On June 2nd, 2020 — influencers around the world posted a black square with the hashtag #blackouttuesday on Instagram. It was, in some way, to demonstrate solidarity for the Black community and the injustices they face by taking to social media.
Looking back, what did your feed look like that day? While you may feel comforted from seeing a lot of black squares on your feed, it also raises another issue — your feed just isn’t diverse enough.
Having been a part of the influencer marketing industry for a number of years, I can’t ignore the gut-wrenching fact that Black creators are severely underrepresented in this space. Last week, I shared 8 things influencers can do to make the industry more anti-racist. But before we can amplify Black voices, many of us desperately need to diversify our feed. Here are 20 Black influencers you need to follow on Instagram and why:
20 Black Influencers You Need to Follow on Instagram
Francesca from @onegrloneworld
Francesca is the full-time beauty and travel influencer behind @onegrloneworld. She has a ton of travel tips and guides on her blog, with extensive coverage of the Caribbean. So much so, that she was nominated for the Caribbean Media Awards for best travel blog. And if living abroad is on your bucket list, Francesca has a ton of great tips about studying and teaching overseas.
She has also written a guidebook all about Martinique. It provides a comprehensive list of things to do, places to eat, basic French and Creole phrases to get through, and also safety tips for solo travelers.
Francesca’s blog: https://www.onegirl-oneworld.com/
Karen from @themomtrotter
Karen documents her full-time life on the road with her RV’ing family. She travels the world with her husband, son, niece and nephew, all while inspiring more Black families to travel. Her blog, The Mom Trotter, shares a lot of helpful tips from homeschooling and parenting, to budget-friendly family travel, and destination guides.
She’s also the founder of @blackkidsdotravel, an Instagram account that features the adventures of families of color. For parents, her blog is a one-stop resource for everything you need to know about planning kid-friendly travels all around the world.
Karen’s blog: https://themomtrotter.com/
Olivia from @ochristine
Olivia’s expertise lies in the travel and wellness space. Her content inspires people to seek out experiences and create the life they dream of, despite their circumstances. In fact, her knowledge of wellness and travel comes from personal experience. Olivia doesn’t let Lupus get in her way of exploring the world, even accomplishing major bucket list activities like trekking Patagonia.
In addition to her wonderfully detailed travel guides, she also shares wellness resources and advice. Her post about how she successfully managed her Lupus so she could travel more is a great resource. In it, she details how she pays attention to her body, gets smart about her travel decisions, and vouches for herself during doctor appointments.
Olivia’s blog: https://www.ochristine.com/
Oneika from @oneikatraveller
One of the best travel bloggers in the industry, Oneika is a huge advocate for female and Black travelers. Having visited over 100 countries, Oneika has a wealth of resources, tips, and guides for destinations all around the world. She also shares insight about traveling the world as a Black woman, from the 10 countries every Black woman should visit, to an important post on the lack of Black in travel blogging and media.
In addition, Oneika is the host of 2 programs on The Travel Channel, an on-air travel and lifestyle correspondent for NBC New York and CTV Canada, and a keynote speaker at major events like the Women in Travel Summit.
Oneika’s blog: http://www.oneikathetraveller.com/
Asiyami from @asiyamigold
Serial entrepreneur, Asiyami Gold, is the founder of clothing brand A.Au, and the AuCoStudio creative agency. She creates stunning fashion and travel content focused on visual storytelling. Her content is so thoughtfully curated, and it will definitely inspire your creativity.
Asiyami has been featured in magazines such as Cosmopolitan and Essence. Her work with her creative agency has been highly sought after by companies such as Vogue, Pantene, J.Crew and Gap.
Asiyami’s blog: http://www.asiyamigold.com/blog
Jessica from @thecatchmeifyoucan
Jessica is the first documented Black woman to have traveled to every single country in the world. Her travel blog, The Catch Me If You Can, documents her journey along with tips for visiting some of her favorite destinations. As the owner of both a U.S. and Ugandan passport, she takes time to address the issue of passport privilege. In fact, it is part of her mission to enter as many countries as she possibly can with her Ugandan passport.
