Sustainability. It’s a word you’ve seen time and time again online. We see this word associated with many ethical, eco-friendly apparel brands, but what about shoes?
That’s why I’m excited to bring you a list of my favorite sustainable brands making ethical shoes. These brands have consistently made positive changes throughout their supply chain, products, employees, customers, and beyond.
Before we get into it, I’d like to point out that the easiest and most effective way to practice sustainability is to slow down your overconsumption! This means purchasing items you need rather than items you want. Long-lasting, basic items are the best way to accomplish this and you can find exactly that from the brands below. Also, check out some of my favorite sustainable basic brands here to help expand your sustainable wardrobe.
If you’re in the market for some new ethical shoes, the brands below are a great fit for not only you but the planet and its people as well. Let’s get into it.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting my site and read more about my disclosure policies here. All prices are accurate at the time of the article and are subject to change.
The foundation of Everlane’s business model is built on creating high-quality, timeless products that you can wear for years to come.
Everlane implements various sustainable initiatives throughout their business by prioritizing natural fibers, using recycled synthetics, and taking pride in the integrity of their factory partnerships, among many other things.
Everlane created the Forever Sneaker, a recyclable sneaker that is made to last for years. I own the forever sneaker in white and love it dearly! Besides white, they offer this sneaker in black and blue. Plus, they sell this sneaker in a slip-on style! Doesn’t get much better than that.
Everlane’s shoes come in half sizes and they offer free shipping on orders over $75.
Nisolo’s mission is to push the fashion industry towards a more sustainable future by offering fairly priced, sustainable-driven designs that benefit both the consumer and the planet.
Nisolo believes in design versatility. This ties back to what I was saying about purchasing long-lasting, basic items. The more versatile the item, the longer you’ll have it because it can go with anything. This means that not only your wallet will benefit, but the planet will as well.
What sets Nisolo apart from competitors is their commitment to the welfare of their employees, which is where they’ve implemented a code of conduct which holds strict requirements for their suppliers and brand partners’ suppliers that help develop, maintain, and apply socially acceptable practices in the workplace. Pretty cool, if you ask me.
My favorite Nisolo shoes are any of their boots. They’re incredibly durable, stylish, and most importantly, sustainable. Check out their best-selling Everyday Chelsea Boot here!
Nisolo’s shoes come in half sizes and they offer free shipping on orders over $250.
Able’s brand mission is to end generational poverty by working directly with women who have faced challenges in their lives. They work with communities to help improve lives by creating jobs and ending the cycle of charity dependency. They are truly an amazing company.
With every purchase, Able helps empower women and give them a job with dignity. These amazing women produce a number of products from leather goods, to handmade jewelry, to denim, and yes, even ethical shoes!
If you want to help women all across the world, from The United States to Ethiopia, Peru, and Mexico, then this is one of the best brands for you to check out for ethical shoes.
Able’s shoes come in half sizes and they offer free shipping when you are an Able Reward member. $4 ground shipping for those who are not.
Cariuma was created by two friends who were sick of the industry standard “cool classic” sneaker that was not only uncomfortable but wildly unsustainable as well. They decided to change that with Cariuma.
Cariuma sells canvas, leather, and suede sneakers made from eco-friendly materials, which include organic cotton. They use leather, but other than this they do not use any other animal products. 65% of their products are vegan, which is pretty awesome!
Cariuma follows the same code of conduct as Nisolo which ensures that their factories’ employees are making a livable wage throughout their supply chain. They routinely visit their suppliers and keep a close working relationship which goes to show their dedication to making sure their factories’ employees are being treated, and paid, fairly.
Cariuma’s shoes come in half sizes and they offer free standard shipping with every order.
Thousand Fell is a sneaker brand making ethical shoes that combine thoughtful design with modern styles and sustainably sourced materials. Their sneakers are made to last, which helps with the overconsumption problem I mentioned earlier.
Thousand Fell is an amazing company that designs its shoes right in NYC and makes them in Brazil. They work with a small family-owned factory that has three decades of shoemaking experience. This is how Thousand Fell is able to ensure that they keep any excess inventory low and quality high.
Thousand Fell is dedicated to creating a circular and responsible business model by ensuring every pair of sneakers is built to the highest quality to ensure they won’t end up in the trash.
This brand is also awesome because they donate 1% of every purchase to a nonprofit that you get to choose! There are a ton of amazing charities to choose from, from composting, to upcycling, to environmental protection.
Thousand Fell offers half sizes and also offers free ground shipping.
I’ve heard so many great things about Rothy’s! I’m sure you’ve heard of them too, especially if you listen to podcasts because they are often advertised on them.
Rothy’s products are created with comfort in mind, made from eco-friendly materials that turn into long-lasting wardrobe staples. They take sustainability seriously at Rothy’s and have a series of goals they’re striving for in order to create a better future. One of those goals is to achieve a closed-loop product model by 2023.
What makes Rothy’s different is that they own their production factory in China in order to ensure responsible manufacturing. It’s so important for brands to know what’s going on in their production facilities, so this is awesome!
Rothy’s also strives towards generating zero waste by creating machine-washable styles that are both cute and comfy. They create styles that are able to be worn for various occasions which means you are able to cut down on overconsumption by having a versatile pair of shoes you can wear anywhere!
Rothy’s offers half sizes and also offers free ground shipping.
Sézane, I love you! This brand is one of my favorite contemporary Parisian fashion brands, and one of my favorite brands producing ethical shoes. Their styles cost a pretty penny by they are 100% worth it with the quality and designs.
Sézane still has some steps in their sustainability mission but hey, baby steps! Sustainability takes a while to work towards, as we all know. Let’s talk about what Sézane is doing to make their products and business more sustainable.
3/4 of their materials are eco-friendly, made from a variety of organic and certified materials including organic cotton, recycled polyester, and vegetable-tanned leather. More than half of their pieces are certified, which means that they confirm the absence of any harmful, chemical substances.
100% of Sézane’s shipping boxes are made from recycled cardboard or are derived from sustainably managed forests. All of their locations are also powered by renewable energy. And most importantly, in one year, they reduced the carbon footprint of their products by 22%!
Sézane ships for free on orders over $200.
Last but not least, we have Allbirds. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve definitely heard of this awesome brand! They’ve been pioneering the ethical shoes industry as having some of the best products out there that are made to last. Here’s why!
The founders of Allbirds realized that merino wool had some amazing qualities which are why they decided to create their shoes from this material! They use a ton of eco-friendly materials and also uses renewable energy to help reduce climate impact.
Allbirds are also very involved in the production process as they trace all animal products to the first stage of production so they ensure that everything is done ethically. Well done.
Allbirds focuses on simplistic designs that are made to be comfortable and practical, giving the shoes a long lifetime. They also use 90% post-consumer recycled cardboard that is a multi-purpose shoebox, shopping bag, and mailer all in one.
Allbirds’ shoes ship free over $50.
Let’s Wrap It Up
I hope you all enjoyed this article on the best brands to buy ethical shoes! Many of these brands I own and a few I have yet to try. But all in all, they’re all amazing and I can’t wait for them to become a part of my wardrobe in the future.
Don’t forget to check out all of my other sustainable content here! And as always, thank you for reading. I appreciate you more than you know.
With love or whatever,