GEAR,  Product Reviews

New season swimwear from Zoggs – made from plastic bottles

Two plastic bottles go into every Zoggs Ecolast™ and Ecolast+™ swimsuit, single-use plastic that would otherwise go into landfill or eventually find its way into our rivers and oceans. 

Made from recycled post-consumer plastic bottles and with customisable fits to suit all shapes and swimming styles, the new leisure and training swimsuits from Zoggs are an outstanding choice for responsible swimmers. In fact, each year, Zoggs use over 1.7 million plastic bottles to make their swimwear.

As well as being at the forefront of eco conscious fabric design, Zoggs are also specialists when it comes to customisable fits and flexible back styles – their current range offers more than 25 different options to choose from!

For this review, we tested two new season swimsuits – the Botanica Adjustable Scoopback from their leisure range and the Sunset Atomback One Piece from their training collection. Scroll down to read the reviews, but first, let’s explore the innovative fabric behind the new season collection.

Making swimwear from plastic bottles

Introduced into Zoggs swimwear in 2019, Ecolast+™ is a sustainable eco-fabric made with REPREVE yarn, a high quality fibre produced from 100% recycled post consumer plastic bottles. A minimum of two plastic bottles go into every Ecolast+ swimsuit and six bottles in every metre of swimwear fabric.

The benefits of this innovative fabric goes beyond their eco-creditentials, though. Ecolast+™ also provides optimal stretch and shape retention and has four times the fabric compression of traditional swimwear fabrics. It’s also 100% chlorine proof and has UPF50+ sun protection. The brand is so confident their fabric is chlorine proof, they offer a lifetime guarantee, meaning they’ll replace any suit that wears out (excluding damage caused by improper use, of course). 

Beyond the fabric

Zoggs’ ambition to become a more eco-conscious brand flows through other aspects of their production and presentation: product tags and packaging are made from recycled materials; swimsuit hangers are produced using post-consumer waste such as discarded plastic flower pots and toys; and switch to digital fabric printing has redueced their water consumption by 35%. “We’re committed to doing everything we can to help the environment. Our mission is to have 100% sustainable packaging and over 95% of our swimwear to be made from recycled materials,’ says Mark Hammersley, VP HEAD Swimming Division.

Zoggs Botanica Adjustable Scoopback Swimsuit | £55

They say: Discover the ultimate in swimwear comfort and style with the Botanica Adjustable Scoopback from Zoggs. Featuring full foam cups, medium leg height, tummy control, and adjustable straps, this swimsuit offers a flattering silhouette and superior support. Its black and green floral print with a scoopback design adds a touch of elegance to this functional swimwear piece. Made from our sustainable Ecolast™+ fabric with recycled plastic bottles, this suit is also 100% chlorine resistant and comes with our Lifetime Guarantee.

We say: This swimsuit is comfortable, supportive and provides a good amount of coverage with its medium leg, subtle stitched-in foam cups and mesh tummy control panel, which smooths, shapes and supports with four times greater fabric compression than traditional generic swimwear fabrics. That control panel, by the way, doesn’t just help you feel more secure, it also helps you to maintain the correct position in the water when swimming, which I really noticed when testing the suit in my local lake. I usually wear a neoprene swimsuit (which gives a little lift as well as warmth), but I didn’t notice much drop in my body position wearing the Zoggs swimsuit. Wide adjustable straps allow you to customise the fit – with an extra 5cm of adjustability meaning you can make them 2.5cm shorter or 2.5cm longer – which suited my long body, and were also nice and wide so prevented the straps digging into my shoulders. Made from recycled post-consumer plastic bottles, the Ecolast+™ fabric is also quick-drying, hard-wearing, 100% chlorine proof, and won’t degrade in chlorine. I also really liked the green and grey botanical design, which felt nicely on trend. Despite being part of Zoggs’ ‘leisure collection’, which focuses on providing comfort and support for casual swimming, the suit felt perfectly suited to swimming circuits at the lake.

Sunset Atomback One Piece Swimsuit | £44

They say: Every swimmer needs a go-to suit in their wardrobe and our Sunset Atomback is exactly that. The open Atom Back and wider straps create a perfect combination of freedom of movement and support. Feel the water down your back as you glide through the water in this swimsuit. With slimming contrast print side panels, front lining for modesty this swimsuit is available up to size 18, plus it’s 100% chlorine proof and made from our eco-friendly Ecolast+ fabrication.

We say: High leg, cross back styles like the Sunset Atomback One Piece Swimsuit are made for training and generally offer lower coverage for maximum freedom of movement and increased feeling of water on skin. Personally, I’m used to wearing a more modest cut, and admit I did feel a little self-conscious about walking to the steps at my local lido, when once in the water the effect of the fit and shape was transformative. The high cross back sits between the shoulder blades for unhindered rotation, while the high legs allow full freedom of movement – the extra feel of the water against my skin was really noticeable. I also rather liked the bright, palm tree side panels and pop of pink on the straps. I will definitely be reaching for the Atomback One Piece in the future. And as Zoggs training swimsuits are designed to withstand long swim sessions thanks to the durability of their chlorine resistant Ecolast+ fabric, I may be reaching for it for quite some time.

Offer code valid until 30/09/23.

Jo is the Gear Editor for Outdoor Swimmer and also writes news and features for the website. A keen open water swimmer and long-distance walker, she loves seeking out lakes and lidos close to her home in the Mendip Hills, Somerset. She is the author of The Slow Traveller, editor and founder of independent magazine, Ernest, and has previously tested outdoor clothing and kit for BBC Countryfile Magazine, BBC Focus and Ernest Journal.