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 growing up, including 3- day headaches, cramps, insomnia, exhaustion, weepiness, irritability and depleting depression, I sought relief everywhere.
Reliant on conventional pharmaceuticals for the duration of my teens, I began to look to holistic approaches in my 20’s, as my PMS got worse. I tried yoga, meditation, pilates, acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurveda and naturopathic herbs and teas, massage and aromatherapy and even changed my diet to become a vegetarian. You name it, I probably tried it. While all these changes 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 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 they are considered trade secrets. Since perfume is in everything from toothpaste to shampoo to dish soap and deodorant, I thought learning about this ingredient that surrounded me, might shed light on my PMS and help me understand how to control my hormones.
As my symptoms persisted and even got worse, I began my research, looking at the ingredients lists on the conventional personal care products and cosmetics I sold in store, to learn what they were and see if they were having a possible effect on my health. As my journey evolved, I learned about the lists (and lists..) of toxins in the products I was inhaling and applying every day and the horrific effects on women and the environment.
As I learned about toxins and their harmful and terrifying effects on hormones and reproductive system, I dove into learning about hormones. I was curious how synthetic scent interacted with hormones and about how scent affects mood and the brain. I continued down the rabbit hole, enrolling for my aromatherapy certification, studying scent and plants and herbs, buying all the essential oils I could afford, to practice fragrance formulating and make safe, non-toxic skincare and self-care products.
After 20 years in the luxury beauty industry, and about 17 years of research and development, I decided to quit working in department stores and set out to create non-toxic products as effective and luxurious as the ones I had gotten used to in stores, but safer and supportive of my PMS symptoms. Selfishly, this was for my own health, though I do care deeply about the health of others and wanted to share the safer, self-care alternatives I had discovered and created. So with Kavana, I bring you what I learned and hope it helps you live in harmony with your hormones, with nature inside and outside of you.