Her story (and accomplishments) are amazing, and she has even documented the countries she’s visited in order, which ones she’s visited solo and the countries she’s entered with her Ugandan passport. You can read all about it in this post. Jessica is also the founder of Jet Black — a travel firm that specializes in travel to Africa, Central, and South America, and the Caribbean.
Jessica’s blog: https://thecatchmeifyoucan.com/blog
Jet Black: https://www.globaljetblack.com/
Courtney from @colormecourtney
Courtney’s content is sure to make anyone smile. She is the color queen of New York City, and quite honestly, Instagram as well. Her candy-colored content focuses on fashion, style, and body positivity. Courtney’s style is fun, playful, and bold — and if you need any tips for styling bold colors or patterns, she’s got them!
In fact, she recently launched her very own line with Rent the Runway. Every piece is so fun, quirky, and too perfect for summer.
Courtney’s blog: https://www.colormecourtney.com/
Courtney’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmQjKW9l-FDjkpETobx8WFA
Onyi from @mossonyi
Editorial, dreamy, and imaginative — Onyi’s photography style is absolutely so divine. She runs her blog alongside her husband, sharing fashion, travel, and lifestyle tips. A self-taught photographer, Onyi is so passionate about visual storytelling. In fact, she has been featured in publications like Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, and The Guardian.
If her photography and editing style inspires you, her Lightroom presets are accessible for anyone to download for free.
Onyi’s blog: https://mossonyi.com/
Onyi’s YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6SMyPtNcSPkFCDe3LIZvmA
Ashley from @heyashleyrenne
Ashley is a vegan and sustainable blogger, sharing sustainable fashion brands, vegan recipes, and cruelty-free beauty. In addition, the smart tech section of her blog covers innovative, energy-efficient technology that helps you live a greener life.
She’s also an avid traveler with a mission to diversify travel media. If you love traveling but want to reduce your carbon footprint, Ashley has written countless blog posts all about sustainable living, travel, and lifestyle.
Ashley’s blog: http://www.travellushes.com/
Jennelle from @jennelle.eliana
In need of some van life inspo? Jennelle has been a full-time van lifer for over 3 years. In addition, she travels around in her baby blue van along with her pet snake, Alfredo. Her content is so fun and entertaining, giving you a look into the realities of van life.
Her content is particularly important because the van life community often features non-POC travelers. Although there are many Black van lifers, Jennelle’s breakout on YouTube is key to diversifying and changing the van life movement. But aside from having over 2 million subscribers on YouTube, Jennelle has been featured on major channels like Refinery29 and Glamour.
Jennelle’s YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCaXEr4t_QBZBk3qlIlc2HRg/videos
Ciara from @hey_ciara
Ciara is a solo female traveler who is inspiring others to live an adventurous life. So after working in HR for 2 years, she quit her 9-5 job to pursue traveling full-time. In fact, traveling solo as a female can be intimidating and downright scary at times. And Ciara keeps it honest and shares those same fears. However, she doesn’t let that stop her from chasing new adventures with precaution and confidence.
Ciara’s blog has been featured in Refinery29, Elle, Cosmopolitan, and Forbes just to name a few.
Ciara’s blog: https://www.heyciara.com/
Shelcy & Christy from @nycxclothes
Fashion influencers and storytellers, Shelcy & Christy, are the sisters behind @nycxclothes. In addition to inspiring you to up your wardrobe game, they also share tons of helpful online work and branding resources. Having moved from Haiti to New York City in 2010, they started their blog as a way to document their lives in the Big Apple.
They’re the founders of NYCxClothes & Friends, a community for creatives to get together and make friends. In fact, Shelcy and Christy noticed that many events they attend in NYC lacked the element of connection. NYCxClothes and friends is their response and solution to community building, by offering gatherings, workout classes, and events for creatives to show up and support one another.
Shelcy & Christy’s blog: https://www.nycxclothes.com/blog-i
NYCxClothes & Friends: https://nycxclothesandfriends.com/
Shavonda from @sgardnerstyle
If you have a passion for interior design, you must follow Shavonda. Her mission is to inspire bold styles, even in small spaces. Moreover, her design style is influenced by her global travels and her nomadic upbringing. Shavonda is all about living intentionally and teaching others to be happy with less space. She uses interior design to create a space that makes the individual feel amazing, emphasizing her philosophy that “life is too short to live in a home that doesn’t make your heart smile.”
