Maia Botanicals is owned and operated exclusively by Dr. Lea Wester. After completing her extensive medical training at Bastyr University and becoming a licensed naturopathic physician in the state of California, she found herself drawn to environmental medicine, which is the study and treatment of individuals exposed to chemicals and toxins found in their home, community, and workplace. This was both a rewarding and frustrating venture, because she loved creating a healthier environment for herself and her patients, but she also found it difficult to find truly natural alternatives to many of the daily toxic norms.
This was especially obvious in the beauty product industry. There is so much false and misleading marketing and branding with personal care products that consumers aren’t even aware of the fact that they are exposing themselves to many harmful substances on a daily basis. Even with the knowledge of what to avoid, it can be very difficult finding products that are truly natural.
While searching for products she could trust herself, Dr. Wester discovered how limited the options were. She would find brands that use many organic ingredients in hopes of distracting consumers from the toxic emulsifiers or preservatives. And, if she found a company that actually uses organic ingredients and natural emulsifiers and preservatives, then they still contained synthetic fragrances. If by some miracle she came across a product that had all of the right ingredients, it was often either way too expensive, or the skin feel wasn’t what she was looking for.
As a result of her own frustrations in finding the perfect skincare products, Dr. Wester realized that if you really want it done right, then sometimes you just have to do it yourself. She has always possessed a strong passion for botanical medicine, so being able to combine this with her creative nature and love for working with her hands, meant starting her own all-natural skincare line just made sense.
Combining Naturopathic Medicine & Skincare
In addition to her passion for botanical medicine, she also has an equally strong passion for gut health and the study of the microbiome. This gives her a unique perspective on skincare, because she has spent years studying the connection between gut health and skin health. Since 80% of the immune system is contained within the gut, digestive health is the single most important aspect of a healthy immune system. And if the gut is not happy and healthy, one of the first signs of this is the manifestation of various skin issues (acne, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea, etc.).
With naturopathic medicine, it is important to care for the whole person both inside and out. With that in mind, it is Dr. Wester’s belief that what you put on your body is just as important as what you put in your body. This means that skincare should be so pure and clean that it is basically edible. This is why all of her products are 100% plant-based and formulated with natural ingredients and a little bit of love.
Meaning Behind The Name & Logo
Dr. Wester was drawn to holistic medicine after being raised by a mother who was very passionate about the topic herself. As a result, she grew up spending most of her time in nature, and playing with various plants and animals. She lived a healthy lifestyle designed around the belief that the body has an innate ability to heal itself, and that there is extensive medicinal wisdom contained within mother nature.
The bond that Dr. Wester shared with her mother was very rare and meaningful, and some of the happiest times of her life were the 16 years she spent with her mom prior to her passing away from breast cancer. Without the unconditional love and nurturing she experienced from her mother, she would have never become the woman she is today. It is because of this ever present cosmic connection with her that Dr. Wester found it important to dedicate her business to her memory and teachings in some way.
So the name "Maia" was chosen because it means mother in Greek. Dr. Wester's Greek heritage comes from her mom's side of the family. In addition to this, the symbol logo is a joining of 2 symbols, one that translates to "mother" or "woman", and the other that means "earth". So the symbol portion of the logo basically means "mother earth".