By Jennifer Walker Sexual wellness and female empowerment advocate, Angela Mustone, has been both a visionary and a driving force behind innovation and excitement within the adult and sexual health market for over 17 years. Incorporating her knowledge and experience with her newest endeavor, High On Love, Mustone brings a fresh and aesthetically-pleasing perspective […]
By Jennifer Walker
Sexual wellness and female empowerment advocate, Angela Mustone, has been both a visionary and a driving force behind innovation and excitement within the adult and sexual health market for over 17 years. Incorporating her knowledge and experience with her newest endeavor, High On Love, Mustone brings a fresh and aesthetically-pleasing perspective to integrating sex and cannabis.
Jennifer Walker: Thank you so much for talking with me today about your company, High On Love. You’re in Canada, yes?
Angela Mustone: Correct… Montreal. And we just got a huge snowstorm, so we’re deep in snow right now. I’ve been traveling a bit too, I just returned from Colorado.
JW: I was just looking at your website and checking out some of the products. I really love the design of the website…there’s a feminie aesthetic to it, but it’s also sleek and user-friendly, which is great…
AM: Thank you so much! I like pretty things. I started off in the sexual wellness space, I used to work for California Exotic Novelties for 14 years. Previous to that, I came from the beauty industry. So when I started High On Love in 2018, I was noticing that a lot of the products in the cannabis space weren’t all that attractive or appealing. I wanted to create something that was pretty and gorgeous. I was thinking about details like packaging- something that speaks to you as a consumer. You know how it goes, sometimes you pick something up because it looks nice and makes you feel good! I came up with the name High On Love (and trademarked it) and that’s how High On Love came to be. Even my THC products are stunning, I really want to redevelop the cannabis space. My mentor is a woman named Susan Colvin who used to be my boss at California Exotics and her claim to fame 30 years ago was a pink vibrator. I really follow her lead with what I’m doing with my brand. I know we’re restricted with the regulations in the industry, but there’s certain ways that you can still use creativity and take it up a notch with your products. I’m really excited about this industry and all the possibilities.
JW: Well if that was your motivation, you’ve done a good job in translating that to what you’re presenting. Your products kind of remind me of Sephora- everything looks so gorgeous and well packaged. Are you doing full-spectrum? Isolate?
AM: Right now I’m doing isolate since a lot of my products are water-based, so I want to make sure that things blend well. Since I also ship my products overseas, I have to be in compliance with regulations, so I use hemp seed oil as well. My THC products, I’m doing my own strains and my own flower, as well. I’m modifying some of the genetics to create an experience for sexual wellness, so some of my strains will have relevant names.
JW: I have specific strains that I like to use as well for certain activities. That’s where the education comes in- we like to educate readers on the various cannabinoids, terpenes and ratios that enhance or inhibit experiences. Education is key!
AM: I agree. I’ve partnered up with a licensed producer here in Canada, and in Canada the cannabis world is very different. There’s a lot of corporate etiquette. It’s very different from working with the grows in the United States where they smoke what they grow. I am trying to educate the growers because, even though a lot of the interest is in the higher THC strains, I think it’s important to educate the public on the various strains available (which may not necessarily be high THC). There’s a lot of heavy regulations in Canada.
JW: So you have your challenges dealing with the corporate environment but I imagine you might also face some pushback as a woman in the industry, too…
AM: Oh for sure! I created my brand for me quite frankly, and people like me. I know what women want. I have a very strong voice within the business.
JW: We’re running into some similar issues here in the U.S. in that there aren’t as many cannabis brands owned by people of color and not a lot of gender diversity, either.
AM: I am excited by the fact that the grow that I’m working with in Colorado is woman-owned. It’s such a breath of fresh air working with a woman who gets it!
JW: Have you officially entered the Nevada market?
AM: I’m looking for the right partner there…I really want it to be fun and find a good fit.
JW: How has the Covid-19 pandemic affected your business?
AM: When we locked down in March, my sales dipped like 80%. It was awful. But slowly, sales started increasing again. We had a great Christmas season so I’m hoping with Valentine’s Day approaching…February is usually our month.
JW: We definitely saw an ebb and flow here too within the industry. Slowly but surely, the industry is coming back…
AM: I always say the main industries are alcohol, cannabis, sex and food. The main markets that people turn to for comfort, especially in stressful times.
JW: For Valentine’s Day, do you have any new products coming out?
AM: I have a gift set which includes Stimulating O Gel with a massager toy, and the Dark Chocolate Body Paint is very popular during Valentine’s Day season. It’s heart-shaped and really cute.
JW: Do you have a large staff?
AM: I have a decent sized staff. Someone in regulations, a designer, a copywriter, a social media person, accounting, operations, I have a lab that works on the production side. I work with a formulator and I work with a chemist, as well. I’m very particular about what goes into my products, I’m not shy about changing formulas if I think that it can be better.
JW: That’s great, it sounds like a very boutique style of operations within your company. Very hands-on. Even though you’re creating the products at a higher volume, you still add little personal touches to the products that make them unique.
AM: Absolutely. My bath oil for example- when I first started making it, we were using mineral oil. Mineral oil isn’t the cleanest product. So I replaced it with almond oil. My profit margins went down, but it was worth it because the product came out so much better. It’s easily one of my favorite products. When I first saw it with the almond oil replacement, I cried! That’s how proud I was!
JW: Are all of the products on your website hemp-infused?
AM: Yes, they’re all hemp-fused.
JW: What are your plans for Valentine’s Day?
AM: I’d love to come out to Nevada! I want to do something special. I have travelled during the pandemic, I went to China for 3 days, I was talking to my friend in Tel Aviv about visiting, also. It’s so much easier to do business when you’re face to face instead of online or via video. It’s just more personal, there’s no comparison.
JW: Are you originally from Canada? Are you bilingual?
AM: I am from Canada but I lived in Colorado for a time, as well. I do business in Europe, Russia, China…I’m looking at Israel right now and the Middle East, believe it or not. I am bilingual, I speak French, English and Italian.
JW: Impressive! Do you have any famous last words to impart to our readers?
AM: I’m very proud of my brand. Whoever thinks about buying High On Love products should know that there was a lot of love and a lot of work put into it. The fact that customers find us and take interest in our products- I’m very grateful for that. I’m so grateful to be interviewed, as well!
Find High On Love here: