When Hollywood’s eco-conscious cognoscenti look to make a fashion move this season, the easiest way may be with a pair of sustainably produced sneakers — a category that has come into its own, led by hip designers like Stella McCartney and Rick Owens in his collaboration with Tinseltown fave Veja (whose fans have included Chloë Grace Moretz, Seth Rogen, Katie Holmes, Eddie Redmayne and Jennifer Garner.)
Long committed to an Earth-friendly approach, McCartney creates recycled polyester styles that use 50 percent less energy than virgin polyester. Veja makes its knit version in a material made from recycled plastic bottles with sole construction that includes sugar cane, banana oil, natural rubber and rice waste.
Mr P. (the in-house brand of Mr. Porter) and Pangaia’s leather-like sneakers use an Italian biomaterial made from grape skins, stalks and seeds left over from winemaking. Indie brand Greats’ innovative footbed is made with algae foam from overpopulated ecosystems, while Saucony’s vegan sneaker incorporates cotton, jute, wool, rubber and even beet and gardenias. (Saucony’s shoes ship in a 100 percent recycled cardboard box and without paper stuffing to reduce waste.) Shoelaces are getting a makeover, too, in recycled cotton or from PET plastic bottles.
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The McCarren sneaker with algae-foam footbed and recycled cotton laces. One hundred percent recycled materials are used in binding and stitching. Ryan Reynolds, Emily Ratajkowski, Kaley Cuoco, Ben Affleck and Orlando Bloom have all worn the brand.
2. Golden Goose
V-Star distressed low-top women’s sneakers made from recycled canvas and leather.
Runyon running shoe with recycled mesh upper and lining and vegan suede panels.
Grape leather sneakers with part-recycled rubber soles from discarded products.
5. Onitsuka Tiger
Delegation Ex sneaker with recycled leather upper and repurposed PET laces. Willow Smith has been a brand ambassador; $140, at Onitsuka Tiger, Beverly Hills.
6. Mr P.
Larry Eco-Edition made from Vegea, a byproduct of Italian wine production.
7. Rick Owens X Veja
Rick Owens’ Runner 2 in Pop-Pink with V-knit upper made from 100 percent fully recycled polyester from plastic bottles.
Calibre Jazz Court RFG is made of completely plant-based materials, down to natural dyes from gardenias and beets.
9. Stella McCartney
Loop lace-up women’s sneakers made from recycled polyester and cruelty-free non-leather materials.
Mizzle women’s wool runner is carbon-neutral with an eco-certified water-repellent coating. Lana Condor, Alicia Vikander, Michael Fassbender, Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher and Emma Roberts have all worn Allbirds.
11. Adidas Originals
Stan Smith recycled leather sneakers with perforated side stripes.
The Luke White Recycled is a version of the Italian brand’s chunky signature sneaker fashioned with at least 50 percent natural recycled leather.
A version of this story first appeared in the April 14 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.