Kristen Bell is having what she calls “a sedentary day.” After a morning filled with phone calls, she’s getting ready to hop into a production meeting on Zoom and has somehow found the time to feed and clothe her two children, Lincoln and Delta, amidst it all. And though it’s hard to believe the actress is ever anything but cool and collected—thanks to her chipper voice, happy-go-lucky attitude, and general friendliness on and off the screen—she credits it all to CBD—and specifically, to Happy Dance, the line of simple CBD products she launched last year in collaboration with Lord Jones.
Bell first discovered CBD a few years back when her hairstylist used a Lord Jones cream on her shoulders following a haircut, but she’d heard rumblings about its wonders long before that. “It’s hard to explain what it did to me,” she recalls. “But I just felt this overall improvement, and at the end of a chaotic day, using any Lord Jones product made me feel like I was either turning down the volume on my children or turning the thermostat of my life to exactly the right temperature.” Her drives home from work, usually marked by thoughts of bath time, buying new lunchboxes, and turning in school projects, were suddenly blissful, and despite the storied Los Angeles traffic, she even found herself rocking out to whatever new pop song was playing on the radio. “I thought, there’s really something to this,” Bell says.
CBD quickly became a staple in the actress’s life, but she felt that its market, while expansive, still had a large gap that was in need of filling. “I contacted Lord Jones and just asked them if we could create a product together that demystifies CBD, that doesn’t play into the stoner trope or feel too clinical but that feels cheeky and a little more me, and at a price point that can be more accessible,” she explains. “I really wanted to allow people who had not used it before or who had not been exposed to it the accessibility, and in any of my entrepreneurial ventures, that’s always been the priority.”
Bell thought long and hard about what she would look like if she were in your vanity or medicine cabinet and last October, she delivered exactly that with the launch of Happy Dance. With just three products—a bath bomb, a body butter, and an all-purpose coconut melt—all under $30, the CBD line was highly anticipated as a playful addition to any bathroom routine but also as a helpful and affordable one. “These are really simple products that could fit into the lifestyle of anyone because I don’t think self-care needs to be difficult or eventized,” she says.
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Now, just five short months after its debut, Happy Dance is heading to select Ulta Beauty locations nationwide, a move that Bell believes will even further build on the brand’s accessibility. “Accessibility means two things: it means a price point that you can afford, but it also means availability on a shelf where you can purchase it at a store near you,” she notes. “So, the partnership with Ulta is what makes that dream a reality.”
The actress hopes Happy Dance’s rollout at the national retailer will also help shine a light on the brand’s charitable partner, Susan Burton’s New Way of Life Reentry Project, and aid communities that are disproportionally affected by marijuana-related offenses. “It was not lost on me that the BIPOC community has been adversely affected for marijuana-based crimes throughout history, and because CBD is pulled from the same strand of the hemp plant, we thought it was the perfect chance to donate one percent of profits back to this amazing organization,” Bell says. “And the Ulta launch is going to make this a brand that is sustainable for Miss Burton’s philanthropic endeavors.”
But even with the product line now available at more than 500 Ulta stores and on its website, Bell knows that CBD can still be a confusing space. So, to ensure that all Happy Dance customers can find their happy dances in the same way she has, the actress is answering some of the most common questions about CBD, clarifying the biggest misconceptions and sharing her own tips and tricks along the way.
Gabby Shacknai: What exactly is CBD?
Kristen Bell: CBD stands for cannabidiol, and that is a compound found naturally in hemp plants, but it’s one of over 100 active compounds in the plant. Unlike some of the other compounds, like THC, though, CBD is not intoxicating and will not get you high.
Shacknai: What does “full-spectrum CBD” mean?
Bell: All Happy Dance products feature CBD from full-spectrum hemp extract, and full-spectrum basically means that the extract features elements of the whole plant—like terpenes and rare cannabinoids—in it in addition to CBD. So, a full-spectrum hemp extract also can contain less than 0.3 percent THC, which is the legal limit of what will not get you high.
Shacknai: Is CBD safe?
Bell: The CBD category is really saturated, and it’s really tough to understand what to trust when you’re buying a CBD product. But the whole reason I partnered with the Lord Jones team is because they were a pioneer in the space and have some of the most trusted CBD products available. There are a few things I would say are important to look for when buying a CBD product. You have to make sure that what you’re buying says CBD or cannabidiol on the packaging as opposed to hemp-seed oil or cannabis sativa seed oil because there’s no CBD in the seed of the plant. There are select products—ours are among them—that have a COA, which is a certificate of analysis and is incredibly important for transparency in my opinion. You can basically enter the COA number from our bottle on our website, and it will bring up the certificate to ensure that the product contains the amount of CBD advertised. It’s also important to make sure the product has undergone third-party testing for heavy metals, pesticides, microbiological contaminants, and residual solvents—that’s all really important when you’re pulling something from a plant and putting it into a lotion. I’d also say it’s a good idea to shop from brands who are exclusively in the CBD space and truly understand the landscape because it’s changing at the speed of light, and it’s a higher likelihood that they’ll actually understand it.
Shacknai: What benefits can CBD offer?
Bell: It provides a calm sense of wellbeing, and it calms and soothes when you need it most. For me, after a long stressful day, there is nothing like taking a bath with our CBD bath bomb. I also keep the coconut oil in my purse and use it throughout the day on my temples, on my cuticles, to take my makeup off at night. It’s hard to explain, but CBD really does let turn down the volume of my life, especially when I’m in ‘mom’ mode.
Shacknai: How often should people use CBD?
Bell: I would encourage people to try it out for themselves. The only person who’s going to know how and when to use them is you. I use them multiple times a day, and if you’re nervous about it, you can check the amount that’s in the bottle and look up the COA on our website and decide for yourself. You can start with one application and see how you like it, but there’s no exact prescription for every person.
Shacknai: Do you use CBD as a holistic tool or something that you reach for only when you need it?
Bell: I use it everyday. I use it everyday because the three products we’ve created are so seamless with my routine. The body lotion is so soothing, the coconut oil has so many purposes, and the bath bomb is the only one I don’t use every single day—I wish! But I keep them on at all times because I really love the formulation, and having been involved in creating it allowed me to test it to figure out what worked. So, I was a creator here but also a consumer, and when we started the company, the only test subject I had was myself. I trusted my gut and thought other people would love it, and I hope that as we grow, we can listen to our customers and hear what they want and need.