By Kristen Philipkoski
Women who leave the workforce after having children often go the entrepreneurial route when they’re ready to work again, rather than attempting to jump back on the corporate ladder.
Unfortunately that means they’re some of those getting hit the hardest as small businesses across the country close their brick and mortar stores as we shelter-in-place to protect against the spread of the novel coronavirus.
And all female business owners are at a disadvantage from the get go. While 45% of all small businesses are owned by women, female founders receive only 15% of venture capital funding according to research by All Raise, even though for every dollar raised they earn 78 cents on the dollar compared to 31 cents for men.
Most of these women are already working with slim margins with no outside financial help. A monthlong shutdown could literally shutter their businesses. That’s why I’ve created this list of women-owned small businesses that could really use support right about now. Whether you’re planning that first post-lockdown stunner outfit, getting gussied up for social media, or giving your home some extra love, there’s plenty here to fulfill all of your online shopping desires. Many are offering extra discounts and free shipping as well, so it’s a good time to shop.
This may seem like a long list, but it’s a small sample of the businesses across the country that are suffering. Also check out the businesses recommended at Intentionalist as well as the list curated by All Together Collective.
And if you’re not in the market for goods at the moment, consider buying gift certificates from your favorite sellers, share their posts and photos on your social networks, sign up for their newsletters, and write reviews—or simply shoot them a supportive DM. No gesture will go unappreciated.
Beauty and Wellness
Get free shipping with code TOGETHER at this beauty and wellness shop that was forced to close its doors in Novato, California. The company is donating 10% of its sales back to its team.
This skincare brand was created by and for women with sensitive skin. Drifter oils and butters are the perfect treat for your face and body while you hunker down.
Menopause plus lockdown is a miserable combo. Check out Evernow’s free trial to help get symptoms under control with a tailored-for-you treatment plan.
Get 40% off all orders (yep you read that right) from this botanical fragrance and beauty brand until March 22, and get free shipping on orders $75 or more.
Take a virtual vacay to Hawaii with a free digital dance class, or purchase a gift certificate when you can finally enjoy an in-person dance class again.
You can’t currently book a luxurious facial at this San Francisco spa, but you can buy their gorgeous oils and serums, or order a gift certificate.
Use code STAYCALM free shipping on Erin Dempsey’s plant-based oils, lotions and aromatherapy, including the CBD variety. Don’t miss her 70% alcohol aloe hand sanitizer.
An online resource for the self-care we all desperately need right now.
These 100% natural lotion and soap bars were created by two young sisters ages 10 and 13 in California—just bars, no bottles! Soap is something we can all use more of right now—and lotion to replenish our scrubbed skin. And while stores may be out of dish and other types of soap, they have plenty of inventory.
Fashion, Jewelry and Accessories
Need a dress for a special occasion that will hopefully happen in a couple months, fingers crossed? Alyssa offers digital fittings and alterations—no need for physical contact. Lead time is just 2-14 days and she uses only sustainably-sourced fabrics.
Everyone could use a little pick-me -up right about now, and Gordon’s jewelry will certainly do the trick. Check out her new enamel fridge magnet pendants. Free shipping always.
Take an extra 25% off all sale items with code 25together on everything but shoes, and get free shipping at this unique, uber-stylish independent online shop.
When you buy one of these stunning 70s-inspired bags you’ll get a free leather pouch, an inspiring sticker, and free shipping.
This Brooklyn fashion and lifestyle shop will suit you up in cozy casuals, many of which are currently marked down.
This is the jewelry shop for you if you’re ready to give coronavirus the finger in the form of a beautiful gold necklace. Or if you’re experiencing love in the time of COVID-19 and need a mail order engagement ring, stat.
Shop these chic clear handbags for when concerts and festivals get rescheduled. In the meantime show them off on social media. You get to pick your strap!
It’s a stressful time to be a pregnant woman. These beautiful hospital gowns look like the chicest kaftans and will provide welcome comfort during and post delivery.
This fashion-forward and ultra chic San Francisco boutique is offering free shipping on all domestic orders, no code needed.
Take 25% off your entire order from this online boutique (offline in Burlingame, CA) which features brands including Ulla Johnson, Sea, Golden Goose, and so much more including gifts and wellness products. Also get free shipping on orders $50 or more.
