CHICAGO—Each year, the Black Women’s Exposition never fails to provide a glamorous showcase of businesses and workshops by and for Black women. Its 28th expo, held at McCormick Place on August 4-6, attracted hundreds of consumers from all walks of life.
The expo’s theme was “Strength, Success and Sisterhood.” Notable speakers and celebrities such as Iyanla Vanzant, Kurt Carr, hip-hop artists Shawnna and Twista, and many more attended the workshops and festivities of the event.
Consumers were able to enjoy products and services from more than 300 small business exhibitors such as cosmetics, hair, personal care, food and drink, education and much more.
Tiara Lee of Hawaiian Silky, which specializes in beauty, cosmetics and personal care told The Final Call, “The Black Women’s Exposition provides an environment for Black women to uplift and empower each other.”
Consumers were able to receive complimentary hair styling and braiding at the Hawaiian Silky booth. “Our business is family-owned and located on the South Side of Chicago,” she continued. “This event allowed us an opportunity to show our community that we appreciate their support while giving back to our community with free products, free hair styling, and just showing love to each other. We are in the business of not just creating beauty on the outside, but on the inside as well.”
Sisters Jamilah Shakir-Muhammad and Khalilah Shakir-Ramirez, who are sisters of this writer, were full of smiles after experiencing the Black Women’s Expo for the first time.
“The Black Women’s Expo benefits our community because it shows how powerful we are when we unite financially,” Jamilah said. “It gives us a sense of financial power when we see how powerful the Black dollar is as we are taught by the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad.”
She said she enjoyed the camaraderie and sharing of skills and talents. “It benefits Black women because it opens a space for Black women to share each other’s creativity and share healthy critiques,” she continued.
Khalilah told The Final Call, “The Black Women’s Expo allows Black women to remain a sisterhood as a whole, physically and mentally. Keeping our Black dollars in circulation is one, but an event specifically for us to keep us united and supportive of one another as opposed to envy and separation.” She said her focus is supporting Black women in every way.
“Personally, my business is to support Black women in loving themselves as we are in all the aspects we come with and help us to realize we’re crafted this way for a reason, so embrace it. Also, appreciate how God really showed out with us to begin with and keep that mentality which is the truth.” Both sisters are looking forward to the expo in 2024.
“This needs to be more than once a year,” Khalilah said.
For more information on the Black Women’s Exposition, visit bwenext.com.