The Scoop: For decades, companies have made skin care products with the same handful of ingredients. Cannuka set out to change that dynamic by using innovative ingredients that could help people with skin issues. Cannuka uses cannabidiol (CBD) from hemp and Manuka honey to create products that can soothe many skin care concerns. Whether customers buy Cannuka’s CBD Skin Balm for themselves or order some CBD Nourishing Body Cream for a partner, they’ll benefit from the organic and all-natural ingredients.
If you had told Michael Bumgarner five years ago that he’d be running a skin care company today, he would have laughed.
“My skin care regime was a bar of soap and Vaseline,” said Michael, the Founder of the all-natural skin care line Cannuka.
Michael was a farmer and an entrepreneur, and he started a business that helped small and medium-sized farms grow industrial hemp. The highly sustainable plant is increasingly used for consumer products, including clothing. Hemp is a desirable crop because it grows quickly and requires little water and few pesticides.
At first, Michael got into the industry because he saw how much farmers in the U.S. were struggling with traditional crops, and he knew hemp could help them generate a more reliable source of income.
“If they have five acres they aren’t doing anything with, that generation of $5,000 or $10,000 can be life-changing,” he said.
Eventually, he started researching other industries in which hemp, or its byproduct cannabidiol (CBD) oil, could be beneficial. Savvy entrepreneurs in many industries had already begun using the plant, but there was one vital market that remained untapped: the skin care industry.
For decades, most skin care and beauty companies cycled through the same handful of ingredients to create their products. But Michael wondered if there was a better way. Even though many individuals and couples struggled with skin care issues, they didn’t have any new options.
Michael founded Cannuka to disrupt that dynamic by introducing products infused with CBD and Manuka — a rare honey found in Australia and New Zealand.
Today, the company sells lotions, creams, and body bars to consumers who are looking for something different for themselves — or as a special gift for a partner.
Products Help Calm Troubled Skin with CBD
How did Michael — a self-proclaimed skin care novice — discover that CBD could help calm the skin? He got help from an expert — his wife Kelly, who is a PA-C in dermatology.
Together, the Bumgarners started running a series of tests to find out if CBD would work well as a skin care product.
“We discovered that CBD is known to calm and soothe the skin. We tested CBD topically very quickly and saw that it was effective,” Michael said.
The only problem, then, was ensuring that consumers understood what CBD was — and what it wasn’t. Some people associate CBD made from hemp with marijuana, but they’re entirely different. Michael compares hemp and marijuana to a poodle and a wolf, respectively; both are canines, but they’re unique creatures.
“They’re in the same family, but they’re not the same thing,” he said.
Cannuka uses a 99.7% pure CBD isolate in its products. That means it removes oils, plant material, chlorophyll, and waxes so that the CBD is in its purest form. Few companies can produce such pure CBD oil.
The Bumgarners also add Manuka honey, which is found in Australia and New Zealand, to its Cannuka products. It contains tea tree oil, amino acids, and draws in moisture to keep the skin looking fresh.
Cannuka products only contain a few other ingredients, including Vitamin E, grapeseed oil, aloe vera, and olive oil.
Since Cannuka is a pioneer in using CBD in its skin care products, it has piqued the interest of many beauty and skin care aficionados.
“We’ve seen interest in our company, and I think that’s because there haven’t been many new ingredients in the beauty industry in a long time. CBD is new and effective,” said Michael.
Offerings Range From Eye Balm to Body Cream
Cannuka products aim to make people think about hemp in a new way, and each one highlights the plant’s healing properties.
Michael recommends the Calming Eye Balm.
“People — male or female — can relate to waking up with dark circles under their eyes and looking tired. But our products help you feel calm and energized. When you walk out of the house and feel good and look good, your attitude changes,” he said.
One of the company’s most popular products is its CBD Harmonizing Face Cream. Combining Cannuka’s key ingredients with hyaluronic acid and cucumber extract, the cream is “a drink of water for the skin, plus it reduces the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, leaving behind a youthful, dewy glow,” according to the company’s website.
The CBD Cleansing Body bar incorporates black pepper essential oil, sunflower oil, coconut oil, and grapefruit oil to “leave skin soft, smooth, and conditioned.”
Those wanting to get a sense of what Cannuka products are all about can purchase the three-piece hydrating face set, which includes a small version of the calming eye balm, face cream, and hydrating lip balm. A five-piece set also adds on the skin balm and the body bar, and those samplers make excellent gifts.
But no matter what product customers choose, they appreciate the line’s health benefits.
“Our skin is our biggest organ. Healthy skin helps us keep our bodies in balance. It’s the first thing people see, but it’s also our barrier to keep us healthy,” Michael said.
Cannuka: Serving Individuals and Couples Worldwide
Cannuka’s unique products have won the company a devoted following, including from many people who have tried other products to no avail. For some, the product line is their last resort before turning to steroids, a treatment option that often has considerable side effects.
“When people start using Cannuka, they feel better. That keeps us motivated,” said Michael.
Michael shared the story of a woman from California whose skin had become painful and hard to manage during chemotherapy. She’d tried everything, but nothing worked until Cannuka. Then, she started feeling like her skin was also on the road to recovery.
“Chemo destroyed her skin, but Cannuka helped change her outlook on everything,” he said.
Those who live in the United States can order products through the company’s website. People can also test out the skin care line at various retailers, including Ulta Beauty, Neiman Marcus, Anthropologie, and Urban Outfitters.
Cannuka plans to expand its offerings soon to the U.K. and the E.U. Over the next four years, the company aims to sell its products around the world. Michael and his team also want to ensure that Cannuka expands in the same ethical, fair model in which it started.
The company has already seen rapid growth in a short time. Michael has also seen his life change considerably. Now, the former Vaseline-wearer has come to understand how healthy skin can improve people’s lives.
“I know now that Cannuka is more than just a skin care line. Skin care can impact people’s lives in more ways than even I imagined,” he said.