Since my colleague Maddie Vincent first introduced Snowmass Sun readers to Karina Marconi in March, much has changed for the locally based founder of Antedotum — a newly formed luxury CBD skincare company. Marconi, who soft- launched the line this winter, has not only reorganized her team, but also reformulated and repackaged Antedotum’s two hero products, officially re-released on Mother’s Day.
Co-founded with her husband Christopher Marconi, the couple has fittingly created the Dynamic Duo: an Elixir Firming Serum with a Vital Face Oil — each infused with 500 milligrams of CBD oil (extracted from certified- organic, full-spectrum hemp) with a proprietary blend of pure ingredients handpicked to help battle common skin issues from inflammation and dryness to dark spots and wrinkles.
Relaunching amid a global pandemic hasn’t been without challenges. The pair had to find bottling alternatives beyond China and learned that prospective retailers like Neiman Marcus are filing for bankruptcy. But the Marconis — also parents to Nico, 12 and Havana, 7 — have found that working together while staying at home has been wildly productive.
“Seeing Karina in her happy place is everything for me,” Christopher told me during a socially distant interview at their home in Snowmass. “And working on Antedotum has become my happy place, too.”
With decades of experience in luxury cosmetics, including an executive role at Chanel Beauty, Karina started Antedotum as her “third baby.” Christopher, whose career in finance spans mergers and acquisitions to managing turnarounds, saw a promising response to what his wife had created, committing to the company as chairman while Karina serves as CEO.
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“I wanted to build a brand that truly helps people, that gives more than it takes and supports others in living a better life,” Karina shared. “I’m a lifelong skincare aficionada and over the past few years, have incorporated CBD into my personal wellness ritual. I realized that there was an opportunity in the market to create a best-in-class CBD skincare line, so started working meticulously with scientists to create remedies that can easily be incorporated into any routine and are formulated with optimal potency.”
Late last year, the Marconis applied to CanopyBoulder — one of the cannabis industry’s leading business accelerators and venture capital funds. Antedotum was one of 10 startups selected out of a pool of about 400 companies for the Winter 2020 Cohort, which began in January. Weekly road trips to the Front Range for in-person pitch sessions and business seminars turned virtual for the final month of the program, with a Zoom celebration upon completion in April.
“The market for luxury CBD products is wide open and ripe for a brand like Antedotum,” said CanopyBoulder co-founder and CEO Patrick Rea. “Karina and Christopher have developed an incredibly efficacious product that their customers rave about. We are excited to support their entrepreneurial journey.”
With CanopyBoulder’s backing, Antedotum was able to bring on a full-time director of sales and marketing — Shenna Jean, a leader in the Aspen wellness communitywho recently relocated to Denver to facilitate faster brand growth — with the goal of expanding nationally into luxury cosmetic retailers from Sephora to Credo.
The Marconis plan to unveil additional products later this year and will also remain deeply rooted in the local community — to which they credit as having “the most sophisticated consumers” who helped build the brand in sharing feedback throughout the process — while developing wellness workshops, spa partnerships and retailer events.
Christopher called the CanopyBoulder program “pivotal” and added, “It provided us with tremendous industry knowledge on the benefits of CBD, what it takes to succeed as a new brand in an ever-changing marketplace and connected us with amazing resources that can help us scale Antedotum to the next level.”
As one of the company’s early testers, I’m assured that Antedotum is well on its way with a perfect pair of products that has simplified my own beauty routine and restored my sensitive skin from the harsh effects of living in High Country.