Find handmade jewelry, products for natural hair, comics and more at these Black-owned businesses…
Travel Responsibly: In an effort to limit the impact of COVID-19, mask-wearing and social distancing are required in all public spaces per official guidelines. Advance tickets or reservations are highly recommended or necessary at many spots. Your best bet: Plan ahead.
Philadelphia has an array of Black-owned and -operated shops, boutiques and bookstores.
Visitors and locals can shop (both in-person and online) made-to-measure suits with Super Bowl cred (Damari Savile); grab the essentials at the city’s first boutique specializing in natural hair beauty supplies (Marsh + Mane); shop for singular accessories and clothing curated for women of color that exemplify beauty and wellness (The Sable Collective); and peruse history, health and fitness, and children’s books at one of the oldest Black-owned bookstores in the country (Hakim’s Bookstore).
During the 2020 holiday season, consumers have an opportunity to make change and strengthen the Greater Philadelphia community by shopping with Black-owned businesses, which are disproportionately at risk of closure during the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re inspiring support and giving readers the chance to win 10 gifts valued at $500 from Black-owned shops for themselves or someone they love by entering the Love + Grit Sweepstakes, a holiday contest inspired by Visit Philly’s podcast that runs through December 30, 2020.
Note that shopping in Greater Philadelphia is a little different at the moment. Most shops are open. Some are offering in-person visitation, with safety guidelines in place. Other stores may still solely offer curbside pickup or delivery. And most have online stores. Your best bet: Look online or call ahead to see what to expect.
Looking to dine and support Black-owned businesses? Check out our guide to Black-owned cafes, coffee shops and eateries.
Read on for a curated list of some of the city’s standout Black-owned shopping destinations.
For even more Black-owned businesses, check out this community-curated Black Business Friday list and this Philadelphia magazine-maintained list of 300+ Black-owned businesses in Greater Philadelphia.
01–Black and Nobel
More than a bookstore, this cultural center owned by Hakim Hopkins offers DVDs and an array of health and wellness products in a creative atmosphere with original art and live music. Delivery on electric bikes make this spot extra convenient.
Where: Black and Nobel, 410 South Street
02–Hakim’s Bookstore & Gift Shop
One of the country’s oldest Black-owned bookstores resides at the same West Philly address where Dawud Hakim founded it 60 years ago. Historic, activist, welcoming, old-school and family-friendly, the shop now belongs to Hakim’s daughter, Yvonne Blake.
Where: Hakim’s Bookstore & Gift Shop, 210 S. 52nd Street
Fishtown got this welcoming, women-centric, art- and activism-forward, frankincense-scented, named-for-Harriet Tubman bookstore owned by Jeannine A. Cook in February 2020. On its shelves: Toni Morrison’s complete collection, works by Zora Neale Hurston, children’s books and more books that Cook herself loves to read.
Where: Harriett’s Bookshop, East Girard Avenue & Marlborough Street
04–Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee & Books
Owner Marc Lamont Hill’s Germantown hangout exudes an earth intellect in its book selection and living-room vibe, a la Washington DC’s acclaimed Busboys and Poets chain. The spot takes its name from the columnist and Temple prof’s favorite uncle, who nurtured his love of reading.
Where: Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee & Books, 5445 Germantown Avenue
BOUTIQUES & SHOPS
05–Amalgam Comics & Coffeehouse
On Frankford Avenue, the East Coast’s first African American woman-owned comics shop stocks Marvel, DC, big-time and self-published books for grown-ups, kids and everyone in-between. The spot — owned by Ariell R. Johnson — also serves coffee drinks and locally made pastries, including comic-book-hero-themed cupcakes.
Where: Amalgam Comics & Coffeehouse, 2578 Frankford Avenue
Seven days a week for more than 30 years, this Reading Terminal Market stall has represented international artists and lived the motto, “where cultures meet.” For sale: folk dolls, original paintings, body care, cultural clothing — including Urban Karma, owner Charita Powell’s vibrant clothing collection — and sterling silver jewelry of her own design, made by Indonesian artisans.
