It’s that time of year when many will journey into another year of college life away for school. For those who are attending their first year of college away from home, it’s a new era of freedom and responsibility. You will now be responsible for the many chores that sometimes just gets magically done back at home. It’ll be daunting, but we’re here to help you out. We have listed the essentials you will need to get you settled in your new dorm, and check out these Black-owned brands to check out to keep you stocked-up.
1. Stationery: Just Be Hue
This back-to-school season, you will be needing at least a new notebook. Look no further. Just Be Hue has everything you need. The company creates notebooks, folders and bags designed with beautiful illustrations of Black people. Their core belief: representation matters. Monique Price, the owner, believes that, when kids see themselves as an astronaut, ballet dancer or chef, it sparks a dream within them that, in the words of rapper Tupac, “I’m not saying I’m gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will change the world.”
2. Laundry Detergent: True
Going on to a new college adventure away from home? Breathe it in. It’s the smell of freedom — and pile of clothes that needs to be washed. When shopping for the detergent for your weekly laundry (yes, you have to do it at least weekly), check out True. It’s is Black-owned detergent brand headquartered in Georgia. The detergent brand was founded by Alanta-resident Ali Muhammad, a Vietnam War veteran; Malik Saleem, an entreprenuer who started as a street food vendor; and Atlanta-resident Abdur-Rahim Shaheed, a veteran sales and marketing professional. Their product is 4x more concentrated than other brands which helps cut shipping and logistics costs. That means more savings. It’s also safe for those with sensitive skin and is biodegradable. So, make sure you have some these stocked up in you dorm room.https://www.instagram.com/reel/ChU3e5Bg8R0/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
3. Dental Products: Coral Oral
Coral Oral is an Atlanta-based, Black-owned business that offers everything you need to keep your teeth and gums health. They offer a line of dentist-approved toothbrushes, mouthwash, and floss picks. On every packaging they feature Black- and brown-skinned illustrations, and one little-known fact about Black history. The brand prides itself as a community-focused company that provides jobs to the youth of inner-city Atlanta, and engages with the community through activities that promote oral hygiene. You can buy these must-have dorm room items via We Buy Black.
4. Lights: Ujamaa
Moving in to a new dorm means a new level of independence. And with that new found freedom comes with dealing with everything that can go wrong in your humble abode: just like busted light bulbs. If your dorm room lighting or desk lamp bulb has reached end-of-life, try Ujamaa. It’s a Black-owned brand that offers smart LED bulbs and “dumb” ones. Founder Rob said that there is virtual absence of Black-owned companies in the business of manufacturing toothbrush, laundry detergent and lighting fixtures. He saw the gap and launched his company. Ujamaa light bulbs are available on Amazon. There’s even one-day shipping for the times you really need it.
5. Toilet Paper: Reel
Toilet paper is a need for any dorm room. If you’re shopping for some check out Reel. It is made of 100 percent bamboo fibers and no plastic packaging — it’s sustainable, and eco-friendly. Products like this are considered fully biodegradable and produces 30 percent less greehouse gasses during production compared to toilet paper created from virgin forest tree fibers, according to a report by the nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council. The brand was cofounded by Nigerian-American entrepreneur Derin Oyekan. “My experience growing up in Lagos and seeing those without definitely fuels my ambition. I have a post-it note on my bedroom mirror that reminds me of my personal mission every day- which is to create products and experiences that have a positive impact on people’s lives,” Oyekan writes on his website. You can order Reel toilet paper online or buy a pack at the nearest Target store.