Devils Club & Coast Salish Traditions in Beauty
GBC: You are reuniting the indigenous community & settler guests of turtle island with the healing powers and teachings of plant medicine. Why is it important to keep these teachings and traditions alive and known today.
A: Every single human being on earth comes from plants & traditional herbal remedies. I chose to make my career about reconnecting the indigenous community with traditions once practiced before colonization but also connecting settlers with local plants so that they could learn to respect our ancestral ways & current abundance.
GBC: Can you tell us about the healing properties of Devil’s Club and why you use it.
A: Devils club is an incredible plant medicine for many reasons. It was a gift from the creator to the northwest coastal tribes to help heal pain and trauma. Historically we used it for nearly everything. Presently, we are using the plant extract in topical oils to remedy arthritis, inflammation, pain, sore muscles, neuropathy, and much more.
GBC: What has been your biggest lesson working with plant medicine?
A: My biggest lesson in working with plant medicines is that I have to share the importance of their preservation & sacred value. Once people get connected with local plants and their uses, they are more likely to stand up against deforestation and over-harvesting.
GBC: Tell us about the impact your plant medicine has on elders with arthritis and diabetes.
A: Devils Club and other local plants like nettles have been great for helping my elders and elderly non-indigenous community to live their lives with less pain. Since indigenous people have suffered genocide and cultural disconnect, having elders share their stories in a healthier state of helping our future generations connect, heal the historical traumas, & lead more traditional lives.
GBC: What is one beauty ritual you cannot go a day without?
A: The one beauty ritual I cannot live without is affirming myself that I am blessed. No amount of makeup, skincare products, or adornments can ever make me more sacred than I already am in the form that I was given naturally. I have spent most of my life believing that I need something to make me more beautiful but now i realize that confidence and pride in my ancestral DNA allow me to radiate true beauty every day.
*all images sourced from the @quwutsunmade instagram page. I do not own, nor did I take any of these photos.