trove of small businesses with special pieces, but there are so many different sellers, one can fall down a never-ending rabbit hole. Stop the scroll and check out this funky print of Marsha P. Johnson from the black-owned shop Frequency of Love.
Marsha P. Johnson Print, $40+
Maren Beverly is a 19-year-old writer from West Hartford, CT. She attends Wake Forest University. In her free time, she enjoys romance novels, Timotheé Chalamet movies, and Vogue. You can find her on Instagram @marenbeverly.