Products from The Kind Store
The Kind Store
In the UK, environmentalism is becoming a big deal. One poll claims the number of vegans will skyrocket by 327% in 2020, another found 71% of Britons believe climate change is more important than Brexit.
This move towards a planet-friendly lifestyle, as well as her own convictions, prompted Natasha Tyler to launch The Kind Store in March 2018.
“I found it so difficult to find items that suited all of my principles,” the 30-year-old explains. “I’m very much a believer in voting with my money whether that’s the food I eat, what I wear or put on my skin.
“I had an eureka moment in January 2018. I’d purchased a range of vegan, natural, and eco-friendly products online to only be disappointed when they arrived in a plastic bag, with plastic air bags as protection and each item in its own plastic bag.”
And just three months later, despite no experience in retail or creating a website, Tyler’s company was born. Tyler is still the only employee, however she is preparing to move her company’s products into a larger store room, and will be hiring temporary staff for the Christmas period.
The store offers a curated selection of toiletries, skincare, make up, home and on the go products all wrapped in plastic free packaging.
She describes her company as a “disrupter” to high street health and beauty stores.
“Walk into any high street store and you are overwhelmed by plastic packaged products, promotions that make you wonder how the product has been made in the first place and marketing that encourages you to buy to feel better about yourself,” she says. “There is also so much confusion over labelling and certification of products and its difficult to know if products and brands are vegan or really 100% natural.”
The Kind Store only stocks vegan products, products made from natural ingredients, and prioritizes working with independent, UK-based businesses, and handmade products.
All products are posted in plastic-free packaging, either made form recycled packaging, or sourced from re-used packaging from suppliers.
“We live in world where convenience is king,” Tyler says. “There were already a number of independent brands creating their own products which met all three principles however if you have to buy your deodorant, toothpaste and moisturizer from different stores, that’s a lot of time, effort, postage cost and emissions.”
Tyler aims to encompass three principles in one place: veganism, organic and natural ingredients and plastic-free.
“My aim is to make living low-impact easy for everyone. Whether you are concerned with the current climate crisis, live a vegan lifestyle, want to support local makers or avoid toxic ingredients, The Kind Store was founded to make it easier for everyone to shop more kindly for people, planet and animals.”
Over the past two years, more than 100 zero waste stores have popped up across the UK.
But Tyler says she doesn’t feel the industry is competitive.
“Everyone has created their business for a bigger reason than their bank balance and we very much feel like a community.
Although Tyler has noticed a surge in bigger retailers offering many of the brands her company stocks, she is confident she has built up a loyal customer base.
“It’s definitely a challenge I’m facing. But my customers love the fact we are small and independent and they are supporting a business who is doing the right thing because they care, not because they have seen a new profit-making opportunity.”