Shine founder, Dave Brown celebrates the Golden Age of cannabis.
The rise of the Golden Age of legalized cannabis has brought forth innovative products for every style and taste. As part of the hemp renaissance, Shine is boss, elevating the luxury cannabis market with its 24K gold rolling papers. Heads Lifestyle rolled a 24K gold blunt with Shine founder Dave Brown who shared his impressions of owning the luxury smoking experience.
Heads Lifestyle: A lot of great cannabis-related products have been conceived during late-night smoke sessions. In 2013, when you got your start, could you have imagined your 24K gold rolling papers taking off the way they have?
Dave Brown: We were excited about the product and knew that people’s responses when they saw it in person were always very strong. But, when we started posting on social media, the feedback was immediate and overwhelming. There was no doubt that we had a hit on our hands at that point, as the viral nature of the product was self-evident. We always knew we could succeed as a celebratory item, but we definitely were surprised by how many people began choosing Shine as their everyday paper of choice.
We always knew we could succeed as a celebratory item, but we definitely were surprised by how many people began choosing Shine as their everyday paper of choice.
HL: You were inspired by the glam of luxury cigars. Do you believe your 24K gold rolling papers are elevating cannabis to the level of fine spirits and cigars?
DB: I don’t think there’s any doubt that we’ve elevated cannabis accessories to the level of fine spirits and cigars. Setting multiple-use items aside such as glass or vaporizers, Shine created the luxury smoking experience and owns it fully; no one really comes close. I think a clear signal of this is how much mainstream press coverage Shine receives, which I believe is because we hit at the intersection of cannabis and luxury. Forbes, GQ, Goop, Esquire, Rolling Stone, Vice, Vogue, and Elle are just a few of the outlets that had to find a singular item to share with their mainstream audience about what’s happening in cannabis now and Shine is always the go-to product for that.
Shine's 24K gold rolling papers
HL: Do you feel that by creating a new lux category of cannabis products—one associated with sophistication and refinement—you are doing your part to break down the longstanding stigma surrounding cannabis?
DB: I absolutely believe we are doing our part to break down the stigma surrounding cannabis. Ignorance leads to fear and allows people to create false narratives in their minds with regards to what cannabis is about and who uses it. It’s not just the kid with baggy pants and a backwards cap that doesn’t feel relatable to other segments of America. When a product like Shine is featured on mainstream platforms, the refinement of the product is a clear signal that we’re entering a new era of cannabis consumption and knowledge about the plant. The novelty and visual appeal of the product also excites people, who may not otherwise be interested in trying cannabis. But lots of people are open to being fancy with their friends.
The novelty and visual appeal of the product also excites people, who may not otherwise be interested in trying cannabis. But lots of people are open to being fancy with their friends.
HL: Tell us about the gold. Where is it sourced? And what about the gold ashes? Has anyone come up with an idea on how to re-purpose them?
DB: The gold is sourced overseas and six different countries make up our supply chain. We’ve seen many people save their gold ashes as a badge that says they’re part of the Goldgang, but no one has re-purposed them beyond that. It’s still ash. There’s only a very thin layer of gold on each paper.
Shine founder Dave Brown
HL: Your Shine Days have really gotten a lot of attention from your followers. Can you tell us about how you came up with the idea and why you wanted to give back to your supporters?
DB: We wanted to own a day like Amazon does with Prime Day. Basically a unique day where there’s not a lot of competition for eyeballs and dollars like other traditional shopping holidays such as 420 or Black Friday. A day where whatever we do can be the top news story of that day in our ecosystem. We decided on February 4th (2/4 for 24K), and created a national scavenger hunt for our goods that our fans love. We receive tons of messages every year from people who didn’t win the hunt but had a great time playing. From our perspective, the engagement and activity it generates makes it the most successful marketing initiative we’ve done, and 2020 will be our 5th anniversary of Shine Day so it’s going to be MASSIVE.
HL: Shine’s 24K gold products are unequalled for rolling out the green carpet for special sessions and celebrations. What do you think is the perfect occasion for turning up the Shine?
DB: We always used to say, people don’t sit at home on the couch by themselves and smoke Shine. Our point was this is a social and celebratory product. So anything from a night out with friends, to a birthday or wedding, and even a few funerals that we’ve shipped product for, these are the times when you should be using Shine. Occasions when you want to connect with the people you care about.
HL: You partnered with NORML to help raise funds with the sale of your 420 packs. As a member of the cannabis community do you feel a responsibility towards supporting ongoing legalization?
DB: Yes, we feel a responsibility to support ongoing legalization. We feel like everyone in the industry has an obligation to do that, even if it’s not with dollars. There are many ways to support from volunteering to even just being a great example of the positive effects cannabis can have on a community. We can all do our part to move that forward.
There are many ways to support from volunteering to even just being a great example of the positive effects cannabis can have on a community. We can all do our part to move that forward.
HL: Your 24K gold rolling papers have sparked a lot of creativity when it comes to custom novelty blunts. Do you feel your unique products appeal to stoners’ inventiveness?
DB: We didn’t invent creative rolling; we just made it way more interesting and allowed these amazing rollers’ creativity to flourish. A great painter needs a wide palette of paints to choose from, and what’s better than gold when you want to make something noteworthy with a creative roll? We have a ton of fun interacting with the rollers and watching the amazing things they can make with Shine. We take a lot of pride in it.
HL: The gold in Shine Papers gets all the attention, but they’re also made of hemp, the cornerstone of the culture. Can you tell us more about that?
DB: It took us awhile to find a paper we really loved. When we first launched Shine, people would sometimes complain about the taste, and the paper had more of a crinkled texture. What was interesting is that when we found a new hemp blend paper, the texture of the paper became super smooth, and the taste became incredibly clean. So the gold attracts people to the product, but the hemp blend paper keeps them with us because the actual smoking experience is far superior to other papers.
HL: What’s next on the horizon for Shine?
DB: We have a ton on our horizon. We’ve launched Shine Cannabis in California. We just launched Shine 24K Gold Vodka. On the smokables side, we’ve launched our hemp blend paper as a stand-alone product called Blaze by Shine. And, we’ve re-launched Pure Leaf, which is our natural leaf blunt wrap, with brand new packaging and a reduced price-point so that people can afford to use it everyday.
Read our product review of Shine 24K gold rolling papers here
Heads Lifestyle featured Shine 24K gold rolling papers in Highly Curated 2018 Holiday Gift Guide
Check out Shine at: shinerollingpapers.com
And follow them on Instagram at: @shinepapers