Where: Amazulu Collections, 51 N. 12th Street
07–Atomic City Comics
This classic comic bookstore owned by Darryl Jones known for dollar comics, manga, back issues, horror, sci-fi and old-school arcade games such as Street Fighter has been a South Street mainstay since 2001.
Where: Atomic City Comics, 638 South Street
08–American Hats LLC
Co-owner Reverend Georgiette Morgan-Thomas rescued one of the country’s oldest hat factories in the city’s Bridesburg section and now operates a retail outlet for its wares — all manner of old-fashioned and avant-garde styles for proper churchgoers, dapper gents and statement makers — in the Fashion District with co-owner Robert J. Morgan III.
Where: American Hats LLC, 901 Market Street
09–Blue Sole Shoes
Owner Steve Jamison, a fashion footwear specialist, established his sunny Rittenhouse Square boutique in 2007 to cater to high-end tastes in men’s shoes, socks, accessories — and customer service. Among the designers in stock: Harris, Magnanni, John Richmond, Jo Ghost and Tateossian.
Where: Blue Sole Shoes, 1805 Chestnut Street
This Midtown Village consigner owned by Phillip Moore offers exclusive sneakers and vintage pieces — Pharrell Williams Adidas, Air Jordans from overseas — and features rare, sold-out merch from prominent sportswear brands like Supreme and Bape.
Where: Common Ground, 134 S. 11th Street
11–Cultured Couture Vintage
This Brewerytown bastion of timeless style owned by Erik Honesty is best known for its stock of smart designer vintage menswear — Hermes scarves, ties, coats and shirts, Louis Vuitton and Gucci luggage, with select women’s pieces and Honesty’s own line of royalty-inspired, sui generis capes.
Where: Cultured Couture Vintage, 2639 W. Girard Avenue
Former Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins founded this men’s and women’s boutique on Jewelers’ Row in order to redefine modern custom suiting with creativity, styling and precise tailoring — all while keeping culture at the forefront. The shop also stocks custom bowties, neckties and pocket squares. Coming soon: a variety of ready-to-wear clothing items.
Where: Damari Savile, 709 Walnut Street
Natural stone and wooden jewelry, shea butter, natural soaps and body washes from Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria are for sale at this Reading Terminal Market standout owned by Joycelyn Parks.
Where: De’Village, 51 N. 12th Street
With a showroom located in Norristown, D’Iyanu features a co-ed line of African print blazers, pants, scarves, maxi dresses, skirts and jumpsuits. Owner Addie Olutola named her brand using a combination of the word “miracle” or “wonderful” in Olutola’s native Yoruba and a French “d,” to mean “of.”
Where: D’iyanu, 910 E. Main Street, Norristown
15–Dolly’s Boutique & Consignment
The stylish set loves that this shop — owned by Shani Newton — carries women’s clothing for all sizes (extra small through triple extra-large), ages and budgets. On offer: silky tops, stylish separates, maxi dresses and on-point accessories. Dolly’s also has a satellite location in the Fashion District.
Where: Dolly’s Boutique & Consignment, 6778 Germantown Avenue
Expect Lace aims to build customer confidence through an intimate understanding of the female body with brands that sculpt every shape and size. Owned by Shaw Lewis, the boutique is known for carrying some of the world’s top intimate brands for women and men. Services include personalized under garment-fittings and lingerie consultations.
Where: Expect Lace, 4403 Main Street
17–Flourishing Beauty and Wellness
Flourishing Beauty and Wellness encourages consumers to indulge in self-care with a soothing cup of organic tea. The online-only company, which opened in 2020, offers loose leaf teas with delightful names like Brain Love and Mellow Out. Coming soon: organic skincare products with natural ingredients. https://flourishingbeautyandwellness.com/
18–Perfectly Flawless Boutique
A combination apparel and makeup studio owned by Crystal Jackson, this Germantown shop deals in jumpsuits, rompers, bodysuits and going-out wear, offers onsite manicures and makeup by esthetician Sade Jennine, and is committed to promoting overall body positivity among women.