Shipping might be slower than normal, but this stunning jewelry is worth the wait.
Rapp’s gorgeous, glamorous jewelry is made of repurposed vintage mesh handbags. Shipping is currently free and gift cards are 25% off.
This chic Oakland, California boutique is offering 10% off all orders with code MCMULLEN10 plus free ground shipping.
Check out the new collection just launched this week and get free shipping. Owner Marja Germans Gard is also donating 10% of her sales to the Alameda Country Community Food Bank through the end of the month.
Her gorgeous mudcloth scarves, vintage shibori vests, coats and tops make unique gifts for someone who had to cancel their birthday party (or for yourself).
Many people are taking on closet cleaning while holed up inside, and Mira can help you get that blissful, organized feeling virtually.
Don’t let your lifestyle suffer just because you can’t leave the house. O.K. that’s impossible but this shop will at least keep you in jewelry and accessories so you look good on Insta.
This chic and comfy fashion brand is offering 20% off gift cards.
Don’t miss this jewelry brand’s sample sale with more than 100 designs 70% off.
It’s a good time to spread happy thoughts, and this t-shirt brand helps you do it with your clothing. Free shipping on all orders with code BRIGHTSIDE.
Pregnancy can be scary even in normal times. Luckily this telehealth service connects expecting women with doulas, midwives and nurses with a 24/7 texting service.
Use code CLEARANCE25 to get, you guessed it, an extra 25% off clearance items from this progressive women’s surf brand. Also purchase two suits from the spring 2020 collection and get one ftee.
Birthdays and anniversaries continue to happen, quarantine or no, and baubles always bring a smile (and recipients can still show them off on social media).
TLR stands for The Love of Retro, and it specializes in blingy, chunky, colorful hoops and other geometric shapes that will make you stand our from the crowd (on Instagram). Lizzo is a fan! Get free shipping on domestic orders.
This female-founded ethical fashion brand works with artisans around the world, paying them fair wages and is granting unlimited sick days during the coronavirus pandemic. Get 30% off everything with the code LOVEANDLIGHT.
Shop this Mexico-based brand’s colorful kimonos via DM on its Instagram account.
The S.F. and L.A. shops are closed, but you can still shop online for hard-to-find brands including Henrik Vibskov, Textilehaus, Megan Ilene and many more.
Get 20% off everything plus free shipping on orders of $25 or more at this San Francisco shop where you’ll find plenty of comfy hunker-down appropriate garments perfect for you and your kids.
Lisa Anderson Shaffer creates the prettiest woven necklaces, bracelets and hair accessories. Free shipping on orders over $100. Also check out her guided journal “These Three Things.”
Home and Gifts
This Lancaster, Pennsylvania shop like so many others has been forced to shut its doors. Lucky for you they’re offering free shipping and pay-by-phone with curbside pickup if you’re in the area. In addition to decor look for jewelry, stationary and other gifts.
This Richmond, California business is one that’s been able to stay open thanks to its 2.5 acre property where you can safely browse for flowers and plants.
Get free shipping on all domestic orders at this modern bohemian home goods and clothing shop out of Healdsburg, CA.
Save 50% on rags with code RUGS50 at this nautical shop.
Support women and Latino culture by purchasing art, jewelry, decor items and more.
Has there ever been a better time to try your hand at wallpaper?
If you’re anything like me, staring at your house all day if giving you the redecorating bug. This is a good place to start.
I bet you’re tired of doing dishes right about now. Treat yourself to some paper plates that will also boost your mood, plus get free shipping on orders over $35.
The team behind this Santa Cruz shop for affordable bohemian modern decor for home and office is working hard to post more products to shop online so you can shop from afar.
It’s the perfect time to organize your record collection and these beautiful wood products help you do it in style.
It’s a perfect time to make your home a little more gorgeous with this SF-based shop’s beautiful ceramics, decor, dinnerware and more.
This is the perfect online boutique to find an ethically-made gift for that co-worker, boss or employee you want to show appreciation for during these uncertain times. Monogramming and a personal handwritten note are always gratis.
Support this lifestyle shop, which carries a thoughtfully curated selection of goods made by independent designers and craftspeople.
Hatch creates ceramics that become instant heirlooms. Also look for stationary, home goods and gifts that are “somewhere between whimsical and traditional.’’ Get 20% off home and garden through 3/26 with code GARDEN20 plus free shipping with cod SHIP4FREE.
