Meet Canna Girl Karie Ann Slayton
What inspired you to work with cannabis products and ultimately base your professional life around them?
I have always believed in the concept of doing what you are passionate about, but I could never actually put my head and heart around what I wanted to do. I knew that helping people is what truly made me happy. I would convince myself whatever corporate position I held was helping people in some way and I should be happy, but deep down I was never fulfilled. I became sober from alcohol in 2014 and in 2016, I was still suffering from severe anxiety, depression and PTSD. My husband has 9 years clean and sober, but still suffers from chronic pain. We decided to try THC to help treat our problems before we were willing to try prescription drugs. We took the steps to get our medical cards and started using THC. We were so blown away with the results, that we knew that we wanted to help others with cannabis and recovery. A year ago, I quit my corporate job of selling commercial insurance, to not only help my husband full time with our CBD oil production business, Zia Extracts, but I also started XOXO CBD. I have an online store which I promote on social media, and I have a retail location in Nob Hill.
It has been said that cannabis can be a valuable tool for people in recovery from alcohol and substance abuse. You are a self proclaimed “sober person” – How do you help customers deal with the stigma of all cannabis products getting you high on a day to day basis?
Getting head high is not for everyone. If the feeling of using THC triggers you to want to use other substances than by no means is it the right choice for you. THC helps me calm my nervous system and aids with social anxiety. After I stopped drinking, I could not be in large crowds without getting severe anxiety. Once I started using cannabis, I could go to concerts and weddings and dance again but without the drama alcohol would bring me in those situations.
How has your impressive social media presence helped you and your business? What’s your secret to success on social platforms? Do you have any advice for people looking to expand their businesses through social media?
I have so much gratitude for social media. Today I have over 400k on TikTok and Over 49k on Instagram. Those channels account for over 60% of our sales. The only secret I can say is post often, be consistent and be yourself.
Outside of CBD and running your business in Nob Hill, what else are you passionate about?
First and foremost, my recovery. If I don’t put my sobriety first, everything else falls to the waste side. Outside of work and my AA meetings, I enjoy spending time with my family the most. I am super fortunate that both of my daughters currently live in Albuquerque even though they are 22 and 25 and can live wherever they want. We also take a lot of day trips on my husband’s Harley to explore this amazing state.
How do you expect legalization in April 2022 to affect XOXO CBD?
It is going to affect the production of products more than anything. As I mentioned earlier, there are different reasons to use CBD, so hopefully those reasons will become more known as more people use it.
What makes XOXO CBD unique from the other CBD outlets in Albuquerque?
Because of our backgrounds in addiction recovery and chronic pain we truly came into this industry to help people. Of course, this is still a business, but we have never made financial profits be our focus. At the very seed level of our business all we wanted to do was help people in physical and mental pain. It seems if we stay focused on that, everything works out for the best.