The Playa Bowls Hang 10 Giveaways is back this February. That’s 10 chances to win epic giveaways from partnership giveaways to playa swag (all you need to do is head to our Instagram). Every year our Hang 10 also happens to fall on Black History Month, a time to honor and celebrate our Black communities. That’s why this year we’re proud to spotlight one of our giveaway partners, Black Girl Sunscreen.
Founder and creator of Black Girl Sunscreen (BGS), Shontay Lundy, is an innovator and thought leader in the beauty industry. Let’s dive right into her journey.
Describe what being a Black-Owned Business means to you.
Being a Black-Owned Business means trailblazing a path for other black-owned and female-led brands to break barriers, surpass expectations, and realize their dreams.
How does BGS pay homage to those who laid the path before it?
We consistently remember the Black, everyday heroes who came before us and those very shoulders we are standing upon. We have a legacy to continue, so we strive to honor and imitate Black founders. It’s the inspirational fuel that lights the fire within our hearts to trail-blaze uncharted waters for future generations in the space of sun care and corporate accomplishments.
You saw an issue with the industry and decided to fix it. What ignited the passion to act on it?
Over the decades, sunscreen has been made for and marketed to people with fair complexions, leaving people of color out of the sun care conversation. Because of the lack of sunscreen products and education for black people, myths like “Black Don’t Crack” or “Black people don’t need to wear sunscreen” have run rampant throughout our community.
In 2016, I became tired of using sunscreen that left a white residue. So I decided to leverage my MBA and knack for business to develop a melanin-friendly option for women who look like me. Black Girl Sunscreen was created to change that narrative.
Tell us more about the narrative that needs rewriting.
Education about wellness and skin care for people of color has lagged for decades. BGS sees the importance for people of all skin tones, especially those with deeper skin tones, to wear SPF daily, and fight the risk of sun damage by wearing sunscreen. We’ve inserted women and people of color into the sunscreen dialogue to ensure that they are seen, advocated for, and have products they can use.
Is that why you partner with other organizations?
Our partnerships with the University of Southern California and Florida A&M University laid the foundation for other Black-Owned brands to partner with esteemed institutions, schools, foundations, and companies to make a difference in the lives of young women and further the conversation around sun safety for people of color. We love partnering with USC and FAMU as they’ve partnered with us in our mission and vision to educate the importance of sunscreen to those who need it the most. I hope other young women of color take my story and passion as inspiration for their careers, dreams, and aspirations.
And you’ve successfully made an impact!
Any chance to make a difference within our community and support the next generation, we jump on it. It’s not just about sunscreen; it’s also about paving the path for future generations to continue changing the sunscreen space and bettering our community.
As the first, Black-owned sunscreen company to sponsor USC’s Women’s Track and Field team and both FAMU’s Women’s Track and Field and Softball teams, we provide scholarships to some of their deserving athletes. BGS remains eager to make a difference in the lives of these talented young women. We also provide them with the necessary sunscreen products to protect their skin from UVA/UVB rays, skin cancer, and other sun damage effects while competing in outdoor track meets.
What’s your message to other young, Black women who want to start their own business?
I would encourage young Black women to follow their intuition. If an idea or venture feels good then it is something to consider. Listen to your heart, your gut, your intuition. And it’s important to remember that everyone falls. But you should at least try. If you don’t start or if you don’t try, then you’ll never know how that business idea will turn out.
Check out Black Girl Sunscreen through Instagram and via their website! And be sure to enter our Hang 10 Giveaways on day 5 for a chance to win your very own products from Black Girl Sunscreen.