12 Best Sustainable Sneaker Brands for 2020

Looking for your next pair of sustainable sneakers?

You’re in the right place.

We’ve created this guide to help you find the best brands out there today making stylish and eco-friendly sneakers.

Most of the sneakers in this list can be dressed up or down and are comfortable enough to wear all day long and handle a range of activities.

As usual, you can use the contents section below to jump to specific brands in this list, or feel free to scroll through leisurely.

Let’s get into the article.

11 Best Sustainable Sneaker Brands

1. Allbirds

Sustainability: Eco-friendly materials, B Corp, shoe donation program.

Price: $$ – $$$

Allbirds sustainable sneakers

Allbirds are sustainable sneaker brand from San Francisco that you may already know. They’re growing quickly thanks to their reputation as being ‘the world’s most comfortable shoes’.

Allbirds are a B Corporation, which is proof of their sustainable efforts. They also have a Forest Stewardship Council certification. This means that their materials meet standards to ensure the protection of forests around the world.

Allbirds sneakers are made from a variety of eco-friendly materials such as recycled plastic bottles, and TENCEL™ Lyocell.

If that’s not enough to convince you, Allbirds top it off by donating lightly used and returned Allbirds to communities in need of shoes all over the world.

Shop Allbirds

2. Babuuk

Sustainability: B-Corp Certified, wool sourced from mulesing-free sheep, follow traditional, ethical processes when producing their sneakers. Pay their workers 25% higher than national averages, hiring process to promote diversity.

Price range: $$ – $$$

Babuuk sustainable sneakers for women

Babuuk are an awesome sustainable sneaker brand making shoes for women and men.

First of all, they’re a B Corp, part of the global movement of business as a force for good. They meet all the guidelines for social and environmental performance and ensure their processes benefit their workers, community and environment.

Their wool sneakers are sourced from sheep in Portugal and New Zealand.

In Portugal, their sheep live in the protected Serra da Estrela Natural Park, a large protected area, and are all mulesing-free.

The farms in New Zealend are chosen for their sustainable water and soap washing processes that involve recycling to make sure no local water sources are polluted.

Babuuk’s sneakers are minimal, stylish, and comfy.

Shop Babuuk’s sustainable sneakers

3. Veja

Sustainability: Vegan leather

Price: $$$

Veja sustainable sneakers

Veja sneakers are instantly recognizable by the signature ‘V’ logo.

They create a range of sustainable vegan sneakers that are cruelty-free and ethical.

They’re stylish, too.

In our opinion, Veja’s sneaker designs rival any other leading sneaker brand in terms of looks, and as most of their sneakers have a minimalist design they can be dressed up or dressed down as you please.

All of their materials are sourced in a responsible way,

4. Matt & Nat

Sustainability: Vegan, sustainable materials

Price: $$

Matt and Nat vegan sneakers

Matt & Nat are a vegan brand from Montreal creating a range of clothes, accessories, and – you guessed it – sneakers.

Like Veja, their selection of shoes are minimalist and stylish, and can definitely be worn with a wide range of outfits.

Another benefit of Matt & Nat’s sustainable sneakers is that they’re actually very affordable, considering their style. Definitely worth checking out if you’re in the market for some new fashionable minimalist sneakers.

5. Stella McCartney

Sustainability: Vegan materials

Price: $$$$

vegan sneakers from stella mccartney

Stella McCartney is a completely vegan brand and always has been. It’s impressive considering the scale of their operations.

They use a variety of sustainable materials instead of the materials sneakers are traditionally made from.

For example, the recycled polyester they use has a 24x lower impact on the environment than Brazilian calf leather does.

As you may already know, the styles of sneaker they make are pretty high-fashion

6. Tastemaker Supply

Sustainability: Vegan

Price: $$$ – $$$$

cork sneakers by tastemaker supply

Tastemaker Supply’s vegan shoes are all hand made in ethical factories in Taiwan. They offer a range of women’s and men’s shoes, in a range of styles.

Their range of sneakers is slightly limited compared to their other ranges, however they have some interesting models such as a pair made from cork.

They’re one of the more expensive brands here, and you can expect to spend $100+ on a pair. But, according to their website the vegan leather is guaranteed to last at least 10 years without flaking or falling apart. If so, that’s amazing value for money.

