Monday, April 5, 2010
I love shoes. I have a few leather shoes still kicking around from before I went vegan, but the vast majority of my shoes are vegan. I happen to love canvas shoes, which is kind of bad because it rains here all of the time! It can be difficult to find vegan-friendly shoes, so hopefully these links will help.
Here are some general shoe websites. You can find everything from high heels to flats to sneakers and mens shoes on these sites. Most of them are reasonable prices too, even with shipping.
Zappos Vegan Shoes
The main thing I look for in shoes is animal friendly materials (fake leather, canvas, hemp, rubber, etc). Oftentimes, even when the shoe itself is fake leather etc, the sole will be made of real leather so that is something to watch out for. Another issue is animal-based glues. I try to buy shoes specifically labeled vegan-friendly but sometimes that isn't possible and I accept the fact that maybe the glue used is animal based.
The shoes in the picture above are the ones I wear the most. I used to have quite the large stash of high heels, but they all got ruined last year in a pee-flood from the above apartment *sigh*. I hardly wear heels anyways, I just like the look of them.
Note: I try to buy shoes that do not use animal based glue but am not 100% certain all of these use vegan-friendly glue.
#1 - Simple Shoes flip flops. I wore these every day last summer (hence the dirtiness on the soles) and they are the greatest flip flops EVER. They are made of recycled car tire, carpet underlay and organic hemp and stuff. They are vegan and environmentally friendly. They are pricey, but considering I have another year (at least) of wear in them, it's worth it.
#2 - Asics Gel Nimbus (10?) running shoes. These are made of synthetic leather and rubber and are the best running shoes I have ever bought. I ordered them off zappos and got them for half price! Asics makes a lot of vegan friendly shoes so I like them. Another good brand for vegan running shoes is New Balance.
#3 - Dollhouse boots. I love these boots! I bought them at Winners a few years ago for super cheap. Stores like Winners and Payless Shoes are a great place to find vegan shoes. Because the stores carry "budget brands" most of the time the shoes are synthetic leather. It's a win win - cheap and vegan!
#4 - Tretorn Faux-Fur lined gumboots. One day I was walking home from school and my converse got soaking wet and my feet and socks got wet and I was just pissy and miserable. That day I decided to buy gumboots. I love the bright blue of these boots and the fuzzy lining keeps my feet warm(ish) when it's slushy or snowy out. They are pretty comfy although I have gotten blisters on my heels from them. Now when it rains I don't cringe in fear of wet feet!
#5 - Saucony Originals Jazz Lo-Pro Vegan Shoes (stupid name haha). These are my favourite shoes. I seriously love them. They are the only shoes I have ever bought that were instantly comfortable. I have not had a single blister or anything from them. They are made of hemp and are padded so they are relatively water-resistant although my toes did get wet last week in a ridiculous rainstorm, but that's to be expected with any shoe. These were only $50 from zappos too. If you need comfortable daily shoes, buy these. I can walk for hours and stand for ages in them and my feet still don't get sore
#6 - Sanuk "I'm Game" sidewalk surfers. These are also my favourite shoes (I can have two, right?). As I mentioned above I am obsessed with canvas no-fuss shoes. I can just slip these on (no socks required) and walk for ages. They feel like you are bare foot. The only problem with these is that they are a really thin fabric and thus have zero water protection. I avoid wearing these if it's remotely rainy outside.
#7 - Draven slip ons. I love the cute factor these shoes have, and that they are vegan. The only problem is that they give me serious blisters. I have overly sensitive heels, so they might not give everyone blisters, but I can't wear them for very long periods of time. They do get better after they are broken in however. Draven has lots of cute shoes, so check them out.
#8 - Simple Shoes sneakers. These have the squishiest soles ever! I love them. If you go to their website you can find tonnes of colours and styles of this shoe. They aren't the comfiest shoes out there, but they are eco-friendly.. Even if these shoes felt like death I would buy them just because they say "eco-sneaks" on the tongue. I love it!
#9 - Nine West leopard heels. I am most certain that these use animal-based glue as the company is full of leather shoes but I included these to show that sometimes you can find non-leather shoes in an otherwise leather filled store. These have a man-made sole and a fabric upper. I emailed Nine West about their glue situation but they never answered me, so oh well. I still check out big leather shoe companies once in a while because I like their shoe styles, and sometimes you can find a friendly shoe :)
#10 - Rocket Dog sneakers. I had a pair of black rocket dogs for like 7 years that I wore to death. By their retirement water would soak through the bottom of the sole because they were so thin haha. If Jason didn't make me throw them out I would still wear them! I will say that every pair of rocket dogs I have owned give me blisters for the first few months so you have a pretty long break in period. After that though, they are comfort heaven! You can buy a bazillion different patterns and styles too. I emailed Rocket Dog and they told me they use animal-free glue as well. Plus, who doesn't want bright orange soles? I know I do.
#11 - My totally cliche Converse. These shoes aren't even that comfortable, but I do like the look of them. Plus, like other shoes, you can get any colour you want. I read somewhere that they use animal-free glue as well, but all their shoes are made in some serious sweat-shops, so that's not the greatest. When these need to be retired I am going to look for a more ethical substitute. I know there are many knock offs of this style.
#12 - Steve Madden booties. Steve Madden/Madden girl have a lot of cute vegan friendly shoes. Any pair of Steve Madden's I have owned (these included) are not that comfortable though, so I usually only wear them out for dinner or something. Oh well, at least I can have cute shoes for a few hours every once in a while, right?
#13 - And last but not least my gladiator sandals I got for $8 at Target. Even though Target is an American store, I still love it. They have really cheap and vegan friendly shoes. Just be sure to read the materials before you order anything.
Now you know that vegans can buy cute and comfortable shoes too!
Happy shoe shopping everyone.