Where: Perfectly Flawless Boutique, 5312 Germantown Avenue
19–Philadelphia Diamond Company
Custom engagement and wedding rings, one-of-a-kind pieces and gemologist-certified appraisals are the reason clients call ahead to book appointments at this Old City jewelry shop, owned by Ken and Nicole Black.
Where: Philadelphia Diamond Company, 421 Chestnut Street
20–The Sable Collective
Relocated from North Philly to the Fashion District, this inviting, women-centric shop owned by Shanti Mayers specializes in holistic body care, new and used books, Ankara-print socks, eclectic housewares, affirmation flag pennants (“I Am Brave” and “I Am Magic”) and locally made jewelry and clothing.
Where: The Sable Collective, 901 Market Street
21–Snapdragon Flowers & Gifts
This eco-conscious online shop owned by Tolani Lightfoot features a range of hard-to-find botanicals, candles and Insta-worthy arrangements for homes and events. Lightfoot and company are known for their terrariums and vertical gardens and have a way with succulents and herbs.
Where: Snapdragon Flowers & Gifts, 5015 Baltimore Avenue
22–Style by Blain
With a showroom featuring a pool table, elegant wooden side tables and a beautiful fireplace to display his unique selection of shoes, owner Voltaire Blain — known as the best dressed man in Chestnut Hill — strives to make shopping for shoes an experience like no other. His shop carries a wide selection of hard-to-find shoes, including loafers, oxfords and both high- and low-cut boots for men, as well as several styles for women.
Where: Style By Blain, 8433 Germantown Avenue
This Northern Liberties shop owned by Dorothea Gamble and Dagmar Mitchell carries environmentally conscious bespoke furniture, home furnishings, accessories, clothing, art, jewelry and beauty essentials. That comes in the form of Afrocentric socks, sister friends drinking glasses, original artwork and so much more.
Where: Trunc, 929 N. 2nd Street
24–Xavi Row Bespoke
Xavi Row Bespoke — owned by Leroy West and Kelly Vargas — is known for its bold, ultra-dapper custom suiting. They create suits and shirts for professionals, prom goers and celebrities, including pro basketball player Dion Waiters. Clients book online, and West and Vargas make house or office calls. The time from measurement to outfit: about four weeks.
At her minimalist gift shop along Queen Village’s Fabric Row, former fashion designer Shannon Maldonado assures each limited-edition Domenic Frunzi planter, Zona Baari scarf or One Eye Ceramics feels like a work of art. Maldonado also served as the creative director and interior designer of The Deacon, a circa-1906, Watson & Huckel-designed church now enjoying a second life as a gathering space and boutique hotel in Graduate Hospital.
Where: Yowie, 716 S. 4th Street
SPAS, BEAUTY & WELLNESS
26–2B Groomed Studios
This vintage-feeling business owned by Jahmal Rhaney services all manner of men’s grooming needs, starting with scissor and razor cuts and extending into skincare for stubborn bumps, goatee trims, steam facials, straight-razor shaves and beard coloring. Also on tap: a full slate of grooming products and a complimentary shoeshine from the buffing machine with every service.
Where: 2bgroomed Studios Philadelphia, 270 S. 11th Street
27–3rd Element Spa
Proving sisters make the best small business partners, owners Tomika Branch and Chyvonne Shackelford established their full-service day spa in their West Oak Lane neighborhood. Popular here: Oxygen facials, gel manicures, detox pedicures, plush waxing, lash and brow enhancements, massages, and 3rd Element lip balm and body butter and wash.
