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13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Image by Sustainable Jungle #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
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13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot

The SJ Team


It’s always good to kick it footloose with your wardrobe (and your dance moves).

But we shouldn’t play loose with our standards for sustainable shoes. 

Shoes are a haven for plastics and other non-renewable materials. They’re often produced to be consumed, not repaired, resulting in billions of pairs heading to landfill each year.

Before you put away those dogs and go barefoot, we’ve collected some of the best sustainable shoes, so you can dance the night away without worrying about your feet or the planet.

Everything we recommend to you on Sustainable Jungle is independently researched and we ask all brands to confirm their claims. To avoid waste, we test products on an as needed basis. This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a small commission. Learn more about why we do this here.

The Best Sustainable Shoe Brands To Get Your Conscious Kicks

Allbirds goes beyond carbon-neutral to climate positive with sustainable workout shoes and, in our opinion, the comfiest casual shoes which are basically like wearing slippers (without actually wearing slippers).

Characterized by circularity, we love that Thousand Fell shoes are made using a closed-loop process. They’re cute and functional to boot (pun intended).

For fair trade and eco-friendly leather shoes, Nisolo we think are the best in class for ethics and sustainable leather production.

If you want to know what steps we took when choosing the best sustainable shoe brands for women’s and men’s styles alike, hop on down to the end of the article.

The Most Sustainable Shoe Brands


1. Allbirds

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Allbirds #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Allbirds

Price Range: $50–$170

About Allbirds 

We talk about Allbirds a lot on Sustainable Jungle—and for a good reason. 

This Certified B Corp uses sustainable materials to make durable, high-quality shoes that are good for your feet and the planet. 

Check out their Wool Runner Mizzles for rain-friendly, water-repellent sneakers, and their sustainable kid’s shoes for little tootsies. We’ve worn their runners and sneakers for years and for slipper comfort levels, you don’t get much better than this.

Allbirds’ Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Allbirds’ sustainable training shoes and casual sneakers use two primary powerhouse materials: wool and trees (and sometimes both together with their signature Trino® fabric). 

Their merino wool is ZQ-certified to ensure the highest standards of animal welfare and sustainable farming and the trees used to create their TENCEL™ lyocell comes from an FSC-certified source in South Africa. 

Those wonderfully soft, cushy insoles are sugarcane-based SweetFoam®, protected by made from FSC-certified natural rubber. 

To tie it all up, every pair of Allbirds laces equals one recycled plastic bottle.

Supply chain & labor practices:

Each product description lists where their shoes and sustainable basics are made: North Carolina, Guatemala, Peru, South Korea, China, or Vietnam. 

They establish healthy, long-term partnerships with factories and provide details about their evaluation, auditing, and remediation processes. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

A member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition, Allbirds seeks to continually assess its sustainability and drive change in the industry.

Every product description lists the total estimated carbon output over each product’s lifecycle.

Going beyond carbon offsetting (though they still do that), they want to reduce carbon to begin with, and they’re doing that through regenerative agriculture, renewable materials, and green energy. 

Shoes are shipped in 90% post-consumer recyclable cardboard and their ReRun resale program helps keep shoes in circulation for longer. 

Community & charitable giving:

Partnering with Soles4Souls, Allbirds helps their lightly used shoes find new homes with people who need them most.

Here’s our deeper dive into Allbirds’ sustainability if you want to look at the minutiae of how we evaluated this brand.


2. Nisolo

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Sustainable Jungle #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Sustainable Jungle

Price Range: $90–$280

About Nisolo

For over a decade, Nashville-based Nisolo has taken the sustainable footwear world in its stride with its artisan quality, sustainable leather shoes—making them one of the best sources for sustainable men’s shoes and women’s alike.

The brand’s best-selling Commuter Collection features classy, weather resistant footwear to take you from the subway to the office in sustainable style. 

You’ll also find plenty of sandals, slip-ons, sneakers, boots, and oxfords to compliment any outfit or occasion. 

