Seilich.  What does it mean?

Seilich. What does it mean?

This has got to be one of the most commonly asked questions when we go to markets and events.  And the short answer is that it’s the Gaelic word for Willow, and Willow is my little girls name, however there's a much longer story behind it too!  

Seilich: Willow's skincare company

We started our business when she was born, it made sense to name the company after her, however an existing Willow skincare brand meant we had to be a little more creative with the name, and being a Scottish skincare company, a Gaelic word seemed a good fit!  I also quite liked the way it looked and sounded, being pronounced ‘Shay-lick’ it’s quite a soft gentle word that seemed to fit with our approach to nature and our products. 

So the short answer is that it means ‘Willow’s Botanicals’, however the long story is a little more complex and begins with a bit of botanical Latin. 

Seilich: Sally's skincare company

Keen gardener’s out there will know that the Latin name for Willow is Salix, which of course sounds very very similar to the Gaelic word Seilich (Shay-lick), which often makes me wonder, which came first?  Did the Romans take on the Gaelic word from a Celtic nation, or did the Romans leave it behind when they tried to invade, or is there some older more deeply rooted word that they both stem from?  Anyway, I’m getting side tracked! 

Back to the story, keen botanists among you will know that the plant family that willow trees belong to is called ‘Salicacaea’ (pronounced Sally-kay-see), which is where the link to the name becomes even stronger because if course my own name is Sally, and back at university studying botany, at a rather willowy 6ft 2 in height, I was often called Salicacaea by friends.  So in a way, I’ve named my business after both after myself and my daughter! 

Seilich: a Scottish skincare company

But the link to the name doesn’t stop there!  Before starting the business, I was lucky enough to spend a long time out in the wilds of western Scotland whilst working as a botanist, and frequently came across Seilich in the names of places I visited ‘Coire Seilich’, ‘Beinn an t-Seilich’, ‘Alt An T-Seilich’, ‘Cnoc na h-Airigh-seilich’ and ‘Rubha Port an t-Seilich’ for example, all of which must have been named after willow woodlands or trees that existed there at some point.  Although we now live on the east coast of Scotland, it was this time I spent on the west coast that I first fell in love with Scotland, and retaining the essence of this wild place in the business name seemed very important.  We do very much feel like a Scottish skincare business, with our core ingredients literally growing from Scottish soil, and using a Gaelic word seemed like a way of firming that up, of saying we’re here to stay.

So whether it’s Seilich; willow’s skincare company, Seilich; Sally’s skincare company or Seilich; a Scottish skincare company, I’ll leave it up to you to decide! 


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