Where: 3rd Element Spa & Salon, 7175 Ogontz Avenue
Owned by Bria Moss-Wilkerson, this boutique dance fitness studio, with two locations in Philadelphia, offers group fitness classes designed for people who just love to dance. With classes like Zumba, HipFit and Ballet BarreFit, DanceFit disguises exercise to make working out feel like a party.
Where: DanceFit Frankford Avenue, 2423 Frankford Avenue
29–Duafe Holistic Hair Care
Syreeta Scott — stylist to Jill Scott, Ava DuVernay, Questlove and Janet Jackson — holds court in North Philly, pioneering natural styles (locs, braids, two-strand twists, hair color, more) that definitely require advanced booking.
Where: Duafe Holistic Hair Care, 3129 N. 22nd Street
30–Faheem’s Hands of Precision
Faheem Alexander has taken the barbering world by storm with his hands of precision. As an innovative barber for over 25 years, he’s known for his expertise in styling, hairline correction and beard grooming. He’s had a plethora of celebrity clients including Tracy Morgan, Rick Ross and Philadelphia’s favorite hip-hop group, The Roots. His talents have also led him to be featured in major publications such as GQ, Complex and NBC News.
Where: Faheem’s Hand of Precision, 2100 S. 20th Street
This Northern Liberties self-care and wellness shop owned by Morrisa Jenkins and Bonkosi Alyssa Horn stocks female-founded holistic skin, wellness and lifestyle products, like CBD tinctures, makeup, books and divination Freedom also offers facials, workshops, book clubs and a blend bar of botanical extracts, oils and salts to make custom masks, oils, scrubs and bath salts.
Where: Freedom Apothecary, 736 N. 2nd Street
32–Girls’ Auto Clinic Repair Center
Engineer turned mechanic (and author of “Girls Auto Clinic Glovebox Guide”) Patrice Banks has established the city’s first and only women-run garage and has debuted Clutch Beauty Bar, featuring stations for nail services.
Where: Girls’ Auto Clinic Repair Center, 7425 West Chester Pike
Owned by Shannan Reese, this co-op of licensed bodywork therapists offers holistic relaxation and rejuvenation within a private Center City fitness center. Services — Swedish, deep tissue, sports and hot-stone massages, aromatherapy — are reasonably priced and available by appointment only.
Where: HolNest, 1835 Market Street, 2nd Floor
34–Marsh + Mane
Located in the South Street Headhouse District, this natural hair beauty supply boutique owned by Jenea Robinson carries a curated selection of hair, skin, lifestyle, and bath and body products. The store stocks goods from makers such as Zuresh, Bask & Bloom, Anita Grant, Angie Watts and Scotch Porter, in addition to candles, hair accessories, brushes and shower caps.
Where: Marsh + Mane, 529 S. 4th Street
35–Posh Hair Design
With over 23 years of hair care experience, owner Tish Taylor creates a relaxing and tranquil setting to ensure that clients get the best hair care experience. Stylists here work on all styles and textures of hair. Services include relaxers, weaves, highlights, special occasion hair and more.
Where: Posh Hair Design, 8010 Germantown Avenue
After more than a decade of salon experience, Philly’s Brandy DaVila opened her own space, Salon Tenshi, in 2008. Now with two locations — one in Philly’s Callowhill neighborhood and another near the Main Line in Narberth — DaVila and her team work under the guiding principle that healthy hair and skin are best. Services offered include scalp and hair therapy treatments as well as coloring and more.
Where: Salon Tenshi, 537 N. 10th Street
37–Ursula’s About Phace Rittenhouse Studio
This by-appointment-only spot owned by Ursula Augustine belongs to an industry vet whose 25-plus years in the business include stints with Bobbi Brown, François Nars and Aveda. Devoted clients swear by her award-winning (from Allure, Philadelphia magazine) brow sculpting, micro-blading, lash lifts, derma-planing — but especially her signature URS cosmetics line for note-perfect makeup.
Where: Ursula’s About Phace Rittenhouse, 1700 Sansom Street