Photo: Ginew/Facebook

10 Indigenous-Owned Businesses You Can Support Today

by Carrie A. Back Oct 12, 2020

It has never been easier to back Indigenous-owned businesses. Native American-owned and First Nations-owned small businesses have been booming in recent years. So if you’d like to do a little shopping and support, we’ve rounded up 10 of our favorite companies. All draw on their own culture and ancestral knowledge and work with others from the community to produce high-quality and one-of-a-kind products. Whether you’re Native American or First Nations, a non-Native ally, or just someone looking to give your hard-earned dollars to small businesses and entrepreneurs, these Indigenous-owned brands are for you.

1. For modern home decor — Indigo Arrows

Indigo Arrows

Photo: Indigo Arrows/Facebook

Indigo Arrows is an online modern home goods store that features decor with Indigenous designs. Interior designer Destiny Seymour started the home decor brand after being inspired by the ancient clay pottery patterns made by her ancestors. The textile comes in beautiful geometric motifs. The patterns include shapes and clean lines on a wide selection of table linens, pillows, quilts, and other home products. Each piece is handcrafted in small batches on 100 percent linen using eco-friendly inks. Plus, a portion of the proceeds goes to an after-school program supporting Indigenous preteen girls.

2. For vintage clothing — Orenda Tribe


Photo: Orendatribe/Facebook

Navajo-owned Orenda Tribe offers handcrafted and upcycled vintage clothing. From repurposed 1960s military flight suits, to colorful hand-dyed sweatsuits, to artisan handwoven textiles and tops, each piece is truly unique. The team is made up of Indigenous artists that restore vintage pieces using sustainable processes. When you make a purchase from Orenda Tribe, a portion of the sales are reinvested back into the Diné community and a number of projects that empower local peoples.

3. For high-quality and cruelty-free cosmetics — Cheekbone Beauty

Photo: Cheekbone Beauty/Facebook

Jennifer Harper is the founder of Cheekbone Beauty, a cosmetic company that is Indigenous-owned and founded. Cheekbone Beauty is known for its high-quality and cruelty-free beauty products such as liquid lipsticks and contour and highlight palettes. Staying aligned with her Anishinaabe roots, the company just launched Sustain lipsticks, which have biodegradable packaging and sustainably sourced ingredients. The Warrior Women lipstick collection features shades named after influential Indigenous women. The products are never tested on animals and are paraben-free. A portion of the profits from Cheekbone Beauty goes to a variety of nonprofits and your purchase helps causes like equal-opportunity education.

4. For botanical skincare — Sḵwálwen

Skwalwen Botanicals

Photo: Sḵwálwen Botanicals/Facebook

Sḵwálwen is an Indigenous business offering luxurious botanical skincare products. The founder is ethnobotanist Leigh Joseph. She combines her academic knowledge of plants with traditional Squamish plant knowledge. As a member of the Squamish First Nation, she incorporates her Nation’s cultural teachings and traditional horticultural practices using sustainable methods. The high-quality apothecary brand includes facial oils, toners, and masks that are free from harsh chemicals, synthetics, and parabens. She develops each recipe by pairing plants based on their healing properties using oils, clays, plant butters, and other products from the earth. She then makes each skincare item by hand in small batches. We recommend the anti-aging TEWÍN’XW Cranberry Rose Antioxidant Facial Serum made with pressed berry seed oils and essential oils.

5. For handmade goods — B. Yellowtail Collective


Photo: B.Yellowtail/Facebook

Founded by fashion designer Bethany Yellowtail of the Northern Cheyenne Nation, the B. Yellowtail Collective features handmade goods that are 100 percent handmade by Native American artists. This collective provides a platform for Native American entrepreneurs from across the Great Plains region to sell their products and accessories online. The shop includes jewelry, scarves, moccasins, and other heirloom-quality artisanal goods. Each piece is handcrafted and blends time-honored traditions, like Crow and Plains beadwork, into contemporary designs. Each piece is a one-of-kind item, created using techniques that have been passed down through generations. With a slogan like Indigenously Designed for All, each piece is hand-selected and meant to be worn by all, by Natives and non-Natives alike.

6. For artisan clothing and accessories — Ginew


Photo: Ginew/Facebook

Known as the only Native American-owned denim line, husband and wife duo Amanda Bruegl and Erik Brodt started Ginew as a side project. Now, Ginew has expanded into a full-blown artisan-made, workwear-inspired clothing line. With a vibe described as “Native Americana,” it fuses workwear with elements from their Ojibwe, Oneida, and Mohican heritage for a contemporary feel. Its collection of jeans, jackets, vests, and accessories are all made in the US using meticulously sourced materials. The Heritage Coat is one of the brand’s signature items. It’s utilitarian in style and made with durable thick denim. The inside of the coat is lined with graphic printed wool with a pattern that represents Ojibwa and Oneida dwellings, along with other Native American elements.

7. For fine art, apparel, and jewelry — Eighth Generation

Eighth Generation

Photo: Eighth Generation/Facebook

Eighth Generation provides 100 percent Native American made and designed art and products. The company’s slogan is “Inspired Natives, not Native-inspired,” which is very fitting since it makes such an effort to promote Indigenous artists and only offer authentic Native American art. Eighth Generation is best known for being the first Native American owned company that produces wool blankets. In the store, you’ll find a wide range of products like fine art, apparel, and jewelry. Each piece is designed with cultural elements specific to a Tribe and Nation, so if you’re looking for a variety of art and styles this is the shop for you. Owned by the Snoqualmie Indian Tribe, the online store continues to be one of the most well-known Native-owned brands around.

8. For handmade soap and other wellness products — SHIMA’ of Navajoland

Native American owned and operated SHIMA’ of Navajoland creates premium handmade soap, body, and wellness products using ancient Navajo traditions. The blue corn soap is a best-seller. It’s made from ground blue corn, sage, pinion, and wild sunflowers. The soap gets its beautiful blue color when traditional juniper ash gets added to the soap-making process. Another favorite is the Navajo tea soap, which is infused with honey, yucca, carrot, essential oils, lemon, and wildflowers. The soaps are gentle enough for all skin types and can also be used as a shampoo bar for your hair. Each purchase helps support the Navajo Nation by creating more employment opportunities.

9. For contemporary and holistic apothecary — Quw’utsun’ Made

Step up your self-care game with products from Quw’utsun’ Made, a contemporary and holistic apothecary brand. The store includes natural fragrances, healing salves, scented soaps and candles, purifying clay masks, moisturizing lip balm, organic exfoliating coffee scrub, and tattoo aftercare kits. Handcrafted in small batches, Arianna Johnny-Wadsworth combines her ancestral knowledge with plant extracts native to the northwest coast to create a complete vegan and paraben-free body-care line. A descendant of the Quw’utsun’/Cowichan Tribe, she wanted to preserve cultural teachings in order to pass it on to future generations. Best-sellers include the roll-on fragrances that are infused with cedar and orange essential oils and infused with marigolds and juniper berries.

10. For specialty foods — Séka Hills

Séka Hills

Photo: Séka Hills/Facebook

If you consider yourself a foodie, check out the specialty foods from the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. Cultivated in California’s Capay Valley using sustainable practices, the Séka Hills estate grows a variety of wines, premium olive oil, and organic produce. Other products that are available online include wildflower honey, nuts, vinegar, hummus, and pickled asparagus. It also offers personalized gift boxes and subscription boxes so you can be among the first to try its newly-released olive oil, wines, and produce. Recommended products include the wildflower honey, which has layers of flavors like sweet molasses and brown sugar caramel. Also be sure to try the Arbequina and Tribal Blend extra virgin olive oils.

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