Blaire Edwards is a product developer, formulator, Educator & Western Herbalist. She formulates for both entrepreneurial and well-established commercial food, beverage and supplement companies, as well as works with individual clients in her private practice. Her passion is the intersection of plants and human experience, how we can use plants for harm reduction and how we can work with the plants to create a more regenerative world.
Blaire’s medicine cabinet staples.
Herbally, I stock about 100 herbs in my home, if not more. Supplement wise, I always take fish oils, vitamin D and a 30:1 CBD for my lower back. I'm also a huge fan of lypo spheric vitamin C since air pollution depletes vitamin C levels and I live in Los Angeles.
Her thoughts on the differences between eastern and western medicine.
I don't think it's as much about balancing "east" vs "west" (as there is no homogenous east or homogenous west culture in my opinion, and certainly no homogeneous east or west medicine) as much as it is asking yourself "what does my body need right now?" If you are bitten by a tick, please go get an antibiotic. If you are going through a particularly stressful time, let's talk about nervines and adaptogens.
The herbs she uses in her personal practice as an LA resident.
I practice with over 100 different herbs! But I do have some favorites, though they change often. I've been dealing with all the smoke from the LA fires so I'm currently enjoying a tea with licorice, cinnamon, mullein, chamomile and goji powder. I'm also obsessed with an infused oil I made from Black Sage that I was gifted from my friends garden in Downey. It's outrageous—so potent, so magical.
What being an herbalist means to Blaire.
I could write a book.. but in short, being an herbalist means using plants as a means of harm reduction and prevention. It also means accepting, realizing and learning to act as if the world is made up of more than the dominant culture and its desires.
Her herbal DIYs for when you’re feeling a little off.
It depends on the symptoms and the energetics of those symptoms. There are different herbs indicated for hot/dry conditions vs cold/damp conditions. It's so important to pay attention to your body (and your environment).
The weirdest thing she does when she’s sick.
Want to work out! Usually contraindicated, but I have some belief that I can "sweat it out" when in reality I just need rest!
The herb she can’t live without.
I cannot just pick one! I am a go-go-go person though— so I would say I lean on sedative and nervous system tonics more than anything else. Ashwagandha, oats and lemon balm are all good friends. I also take Kava at night with a mixture of other sedating herbs to knock me out and turn my brain off.
What’s inspiring Blaire right now.
Oh man—a lot! First, the work of Adrienne Maree Brown! If you haven't read Emergent Strategy or Pleasure Activism, I cannot recommend those works enough! I'm also really inspired by the people around me who are doing the deep work of undoing familial trauma & patterns, who are overcoming things they've dealt with for decades plus, and who are becoming more compassionate, honest people in the process. I'm constantly amazed at how resilient people are!
This interview has been edited and condensed.
This information is for educational purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. Please consult a physician before treating any disorder.