Zoe volunteering on a beach clean up
Hi, I'm Zoe Wiggins. I grew up in the Hertfordshire countryside with a nature loving family. We used to believe that recycling was a good way to do our bit for the environment - that is, until we realized how broken the recycling system is. I used to refill plastic water bottles - until the contents started to taste weird. Little did I know then about the toxic chemicals that leach out of plastics. I hate to think what that was doing to my health. Then I started making a few simple changes, like buying a reusable water bottle and later a bamboo toothbrush.
But it was when I watched the documentary, A Plastic Ocean, that everything changed. I knew I had to make more of a difference.
I began searching high and low for plastic alternatives and encouraged others to do the same.
I was living in Colombia at the time and got involved with two environmental charities which work to educate locals and encourage them to care for the world around them. While I was living in Cali, some parts of the city banned plastic straws. Ahead of the UK on that one!
When I came back home, having learned what I'd learned and knowing there are now millions of people just like me who want to reduce their use of plastics, I decided to start my own plastic free shop back in the UK and Vida Eco Shop was born. I wanted everyone to know there are incredible options out there. Going plastic free doesn't have to feel like a sacrifice, as the environmentally friendly choices available to us are often far better than their chemical-ridden, plastic-clad alternatives.
The Vida Eco Promise
With the help of my amazing parents, sister and husband, we've done and continue to do the research, so you don't have to. We've vetted all the companies we work with to ensure they are as passionate about making a difference as we are and whose reason for existence is to make a positive difference in the world.
Wherever possible, the products on Vida Eco Shop are 100% natural and plastic free. If anything does contain a small amount of plastic, it will be BPA free and sometimes comes with a plastic free refill option. The majority of products we stock in our plastic free shop are made in the UK and as local to us in Hertfordshire as possible to lower our carbon footprint.
All packages are sent in plastic-free wrapping using paper tape, and often recycled cardboard boxes from other local businesses (if you're wondering why you may occasionally receive a branded box or a box with traces of sellotape still stuck on!). I'm sure you'll agree that it's better to use again, than for these boxes to head straight to landfill.
We have chosen to support the Marine Conservation Society by donating 1p of every £1 we sell, to support the amazing work they do protecting the oceans and wildlife.
In addition, we try to work with brands that also give back - these are highlighted in our product descriptions.
Why the name?
"Vida" is the Spanish word for "life" - inspired by my time living in Colombia. My name, Zoe, also means life in Greek.
On top of that, by reducing our plastic waste, helping others to do the same and by donating to the Marine Conservation Society, we're helping give life back to the oceans.
So there you go!
Thank you for visiting our plastic free shop and for being part of the solution.
Happy shopping :-)