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Luxury shoes are a coveted investment for many shoppers, but in the burgeoning era of conscious consumerism, how do the top luxury footwear brands rate for their impact on people, the planet, and animals? The following brands’ ratings were published on the dates per listing and may not reflect claims the brands have made since then. Our ratings analysts are constantly rerating the thousands of brands you can check on our directory.
A luxury mission changed
When I started researching this topic, I was expecting to write a guide to the luxury brands doing better in the footwear category. Unfortunately, that’s not what came back after our expert ratings team reviewed the relevant brands.
The reality is, despite popular belief, luxury does not necessarily mean better—quality or ethics. In fact, of the top 28 luxury footwear brands we looked at, only two came out with “Good” or “Great” ratings. Eight rank “It’s a Start”, and the rest rate low on the scale with “Not Good Enough” or “We Avoid” ratings.
Some of the most common reasons luxury footwear brands rank so low on the ethics and sustainability ladder is their continued use of damaging and harmful materials like polyester, leather, and exotic animal skins, and their lack of action to ensure payment of living wages.
So, whether you’re searching for your next pair of luxury shoes or just curious how the popular brands score in Good On You’s methodology, this one’s for you.
Why you can trust our recommendations
At Good On You, our mission is to make it as easy as possible to buy products that meet your needs, from brands that live up to your expectations in relation to their environmental and social performance and how they impact animals. We also support the motto “buy less, buy better” which looks like opting for high-quality, timeless, trend-transcending pieces you need that are designed for longevity so they last for many years to come.
As ever, the most sustainable choice to make is the one already in your closet. Whether that means taking care of your clothes, getting them mended or tailored, or mixing and matching to keep things fresh. The next best option is to swap or shop second hand. But sometimes you must buy new, and that’s where our expert ratings system comes into play.
As you know, ensuring fair wages and decent working conditions for the people behind our clothes is crucial for a more fair and ethical fashion industry. It’s not just about the materials or the environmental impact—it’s also about the human impact. That’s why our selection of brands creating more affordable and sustainable t-shirts have all received at least a “Good” rating for labour conditions. These brands prioritise more responsible practices. By choosing t-shirts from these brands, you can feel confident that your purchase supports a more equitable fashion industry, where the people making our clothes are treated with the respect and fairness they deserve.
Luxury footwear brands worth a look in
Brands rated ‘Good’ and ‘Great’
The following brands are leading the way in luxury fashion that is doing better for people, the planet, and animals, and are your best bet if you are in the market for new luxury shoes.