Waking Bird is a holistic, artisanal body care line, handcrafted in Portugal.
Micro-batched in Sintra, our fresh, botanical formulas are created with a deep focus on the healing attributes of curative herbs and wildflowers. Our recipes are made to radiate beauty, protect our skin and nurture our bodies.
Rooted in the philosophy of holism, Waking Bird aspires to catalyze healing by encouraging loving self-care and a closer connection with nature and our own being.
Waking Bird was founded by Jennifer Caravella, who's unique background in the healing arts led her to create alternatives to mainstream products that cause harm to our health and our planet.
It is our mission to work in harmony with the rhythms of nature while showing great consideration for the earth and all forms of life.
As a child I was immersed in the healing arts and natural world. My mother was an herbalist and massage therapist. Foraging for wild berries and edible flowers in the California redwood forest was part of our daily life.
Instead of prescription medication, I was given homemade herbal powders and bitter tinctures to soothe just about any ailment. She taught me that the true cure lies in understanding the root cause of an illness, not merely masking a symptom.
I believe that dis-ease is a reflection of disharmony, which cannot be mended with a bandaid or numbed away.
My mother's influence began to tangibly illustrate itself in my life while I was in my 20's. I was studying kung fu in LA and found myself very drawn to the healing side of the art, which led to a passionate exploration of qigong and Chinese herbalism.
As part of our traditional practice, it was required that we apply a liquid herbal concoction called "dit da jow" ( translated as "heal the injury liniment") to our joints before training. These liniments have been used by Chinese martial artists for centuries for injuries and prevention of arthritis, which can be caused by decades of intense and repetitive physical activity.
The highly effective results from using dit da jow left a lasting impression on me. I found through both my own experience and observing those around me, that these herbs genuinely healed the body and relieved pain, instead of just masking it.
My love for kung fu led me to become a qigong teacher, which included Chinese herbalism. During this time, I was asked by my sifu to invent a dit da jow salve with an herbal blend that was unique to our 500 year old kung fu system. This was to serve as an alternative for students who had skin allergies to the alcohol-based liniments.
I worked to develop this recipe for over a year. I added certain essential oils for their analgesic properties, finally coming up with the first version of what is now known as Waking Bird Healing Balm.
Our students reported back with great results for pain relief and injury recovery, and the Healing Balm became a well known "must have" at the studio.
I began to seek different solutions for my own well being. I had been afflicted with severe eczema and allergies since I was a baby. I managed to curb it for the most part with a clean diet and active lifestyle, but skincare products always posed a risk - even many of the natural options.
Knowing that anything you put on your skin is absorbed into the bloodstream, I began making my own products with organic oils and edible botanicals.
I went on a journey all around the world and began using local ingredients to formulate herbal remedies and body care products that were unique to each region. I remained in good health even when exposed to foreign viruses, and my skin was glowing. Over the span of a decade it has hardly shown any signs of aging, which I attribute to these plant-based cosmetics, alongside whole body care.
I was also concerned with the beauty industry's way of doing things in terms of animal cruelty and the use of harmful chemicals. Nor did I support their damaging marketing messages that erode one's self-esteem. There was nothing beautiful about it.
I made a choice to put my knowledge to use, and set out to create healthier alternatives for our bodies and the planet.
After landing in Portugal, and inspired by the local botanicals, I created my first line of body care products and created a different kind of company. One who's mission is to kindle healing by aligning with nature, our own bodies and all expressions of beauty.