Have you ever had to dye your pointe shoes, tights, or leotards a different color to match your skin tone? Have you tried to find dance apparel that fit your body type but couldn’t? Or, do you just want to support Black business owners in the dance industry, and build a cute wardrobe while doing it?
Whatever your reasoning for clicking on this article, we hope you benefit from learning about the awesome stories and products behind these Black-owned dance companies. The introduction of a diverse range of flesh-colored tights and dance shoes in the last few years is interesting enough, but keep reading to see which dancewear brands and key players were a part of that shift!
Founded in 2018 by Imani Rickerby, Jasmine Snead, and Sydney Parker, Aurora Tights offers tights of all skin tones for the competitive dancer or figure skater. Rickerby and Snead have ice skating backgrounds, so you know those tights will hold up under pressure! Aurora Tights even has a “Find Your Shade” feature to help you with the guessing game part of picking the right shade of “nude” tights as you shop online.
Instead of centering beige as a neutral nude color, FleshTone posits that whatever skin you have is your “FleshTone” and that you deserve to find dance apparel in that shade! FleshTone is an online hub for any and all things skin-color-related when it comes to beauty, fashion, and dance apparel. The website is innovative in its approach, as it is primarily a directory of skin-tone products, rather than an individual storefront.
Alison Stroming is a professional dancer, model, and entrepreneur. She began AS Dancewear in 2018 to bring to life her dreams of female empowerment in ballet. Stroming strives for every young girl to be able to feel confident in their own skin in a ballet class. She credits beautiful leotards to being part of the solution and has worked hard to make that dream a reality. The styles are inspired by the colors and spirit of Alison’s home country of Brazil, so you’ll be sure to find something unique in their collection!
Based in Atlanta, Georgia, Ju’Nae Fit sells athleisure, swim, and exercise accessories. As you can tell from their Instagram page, they are best known for their matching sets, which they model on a diverse group of women. With an affordable price point and the ability to buy not only athleisure attire but workout gear to match, Ju’Nae fit is a great option for expanding your closet!
Revel Dancewear is inspired by and created for curvy body types. With T-shirts designed in sizes up to 4x, they offer more size inclusivity than some of the other brands on our list! When you build a company, you have limited capital and you have to make choices on where you’re spending it. Revel Dancewear chooses to prioritize size inclusivity as a must instead of as an add-on later. Celebrate your beautiful body by wearing their clothing which bears the slogan, “Dope Curves”!
At the heart of the Blendz dancewear brand is a story that may sound similar to the many other black-owned businesses on this list. Founder Jamia Ramsey was new to directing her own dance academy, DanceMoves, when she noticed the dancers and parents at her studio spending unnecessary time, energy, and money dying tights, leotards, and ballet shoes to match their complexions. In response to what she saw (and the fact that the dyed tights were not always uniform in color!), she created Blendz Dance Apparel, a dancewear line that promises there is uniformity in diversity! And, a percentage of each purchase you make will go towards The Valerie Grace Scholarship Fund to assist young dancers in need!
Nude Barre is a hosiery and undergarments company that works to represent all skin tones and eliminate the idea that darker skin tones are the other option for nude garments. Nude Barre offers 12 different shades of nude that “close the representational gap and elevate all hu(e)mans.” They even have an ambassador program where people of different ages, sizes, colors, and personalities model their garments.
Chloe + Maud
Did you know Chloe and Maud Arnold have their own athleisure brand, too? On top of running their growing foundation and teaching classes at CLI Studios and across the world, they run their own line of athleisure apparel under the Chloe + Maud Foundation. If you’re looking for “ I ❤️ Tap” t-shirts or hoodies, look no further! They also sell Syncopated Ladies merch and currently have a signature Chloe + Maud tap shoe for purchase.
Supporting black fashion designers and businesses is a great way to promote and honor diversity within the dance community. So the next time you’re looking to sport a new, elegant style at home or in your dance studio, consider shopping online at one of the brands on our list!