5 Iconic Shoes and Our Ethical Alternatives - Good On You
11 Feb

5 Iconic Shoes and Our Ethical Alternatives

When it comes to shoes, it pays to tread carefully. From sweatshop scandals to animal rights issues, some of the world biggest shoe brands have hit the headlines over the years for all the wrong reasons.

Luckily for us shoe lovers, there is a growing number of brands getting on the front foot and creating beautiful designs that are good for your sole.

Here are five ethical, eco-friendly, or vegan alternatives to the world’s most iconic shoes:

For Fairtrade

Instead of Converse, choose:


Rated: Great

Organic Fairtrade Black & White Hightops – Ships internationally

Etiko is an ethical footwear pioneer. The award-winning brand is Fairtrade-certified 100% vegan.  These basketball shoes provide the perfect alternative to Chuck Taylor All Stars.

See the rating.

Shop Etiko.

Instead of Nike, choose:


Rated: Good

These luxe-athletic shoes from French brand Veja, are Fairtrade certified and use recycled cotton and polyester as well as leather. Veja buys Fairtrade rubber directly from producers in Brazil – a great alternative to Nike Air Max runners.

See the rating.

Shop Veja.

For Vegan

Instead of Jimmy Choo, choose Bhava:


Rated: Good

We love US label Bhava. Their shoes are not only elegant and high quality, they’re also 100% vegan, meaning you can guarantee no animals were harmed in the making. What’s more, they won’t cost you the GDP of a small nation state to buy. We think that makes it a pretty easy choice.

See the rating.

Shop Bhava.

Instead of Timberland, choose:


Rated: Good

Portuguese footwear makers Nae are wholeheartedly committed to minimising their impact on the environment as well as our furry friends. Their shoes are made from natural materials like cork, recycled plastics, and Piñatex (faux leather made from pineapple leaves).

See the rating.

Shop NAE.

For recycled

Instead of Havaianas, choose:



Rated: Good

Indosole craft the soles of all of their flip flops out of old tyres that have been salvaged from landfill in Bali. The tyres, which would have otherwise been burned, emitting toxic fumes, make the soles of the shoes.  They also make these shoes without the use of fuel-powered machinery –  win-win for the atmosphere.

See the rating.

Shop Indosole.

Editor's note

feature image via Unsplash, all other images via brands mentioned. Good On You publishes the world's most comprehensive ratings of fashion brands’ impact on people, the planet and animals. Use the Directory to search more than 2,000 brands. To support our work, we may earn a commission on sales made using our offer codes or affiliate links.

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