In 2014, Shavonda moved out of her larger house and into a bungalow half its size. In fact, her knowledge and creativity for working with smaller spaces come from personal experience. She’s currently working on an English-inspired potager garden, which you can keep up with on @thecottagebungalowpotager.
Shavonda’s blog: http://sgstyleblog.com/
Janea from @jnaydaily
Fun, happy vibes, and the ultimate inspo for beautifully affordable interior design. Janea is a lifestyle blogger who shares how busy women can create their dream home aesthetic, while seeking wellness in their day-to-day lives. She shares lots of helpful tips on interior design and decor style on her blog, so be sure to check it out. Janea is all about inspiring others to take care of their wellbeing, create a beautiful space, and live their best life.
So if you’re thinking about bringing a little greenery into your space, Janea has some great posts to help first time plant parents along on their journey.
Janea’s blog: https://www.jnaydaily.com/
LaTonya from @latonyayvette
LaTonya is the writer and creative behind the lifestyle blog, Latonya Yvette. She blogs about family, wellbeing, style, culture, and community. LaTonya is also the author of the book, “Woman of Color”, in which she discusses racism, motherhood, love, and death. In fact, she was awarded Break Out Author of the Year in 2019, by the African American Literary Awards. Her blog offers lots of valuable resources from styling guides, tips for motherhood, and lifestyle inspiration.
LaTonya’s blog: https://latonyayvette.com/
Monica from @awedbymoni
Monica is a fashion and lifestyle blogger who shares incredibly helpful styling tips. She’s so passionate about helping women feel confident through their style at every price point. Monica has worked with brands such as Dior, and has been featured in major publications like InStyle and People Style Watch. She takes to her blog to share detailed fashion tips, style guides, beauty secrets and so much more.
Monica’s blog: https://www.awedbymonica.com/
Monica’s YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6gaoJicPuPR5ONZjByJHRg
Nimi from @nimiblackwell
Fashion, beauty, and lifestyle — Nimi is a London-based blogger who writes about style, life in London, and a touch of travel. Her style is feminine, elegant, and timeless. So scroll through her feed and you’re sure to leave with lots of style inspiration.
Nimi’s blog: https://nimiblackwell.com/
Skylar from @skylarmarshai
If you’re looking for editorial travel photography, look no further. Skylar’s account features stunning travel images that are sure to inspire your own photography. Additionally, she is the social strategist at The Creative Collective NYC, an influencer agency for black creators.
Janelle from @waityouneedthis
Janelle’s content is all about creating an effortlessly feminine style through fashion and home decor. As an experienced buyer, stylist, and marketer in the fashion industry, Janelle’s love for home decor brought her back to school to study interior design. Her blog (Wait, You Need This) focuses on her personal style, shopping advice, and her keen eye for interiors. In addition, Janelle creates content that sets out to inspire stylish and accessible living.
Janelle’s blog: http://waityouneedthis.com/
Glo from @glographics
The creator behind The Blog Abroad, Glo is an inspirational solo female traveler who encourages people to challenge themselves, chase adventures, and explore the world. She has been featured in huge publications such as Forbes, Condé Nast, and The Oprah Magazine. Glo has also used her platform to educate her audience on topics, such as how we can become better allies to the Black community.
Glo’s blog: https://theblogabroad.com/
Glo’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8vyzSlKLCDBh5YIHjtkZ2g
Before We can Amplify the Voices of Black Creators
As influencers, we have the responsibility to show up and ensure that the industry becomes a more inclusive space. So one of the ways in which influencers can make this industry more anti-racist is by recommending Black creators for campaigns. In order to do so, we need to support more Black creators for their work, ideas, and creation.
Whether you’re interested in travel, fashion, wellness, or more — it is undeniable that there needs to be more Black representation. Our jobs as non-Black influencers is to listen, learn, and amplify — not just when it’s trendy or in a hashtag — but every single day of our lives.