Our personal favorite is the Heeled Chelsea Boot, which has become a staple in our wardrobe. It looks classy enough for the nicest and most professional of occasions, yet its chunky, 2″ heel is super stable and comfortable (meaning we can also comfortably strut our stuff all day).

Nisolo’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Nisolo’s primary material is leather, combined with rubber soles and foam midsoles.

95% of their leather is certified sustainably tanned by the Leather Working Group (LWG) and 100% is sourced as a byproduct of the meat industry.

Supply chain & labor practices:

Nisolo’s main factory is one they own and operate in Trujillo, Peru. They also partner with factories in León, Mexico, and independent artisans in Nairobi, Kenya.

With 100% living wages across their entire Tier 1 supply chain (and expanding to other tiers), Nisolo is transparent about its efforts to support meaningful employment for all workers. 

As a co-founder of the Lowest Wage Challenge, they also encourage other brands to do the same. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Nisolo is Carbon Neutral-certified via offsets, but their 0% Net Carbon commitment has them working to reduce their emissions altogether.

Each Nisolo product includes a Sustainability Facts label that lists its carbon footprint.

The brand’s comprehensive Sustainability Framework outlines its goals.

Community & charitable giving:

Nisolo partners with Soles4Souls to sponsor a reclamation program for their shoes.


3. 8000Kicks

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Sustainable Jungle #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Sustainable Jungle

Price Range: $129-$199

About 8000Kicks 

Portugal-based 8000Kicks can’t hemp but be sustainable.

With hemp as their signature material, they’ve created plant-based, eco-friendly walking shoes that help you run lightly, both in your mile and in your carbon footprint.

Their signature Explorer V2 vegan sneakers are breathable, lightweight, and waterproof and come in various colors and sizes for both men and women. 

The hemp insole is particularly standout with about as much give as a cork sole, it moulds to your foot. And with a winder toe box your foot can expand as you get more active.

They also have the Crossover Chelsea boots if you’re looking for some sustainable hiking boots that pack a sturdier punch. 

8000Kicks’ Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

As eco-friendly materials go, hemp fabric is one of the best, and it’s what 8000Kicks uses for its uppers and insoles. 

The outer soles are made from algae harvested from algal blooms, helping clean-up marine ecosystems. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

8000Kicks partners with factories in Portugal and China, for which they share the average salary in their FAQs

Regular factory inspections ensure high standards of worker welfare. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

8000Kicks uses renewable energy, carbon offsets, and recycled cardboard and cornstarch mail bags.


4. Thousand Fell

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Thousand Fell #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Thousand Fell

Price Range: $125–$135 (+$20 recycling deposit)

About Thousand Fell

Thousand Fell was founded with the idea that sneakers shouldn’t end up in landfills. 

This NYC-based brand creates closed-loop vegan eco-friendly shoes that are repairable and recyclable. 

Choose from classic styles like eco-friendly slip-on shoes and retro-inspired Court shoes.

You pay a $20 recycling deposit, and when they finally wear out, you can send them back to Thousand Fell and receive $20 towards your next pair. 

 Thousand Fell’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

The main material for the body is a vegan leather made from recycled plastic bottles coated with a corn waste resin and a natural quartz barrier making it stain and water-resistant.

Outsoles are made from natural rubber and insoles from recycled rubber yoga mats. 

Cushioning is thanks to castor bean oil, and you can say goodbye to stinky feet (and socks) with the aloe vera-coated sock liner. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

This brand’s eco-friendly skate shoes are designed in New York City and made in Brazil in a family-owned factory.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

The brand’s circular process means that their women’s and men’s eco-friendly shoes are taken back and either refurbished for donation or reclaimed for raw materials. These materials are then upcycled into new shoes or recycled by third party-partners. 

Each pair comes wrapped in a reusable organic tote bag and an FSC-certified shoebox that doubles as a shipping box. 

Thousand Fell uses micro-warehouses and bikes to reduce the carbon output of NYC-area deliveries. 

