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8 BIWOC-owned beauty brands chosen as Sephora Accelerate 2021 finalists

February 9, 2021

...and Kulfi is one of them.

By Samia Abbasi, Editor

Kulfi founder Priyanka Ganjoo dreamed of a South Asian-focused beauty brand when she was working in the corporate beauty space. She didn’t see South Asians represented in the forefront of the beauty landscape, where many South Asians have to mix and match their makeup products to get the right shade. This dream is now Kulfi Beauty: creating fun and approachable beauty products, made with South Asian skin tones, undertones, and skin concerns in mind. 

Today, we are excited to announce a big step in our journey: Kulfi was chosen as a finalist for Sephora Accelerate 2021, a beauty brand incubator focused on Founders of Color. You can read more about the Sephora Accelerate 2021 program at Glamour: Sephora Announces New BIPOC-Owned Beauty Brands Coming This Year and at Forbes: Sephora Elevates BIPOC Owned Brands Through Its Incubator Program.

We grew up thinking that beauty isn’t something that could be possibly tailored to our wants and needs. While browsing in makeup aisles, we’d often think: ‘I’ll take what I can get.’ Time and time again, we’ve been told: ‘Sorry, we already represent a Woman of Color brand.’ We are hopeful to see intentional steps taken to break down this notion and change the narrative in the beauty space. To see many beauty brands founded by BIPOC. To see BIPOC-owned brands representing a variety of products, backgrounds, stories, personalities, and focuses. Through initiatives like Sephora Accelerate 2021, younger generations will grow up viewing beauty in a more holistic perspective: 

"There are beauty products made for me, by people who look like me."

Kulfi is honored to be among an amazing group of 8 BIWOC-founded beauty brands that are breaking barriers and creating holistic representation for BIPOC in the beauty industry: 

54 Thrones founded by Christina Funke Tegbe

54thrones soaps
photo credit: 54 Thrones

54 Thrones (@54thrones) is a beauty and skincare brand inspired by the richness, diversity, and cultures of Africa. With Beauty Butters in elegant packaging and moisturizing oils, 54 Thrones centers ‘the African origin of clean beauty.’

EADEM co-founded by Marie Kouadio Amouzame & Alice Lin Glover

photo credit: EADEM

Founded in 2020, EADEM (@eadem.co) is a beauty and wellness brand that is pioneering Smart Melanin Beauty and highlights the warmth of friendship. Championing ‘by us, for us’ practices and narratives, EADEM is ‘about us, women of color, telling our stories, on our own terms, through the lens of beauty.’

Glory founded by Alisia Michelle Ford

glory skincare candles
photo credit: Glory

Glory (@gloryskincare_) has a unique approach to fusing clean skincare and wellness for every hue. It is formulated without the 20 most questionable ingredients in skincare items. With Glory, you can create a WellnessBox with a variety of acne patches, moisturizers, oils, eye gels, and more.

Hyper Skin founded by Desiree Verdejo

hyper skin serum
photo credit: Hyper Skin

Finding a gap in addressing the pressing skincare concerns rooted in multiculturalism, Desiree Verdejo founded Hyper Skin (@gethyperskin). With a fun red and light orange packaging, Hyper Clear is a brightening and clearing serum packed with 15% vitamin C. 

Imania Beauty founded by Nia Wellman

Imania Beauty products
photo credit: Imania Beauty

Faith and purpose, hand in hand. Imania Beauty (@imaniabeauty) is a wellness-conscious, ‘scalp first’ approach to simple hair care products. Imania aims to educate their community on holistic hair care practices and the power of herbal healing. 

Kulfi Beauty founded by Priyanka Ganjoo

Kulfi kajal in Nazar No More
photo credit: Kulfi Beauty

Kulfi (@kulfi.beauty) is bringing celebration into beauty. We create and test our products for and with people like us: our skin tones, undertones, and skin concerns. So we can bring you the right shades every time. Our first product kajal, a cultural eyeliner staple reimagined, will be launching on February 16th, 2021. 

ries founded by Megan Graham

photo credit: ries

With a unique take on sustainability, ries (@ries__ries) is creating reusable travel toiletry containers made from biodegradable material. Melding both the travel and beauty industry, reis is the first and only one of its kind. 

Topicals co-founded by Olamide Olowe & Claudia Teng

topicals products
photo credit: Topicals

With products made with BIPOC skin conditions in mind, this Gen Z-founded brand with a 90’s feel is all about ‘funner flare ups.’ Topicals (@mytopicals) has a thick, whipped mask called Like Butter, and a brightening, clearing gel called Faded. 


Cover photo credit: Badal Patel, @bybadal

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