June is Pride Month, and you’ll notice this is when every beauty brand seems to release its rainbow products, proclaiming solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community.
However, it rarely lasts beyond 30 days.
Limited-edition collections help sell products for these brands. They then make the (usually) 10% donation and move on. Ten percent is definitely better than nothing, but being an ally is a year-round commitment.
It means hiring LGBTQ+ people as well as including them beyond one-time campaign imagery and supporting LGBTQ+ causes beyond Pride Month.
This year, invest your money directly back into the community by buying from beauty brands that are run by queer people, that hire and support queer people and that look after the interests of queer people. Here are some brands to support this month and year-round.
Created by beauty guru and YouTuber Nikita Dragun in 2019, the brand’s products were inspired by the way Dragun, a trans woman, used makeup to feminize her face. Dragun Beauty is the first major beauty brand created by a trans woman, and with its launch, the brand chose to cater to queer makeup enthusiasts by creating gender-affirming products meant to enhance their natural beauty. For trans women specifically, the DragunFire Color Corrector can be used to cancel out facial hair, while the brightening powders help create a more rounded, feminine face shape.
With a commitment to inclusivity and diversity, the makeup brand aims to evolve mainstream beauty ideals and provide a platform for underrepresented faces and voices. We Are Fluide’s products pay homage to queer history, and its campaigns have featured individuals such as gender non-conforming writer Jacob Tobia and activist Sebastian Rosemarie. The brand also donates products to different events and fundraisers supporting LGBTQ+ organizations.
Cofounded by queer entrepreneur Brandy Hoffman, inclusion was part of the brand’s story from the beginning. One of the first fully crowd-sourced beauty brands, anyone can submit new product ideas to Volition. If their idea is accepted, they work with the company to further develop the product, which is voted on by the community. Then, the ideas with the most votes are created and sold.
“One of our top priorities when founding the company was to create a platform where anyone could have a say in creating their beauty and skincare products,” Hoffman said to POPSUGAR, to “ensure that an array of voices are represented by Volition.”
When makeup artist Gloria Noto felt alienated by the wellness and cosmetics industry, she created her own brand that represented how she saw herself as a queer woman as well as the people she saw around her. Committed to sustainability, inclusivity and giving back, Noto Botanics offers a range of vegan, cruelty-free and ethically sourced products that celebrate gender-fluid self expression. The brand raises money for causes, too, including through sales of its Agender Oil, which benefits organizations such as Planned Parenthood, the ACLU and the LGBT Youth Center.
When friends Saba Gray and Rebecca Richards discovered the environmental harm caused by traditional cosmetic glitters, they aimed to create an environmentally friendly option. In 2015, sustainable plant-based glitter brand BioGlitz was born. These glitters are formed from hardwoods and Forest Stewardship Council-certified eucalyptus cellulose and colored with cosmetic pigments, which means BioGlitz’s glitter is biodegradable. The founders are committed to queer identities and see glitter as a proud statement of nonconformity as well as a celebration of gender fluidity, Richards told Valfre. The brand also explores the relationship between the devaluation of the earth and the oppression of women, people of color and queer communities.
Gia Mazur is an award-winning staff writer and beauty obsessive who joined The Times-Tribune’s Lifestyles department in 2015. She’s a product enthusiast who can’t live without an eyelash curler. A proud Virgo, Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Pillow Talk is her go-to. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9127; @gmazurTT