Support local women led businesses in Maine! Kelly Ledsworth / Design Director

Even though Women’s History Month is over, we can still support them and empower as all women-run businesses have increased in numbers in the past few years. Below is a list of women-led businesses in Maine that can be supported. Supporting local businesses is very important because it helps bring back money for the economy of Maine, and supporting local allows small businesses to grow. These businesses that are run by women are also important as it puts women in a leadership role and empowers women to become more successful than they already are. It also has been proven that they perform better and are more profitable than businesses run by men, being stated as “they provide a vision that enriches decision-making while creating more equitable work teams and work environments that promote development, respect, and creativity.”(Entrepreneur) 

Green with Envy Salon: 

Locations: Portland, Camden, Belfast, Rockland, Augusta

Owner: Marlene Cohn

The Green with Envy Salon is the type of business that strives to make its customers feel and look good. USM student, Hannah Lowell, said: “the staff is very friendly, the employee I had made me feel super comfortable and I could tell that they took pride in her work.” The workers are always trying to better educate themselves to learn new ways to treat their customers. 

Maine Woman Magazine: 

Location: 5 Fundy Rd, Falmouth, ME, 04105

Director: Mary Frances Barstow

The Maine Women Magazine is a digital publication that tells various stories about women. With different sections that include arts, culture, lifestyle, and leaders and working women, it tells the stories about powerful and inspirational women. 

Blush Bridal and Formal: 

Locations: Portland, Bangor, Presque Isle

Owner: Courtney Wetzel

This business is a bridal shop that is completely female-owned, which is the only one in New England (Blush). For women, shopping for your wedding dress can be scary, as it is a big moment for them and they want everything to be perfect. This business keeps its stores as a safe place to make the women feel safe.

Sisters Gourmet Deli: 

Locations: Portland, Bath

Owner: Michaela McVetty

Founded in 2016 by a USM alumnus, Michaela McVetty, she has been very active in building her business. Sisters Gourmet Deli is a breakfast and brunch sandwich shop, made out of local and fresh ingredients. Located in the Old Port, this business delivers to almost anywhere and caters to a various range of events. On their Facebook page, they have a review section, with one customer having reviewed it and said it had an “Amazing attitude from the staff, delicious unique sandwiches, and super cute interior! Highly recommend.”

Alaina Marie: 

Location: South Portland, ME

Owner: Alaina Marie Harris

This is a fashion store located in South Portland that specializes in making handbags. It was founded in 2013 and was inspired by a lobsterman’s bait bag. “The mission goal is to spread color in your life, not just your wardrobe.” (Alaina)

Sue’s Needhams:

Location: Online

Owner: Sue Shaw Hight

At home business, Hight started her business in 1990. The Needhams are candy, and among other sweet ingredients, are made with natural Maine potatoes. The items that they sell are “soft-centered candy, dipped in chocolate.” Sue’s 

TimberNook of Greater Portland:

Location: Gorham, ME

Owner: Elizabeth Wilkins

TimberNook is a year-round experience for kids, that is based in the outdoors. Detaching them from technology, the kids are taught the importance and the need for them to play (TimberNook). With a good amount of the population in today’s world being attached to their phones, this program allows kids to not have that same feeling. The kids, still being in the years where they’re learning and developing their own ideas. Getting them outside to play and not be inside is very important. 

The Holy Donut:  

Location: Portland, Auburn, Scarborough

Owner: Leigh Kellis

The Holy Donut is a popular local donut store that sells homemade donuts made from potatoes. The business started in 2012 and has expanded into three more locations, bringing in more business. Customer Mark Phillips stated, “I enjoy their donuts, my favorite one is their fresh lemon donut.”

These are just a few examples of local businesses that are run by women. Supporting them by buying their products could really help, as it would bring more money back into Maine, instead of it going to corporations of other popular chain stores. It also will help empower more women to possibly start their own businesses in Maine, and a study done by Berlin Cameron showed that they’re “more purpose-driven, more likely to have access to childcare, and are more likely to offer equal pay.”(Forbes) This link provides some explanation of why more people want to work for women-led businesses, as women are shown to operate their businesses efficiently. 



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