This story originally appeared on Benzinga
A new study, published in April in the international journal Crime, Media, Culture by researchers from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, showed that “cannabis influencers on Instagram are changing the stereotypical characteristics of illegal cannabis culture as being almost entirely dominated by men, to one where cannabis is represented as a desirable accessory in certain feminine lifestyles,” reported Forbes.
According to the study, “From dealing with influencing: Online marketing of cannabis on Instagram,” the way cannabis is marketized on social media platforms like Instagram is changing with the advance of marijuana legalization.
Due to social media platform restrictions on paid advertisements for cannabis products and services, cannabis influencers operate in a legal gray area as they are allowed to promote their personal use and cannabis recommendations without offering direct sales.
“Influencers’ role in transforming cannabis culture to become more mainstream and acceptable for women could potentially affect cannabis cultures globally, as well as ongoing legalization debates”, the study reads.
Leaning more feminine
The researchers noted that female cannabis influencers actively enjoy “getting stoned” and consciously recommend it to other women without losing the traditional feminine way of representing themselves.
Cannabis influencers who associate cannabis marketing with healthy lifestyle habits such as meditating, going for a walk, or eating with friends would be generating an impact on social platforms that would change the paradigm of the illegal cannabis market.
This trend could indicate the transformation of an illegal subculture of cannabis use into a mainstream activity, in contrast, to dealers who don’t reveal their identity.