In honour of International Women’s Day coming up on March 8th, we wanted to spotlight some amazing women-owned brands to support and get inspired by! Although its important to support women 365 days of the year, there’s no better time than now to put some women-owned brands on your radar, in case they weren’t already. We all know the obstacles women face on a daily basis, and building a brand as a woman comes with an extra set of challenges – but these women did the damn thing, and did it well, regardless.
Check out these women-owned brands
Ariel Kaye founded Parachute in 2014. Since 2014 the brand has evolved to have 15 locations in the US and launched in Canada in 2021! What started out as a premium-bedding brand, now includes essentials for all rooms in the home. This year, the brand is approaching conscious consumption with deeper sustainability commitments by expanding into more responsible materials, becoming ClimateNeutral certified, and working with ethical manufacturers. We love to see it!
Lixi Miles founded WAXON Laser + Waxbar back in 2012 with a mission to offer high-end, waxing services at competitive pricing – and she has accomplished that and more! Now WAXON has 15 locations with even more coming. All new stores will be in partnership with an inspiring female entrepreneur, through WAXON’s franchise business.
THE LNK is a global online marketplace where people come together to make, sell, and buy inspiring fashion items. Founded by the inspiring woman, Sonya Gill. Sonya has been an industry leader and mentor, helping some of the world’s most reputable brands, and her passion eventually led her to build THE LNK. The company curates brands and boutiques to provide its customers with only the best. Prioritizing quality and sustainability.
Azar Moayeri, the founder of Parissa, was the first female Chemical Engineer to graduate from the University of Edinburgh! After completing her degree, she returned to Iran where she led an all-male team. Later, Azar moved to Vancouver in 1981 with her family leaving Iran due to political turmoil. Motivated by providing a stable life for her family, Azar was inspired to start a new home-based venture of natural alternatives for hair removal! And so Parissa was born. Parissa became Canada’s first all-natural hair removal product that was sold in local shops providing people with at-home hair removal, quickly growing actress Canada. Now the brand is celebrating 40 years in business!
We’re sure everyone has heard of Alicia Keys, but have you heard about her skincare line? Keys Soulcare was founded by Alicia Keys and dermatologist Dr. Renée Snyder to transform the time we spend caring for our skin into a moment of personal ceremony. The product offerings are paired with one of Alicia’s favourite affirmations. Whether you’re lighting a candle or cleansing your face with an intention or journalling, these are sacred rituals to Alicia Keys and the brand.
Ellie Mae was founded by none other than, Ellie Mae herself. The brand Ellie Mae is based right here in Toronto, and every piece is made within its Toronto studio with excellent craftsmanship! The small-batch collections are intentionally designed to celebrate individualism and authenticity – “We strive to create effortless clothes that inspire women to express who they truly are – on any given day”.
Founded in 2016 by Lesley Hampton herself, the self-titled indigenous-owned, size-inclusive clothing and accessory brand based in Toronto is known for its high-quality fashion from athleticwear to eveningwear, and everything in between. Lesley Hampton is an Anishinaabe Artist and Fashion Designer focused on mental health awareness, body positivity, and authentic representation in fashion, film, and media. She is also a signed curve model with BNM Model Management and speaker on Indigenous entrepreneurship!
Co-founded by Allegra Shaw and Shirin Soltani in 2017, Uncle Studios was established with the goal of creating the perfect t-shirt. Since then the women-owned brand has grown to create all kinds of garments designed to make you feel good. All of its pieces are created to work fluidly with past, current, and future collections, promoting a “less is more” ethos.
Jen Rubio is the co-founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer of the popular, global lifestyle and travel brand, Away. Under her leadership, Away has been named one of Fast Company’s “World’s Most Innovative Companies,” one of TIME’s “50 Most GeniusCompanies,” one of LinkedIn’s “Top Startups,” and a Forbes 2018 “Next Billion Dollar Start-Up.”. With an impressive resume like that, we wonder what Jen Rubio and Away has in store for the future!
Brandi Leidso founded Evio Beauty Group while living in a domestic violence shelter at the age of 21 with only $15! The clean beauty brand was founded on a mission to break stigmas with inclusive, good-for-you beauty products. The brand has grown, carving a new sector of clinically proven, impact-led, clean beauty. Evio has even donated more than $510,000 worth of products and funding to 27+ shelters across North America that supports survivors of domestic violence.
Salima Visram founded SAMARA, named after her younger sister, who has since also joined the company, in 2017 with just $500! She started the brand because she couldn’t find a bag that was cruelty-free, simple, and elegant. The sister duo runs the company in memory of their mother and has a goal to create an impact in the world.
Joanna Griffiths launched Knix with the goal of transforming an underwear market that had too much frill and not enough function – leading her to create Knix’s infamous Leakproof Underwear. Using patented technology, cutting-edge processes, and human-centric design, Knix truly stands out within the undergarment market. Knix has grown into a brand that offers everything from underwear and wireless bras to active and maternity apparel.
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