Is Your Cannabis Brand “Green-Washed”?

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Christopher Eichenauer
Executive Content Developer at Cannacular

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Is Your Cannabis Brand “Green-Washed”?

Break Free from the Tired Cultural Clichés of the Cannabis Brand

We have a term for cannabis brands who lean on the color green and the cultural cache that comes with it – we call it “green-washing.” Coined to describe the practice of cannabis brands overusing the color green in their marketing schemes, green-washing has become a prevalent issue that hampers the creativity and authenticity of many brands in the industry. At first, a clever turn of phrase, the attachment to the color green, has sent countless cannabis brands to the graveyard.

The Problem with “Green-Washed” Cannabis Brands

While the color green has long been associated with cannabis, its excessive usage in branding can be problematic. By relying solely on the color green, these brands miss out on the opportunity to tell a captivating story, evoke emotions, or create a memorable brand experience. In a sea of monotonous green, it becomes incredibly challenging for consumers to differentiate one brand from another – leading to a lack of brand loyalty and diminished market share.

Furthermore, this over-reliance on the color green exacerbates an industry-wide issue of oversaturation. With more cannabis brands entering the market than ever before, standing out has become increasingly difficult. To truly succeed in this competitive landscape, brands must break free from the constraints of traditional branding strategies and embrace a more thoughtful and differentiated approach.

So why do so many cannabis brands fall into the trap of green-washing? One reason is the pressure to conform to established norms and clichés within the industry. The desire to be recognized as a “cannabis brand” often leads companies to mimic what their competitors do–perpetuating the greenwashing cycle. Breaking away from these norms requires courage and creativity, but it is essential for brands that want to make a lasting impact.

Design Tips: Moving Beyond Green-Washing

To combat green-washing, cannabis brands must invest time and effort in developing unique visual identities that go beyond the color green. By embracing innovative design elements, creative typography, and strategic use of color, brands can differentiate themselves and establish a solid and authentic presence in the market.

Here are a few design tips for cannabis brands:

1. Explore alternative color schemes

While the color green may be a natural choice for a cannabis brand, it is essential to consider other colors to create a unique and visually striking identity. Look for inspiration from the specific elements of your cannabis products, such as strain types or flavors, and incorporate those into your color choices.

2. Invest in custom typography

Unique and creative typography can set your brand apart from the competition. Consider hiring a skilled typographer or paying for a custom font to make your brand truly distinctive.

3. Develop a compelling brand story

A strong brand narrative can help differentiate your brand from competitors and engage consumers deeply. Ensure your branding captures the essence of your company’s mission, values, and unique selling points.

4. Embrace simplicity

The most impactful designs are often the simplest. Avoid cluttered layouts and excessive imagery use; instead, focus on creating a clean design that allows your branding elements to shine.

5. Consider sustainable packaging

Show your commitment to sustainability and environmental responsibility by using eco-friendly materials and packaging solutions. This is great for the planet and sends a powerful message to your customers that your brand cares about the environment.


In conclusion, the concept of green-washing in cannabis branding highlights the need for brands to move away from tired clichés and embrace more thoughtful and creative approaches. By exploring alternative color schemes, investing in custom typography, and developing a compelling brand story, cannabis brands can break away from “green-washing” and create memorable customer experiences. Furthermore, embracing sustainability through eco-friendly packaging effectively communicates your commitment to environmental responsibility – helping your brand stand out in the ever-crowded cannabis industry.

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