This season of giving isn’t just a chance to buy special things for the people in your life. It’s an opportunity to use your holiday dollars to support businesses that mean something to you. For us, that means supporting female-founded businesses.
Why is it important to support female-founded businesses? According to The National Women’s Business Council, women-led businesses have an impact of $3 trillion on the economy. And they are growing faster than ever:
- Women start companies at 1.5 times the average rate in the United States.
- The absolute number of startups in Crunchbase with at least one female founder has more than quadrupled in the last five years, from 117 in 2009 to 555 in 2014. And has continued to grow.
- Today, 18 percent of all startups have at least one female founder.
Those are some pretty powerful numbers. And we want to keep it up! If you want to support women-led businesses this season, we’ve picked a few of our favorites female founders and the great gifts their companies offer. (Spoiler Alert: we included ourselves.)
Gregg Renfrew launched BeautyCounter in 2013 when she learned the United States has not passed a major federal law to regulate the safety of ingredients used in personal care products since 1938. BeautyCounter’s mission is to get safer products into the beauty industry. Renfrew created a “Never List” comprised of more than 1,500 questionable or harmful chemicals used in beauty products. They have banned all of these from the products they make so you can feel good about what you’re putting on your body.
Gift Pick: Nourishing Cream Cleanser
In 2008, Drybar founder Allie Webb was styling and doing blowouts based on word of mouth referrals. Her small, at-home business, then called Straight-at-Home, quickly grew. Soon, it was too big for her to handle on her own. She took on a team, which included her brother, and Drybar was born. Drybar is now an international chain of blowout “bars” and has a branded line of hair care products. All that in just 8 years – way to go, Allie!
Gift Pick: A gift card! This is perfect for a friend or family member who needs to treat herself. If you know she has a big event coming up, it’s all the more thoughtful. There’s nothing like a nice blowout to ring in the New Year.
As many of you (likely) know, we launched Brass in September 2014 after feeling frustrated by the fashion and apparel industry. Cheap, fast-fashion had taken over and we were disappointed with the lack of affordable, quality options in the market. Over the past two years, we’ve focused on designing beautiful, quality basics in expert factories that treat employees fairly. We strive to be a responsible option for women who are looking to become more conscious shoppers and build a wardrobe they love. The best part of building this business is our growing community of smart, strong, passionate women!
Gift Pick: The Cozy Kit (Includes our brand new Leggings, The Cropped Crew, and The Scoopneck Tunic)
Crane & Canopy
Karin Sun wanted to create luxury bedding that was high-quality, ethical and had a reasonable price tag. This is when Crane & Canopy was born. Their cotton is purchased from the same farms as high-end luxury brands, however, their factories are Oeko-Tex certified. This means everything is created ethically and responsibly. They have gone from a small collection of duvet covers in 2012 to a large variety of bed and bath linens. Ethical, luxurious, and super cozy too!
Gift Pick: The Vienna Soft White Bedding Set
The Jones Market
Candice Jones started The Jones Market in 2011 when she handmade a necklace for her best friend at a time when she didn’t have enough money to buy her a gift. In the beginning, the necklaces were made as more of a versatile piece to dress both up and down. However, since she was selling to a lot of mothers, she began to refine her design. They became tuggable, non-toxic necklaces that young kids can put in their mouth. Now mothers do not have to worry about what they wear around their children. They can be both fashionable and functional!
Gift Pick: The Tassel Pendant
We want to hear what you’re giving this season. Leave your gift ideas in the comments below!