I first met Scott and Nitsa of Sun Potion at their Potions 101 class held at my favorite natural beauty store in the city, CAP Beauty. I was immediately entranced by their glowing energy and the knowledge they brought with such openness to share. Within minutes of sipping their tonics I was buzzing with the most life-changing clarity and energy I ever had (I am not using that term loosely, it was transformative). At that moment I instantly fell in love with these herbs and knew they were about to become a major part of my life and wellness regimen. I am absolutely jumping out of my seat, squealing with excitement to share this interview with you so that you can get a glimpse into the lives of these magical beings. It is an honor to call them both friends and the ways in which they have inspired me is endless. There is a lot of love + information held in this Dreamer Profile, I hope you enjoy it!
Scott and Nitsa of Sun Potion
Roles at Sun Potion:
Scott:Owner // Founder Nitsa: Creative Director
When/how did you meet?
Scott: Four years ago, Nitsa was my first friend when I moved from Ojai to Santa Barbara. I was in love from the beginning. Some timed passed from our introduction and being together. It was worth the wait. I think we met over the topic of Chlorella. I remember her being very excited (about the chlorella). 🙂
Nitsa: When Scott first moved to Santa Barbara, we became friends, and I would buy food from him. He used to give me incredibly good deals 😉
What is your philosophy on food and wellness?
Scott: Gratitude is King. Noticing and acknowledging: surroundings, plants, meals, cozy spots at home, morning tea, and other human experiences; are all to be celebrated. I like to keep the standards pretty high, and have a lot to appreciate. That is the easiest way I have found to thrive in life. The food is both primary, and an afterthought in this way of being. When I started educating myself, and only wanting the best quality foods entering my body, everything became a lot easier.
Nitsa: Listen to the body, stay open and adaptable, eat the best food you can find (mostly plants), give yourself permission to feel AMAZING! What was your first experience with herbs?Scott: My experiences with tonic herbs began long before being introduced to a single one. From 14-24 years old, I did all kinds of endurance, solitary sports. I sometimes trained 20 hours per week. I was both on an endorphin high, and had plenty of time to get to watch what was happening in my body. This is the same description I can ascribe to finally finding Mucuna Pruriens Extract, or inhaling Helichrysum Oil, or enjoying a morning celebration of tea. The feeling is that of inhabiting my human body. It is amazing and wonderful. Herbs and Humans work well together. The first time I experienced herbs, my whole world got flipped upside down, and right back to an optimistic “normal”. I am so glad to be a plant lover.
Nitsa: My father is an acupuncturist so as a child I was given TCM – Traditional Chinese Medicine & Herbs at every immune dip, sneeze, injury etc. Then, during college I planned a trip to Asia and was really nervous (in general) though especially about not having enough fresh clean vegetables, pressed juice, colloidal silver abroad (helloo neurotic California born and bred health nut?!!) and so I sought out the help from the supplement department at a health food store in Northern California called Good Earth. There was an extremely knowledgeable man working there named Matt who guided me toward Reishi Mushroom, Chlorella, and a skullcap tincture for my nerves… I have been a believer in the algaes and herbs ever since!
What is a typical day of meals for you?
Scott: Tea. I prefer to brew my own, so I can prepare it how I like it. I have a relationship with tea, so it is nice to be with her first thing in the morning. Sun Potion with water, tea, cream, or nut mylk is next. I have a few favorites: He Shou Wu, Pine Pollen, Mucuna, Reishi, Ashitaba, Astragalus, and Tocos. Later in the day, after 4 PM, I get into eating some manner of selectitarian dishes. Eating a grounding, best quality meal, in the evening feels very nourishing. I end the day with a fermented beverage. I am constantly amazed at the level of culinary refinement, and experiential beauty in food that is available where, and how, I am fortunate to live.
Nitsa: In sequence: Tea. Tonic Herbal Potion. More tea. Organic pressed juice. Most of the time I do not eat eat a solid whole food meal until the afternoon / evening, unless my friends Greg Arnold, Scott Winegard or Stephen McCarty are cooking — then I will eat raw cheesecakes and plant based cuisine all day…
What herbs are part of your routine daily?
