Network like your business depends on it, because it does. I find that in this industry a lot of business opportunities come from relationships, there is a sense of community and looking out for each other.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Becky Adam, founder of Lovebud, a natural skincare line centered around using hemp oil and CBD extract as the main ingredients. Lovebud offers both cosmetic skincare and topical relief products, it has cornered the millennial market by rebranding with a refreshing, fun vibe amongst an industry that typically takes itself too seriously.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! What is your “backstory”? How did you first get into this business or get interested in the business?
With a degree in biology, I was recruited right out of school to work as a cosmetic chemist for a wholesale supplier in the industry. I formulated products that were then sold to larger cosmetic companies. As someone who has suffered from chronic pain, I began experimenting with cannabis oil infused topicals in my spare time. Other topical products I had tried seemed to have a funky smell and an unpleasant texture, and so I began my work to create topical CBD products that felt like luxury skincare products. Using Amazon and my background knowledge of what was needed in a lab, I began purchasing my own equipment and ingredients to make products at home. Lovebud began as a passion project out of my kitchen.
Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that happened to you since you started your company
When I had my lab in my kitchen and I would have guests over, their eyes would get big and they would legitimately look at me and ask if I was Walter White..
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
Lovebud stands out because our products are stylistically different from others on the market and have unique, vegan formulas that give them impeccable texture. While it can be hard convert new customers into trying new skincare or topical products, once they try a Lovebud product we see them coming back again and again for more.
Our products also stand out for being fun and kitschy. I like to have a sense of humor about it, after all, we are working with cannabis, so why not have fun with it. Some of our product names include: Puff Puff Past Eye Cream — to fight under eye puffiness; Stoned Cold Lip Budder — a cooling lip balm; Body High Relief Bar — a topical that mimics a localized body high for the area applied.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
I’ve been really lucky that my mom is an attorney and that I have been able to use her for legal advice. In this industry in particular, it really helps to have someone with a law degree that you can turn to.
Are you working on any exciting projects now?
We are working on a new line of CBD bath products that will launch this summer. The positive feedback on them has been very exciting. The best response from one of our product testers was that her body was so relaxed that she felt like she had just had a full body massage after her bath using our product.
Can you share 3 things that most excite you about the Cannabis industry? Can you share 3 things that most concern you?
1. Female Leaders — The cannabis industry has been an amazing platform for many female entrepreneurs like myself to launch their companies.
2. Potential — The cannabis industry is growing at such a fast rate; the possibilities seem endless.
3. Popularity — As legalization expands, more people are willing to try cannabis products. I love meeting customers that are newly accepting of trying cannabis and hemp products, everyone has a story and a personal connection to it.
Three things I find concerning are:
1. CBD Legal Scare — right now there is a lot of confusion and chaos surrounding CBD. While most people assume that the CBD in a product is sourced from cannabis, it can also come from industrial hemp, flax seeds, hops and other plants as well. Lovebud products use federally compliant hemp derived CBD extract.
2. Product Claims — We see many of our competitors listing medical claims regarding their products, CBD and cannabis do not currently have any FDA approved drug applications.
3. Scalability — It is more difficult to find vendors willing to work with us on our CBD products.
Can you share your top “5 things you need to know in order to succeed in the Cannabis industry”? Please share a story or example for each.
1. Understand the laws for your state. Legal issues and making sure your company is in compliance with state and federal regulations is very important and should be one of the first things you tackle.
2. Network like your business depends on it, because it does. I find that in this industry a lot of business opportunities come from relationships, there is a sense of community and looking out for each other.
3. To quote an Eminem lyric “if at first you don’t succeed, won’t hurt to smoke some weed.” Getting started in this industry can be a headache, it takes a lot perseverance and creativity. If you get stuck, take a break, find mental clarity, smoke some weed, do whatever you need to do so you don’t burn out.
4. Find what sets you apart. The industry is quickly becoming saturated, find your voice and what makes your product or brand unique so that you stand out.
5. Set goals and stay focused. It can be easy to pivot or get distracted in this industry because there are so many potential paths to take, I find myself calendaring out my week with daily goals that we need to hit to keep us on track.
In our experience when people are passionate about what they do they are more successful. Where does your cannabis passion come from?
My passion comes from watching people try my products and hearing how they’ve helped them. I’ve created a line of products that are unique and effective, and hearing peoples’ positive responses about the products inspires me to keep creating.
Where do you see your business going in the next 5 years? Where do you see the cannabis industry going in the next 5 years?
I see Lovebud expanding into national retailers like Ulta and Sephora. I see the cannabis industry continuing to boom as legalization continues to expand on a state level and, hopefully, on a national level.
Are you able to identify any rising stars at your company or in your industry that people need to keep an eye on?
Traditionally, CBD has been looked at primarily for its healing purposes. More recently, it has been gaining popularity for cosmetic or beautifying uses as well. I call it the superfood of skincare because hemp oil is rich in antioxidants, vitamins and essential fatty acids, all of which are things you want in your skincare regimen. Our rising star product is the Puff Puff Past Eye Cream which uses CBD to combat the inflammation related to under-eye puffiness. It has become very popular amongst makeup artists as a quick fix for getting their clients camera ready.
What growth sectors should most people be paying attention to that they might not be currently?
While the main product focus in the cannabis industry is primarily ingestible or smokable products, CBD skincare is taking over the indie natural beauty scene. It’s the trend to watch out for.
Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why?
Chelsea Handler. She’s smart, funny and she is entering the cannabis field with her own line soon, we’d have a lot to talk about.
Originally published at medium.com