Shop this lovingly curated collection of California 60s and 70s inspired home decor, jewelry and clothing. Use code TAKECARE for 20% off plus free standard shipping on orders over $100.
Her hand-painted in Los Angeles ceramics may be the dose of cheer your home needs right now.
Look for online shopping soon, and in the meantime send a direct message to shop or buy a gift certificate for this curated collection of jewelry, home goods and fine art.
This knitter’s paradise is offering free local deliveries on emergency yarn supplies, plus an online store where anyone can buy her own ethically-sourced, environmentally-friendly, naturally hand-dyed yarn.
These modern, resin vases, trays, bowls, and more will stop you in your tracks with their unique designs and bright colors.
These beautiful wood goods are perfect for the increased amount of eating and cooking and home you’re now doing.
Linda Fahey makes and curates some of the most stunning ceramic art you’ll find anywhere. Also listen to my podcast with her!
Since you’ll be working out from home, you might as well motivate yourself with a fresh sport bra that really performs. Get free shipping on orders $75 an over with code FreeShipping.
This outpost of the franchise is asking clients to keep their memberships active and check their Instagram account to shop the boutique. Same goes for your local studio.
Wini Linguvic’s yoga students are devastated that her in-person classes are temporary canceled. The silver lining is that she launched her online program three weeks early, so now students both near and far can experience her deeply motivating and effective teaching (Listen to my podcast with Wini!)
Shop the cutest gender-neutral clothing for your little minimalist—look for the monster in the pocket!
Shop small batch and artisan goods for your babe. They’ve started their Easter sale early, plus use the code Wintersale2020 for discounts on select items.
This women-owned grassroots folk music class for kids just launched a new spring collection that kids can take online.
This adorable San Francisco shop is offering free shipping on orders of $40 or more, plus 11% off gift cards now through the end of March with the code GIFT.
Get free shipping and 15% off your first order of little girls earrings, bracelets, sunglasses and more.
Spirits, Food and Other Services
Join the ranks of Olivia Wilde, Alia Shawkat, and Scarlett Johansson and have your portrait taken by this San Francisco Bay Area photographer (when the fog lifts, of course). Batz is offering gift certificates the meantime, email her at email@example.com to set it up.
This thrifted fashion powerhouse will teach you how to work with what you’ve got in your closet already (really our only option at the moment) on her YouTube channel as well as her Instagram feed. Her always-upbeat personality and incredible style might be just the break you need from Netflix and chill. And don’t miss her #alwaysplaydressup tees.
This woman-owned outlet is offering limited selections to support small producers and the Oregon wine community. If you’re in the Portland area you can get local delivery, or Fed-Ex elsewhere. With every 6-pack purchase, a donation will be made to Virginia Garcia Memorial Foundation which provides healthcare for migrant workers.
Colette was born with Down Syndrome, but it hasn’t stopped her from building a cookie empire. And everyone needs cookies right now.
This Seattle shop just opened a few months ago, only to have to shut down with the coronavirus emergency. But they are still offering pick up and deliver on gourmet supplies including wine and meal kits.
These high quality CBD products just might get you through another week of homeschooling.
Pass the time at home with this entertaining YouTube series about fashion, beauty, and influencer life, all combined with a healthy sense of humor.
Is’s a great time to plan that family (or boudoir!) session you’ve been thinking about booking. We all need something to look forward to.
This is no time to run out of coffee. Subscribe to a monthly delivery so that’s one less thing you need to worry about.
This award-winning video production expert can serve your production, editing and motion graphics needs for the web, corporate events or broadcast. And her team can do it all remotely, so you don’t have to push back those video projects. Even if you’re in the earliest stages, she can take your idea and run with it.
This California wine company has opened up a few spots in its coveted wine club, get in while you can!
This Stockton, California bakery is still open for pickup and delivery. Something indulgent like their chocolate chip cookies or bourbon pecan pie sounds amazing right about now.
For small businesses that need product photography services but are facing a suddenly strained budget, this agency is being flexible with budgets for product photography. Just ship the products and they’ll shoot it, show proofs while shooting for approval, send final images and return the product. “Let us know what you’ve got and we’ll do our best to make it work,” agency founder Katie Patterson told me.