Community & charitable giving:

A member of 1% for the Planet, they also partner with Soles4Souls to donate refurbished shoes to those in need.


5. Baabuk

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Baabuk #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Baabuk

Price Range: $99–$159

About Baabuk

Baabuk started with a family trip and a love for wool. Then the first Baabuk slipper was born.

The Swiss brand has since extended its range to include wool sneakers and boots in several unisex and gender neutral designs and, in our opinion, the best selection of colors. Some of the two tones seriously pop.

Check out their wool Ballerina Flats for cute and comfortable sustainable shoes. And their Blacknose Sky Woolers for an ultra comfortable merino lining, with a snug toe box and narrow fit this one’s a winner for cold climates while you do some urban hiking.

Baabuk’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Baabuk’s star material is mulesing-free, ethical wool, which they source from Portugal and New Zealand. 

The soles of the sustainable slippers are made from natural latex, and their sneakers have TPU and natural rubber soles.

The Portuguese workshop uses REACH-certified dyes. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

Baabuk is a Certified B Corp, and provides a breakdown of its score on their website. 

Their shoes are made in workshops in Nepal and Portugal, both of which provide safe working conditions, support female employment, and pay 25% above the national average wage. 

In the logistics center in Switzerland, Baabuk has partnered with the BVA Foundation to help employ people with mental and physical disabilities. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Their wool sustainable winter shoes are machine washable, and you can buy replacement insoles and a repair kit to keep them going for longer. 

You can also send old shoes back to Baabuk where they’ll be donated or recycled for their raw materials. 

Community & charitable giving:

Baabuka partners with ProSpecieRara to help protect six native endangered sheep breeds in Switzerland—they even have a sheep named after them called Miss Baabuka.


6. ABLE

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by ABLE #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by ABLE

Price Range: $85–$165

About ABLE

For sustainable shoes USA, Nashville-based ABLE has our toes covered (or uncovered, depending on the design). 

Whether you’re looking for new office shoes, heels, flats, sandals, or sneakers, ABLE’s affordable eco-friendly shoes are made to last. 

For breezy and stylish sustainable summer shoes, their Mika Clog Sandals are a versatile wardrobe staple. Featuring a criss-cross toe strap, a padded insole, and lightweight wooden heel, these shoes are built for comfort and ethical style. 

ABLE’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Most of ABLE’s shoes are made from leather, sourced from discarded animal hides and processed using semi-veg tanning (a hybrid process of chrome and vegetable tanned leather processing).

They also use tweed, rubber, and memory foam for some of their shoes.

Supply chain & labor practices:

ABLE works with five manufacturers in Ethiopia for most of their products. Their jewelry is produced at their headquarters in Nashville. 

One of the first fair trade shoe brands to publish its lowest wage and a co-founder of the Lowest Wage Challenge, ABLE continually advocates for living wages and safe working conditions for every worker in its supply chain. 

This women-run company empowers its female employees with living wages, company ownership, full maternity pay, options for 100% paid health care, and infertility and adoption support. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

To minimize waste, ABLE collaborates with its leather partners to design repairable shoes (which feature a lifetime warranty) that will make the most efficient use of materials. They donate denim scraps to become housing insulation.

The brand is transitioning to 100% recyclable shipping materials and their vendors use recyclable or upcycled packaging as available in their communities. 

Community & charitable giving:

ABLE works to support all of its suppliers in providing stable, equitable, empowering work for women all over the world.


7. The Root Collective

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by The Root Collective #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by The Root Collective

Price Range: $138–$298

About The Root Collective

The Root Collective was founded to create a positive impact where it’s most needed. 

The brand’s eco-friendly dress shoes and bags provide much needed jobs to Guatemalan artisans. 

Catering to all of your fair trade footwear needs, you’ll find boots, flats, sustainable heels, sandals, and sneakers in plenty of styles and colors. 

Their Casey sandals are perfect for sunny weather. Choose between solid leather or designs with a handwoven cotton strap.

