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Meet Tracey Marshall of Stay Zen CBD in South Mountain Park

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tracey Marshall.

Tracey, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
My interests are wide-ranging and it has been hard for me to pin myself down and really concentrate on any one thing. I started with interior design (residential, then commercial, then yachts [yes!]). I tried my hand at painting & mixed media and had some small success. Introduced to fused glass, I started a glass jewelry business that did quite well but didn’t quite fit the niche I was looking for. Then someone suggested I make them hand cream “because [I’m] crafty”. Body care! I loved the idea of using organic, non-GMO, locally sourced or free trade ingredients and creating products to help people look and feel good.

The creative side of me gets to mix scents and to perfect recipes to come up with the best possible products. The business side of me loves working with pricing spreadsheets, websites, and social media. The best of both worlds – analytical and creative, self-fulfilling and also community oriented. I now sell across Arizona and in multiple States, am a fixture at several local vendor markets and am breaking into a few stores as well. You can find a wide range of my products at the Downtown Mesa Festival of the Arts Emporium… in downtown Mesa (go figure).

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
There have been challenges. Or more exactly, a learning curve. Batches of lip balm that would not set up. My entire stock of lotion bars melted and leaking after being left in the car in the summer. Scents that were overpowering or just plain stinky. How to keep products at the right temperature. How to rejigger an existing recipe to make it perfect for the product I want to produce. A lot of trial and error. A lot of insight from friends, family, suppliers, and co-vendors. Today I am proud of the company I have built, Bad Horse LLC, and my two product lines Esprit Joyeux Aromatherapy and Stay Zen CBD. Who knows what interesting new adventure tomorrow will bring?

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Stay Zen CBD – what should we know?
What started with one unscented hand lotion, turned into 18 scented lotion bars, four face creams, face toner, eye gel, perfumes, ointments, and chakra attuned essential oils. Heaven. My products are all made with the best ingredients and a healthy dash of love. I buy local South Mountain beeswax and free trade Shea butter from Ghana. My ingredients are non-GMO, organic, and cruelty-free. I cannot conscientiously create a product that is not well-sourced and holistic. My products have good karma.

The other side of my business is CBD. I loved the results of taking CBD myself, but realized it was hard to find a reliable, and trustworthy, local vendor to buy it from. After a lot of research, I obtained the proper licensing, set up a home lab in an extra room, and started buying the powdered isolate in bulk (also from a small local business). I now have five flavors and multiple strengths of CBD tinctures, and I also have dog treats, lotion bars, keto friendly chocolate, and face products. CBD has been a wonderful addition to my already booming body care products.

I am constantly looking at new products that can be introduced in my body care and CBD lines – but only if they can be ethically sourced, and especially if I can help support another small business along the way. Going into body care and CBD has opened so many doors and introduced me to so many other great local vendors. Being able to source locally has allowed me to have “holistic” prices – good self-care should not wound your soul with the pricing.

What is your favorite childhood memory?
I was an entrepreneur even as a teenager. Back in the cold Ohio winters I would buy air-activated handwarmers at wholesale and resell them in the stands during high school football games. I was always looking for a niche….


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Eye of Delta Photography

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