Q + A FROM THE FOUNDER OF WINK
SO WHAT GOT YOU INTO THIS BUSINESS?
In California, since I founded W!NK in 2015, the industry has come a long way. While I was the first brand created for-women, by-women, I am no longer the only female-focused brand. Whoopi and Maya introduced their brand for women in 2016. Thankfully with the new Me-too movement, having more female-focused brands is helping to educate women on the therapeutic benefits of cannabis. Women tend to trust women and I think education is the biggest component to having a successful brand. That is where the industry is headed, education. Retailers have learned to accommodate the growing female-demographic of cannabis consumers as well. Well-built stores have beautiful, informative displays, educated staff, and takeaways for consumers.
So yes, I think the industry has, and still is, blooming. As more women come to work within it and pass along their knowledge of the values of cannabis, it only gets better, and more inclusive.
DO YOU FEEL BEING A WOMAN HELPS YOU WITH WINK? THERE'S ALL THIS TALK OF WOMEN RISING THE HEIGHTS + DOING WELL IN THE INDUSTRY, BUT WHAT'S IT BEEN LIKE, FOR YOU?
Of course. I built W!NK to fill a void that had been created when it was overlooked by the hard-core stoner underbelly of weed culture. There was nothing specifically for women, and our micro-dose vape pens easily began to fill that void. As we introduced them to shops and partners, we were not just well received but shared. It wasn’t just us talking about them. We were being referred from shop to shop and woman to woman. We sought to help educate consumers, and non-consumers, on the medicinal benefits the plant offered. And we were dedicated to helping women become acquainted with, or reacquainted with cannabis, both marijuana and hemp based cannabis. And I think people appreciated that.
I believe we were on the mark because we were followed by other brands doing the same thing. There are now other for women, by women brands out there that are doing a great job. And there are brands out there that are focused on education and de-stigmatizing the plant that are doing beautifully as well. I believe women have made that happen. We are the nurturers of our society, so it is only fitting that we are the ones cultivating positive conversation around this plant.
And I would say being a part of this conversation has been good for me. I’ve enjoyed watching the discussions surrounding cannabis shift from what gets you high to what restores you, and have obviously benefitted from it as well.
YOU SAY YOU'RE A PRODUCT DEVELOPER. WHAT INSPIRES + INFLUENCES YOU IN YOUR ENDEAVORS?
WHAT DID YOU DO BEFORE WINK?
WHILE RAISING A FAMILY?
WHAT YOUR GOALS FOR 2019?
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE WOMEN WHO WANT TO WORK IN THIS INDUSTRY OR WHO WANT THEIR OWN BUSINESS?