The Root Collective Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

TRC’s eco-friendly women’s shoes are primarily leather, mostly sourced from a Leather Working Group certified tannery. Some designs also feature handwoven cotton. 

Outsoles are either wood and rubber or leather and rubber. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

The Root Collective shares (with permission) the stories of some of their artisans to help illustrate a less than flat social impact of their sustainable flats and more.

They work with several workshops in Guatemala, where workers earn 50-400% above the local minimum wage. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

The Root Collective prioritizes small batch and made-to-order production to reduce waste and avoid fast fashion

Community & charitable giving:

You can buy and sell your pre-loved shoes from The Root Collective on their online marketplace.


8. Bhava

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Bhava #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Bhava

Price Range: $195–$345

About Bhava

Bhava is ethical, vegan, and here to help you hit the town in good-for-you, sustainable women’s shoes.

Test-driven in NYC, each fashion-forward design is made to be kind to your feet regardless of the urban terrain you’re traversing. 

The Gaia sandal is a summer essential for minimalist wardrobes. Available in beige, black, or white, the style features a minimal toe loop and cross-over ankle strap for support. 

Bhava also sells knee-high boot uppers. Pair them with one of their compatible models of ankle boots for the ultimate piece of flexible footwear. 

Bhava’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Bhava uses REACH-certified Italian vegan leather that does not contain PCP, formaldehyde, PVC, phthalates, azo dyes, or chrome. 

Other materials include cork fabric, organic cotton, eco Ultrasuede, wood and natural rubber. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

Sustainable boots to sandals, everything is handmade in either Spain or Mumbai (which is 100% female owned and operated).

Carbon commitments & green practices:

The soles on each pair of Bhava’s vegan sustainable shoes are repairable. 

They also offer an eco-friendly shoe care kit containing gentle, non-toxic products to help keep your shoes in tip-top shape.


9. VEJA

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by VEJA #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by VEJA

Price Range: $70–$245

About VEJA

Are VEJA shoes sustainable? 

Yes! French-brand VEJA has been making sustainable athletic shoes for nearly 20 years and its industry-defying business model is as transparent as the holes in your old running shoes (read: you can see right through them).

You’ll find high-performance footwear for men and women, as well as those for your mini-me. 

VEJA also has plenty of vegan-friendly options, like the Urca CWL Low Top Sneaker. These eco-friendly canvas shoes are made from a coated organic cotton canvas.

VEJA’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

VEJA’s preferred sustainable materials (which account for 85% of those used) are recycled PET, and natural materials including organic cotton, chrome-free leather, organic jute, and CWL (a coated organic cotton leather alternative). 

The coating for the CWL is a 54% bio-based resin made from P.U., cornstarch, and castor bean oil. 

They also use bio-based materials for cushioning and Amazonian natural rubber for outsoles. 

All are regularly tested for toxins, evidenced by required supplier reports.

Supply chain & labor practices:

Produced in Brazil, VEJA ensures safe, equitable working conditions and fair wages for everyone involved in the production process.

The Certified B Corp also sets the price for the cotton they purchase for the entire year, to encourage financial security and better ecological practices among suppliers. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Using renewable energy and carbon reduction practices, VEJA publishes its exact carbon footprint, as well as the emissions for each sneaker model. 

You can drop off your old VEJA shoes to stores in New York and France, where they’ll be cleaned and refurbished or recycled. 

Community & charitable giving:

To staff its Parisian warehouse, VEJA partners with Log’ins, a social inclusion company that provides job opportunities, professional development, and social support to disabled people.


10. Cariuma

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Cariuma #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Cariuma

Price Range: $79–$169

About Cariuma

Cariuma came into being when two guys from Brazil decided that sneakers could be better—both for the consumer and the planet.

Their vintage-inspired, eco-friendly shoes for men and women include vegan sneakers and sustainable skate shoes, carefully designed for comfort and durability. 

Check out their collaboration with National Geographic for some nature-inspired footwear. 

