Your investment reflects your views and values, and your dollar makes a difference to businesses. Putting your money into companies and organizations that share the same beliefs can be liberating, particularly when it contributes to a good cause.
The global outbreak has affected many small business owners, impacting their financial pulse. In the aftermath of the coronavirus, many small businesses are still facing difficulties. COVID has cost around 50% of the revenue of nearly one-third of LGBTQ small business owners. Supporting LGBTQ+ businesses can be a pillar of support for the community, mainly throughout this period of financial upheaval, which predominantly affects the community— they're more vulnerable to experience discrimination in employment and wages.
So, if you're wondering what you can do to help the LGBTQ+ community during such times of uncertainty, here's a modest proposal— buy from LGBTQ+-owned businesses to support the community!
Empowering LGBTQ+ brands or the ones that donate a share of the profits to LGBTQ+ organizations is an impactful way to directly benefit the community. To make it as simple as possible for you, we've compiled a list of five great brands to support right now and in the future.Five Businesses to support in honor of pride month and beyond
Every book in the Under the Umbrella store is authored by a queer writer or contains LGBTQ+ material. The book genres include fantasy, fiction, nonfiction, graphic novels, and children's sections. Every month the bookstore hosts Queer Speed Date event as a playful spin on the regular book club. Customers have conversations about the book of the month while making new friends, sweethearts, or a little of both! This "queer little bookstore" is located in Salt Lake City and caters to the LGBTQ+ community, committed to promoting and celebrating the art of marginalized queer populations.
Founder: Kaitlyn Mahoney
Play Out is a line of high-quality gender-neutral underwear that features bold prints, limited-edition designs, and a comfortable fit. This trans and queer-owned clothing brand fills a void in the market by empowering consumers with products that have no gender tags. Offering gender-inclusive street fashion and underwear, Play Out creations range from trunks, bikinis, boxer briefs, and thongs. The brand allows individuals to have personal clout while simultaneously not letting the cultural stigmas determine what they wish to wear.
Founder: Abby Sugar and Grey Leifer
Luis Gramajo and Hans Schrei, a Guatemalan couple, are the founders of this Austin-based bakery company. Wunderkeks began with shipping a few dozen of their freshly homemade baked cookies at Austin Farmers Market to dispatching thousands of individually wrapped goodies throughout America. The brand uses only natural ingredients, and some of their best sellers include Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Ever, and Amazing, Life-Changing Snickerdoodles. Then there are other delicious treats worth the calories— delicious cookies, brownies, and sweet care packages. Wunderkeks is about connecting with your inner child with sweet delights through homey flavors. From a background where the LGBTQ community is marginalized, the owners pour extra love into their business which makes the excellence of their bakery all the more special.
Founder: Hans Schrei and Luis Gramajo
Bye Gender helps fund trans people with gender-affirming surgery through the proceeds of their awesome shirts, enamel pins, stickers & tattoos, and binders & menstrual cups. The brand works hard on financing the recipients, ensuring all transgender-related surgeries or expenses are met. Further, it also uses the profits to assist transgenders with their living costs or updating their identification on their passports. Bye Gender also accepts donations for their mutual aid funds Black Trans Rent Relief and Bye Gender Survival Fund. A fantastic way to shop while also helping uplift the LGBTQ+ community.
Founder: Jason Hill and Samuel Leon (former), Devin-Norelle (current)
Kiss My Face is committed to offering pure, healthy, and conscientious products that are phthalate-free and SLS-free. The brand uses the richness of the nature to offer skincare and oral products. Kiss My Face provides top-quality care without the use of harmful, artificial additives. The brand began with a single order of olive soap bars; today, it is a global brand with over 200 vegan products. They carry soap bars, toothpaste, body lotion, deodorants, sunscreen, and other personal care must-haves!
Founders: Bob MacLeod and Steve Byckiewicz
Want to support more queer businesses? Check out Everywhere Is Queer, a wonderful site with an interactive map where you can find queer-owned businesses around you and the world!