Interviews Lifestyle

Getting To Know Tom and Sacha, Owners of SunButter Sunscreen

Founded in 2016 by marine biologists Sacha Guggenheimer and Tom Hiney, SunButterTM was developed with the passion to protect some of Australia’s most beautiful coral reefs from the m harmful chemicals found in sunscreens.

Originally made for whale shark guides, photographers, spearfishers, divers and fishermen of the Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia, SunButterTM formulation provides the highest sun factor possible, SPF 50, but created without harsh chemicals that have adverse effects on marine life and corals. We caught up with founders Tom and Sasha to find out a little more about them.

1. What would you be doing if you had chosen a different career?

Tom: Originally, I was meant to be working in Finance but ditched that plan. If there was no SunButter I’d be a full-time wildlife guide.

Sacha: Carpenter /cabinet maker of tiny houses, earth ships and cute rocking chairs. Or an ocean based wildlife filmmaker!

2. How do you define success?

Tom: being able to make time for loved one and loved hobbies.

Sacha: Success to me is feeling grounded in your own truth and calling

3. What is the most surprising thing about you?

Tom: I was born and raised in England – most people assume I’m pure Aussie!

Sacha: I can’t spell! And I can’t handle squeaky sand.

4. If your life was a movie what would it be?

Tom: Rescuers Down under – I loved it as a child, lived a bit of it as an adult.

Sacha: Amelie, the French film. I LOVE the wonderment.

5. What is your morning regime?

Tom: Up early-ish, do some-thing active (surf/run) have a coffee and smoothie and get to work.

Sash: Up with Tom, something calmer like Yoga or Pranyama (unless surf is on) then to work

6. Do you have a nickname?

Tom: T-Cup, Taz, TEJH

Sash: So many! Just a few from my short time on earth, Sashi, Sushi, Sassy Gee, Guggy, Guggs, flocon de mer.

7. What is your favorite meal to cook?

Tom: I love my mum’s cooking – so i’ll ask her to cook anything!

Sacha: Eggplant masala

8. What is your most treasured item of clothing?

Tom: My grandfather’s hat.

Sacha: An alpaca jumper from South America my brother found in a taxi after a night at Revs.

9. What is the last book that you read?

Tom: Running free by Richard Askwith and Where Song Began by Tim Low

Sacha: Awakening Shakti, Sally Kempton

10. If you could only eat three dishes for the rest of your life what would they be?

Tom: Carrot cake, Roasted Vegetables and good fresh tropical fruit platter.

Sacha: Big yummy tropical fruit platter, a hearty vegetable soup and pad Thai

11. Can you speak more than one language?

Tom: pretty good french and a surprising amount of Swahili

Sash: Fluent French

12. Who is the one person that always makes you laugh?

Tom: My sister – we’re super similar but she is hilarious!

Sacha: Jemima, one of my oldest friends – love the dribble that comes out of our mouths. Most of our conversations are punctuated with belly laughter.

13. What is the most played song on your playlist?

Tom: Rolling Stones- Can’t always get wat you want

Sacha: The Brian Jonestown Massacre – Anemone

14. Where is one place you have always wanted to visit?

Tom: Antarctica (hopefully going in January 2022)

Sacha: Alaska – and tour it on a motorbike!

15. What plant or flowers do you always have in your home?

Tom – a good herb garden

Sacha: Eatables – love growing our own herbs and veggies.

16. Your most memorable holiday?

Tom: With Sash to my parents in France, Indo/Komodo or Sacha’s first Safari in Kenya.

Sacha: Bit difficult to choose – but sailing from Fiji to Rapa Nui (Easter Island) stands out. I fell so deeply in love with the Polynesian way of life. And my first ever Safari with Tom in Kenya was sensational. It literally blew my mind seeing elephants up close in the wild, and watching a leopard eating a carcass in a tree.

17. How do you relax?

Tom: Surf, read and potter – I love to potter around our house and garden.

Sacha: Surf, ocean, nature. Get me out of the house and into the bush and watch me shine.

18. How many hours a week do you usually work?

Tom: Somewhere around that 30-40 mark.

Sacha: As many as needed! In saying that we are really conscious of not overworking. Running your own business can be all consuming and it’s easy to always find jobs to do. Creating healthy work boundaries is a must for it to stay sustainable.

19. What are the three beauty items always in your beauty cabinet?

Tom: ……. SunButter sunscreen and face oil

Sacha: SunButter tinted sunscreen, naturally. Eye of Horus mascara. And our new SunButter face oil is gorgeous – that’s a permanent addition now too.

SunButter Sunscreen

20. Instagram, facebook, pinterest or twitter?

Tom: IG

Sacha: Instagram, but I do love me a little DIY inspo on pinterest!

21. What is the one thing we would always find in your fridge?

Tom: Broccoli!

Sacha: Veggies

22. Your favourite board game?

Tom: Scrabble.

Sacha: Don’t play enough of them to know. Bird Bingo is the only one we own – so I guess it wins.

23. City, country, mountains or beach?

Tom: Mountains or beach.

Sacha: Beach.

24. Who would play you in a movie based on your life?

Tom: A young blonde Hugh Grant

Sacha: Sydneysider Odessa Young

25. What was your first job?

Tom: Worked at a ski/surf/snowboard store in UK owned by a friends Dad.

Sacha: At a florist making posies for the Hyatt Hotel.

26. What is your favourite app?

Tom: Whatsap for chatting with friends and family round the world.

Sacha: Willyweather. Our lives revolve around outdoors activities – so it’s definitely the most used app. Apart from maybe Spotify.

27. What is the most important piece of advice you have ever been given?

Tom: Kobe Bryant once told me (via a poster on my bedroom wall) If you don’t believe in yourself, no-one else will.

Sacha: Tell the truth and we all grown up.

28. Rain, snow or sunshine?

Tom: Sunshine (or heaps of snow!)

Sacha: Whatever the weather, whether we like it or not! Just get out there.

29. What is your favourite room in your house?

Tom: The garden? or the kitchen.

Sacha: Does the porch with a cuppa count?

30. What is your go-to drink of choice?

Tom: A good (English) cider or a cup of tea.

Sacha: Gin and Tonic

31. Who has had the biggest impact on your life?

Tom: The male role models (my father and paternal grandfather) amazing, kind, wise men.

Sacha: I see every relationship as a teacher, from pets to people, gardens to cars – they all teach us things about ourselves.

32. In which city do you feel most at home?

Tom: Not a city person, feel most at home in wilderness.

Sacha: Perth. I love the laid-back vibe of Perth and WA in general.

33. Who is your style icon?

Tom: ……. Sacha’s dad…. if you know, you know.

Sacha: Mum. She is one stylish cat. Born in Geneva, Switzerland with an eye for all things fabric, patterns and cuts – she instilled in me the habit of touching all the clothes on the racks – pre COVID it wasn’t a problem! It’s as if the visuals of the item and the physical touch of clothing need to line up before it’s even worth considering trying that item on. It works great for finding linen, cotton, wools and all the yummy natural fibres in second-hand shops when the racks are higgledy-piggledy.

34. If you could only be remembered for one thing what would it be?

Tom: That I loved wildlife and Sacha.

Sacha: Kindness and willingness to share all that I knew for the betterment of family, communities and country.

35. What is the one thing you want everyone to know about you?

Tom: See above?

Sacha: I feel more at home in the ocean than I do on land.

Want more? Click here for Getting to Know Danielle Norton, Travel Writer or here for Getting to Know Claudia Siron, Editor of Bubble Magazine.

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