Scott: (please see last response) I am actually in love with the entire curated collection of best quality tonic herbs, available through Sun Potion. I do not eat all of them daily, yet I love to imbibe each of them at their appropriate time. Sometimes people do what we do, which is to have ALL of them in the at home cupboard. It’s a pretty cool feeling to have access to all of that goodness, any time we want it. It’s also a great way to study each of the herbs.
Nitsa: Everyday: pine pollen, ashitaba, tocos, he shou wu, astragalus, and reishi mushroom.
What are the staples in your kitchen that you can’t live without? (food, appliances, etc.)
Scott: I want to always have a selection of special teaware in my kitchen. There’s a basket of good wheels and tins of tea as well. I have a few favorite cups for mixing potions in. I also have a selection of very small spoons that work great for serving up the herbs. We keep big glass cambros of springwater on hand at all times. There’s a cool thing called a Dolphin Water Pump which makes it really easy to serve water from these heavy glass containers. Of course, there’s more, but these are the essentials. I like to keep it pretty simple.
Nitsa: Water boiler, tea pot, teaspoon. A good, sharp Japanese knife.
Could you share a favorite recipe that supports you physically and mentally?
Scott: A personal favorite of mine is the Prash, which is sold through the Sun Potion line. It’s a combination of biodynamic ghee, raw wildflower honey, and a dozen of the Sun Potion herb extracts. It is whole-body tonifying, and strong in herbs. The ghee and honey act as conduits for the herbs to digest and absorb deeper into the body. It’s basically a treat, tastes like caramel, and is what I imagine candy would be like if it were made with the best possible ingredients. I initially made it to bring to a party, and people liked it. Later, I made a batch to gift to the buyers of some of our favorite accounts. A few of these buyers began asking for it every time I saw them, which resulted in its inclusion in the Sun Potion lineup. The Prash is an example of how play, led to a gift, and later became a product to be shared more broadly. That is how many of the aspects of the brand have developed. Sun Potion’s evolution has certainly been an entertaining adventure.
Nitsa: A teaspoon of pine pollen in a goblet of sparkling mineral water – nourishes the brain and creative energy – light, activated, yummy.
What role does fashion and personal style play in your life? How does this tie into your view on wellness?
Scott: Comfort drives my personal taste in clothing. I prefer natural fibers over anything. Most of my shirts are made by Jungmaven and are Organic Hemp and Cotton, natural or yarn dyed fabric. We recently did a collaboration with Jungmaven to create a Sun Potion brand Tank Top for Summer 2015. We did an indigo dyed tank and an optic white, both with inverse colored Sun Potion Logos across the chest. It was a lot of fun designing our own tag, which includes a natural fiber // natural dye manifesto. The air in Santa Barbara can be cool, even when the weather is beautiful. I wear cashmere for this reason, nearly every day of the year. I also have a bit of a thing for Italian sports cars, but that’s a story for another day. In each of these examples, I leverage fashion and personal style to feel my best and have fun. In that regard, fashion and personal style directly support wellness. For me, feeling good, having fun, and being well, are all closely aligned.
Nitsa: CLOTHES ARE FOOD TOO.
What is your go-to outfit that you feel most comfortable in?
Nitsa: all-whites. silk, linen or organic cotton, relaxed fit. cashmere sweater or coat if a warmer layer is required… some fun socks and special shoes.
Favorite stores/places to shop? (Online or in-person)
Scott: I like scanning quality vintage stores. I don’t shop with anything in mind. I’m pretty good at welcoming the good stuff when it jumps off the shelf at me.
Nitsa: I love going to events like Mercado Sagrado or Spiritweavers where I can shop for beautiful clothes, products, and art made by friends or meeting designers in person… I am currently very inspired by the designs of Tracy Conti (Prism of Threads), TAIANA, Maria Calderon, Jung Maven, Awaveawake, and Tysa Designs.
