“There are people who may be thinking: I’m not really into cannabis—I’ve never done it. I was that person,” says Claudia Mata, a former New York City–based fashion editor. “Ten years ago, I wouldn’t have said, ‘Oh, yeah, I’m starting a cannabis company.’ ” A recent move to the Bay Area, however, where her husband’s family has long been involved in the marijuana industry, opened Mata’s eyes to the opportunity for creativity and enterprise.
What does that mean for a woman who once spent her days dealing in jewelry and high-end accessories? Learning everything she could at cannabis university (a real thing!), working with an herbalist to create something elevated and organic, giving it a French-inspired name, and putting it in the kind of slick packaging that wouldn’t look out of place in a Bally bag.Vertly, the fruit of her labor, is a line of hemp and cannabis lip balms of varying degrees of plant-infused potency. There’s a cannabis-infused option (available in California only), for those who want to feel the light effects of the plant on the central nervous system, including relaxation, antiviral, and pain management. “
When you apply cannabis topically, you’re never going to get that stoned high,” says Mata. “It doesn’t enter your system that way, but you have more of the subtle benefits.” Another butter contains hemp-derived CBD, the “miracle molecule” in cannabis that has been linked to balancing the immune, digestive, and nervous systems and reducing pain—with a minimum of the psychoactive elements of THC. “It promotes a subtle state of tranquility and generally helps to relieve anxiety,” says Mata. “And it can help with headaches, cramps, and pain.”
Those happy to remain at their regular frequency can opt for standard, hempseed oil lip butter, rich in omega-3 and 6, shea butter, and coconut oil, and great for repairing sun damage. All three levels of Vertly have healing and antiseptic properties, and come in black, gray, and white packaging, respectively. “A nod to my old, monochromatic NYC uniform,” says Mata.Mata, who also has ChapStick-like tubes of the balm in the works, sees Vertly as a sort of nano-dosing. “You can enjoy these throughout the day and never feel like you’re not in the right headspace,” she explains. With New York Fashion Week just around the corner, now may be an ideal time to experiment.