The Female Founders of ShopLatinxBiz Are Using Instagram to Spotlight Afro-Latinxs for Black History Month

Brittany Chávez and Raquel García, co-founders of ShopLatinxBiz, are using their business to celebrate Black History Month in a very personal way.

After decades of struggling with her identity, now 26-year-old Chávez began to identify as Afro-Latinx just one year ago, following her trip to Nicaragua, Remezcla reports.

But, despite having finally claimed her identity, she was unable to find others like her in the media.

"I was low-key infuriated," she told Ain't I Latina. "Not because there was a white woman getting representation, but because we got none."

So, she and García launched their own campaign. A series in which those who identify as Afro-Latinx tell their stories with the hashtag #BlackLatinxHistory.

Check out some of the submissions below:


ShopLatinxBiz is celebrating #BlackHistoryMonth by sharing the stories of Afro-Latinxs. Here is #ShopLatinxBiz's social media manager and photographer, Vanessa Gonzalez (@vgonzophotog). - I had a hard time growing up and being mixed. My mom is from #Guatemala and my dad African-American. I had no one that I could relate to and no one that could understand what I was feeling. I grew with the #Latino side of my family and in a predominately Latino community; and although I identified myself with being Latina, I never could fit in. My hair and facial features were different than my families. Anti-black remarks that were made we’re painful and hurt deeply but was told “don’t take it personally” or “we’re not talking about you.” It came to a point that I was ashamed of being black. - Sadly, my dad passed away when I was young so I didn’t have him around to teach me about my black culture. I did get the opportunity to visit my dad’s family in Ohio during summer month’s but I did feel out of place and it didn’t help that I had cousins tell me that I wasn’t black. - I still have a lot of pain, anger, and even #resentment that I didn’t have the support and acceptance that I needed when I was young but everyday I’m learning to love and accept myself. I’m learning to embrace the beauty and complexity of not fitting into a box or anyone’s preconceived notion of what I need to be. Black or }#Latina. I’m Afro-Latina and that alone is empowering.

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ShopLatinxBiz is celebrating #BlackHistoryMonth by sharing the stories of Afro-Latinxs. Here is production assistant and marketing kween, Charisse Myers @charissemarciaa. . Being an #afrolatina means so many things to me. It signifies a #culture so rich in music, history, FOOD (omg the food!) and celebration. It's blasting Celia Cruz all night long. It's precious moments like getting dressed in the pollera my Abuelita made for me in celebration of my Panamanian heritage. It's recognizing my blackness and showing pride in it; letting others know that being #Latina does not diminish my blackness, and vice versa. The two can exist together, and they do so beautifully. . For me, being an afrolatina also means longing for a country I have never gotten the chance to visit- holding tight to the parts of it that I have here. It means choosing the #revolutionary act of living fully in a society that completely erases #Afrolatinx people from the narrative, or simply doesn't believe we exist. But we are here and we're incredible! Estoy #orgulloso de ser Afro-Latina!

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Marisol Catchings of @AztecaNegra---- I walk out into the world and most people see a Black woman, but my experience is so mixed that I can't only identify with one culture over the other. Two of the greatest gifts my parents gave me were constant reminders to take pride in being #Black and #Mexican and telling me I had no limits. I feel that my ancestry allows me to explore the best of both worlds, the food, the histories, the traditions, the music, and of course, the art. _ I love both of my cultures so much that I created my business to celebrate the beauty of being Afro-Latina. I'm blessed to belong to more than one community; especially as women of color, Black and Brown alike, are in the midst of rediscovering just how dope and powerful and magical we truly are. #BlackHistoryMonth #ShopLatinxBiz

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ShopLatinxBiz is celebrating #BlackHistoryMonth by sharing the stories of Afro-Latinxs. Here is Izabelle Doublin (@izabelleedotcom). - I am #Mexican and Black. My mother's side is from Nayarit and are Cora. My father is also Black/Mexican. His mother from Durango and father is from Alabama, our last name comes from a French slavemaster. Simply knowing these facts about my background and learning these histories has helped me embrace and be confident in my being BlackLatinx! - It was hard being the only black one (besides my little bro) in the family growing up, and I was very self conscious about any traits that gave away I was black because I wanted so badly to fit in. I was only around my mom and her side of the family who had major issues with internalized racism and anti-blackness...especially my mother. She didn't like speaking Spanish unless it was to my nana, started straightening my hair in elementary school, and was insistent that I was "not that black", always explaining me to people. She would comment on the size of my nose, body structure, anything that was "too black" for her. So I didn't claim blackness while living with her because I wanted approval. - After I left home and went to college, I learned more about black #history and everything just seemed to make sense. I felt so connected to the black struggle and black community. I finally started to identify as black. I know it does not erase the fact that I also carry IndigenxMexicanx blood (I'm always asked "what about your mexican side?" or told "You're not thaat black".) THE TWO ARE NOT MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE.  I know I have light-skinned privilege, which I try to constantly check myself on, but I AM BLACK. #NEGRASOY. I am black and I am proud, cuz we lit fam. 

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NEXT: MAKERS Celebrates Black History Month: Looking Forward »

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Photo Credit: Instagram/ShopLatinxBiz