7. Adidas x Parley

Sustainability: Recycled plastic trash turned into shoes

Price: $$$

Adidas x Parley eco-friendly sneakers

Adidas x Parley is a great ongoing collaboration between the major sportswear brand Adidas, and Parley For The Oceans, which is an ocean conservation and awareness project.

The Adidas x Parley shoes look great. You’ll find some of Adidas’ popular trainers in there such as the Alphabounce.

The trainers are made from at least 75% upcycled plastic trash collected from beaches and coastal communities. As well as this, they’re produced in low energy, low water usage process meaning you get the benefits of sustainability combined with the performance of Adidas shoes.

8. Tread By Everlane

Sustainability: Plastic reduction, eco-friendly leather, recycled bottles, carbon offset program

Price: $$ – $$$

Everlane sneakers

It’s often debated whether Everlane is truly an ethical brand.

However, we’re on Everlane’s side when it comes to their Tread sneakers. They have some impressive stats on their website about just how sustainable these sneakers are.

The sole is 94.2% free from virgin plastic, compared to most sneaker soles which is made entirely from plastic. They use recycled and natural rubber that would otherwise go to the landfill, cutting emissions by 54%.

They do use real leather, so if you’re looking for a vegan pair these aren’t for you. On the bright side, the leather is sourced from a Gold Certified tannery, using 46% less CO₂ emissions than most leather tanneries.

The inside of the shoes is made from recycled plastic bottles, using around 9.5 bottles per pair.

Everlane has also partnered with NativeEnergy to offset their carbon emissions, making these sneakers carbon neutral.

9. Converse Renew

Sustainability: Upcycled materials

Price: $$

converse renew sustainable sneakers

You probably don’t associate Converse with ethical sneakers, but as it turns out, they’re making some interesting shoes to promote upcycling.

They have a few different versions of the Renew shoes.

Firstly, they do one-of-a-kind Chucks made from recycled and previously used jeans. They collaborate with Beyond Retro, a sustainable fashion brand, and vintage retailer, to source the pre-used jeans that can be turned into shoes.

As well as this, they have a range of shoes whose upper is made from 100% recycled plastic bottles.

If you’re a Converse person, it’s definitely worth checking out the Renew range for your next pair.

10. Yatay

Sustainability: Vegan, sustainable and recycled materials, eco-friendly business practices

Price: $$$ – $$$$

Yatay sustainable and ethical trainers

Yatay’s made-in-Italy sneakers are Peta-approved, and for every pair sold a tree gets planted thanks to their partnership with One Tree Planted.

They’re a relatively new brand, having only been around since 2018.

They don’t use animal leather and instead rely on a mix of bio-polyols and recycled polyester, with the look being completed by 100% hemp laces. The rest of the shoes incorporate materials such as recycled plastic bottles, recycled rubber, recycled foam, and bio-resins.

All in all, Yatay’s sneakers are highly sustainable and look great. We definitely recommend checking them out.

11. Reebok Cotton and Corn

Sustainability: Bio-friendly materials

Price: $$ – $$$

Reebok Cotton + Corn sneakers
Image source

Reebok is another major sneaker brand investing in sustainable practices.

Their Cotton + Corn range is quite unique. They say it’s the only shoe available made from 75% USA-certified bio-based content. The uppers are made completely from cotton, and the soles are made from a corn-based rubber alternative.

The long term goal for the Cotton + Corn line is to have a shoe you can bury in your backyard. Hopefully, that’s because of old age, and not because you simply don’t like them.

12. Nothing New

Sustainability: Eco-friendly materials

Price: $$$

nothing new eco-friendly sneakers

Nothing New is the final recommendation on this list. They make sneakers that are simple, but stylish.

Every pair uses 5.6 plastic bottles that are repurposed into canvas, which saves ~160 gallons of water per pair when compared to traditional 100% cotton canvas sneakers.

All of their recycled plastic meets the Global Recycle Standard so you know they’re not cutting corners when it comes to sustainability. The outsoles are made from recycled rubber and cork.

What’s more, they’re very comfortable. The Ortholite Eco-Step insoles will keep your feet happy all day long.

Wrapping Up – Best Sustainable Sneaker Brands

If you’re in need of a new pair of sneakers and care about the planet, look no further than this list.

These brands are some of the best out there right now, and you can trust that they’ve all been built to last, and look good.

If you know any more sustainable sneaker brands that deserve a spot on this list, leave a comment below or shoot us an email and we’ll check them out!

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