In the so-called ethical footwear department, you used to have to choose between walking in style but trampling the planet, or choosing an environmentally responsible pair but sacrificing looks. Now you can combine them without giving up comfort. Proof of this is Saola, a young, dedicated shoe brand that fits the bill and is determined to keep innovating to stand out.
While many consumers are now looking at their fashion purchases from a sustainable perspective, the sneaker sector continues to produce more and more models at a furious pace without worrying about carbon emissions and tons of waste generated. Aware of this environmental disaster and new consumer expectations, some shoe brands are succeeding by rethinking their manufacturing processes and opting for innovative materials. The goal is to minimize their impact on the environment as much as possible. This is the case with the Saola brand, whose models with attractive designs prove as comfortable as they are eco-friendly.
Sneakers made from recycled and bio-based materials
Behind saolafounded in 2018 and based in Annecy, is Guillaume Linosier, who after an international career in the outdoor industry decided to start his own brand. The fundraiser then allowed him to achieve his goal: to create a footwear brand whose commitment to the planet is very real and in no way subject to the greenwash that too many companies still practice. Concern for the preservation of the environment which Guillaume learns from an early age and therefore transfers to the footwear sector, a globalized and especially polluting industry where traceability of materials can be difficult.
It is unthinkable for him to choose, for example, leather, a material whose production is detrimental to the environment and which, nevertheless, makes up the majority of footwear models that can be found on the market. Based on the observation that 70% of the carbon footprint of a pair of shoes comes from raw materials and the manufacturing process, therefore, eco-design was the main goal of the brand. The production concern is integrated from the very beginning of the design of each model, Saola is also working in parallel on the remaining 30%, related, in particular, to transport.
Therefore, Saola shoes are made from 4 main materials: recycled plastic bottles, seaweed, cork and organic cotton. It takes about five recycled plastic bottles to make one pair of shoes….