Favorite piece of jewelry and the story behind it?
Nitsa: Emerald ring (Colombia, untreated) – a special engagement gift from Scott 🙂
Scott: Huge, chiseled copper ring with smoky quartz stone. There is Shambala symbology all over it that actually looks like Reishi Mushrooms. Nitsa found this because I wanted an engagement ring too. It was made by a sweet man named Pitango.
What are your favorite products in your holistic beauty cabinet?
Nitsa: ha — the response to this question invites an absolute novella… my current home (and travel) beauty cabinet includes: Benshen serum 1 & 2 and rose aloe mist, Poppy and Someday marfa moon mist and mint lip balm, Shiva Rose face oil, Living Libations everything (!!!) (esp. the nasal essential oil salt pipe inhaler — I almost forgot to bring it with me on the plane the other day and I was genuinely surprised by how sad I got at the prospect of its absence…) Sun Potion shea butter, Evan Healy imortelle mist, La Tierra Sagrada hair oil and salt spray and Jiva Apoha joint oil. Essential oils of vetiver, rose, peppermint, helichrysum, lavendar from living libations and floracoepia….
What is your skincare routine?
Scott: I love Sun Potion Shea Butter. I like to put it on after I shower. It is considered a dry oil, and the skin absorbs it, rather than being coated by it like with other moisturizers. I also use La Tierra Sagrada’s hair oil to anoint my skin and face. It smells really good and has all kinds of magical plant infusions in it. It feels super clean on my skin. I sometimes add essential oils from Enfleurage or Floracopeia to the mix. My favorites are vetiver, cardamom, turmeric, and pinon pine.
Go-to homemade beauty recipe?
Scott: I love soaking in a bath mixture of Magnesium Salts, different kinds of clays, and dried ginger powder. I find this ritual to be deeply relaxing and detoxifying as well. My skin always feels super smooth afterward..
Nitsa: Clarifying face mask with Sun Potion ashitaba, chlorella, rose water, and bentonite clay.
Mind, Body and Soul
Daily rituals to keep you grounded?
Scott: I sit in the backyard for a half hour in the sun each morning. I’m always barefoot. Although this time of year, the grass is getting pretty dry in California, I still love to have my feet on the soil. I also use essential oils throughout the day.
Nitsa: Tea + Photography.
A book that positively influenced your life?
Scott: A few years ago, I did a solo mountain bike and camping adventure in Oregon for four months. Many hours were passed listening to, and re-listening to Eckhart Tolle’s “A New Earth” on a small mp3 player. I could practically recite the book by the end of the trip. It was perfect for where I was at in my life at that time.
Nitsa: Narcissus and Goldmund by Herman Hesse. An absolute game changer and transformational piece of literature for me in regards to love, relationship, art, passion, spirituality, devotion, redefining conventional dynamics.
Current favorite ways to stay active?
Scott: I feel like I’m in really good shape, which is kind of amazing because I don’t workout. I do love to work though. I’m also really stoked about eating amazing foods and the best herbs available. The herbs help keep me feeling great, even though I’m not as active as I could be.
How do you unwind?
Scott: I make daily visits to the Athletic Club for an evening sauna after work. I’m also particularly in love with our Natural Rubber bed and Coyuchi sheets.
Nitsa: I recently got back into playing guitar (I am not very skilled but dropping into the sound sphere for even just a moment has been incredibly soothing for my nervous system (and eyes!)
What are the “jewels” in your life? (i.e. your passions, favorite topics, people, places, etc.)
Nitsa: JEWELS: beautiful food. art. love. the depths of sincerity. connection.
What do you see for the future of Sun Potion?Scott: All golden.
Make sure to check out SunPotion.com to get all of their amazing products (or find a retailer near you) and follow @SunPotion on Instagram for insight into their healing world, gorgeous photography by the beautiful Creative Director Nitsa (also @NitsaCitrine on Instagram) and updates on where they are. If by any chance they are coming to a city near you, I highly recommend taking a class!
Top photo taken by Lindsey Ross