CBD Is Trendy, But New Beauty Brand Floramye Is Intent On Making It Timeless, Too
If you want to know where the market’s heading, keeping tabs on Allison Tryk would be a good place to start.
Before S’wll and Bkr transformed water bottles into accessories in the hands of every cool girl, the serial entrepreneur established stainless steel water bottle company EarthLust. Before wholesale marketplaces like Faire and Joor hit their strides, Tryk was on the team that launched the digital wholesale gift destination Market Sanctuary. Now, she’s made USDA certified organic CBD a cornerstone of her new brand Floramye before it’s broken into the mainstream.
For Tryk, the decision to go with an organic version of cannabidiol, the non-psychoactive constituent of the cannabis plant, was compelled by confusion. There were so many options for CBD available when she was developing Floramye that she couldn’t distinguish between them. An organic option, of which there were very few, helped her separate quality from rubbish. Because hemp is a bioaccumulator, meaning it absorbs both the beneficial and bad stuff from soil, organic processes are employed to keep it and ingredients derived from it as pure as possible.
Tryk figures consumers don’t understand the differences between organic CBD and the run-of-the-mill variety of the ubiquitous ingredient at the moment, but they may gain an understanding as they find out more about CBD. Even if they don’t, including it in Floramye’s formulas underscores that the brand is mindful about what’s in the products it sells to shoppers applying them on their skin and ingesting them. Above the organic CBD, the brand’s mindfulness extends to its glass packaging manufactured in Italy with wooden tops. During a green rush characterized by companies flooding stores with CBD merchandise to get rich quick, Floramye stands out for its deliberate, detailed approach.
“It’s really thoughtfully made with a lot of care and consideration.”
“It’s really thoughtfully made with a lot of care and consideration for primarily the person that’s going to use it, but also everybody and everything else it could affect, so the environment and the vendors we work with, too,” says Tryk, who became familiar with CBD on a quest to address a bulging disc in her neck. “We don’t want to be putting CBD in anything just to sell it, and I didn’t want to put out something I haven’t seen results from. We want it to be purposeful.”
Floramye came out of the gate in August last year with six stockkeeping units priced from $75 to $111: Balancing CBD Face Oil, Calming CBD Body Crème and Revitalizing CBD Elixir in two scents. The scents are the uplifting phenom with evening primrose, rosehip, chamomile and geranium; and earthy bravura with ylang ylang, citrus, cedarwood and sandalwood. The CBD milligram totals for the Balancing CBD Face Oil, Calming CBD Body Crème and Revitalizing CBD Elixir are 300, 600 and 600, respectively. The brand has since introduced a $30 snow quartz gua sha to pair with the Balancing CBD Facial Oil and a $70 Bath Bliss Set with seven bath bombs containing 200 milligrams of CBD each that reveal chakra stones as they melt. Early on, Calming CBD Body Crème is Floramye’s bestseller. A cleanser and an eye balm are future product possibilities to round out the brand’s beauty arsenal.
Floramye has swiftly captured the interest of stores and hotels. It’s entered top Anthropologie doors, Sundance locations nationwide, Big Sur’s Post Ranch Inn and about 20 small retailers. The brand has hired rep group Aesthetic Movement to build distribution. Tryk is drawn to retailers, particularly independents, that are thoughtful about their selections. “I want to make sure we are in the right stores that have the right message that we are aligned with as opposed to just going out there and making money,” she says. “I want organic growth that’s sustainable with partners that believe in us.”
“I want organic growth that’s sustainable with partners that believe in us.”
Tryk’s methodical scaling has a throwback sensibility, and so does her brand’s design and name. Its classic, subtle bottles and jars feature elegant script, and Tryk envisions they could have been owned by her glamorous great-grandmother May Allison Osborne, a silent screen actress. The brand is named for a 1920s-era French perfume house that was called Floramye. “I thought it was a beautiful name, and it sounded historic,” explains Tryk. “The bottles that they made were beautiful—they used Lalique and Baccarat—and I could imagine them on my grandmother’s vanity.”
From her previous entrepreneurial experiences, Tryk is aware that business doesn’t always happen as planned. Originally, she estimated spending $60,000 to create Floramye. Ultimately, the upfront investment was over double her original estimate. The brand’s packaging, ingredients (the rose otto in the Calming CBD Body Crème was notably expensive, not to mention the organic CBD), and marketing weren’t cheap. But Tryk has overcome larger hurdles. One time at EarthLust, a shipment of worth several hundreds of thousands of dollars tested high for lead after it arrived in the United States from China, and she had to eat the cost. Tryk is adamant today that product testing is done prior to delivery. “I’ve made a lot of mistakes,” she says. “The biggest thing I’ve learned is to stay grounded when things don’t go the way you want them to.”
In addition, Tryk has learned that placing an enormous amount of pressure on a nascent company to achieve major milestones can be a risky course. She’s not specifying an exact sales target for this year and, instead, predominantly hoping to see her brand make inroads in a market she acknowledges is crowded, a goal that it’s meeting already. She’s seeking slow, steady progress to lay the groundwork for a brand with longevity.
“As long as we stay true to ourselves and stay on a path that we feel is genuine, there’s a place for us. As long as we feel we are only putting out the best products we can put out, that’s the best we can do,” says Tryk. “I don’t spend a ton of time looking at competition. Especially with the woman-owned brands, there’s a sense that we can do this together. There’s room for all of us. I don’t need to put anyone else down to get ahead.”