Plans for the April 20 launch of WLDKAT, a new CBD-based skin care brand from former Urban Decay executive, Amy Zunzunegui, are moving ahead, COVID-19 notwithstanding.

“That’s what’s great about being a small, nimble start-up,” said Amy, who spent two decades in brand strategy and product development at Urban Decay. “We can be very, very flexible.”

She and her remote team of eight are focusing on getting the word out about WLDKAT’s skin care products, a four-SKU line that includes Coconut Water + Noni Fruit Electrolyte Spray; PH Balanced Patchouli + Cherimoya Gel Cleanser; Mushroom + Moss Gel Cream; Ginger + Kombucha Skin Tonic.

Amy said the idea for WLDKAT came about “in the corner of a bar one Friday night” over conversation with her husband and a friend, who is a silent investor in the company.

“It stemmed from our interest in the cannabis side of the business,” said Amy. “There was a big space in dispensaries in California, where we felt there wasn’t a brand that was speaking directly to women. That presented a whole other opportunity to translate WLDKAT into a bigger space in skin care.”

Eschewing minimalist packaging ideals, WLDKAT products come housed in artsy, eye-catching containers; the tube of the Mushroom Moss Gel Cream features images of towering mushrooms, while a rendering of puffy pink clouds floating in a blue sky cover the electrolyte spray. The products will retail between $27 and $29 and will be available on the brand’s e-commerce site.

“The goal for us was to bring some excitement to skin care, especially something that feels fresh and can bring a smile to a person’s face,” said Amy.

The packaging is made from 100 percent recycled paper and post-consumer recycled plastic and bio-resin. The line is vegan, cruelty-free and contains no parabens, phthalates and sulfates.
“We want to be extremely transparent, from the milligrams of CBD to our sustainability story,” said Amy. “We take all of that very seriously. Yes, there’s a shift in how we’re launching. But the brand remains relevant because the values that we’re founded on – those are what today’s consumer is looking for.”

The products contain broad spectrum CBD, teamed with at least two other ingredients in each product – ginger and kombucha in the Tonic, coconut water and noni fruit in the Electrolyte Spray, for example.

“This is so the products aren’t 100 percent defined by CBD,” said Amy. (The cleanser does not contain CBD because “it just washes down the drain,” she said.)

Because packaging and formulas are made in the U.S., production has not been impacted by the coronavirus, except for a lip balm that was part of the planned lineup. Its packaging components are imported, and shipment delays have forced Amy to postpone the release of the lip balms until May.

With job uncertainty looming everywhere and consumers’ budgets tightening, Amy is aware that now may not be the best time to launch a new skin care line.

“Everybody is having those conversations,” she said. “There’s a huge shift in the market. But we’re lucky to have a product that is very much about self-care, self-love and well-being. People are still at home, doing their masks, taking their baths. It’s one of those products we still think is relevant in the time in which we’re living.”

Up next Amy is a summer event in Los Angeles for a second launch by WLDKAT, cannabis products (pre-rolls, blunts) — or what Amy described as the “rock and roll sister” of the skin care line.