Rooted in Squamish - Sḵwálwen Botanicals

For Leigh Joseph, founder of Sḵwálwen Botanticals, there are deep roots and intrinsic value to working in Squamish that make running her business here incredibly meaningful. Coming from the Squamish Nation, she sees working with her community here as an opportunity to reconnect with the land, plants, health, and wellness.

Sḵwálwen (skwall-win) offers luxury botanical skin care products that honour traditional Squamish plant knowledge. Products are created with sustainably harvested and sourced plants as well as organic and high-quality ingredients. Every product features a Squamish name in recognition of the cultural ingredient and place it comes from.

Creating a connection to the land and nature is a central goal at Sḵwálwen. Leigh started the business as a creative outlet while completing her doctorate in ethnobotany and aimed to create recipes and products she knew would be safe for children, elders, and community members. A defining moment for the business was when Leigh decided to move back home, to be closer to her ancestral home in Squamish territory and ground the business here. It’s proven to be one the best decisions she made – knowing that she is seeing the same sights and walking the same land as her ancestors gives greater purpose to her work at Sḵwálwen.

This is made all the more meaningful by the connections she’s made within the local business community where small businesses thrive, and the spirit of collaboration is strong. Leigh describes the endless opportunities that have come up to work with other businesses in the area and a rich network of partners that strengthen her supply chain. It’s a special and unique combination of grounding in her Squamish cultural teachings, revelling in the incredible landscape, and benefiting from being part of a lively and engaged business community.