1. Ursula Stephen, Ursula Stephen The SalonSource:Ursula Stephen Site
The stylist responsible for coiffing the hair of such names as Rihanna, Kerry Washington and Taraji P. Henson, Ursula Stephen poured her over 15 years of beauty experience into her own salon, the Ursula Stephen Salon which operates out of Brooklyn.
2. Jasmine Lawrence, Eden BodyWorksSource:Jasmine Lawrence Site
At the mere age of 13, Jasmine Lawrence had the brilliant idea to create a line of all-natural hair products to strengthen and protect all types of hair. Eden BodyWorks was born. Years later, it’s available at major retailers including Target, and it recently expanded to include a kids line.
3. TriciaLee, Polish Bar BrooklynSource:Polish Bar Brooklyn
Chances are if you meet a stylish black woman in Brooklyn, she frequents beauty hot spot Polish Bar. The brainchild of TriciaLee Riley, Polish Bar Brooklyn offers a plethora of luxury pampering services from manicures to eyebrow waxing.
4. Patrice Grell-Yursik, AfrobellaSource:Afrobella Site
Considered the godmother of brown beauty blogging, Afrobella’s blog is one of the first online destinations to celebrate the beauty and uniqueness of natural hair. A pioneer in the beauty blogging space, Afrobella has worked with such brands as P&G’s My Black is Beautiful on their Beauty Fit for a Queen program, and she was even invited to cover the red carpet at the 2012 Oscars.
5. Myleik Teele, CurlboxSource:Curlbox Site
The Los Angeles-bred wunderkind launched one of the first, and most popular, monthly subscriptions services for naturally curly hair and started a viral movement on Instagram under the Curlbox hashtag.
6. Karen Mitchell, True Indian HairSource:True Indian Hair Site
Founded in 2005 in New York City, True Indian Hair, a brand of luxurious, virgin hair, is the brainchild of entrepreneur Karen Mitchell. The popular extensions line has been worn by Tamar Braxton and Zoe Kravitz, and it was recently featured in the viral photo series We Are Black History.
7. Sara Liz Pickett and H. Ginger Johnson, Ginger & LizSource:Ginger & Liz Site
The dynamic duo founded a vegan-friendly line of luxury nail lacquers, lauded for its trendy colors and clever polish names.
8. Ashunta Sheriff, Ashunta Sheriff MakeupSource:Ashunta Sheriff Site
If you find yourself marveling over Taraji P. Henson or Alicia Keys’ makeup, you have Ashunta Sheriff to thank. The accomplished makeup artist built a name for herself by beautifying celebrities, and she’s bringing that expertise to the everyday woman with Perfect Blend by Ashunta Sheriff, a dual-ended foundation that highlights and contours without looking heavy.
9. Taren GuySource:BET
One of the first natural hair vloggers, Taren Guy has transformed her wildly-popular YouTube channel into a blossoming enterprise, and created a business model for others to follow in the process. She meets with readers around the world with her regularly sold-out Luv & Learn Your Hair Tour and recently founded online network Areya TV.
10. Dana L. Hill, CocotiqueSource:Dana Hill Site
Dana used her extensive knowledge of the beauty industry and her experience in public relations to create Cocotique, a curated box of beauty and lifestyle samples delivered to subscribers monthly.
11. Jane Carter, Jane Carter SolutionSource:Jane Carter Site
Jane Carter Solution is one of the inaugural haircare lines devoted to women with curly hair. Encouraging women to “love their hair” for over 20 years, Jane Carter products like the Nourish & Shine and Revitalizing Leave-In Conditioner are considered must-haves by many in the natural hair community.
12. Myrdith Leon-McCormack and Monica Promsavanh, M2M Damore Jon NailsSource:M2M Damore Jon Site
There are so many reasons to love M2M Natural Nail Care company: the colors are diverse and rich, the products don’t contain harmful ingredients, and each bottle is named to celebrate one of our favorite celebrities and the charitable works they do to inspire others.
13. Tasha Turner and Marcia Caster, Beauty BeatboxSource:Beauty Beat Box Site
A quarterly subscription service that caters to the unique beauty needs of women of color, Beauty Beat Box is the brainchild of former magazine editors, Tasha Turner and Marcia Caster, who have a combined 35 years of experience in the beauty industry.
14. Karen Tappin-Saunderson, Karen’s Body BeautifulSource:Karens Body Beautiful
Karen Tappin-Saunderson took her popular organic body and haircare line, Karen’s Body Beautiful (affectionally referred to as KBB), from a home business to a household name. Heralded for its natural and nourishing ingredients, KBB’s success story is one Karen shares often in her role as a sought-after speaker and community volunteer.
15. Lisa Price, Carol’s DaughterSource:Lisa Price Site
Lisa Price needs no introduction. The natural hair visionary started Carol’s Daughter in her kitchen and 20 years later, it’s a powerhouse natural hair and skincare brand that recently became part of the L’Oreal family.