Cariuma’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Cariuma uses several natural materials including GOTS-certified organic cotton, BCI cotton, natural rubber, OEKO-TEX-certified bamboo, sustainable cork, and leather and suede from LWG Gold-Rated tanneries. 

They also use recycled materials including nylon and rPET, and mamona oil, a plant-based alternative to petroleum. 

All materials are dyed using bluesign® approved dye chemicals.

Supply chain & labor practices:

This Certified B Corp’s sustainable men’s shoes and women’s shoes are made in a WRAP GOLD-certified facility. Workers receive living wages and benefit from a safe and respectful working environment. 

Annual audits ensure compliance with Cariuma’s Code of Conduct and the brand shares the level of traceability it has across the different tiers of its supply chain. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Featuring protective toe caps and fully stitched outsoles, these eco-friendly skate shoes are made to last. 

Each pair ships carbon-neutral in recyclable and recycled materials, printed with soy-based ink. 

Community & charitable giving:

For every pair sold, two trees are planted in the Brazilian rainforest.


11. Rothy’s

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Sustainable Jungle #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Sustainable Jungle

Price Range: $119–$249

About Rothy’s

San Francisco-based Rothy’s prioritizes recycling with its innovative signature fiber made from recycled water bottles and beach plastic. 

The recycled thread is knitted into women’s and men’s sustainable shoes that are machine washable, colorful, and comfortably stylish. 

The vegan shoe brand‘s best-selling shoe, The Point, comes in over 30 different colors and prints. Each pair is knitted from around 11 plastic bottles. 

You’ll also find flats, loafers, sneakers, and slippers for both women and men, and a cute and colorful kids collection

Rothy’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Rothy’s uses recycled water bottles and marine plastic for their sustainable walking shoes. 

Other sustainable materials include merino wool and hemp for uppers and algae-based foam, natural rubber, bio-based TPU, natural minerals, and castor beans for the footbeds and soles.

Supply chain & labor practices:

Rothy’s owns a factory in Dongguan, China, and team members are intimately involved in the manufacturing process.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

3D printing technology is used to knit uppers to the exact shape required, saving 30% of material waste compared to traditional manufacturing. 

Rothy’s offices, stores, and workshop are powered by 100% renewable energy. They offset their shipping emissions and use recycled packaging made from 95% post consumer waste.

The brand’s Sustainability Council is working to develop zero-waste solutions. You can drop off your worn-out shoes at any of Rothy’s retail stores for recycling.

Community & charitable giving:

Rothy gives back to several charity partners, including the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.


12. Dooeys

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Sustainable Jungle #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Sustainable Jungle

Price Range: $130-$140

About Dooeys

Looking for sustainable slip-on shoes?

Designed in Amsterdam and made in Portugal, Dooeys sustainable slip-on shoes are the ultimate comfy at-home shoe. 

This sustainable shoe brand’s women’s styles include vegan leather loafers, mules, and sandals, all of which are 100% vegan. 

The House Loafers in Blush Cinnamon are bestsellers. With a cozy lining and supportive insoles, they’ll keep your feet happy whether you’re working from home, kicking back, or getting on household chores. 

Dooeys Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

Dooeys uses vegan leather made from apples, recycled plastic bottles, organic cotton, and recycled polyester.  

They also used recycled rubber and foam, cork, and sugarcane EVA for the inserts and soles of the shoes, along with a coconut fiber husk footbed.

Supply chain & labor practices:

Prioritizing small batch production, Dooeys shoes are handmade in a small, ethical factory in Portugal. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Dooeys shoes are wrapped in recycled materials that double as shipping packaging, and shipping is carbon offset.


13. Thesus

13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Images by Thesus #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle
Images by Thesus

Price Range: $138–$220

About Thesus

For sustainable shoes Canada dwellers and outdoor enthusiasts will love, Toronto-based Thesus offers unisex, functional designs in a great range of colors. 

This BIPOC and woman-owned sustainable footwear brand is focused on getting people outside, and its collection of boots and clogs is designed to do just that. 

