GET TO KNOW THE BRAND: Gaia Smiles
Founder: Maddie Devlin
Maddie, a registered holistic nutritionist, founded Gaia Smiles in an effort to give the oral microbiome the attention it deserves. As a digestive organ home to billions of microscopic bacteria and yeast, the mouth has a powerful impact on overall health. Gaia Smiles aims to support that health. They craft wholesome products designed to brighten your smile and freshen your breath while sustaining your mouth’s ideal ecosystem. Gaia Smiles is based out of beautiful Okanagan Valley, Kelowna, B.C.
Gaia Smiles was founded because:
As a holistic nutritionist, the first thing I learned is that the most essential and effective way to improve digestion is to CHEW. Imagine my horror when it was next-to-impossible to get a list of ingredients for the products going into my mouth at the dentist. Years of studying the digestive system made it impossible to ignore the role of the oral microbiome in digestion and overall health - and yet no one was talking about how to take care of that asset! I became obsessed with protecting and caring for my most precious digestive asset.
My dentist experience reflects a passive cultural attitude about oral care: we outsource, just like when we take our car to the mechanic. Gaia Smiles is an expression of my love for mouths, but also an attempt to introduce a more holistic approach to oral care in general - one that creates a more engaged relationship with our mouths. I dream of a culture that puts as much thought and care into oral hygiene as it does skincare!
What are you most passionate about?
Reviving daily oral care rituals. When was the last time you checked in with your mouth?
What it means to be a woman in business in 2021
My experience of being a woman in business in 2021 has been - in a word - incredible. A mentor of mine recently said “Women are born with a phone in their hands”, This past year showed me how much of an asset that really is. Working virtually leveled the playing field. I talk with my copy editor (who moonlights as a lifetime best friend) in Austin, Texas as often as I connect with my retail partners down the block. This elimination of perceived distance has let us connect and learn from other brands and wise women globally as well as offer support and advice in exchange. I haven’t gone through a single step of this journey alone, and no woman should have to. Just pick up the phone.
Shhh, don’t tell the men in business.
What celebrity, brand or cause would you collaborate with and why?
I’m crazy inspired by Routine - you know, the deodorant cream that makes you feel like a mega badass. They gave the cold shoulder to the traditional stick deodorant and let their creative freak-flag fly in every product they produce. When I started making tooth powders way back in 2017, a non-foaming mouth cleansing product didn’t seem like a winning idea. Watching Routine grow and disrupt the status quo around deodorant gave me confidence to keep doing my thing.
Hey Routine! Give us a shout, let's collab!
1. Where do you want to go when travel is back up:
Skiing in Japan!
2. Cottage life or Island escape
Island. Long island iced tea escapes will have to do for now.
3. Coffee or Tea
4. Favorite Cuisine or Dish:
Any food cooked by other people. It just tastes better that way.