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Brands We Love: Leilo

By Danielle Maddi
Posted: September 21, 2021

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The alternative beverage world is teeming with products that replicate the experience of drinking alcohol with flavors and unique ingredients, and deleting the hangover. A new and totally unique member of this growing movement is Leilo, which uses kava, a root found in Fiji, to produce a relaxing effect. At the end of the day when a glass of wine or a cocktail is calling, Leilo offers another option to help you unwind.

I’ve personally been drinking kava since 2019 when my brother decided to stop drinking alcohol for a while. Alcohol can be exciting and fun, leading to increased relaxation and socializing, but too much can turn a relaxing night into a haze the next morning.

Kava is relaxing almost immediately and also tends to increase socializing, but it's nearly impossible to have a negative experience on kava, because it has built-in barriers. You quickly find your happy place with kava and stick with that for maximum effect.  

I've become a big kava fan and even make my own drinks a couple times per week at home. For me it's typically an evening wind-down beverage, but others use it like caffeine in the morning. Whatever works for you.

When we found Leilo I ordered a case immediately. They're awesome! These folks have crafted a drink that introduces you to kava in the perfect quantity for the euphoric and relaxing effect, and the flavors are amazing. Having Leilos in my fridge alongside regular beer and non-alcoholic beer creates balance in my options to satisfy that ritual of unwinding at the end of the day. I'm a big fan and genuinely happy that we get to partner with such a great company.

Here’s what Sol, founder of Leilo, has to say about his unique kava-based beverage:

What is kava and its effects and benefits?

Kava is a root native to the South Pacific that has been used for thousands of years for its special properties. In Fiji, Samoa, Hawaii, and other island nations, kava is deeply interwoven into both their history and contemporary culture. Kava’s biggest benefit is as a relaxation aid. Kavalactones, the key compounds within the kava root, are widely celebrated for their ability to reduce daily stressors and facilitate a calm mind. After centuries, the West is finally starting to recognize kava’s potential—the ingredient is growing rapidly in the U.S with over 250 kava bars now operational. With more and more people experiencing kava’s tried-and-true effects for themselves and gravitating towards the ingredient, we’re confident this is only the beginning for Leilo and the industry as a whole. 

What do you do to relax?

Besides drinking lots of Leilo, my favorite way to relax is watching football on Sunday with my buddies or reading a good book out in nature. 

More generally, I’ve come to learn that “relaxation” is largely influenced by the mindset you operate within. Over the last couple years since I started the company, I’ve definitely had less free time, but find myself feeling more relaxed on a daily basis. I think once you break through the societal expectation to party all the time, drink alcohol, be super active on social media, etc -- you can really focus on what you love doing, and relaxation comes more naturally. 

How does mindfulness show up in your life?

I try to be mindful about everything I do in life, but I am especially conscious about what I put in my body as that’s what is powering me on a day to day basis. Years ago, I found myself developing the bad habit of “rewarding” myself after a long day of work with substances which only compounded my stress. 

So as I started the company, it was essential to keep our products clean and simple. We carefully craft Leilo to produce a calming effect, each and every time, and there’s no alcohol or other questionable fillers included. We're backed up by clinical ingredient studies, thousands of years of firsthand evidence from the South Pacific, and a legion of Leilo fans who swear by our products' effects.

Perhaps even more importantly, our blend is gluten-free, non-GMO, all-natural, and we trace our kava all the way back to the growers we work with in Vanuatu. In our view, relaxation isn’t truly achievable if you’re concerned with what you’re putting into your body; we make products that help consumers feel good, but also that consumers can feel good about drinking in the first place.

What do you love most about what you do?

We are making a real impact every day. Whether it’s someone who’s sober-curious and using Leilo to relax without the sacrifice, a high productivity individual who lets loose after a long day, or someone going through a tough time in need of some natural relief, we are able to help make a tangible difference in our consumers’ lives. Having a real purpose--to de-stress a stressed out world--is a constant motivator for myself and my team and one that makes the work we do extremely rewarding.  

Learn more about Leilo

Visit https://www.leilo.com/ to learn more about Leilo’s line of kava-based drinks 

We don’t make money from our partnership with Leilo. They’re a brand that we honestly love and want to connect our members and fans with ❤️.

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Danielle Maddi

Partnerships and Marketing Manager at Sunnyside

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