If you’re in the market for some sustainable hiking shoes, The Weekend Boot is their all-seasons, water-resistant boot, perfect for outdoor adventuring, errand running, and everything in between.

Thesus’ Ethical & Sustainability Practices

Materials:

One of our favorite recycled shoe brands, Thesus’ shoes are created from 95–100% recycled materials, including recycled plastic bottles, recycled marine plastic, recycled synthetic wool, and recycled natural rubber. 

Both The Weekend Boot and the Terrus Clogs are 100% vegan. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

100% of production takes place in Portugal. 

All of Thesus’ staff and the staff of their direct partners are paid a living wage. They are also working to ensure that living wages are paid by the material suppliers. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

The brand is in the process of becoming a Climate Neutral Certified company, but ultimately aims to be Climate Positive and regenerative.


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What Are Sustainable Shoes?

What is a sustainable shoe, exactly? 

Materials play a big role in the sustainability of a shoe, and there are plenty of eco-friendly options, including recycled and natural materials.

It’s also important to consider a shoe’s overall environmental and social impact, from raw material sourcing to end-of-life options (think: repair and recycling).

This includes social sustainability, so fair trade and ethical manufacturing practices are essential. 

We’ve listed our methodology for choosing shoes made of sustainable materials, so keep reading to get the full scoop.


How We Found The Best Eco-Friendly Shoe Brands

Due to its multiple components and materials, there’s a lot that goes into a sustainable shoe. 

As usual, we used our sustainable fashion criteria to sift through the sustainable sneakers and ethical sandals and find shoes made of sustainable materials.

Materials:

What are eco-friendly shoes made of? 

Materials can make or break a shoe’s sustainability, so we looked for brands that prioritized eco-friendly materials: responsibly sourced, natural materials (cotton, hemp, wood, natural rubber, and cork) and recycled materials (recycled polyester, rubber, and nylon). 

It’s also heartening to see increased use of new and innovative sustainable materials, including sustainable vegan leather and bio-based materials like those made from algae and sugarcane.

We may fancy a pair of green sneakers, but we don’t want any greenwashing, so third-party certifications are key. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

A transparent supply chain is a must for any ethical shoe brand

We look for fair trade brands that transparently share where their products are produced and the mechanisms they have in place to ensure that workers are paid a living wage and have safe and fair working conditions. 

Third-party certifications are ideal, but given that they may not be 100% reliable (see: B Corp greenwashing), we’d also recommend doing your own research into a brand’s shoes.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Carbon-related sustainability goals are crucial. 

The best eco-friendly shoe brands are taking actionable, proven steps towards a carbon-neutral and climate positive footprint. 

We also look for sustainable packaging made from recycled, recyclable, and biodegradable materials.

Community & charitable giving:

Brands that give back make a positive impact in their communities through company culture, social initiatives, and nonprofit partnerships give us an extra spring in our step.


Final Thoughts On Sustainable Shoe Brands For Women & Men

The game is afoot with ethical and sustainable shoes!

Outfitting your feet responsibly can be a headache, especially since shoes are not your typical sustainable minimalist wardrobe staple. 

These environmentally friendly shoe brands though have made big steps in making better shoes.

As always, only consider purchasing shoes when you really need to. Taking care of your shoes and repairing them helps tread a little lighter on the planet—hence why durability and repairability are important considerations when shopping for new shoes.

While finding those in good condition and in the right size via online thrift stores can be tricky, it’s always worth a peek. You might get lucky!

Know someone in need of new sustainable kicks? 

Share this post with your marathon buddy (or shoe-shopping friend) and help spread the word about sustainable shoe brands changing the footwear industry for the better.

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13 Sustainable Shoes To Keep Your Sustainability Game Afoot Image by The Root Collective #sustainableshoes #sustainableshoebrands #sustainablewomensshoes #ecofriendlyshoes #ecofriendlymensshoes #bestsustainableshoes #sustainablejungle

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