My Story – Kavanaskincare

My Story

Hi I'm Maya, the founder of Kavana. 

As someone who suffered from a laundry list of severe PMS symptoms that impacted my personal and professional life- I'm talking 3- day migraines, cramps, insomnia, exhaustion, weepiness, irritability and depleting depression. I sought relief everywhere and couldn't find it.

Reliant on conventional pharmaceuticals to help with my PMS cramps and headaches for the duration of my teens, I began to look to holistic approaches in my 20’s, as my PMS mood swings worsened.

Yoga, meditation, pilates, acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurveda, naturopathic herbs and teas, massage, aromatherapy, heck, I even changed my diet to become a vegetarian! You name it, I probably tried it!

While all these efforts helped, I realized that my job as a beautician in luxury department stores, did not.  

In my 20’s, as a skincare specialist and professional makeup artist, I was constantly exposed to toxins in my work environment, especially fragrance. These toxins were packaged in beautiful bottles and jars with luxurious names on them, who would have suspected? The American FDA has  only banned a dozen toxic chemicals, while Canada, Japan and the EU, have banned hundreds.

Products from the US are largely ubiquitous though, and I became so sensitive to scent, that I could easily distinguish perfumes with my eyes closed, even though I was still blind to what was actually in them.

The ingredients in perfumes are rarely disclosed, as by law, they are considered trade secrets. Since perfume is in everything from toothpaste to shampoo to dish soap and deodorant, I thought learning about this mysterious ingredient that surrounded me, could shed light on why it bothered me so much. 

Learning about 'fragrance' and it's hormone disrupting effects, opened up the door to studying how women's hormones are impacted by toxins and how these contribute to the severity of PMS symptoms.

Women are disproportionately affected by and suffer from this toxic burden, because of our increased exposure to toxins in personal care, fragrance/parfum, skincare and cosmetic products, as well as drugs, food, drink and more. The planet, unsurprisingly, also suffers from these toxins, in astounding ways that echo women's suffering, and vice versa.

After 20 years working as a skincare specialist and makeup artist for luxury beauty brands in high end department stores, and about 17 years of research and development, I decided to focus my efforts on creating non-toxic products as effective and luxurious as the ones I had gotten used to in stores and spreading the word about toxins and clean beauty options.

I was one of the first handful of eco-beauty pro makeup artists in Canada in 2005, when I began this switch over and it delights me to no end, to now be able to share my own, handmade, non-toxic, hormone safe, plant powered formulations with you! 

My purpose in putting eco-friendly, intentional beauty out there, along and my weekly Instagram segment 'Question Peri.d', is to share my story and hopefully help other girls and women feel empowered when it comes to hormone health, reproductive health and beauty.

Thank you for joining me on this self-care journey!

With gratitude and Kavana,