Our favorite ethically-made sneakers are crafted in Brazil using organic cotton, wild Amazonian rubber, and upcycled materials in innovative processes that make us proud to call them friends.
SNEAKERS TO BE SEEN IN
VEJA means “look” in Portuguese. As a brand that’s exactly what they want the people who wear their sneakers to do. Look deeper, and see who’s behind the product, where it came from, and how it was made. Their incredibly high standards of workers’ treatment, ecological protection, transparency, and design make VEJA the most sustainable sneakers we can ever imagine wearing
ANATOMY OF THE ESPLAR
THE ESPLAR COLLECTION
WILD AMAZONIAN RUBBER
The rubber soles of these sneakers are also at the soul of the brand. Made from wild Amazonian rubber, the tread does more than support your feet. It’s also saved 120,000 hectares of rainforest in the Amazon and supports the legacy of the seringueiros, the rubber tappers who live in the forest. To date, 120 seringueiros families have become part of the VEJA project.
COTTON WITH A CONSCIENCE
VEJA sources its organic cotton directly from farmer associations in Brazil and Peru that harvest it with respect for people and the environment. VEJA pays above-market rates to ensure fair and positive partnerships for the families they are working with. In 2017 VEJA paid 90% higher than the market price for their organic cotton. Since 2004, VEJA has purchased 180 tons of organic cotton directly from Brazilian producers.
“We've been buying organic cotton directly from farmers for 12 years.”
TRANSPARENCY IN LEATHER
VEJA tracks the source of all its leather which comes from southern Brazil. While VEJA’s tannery does use low chrome, it is regularly closely checked for to ensure it always complies with REACH standards which require it does not contain any toxic chrome VI. Vegetable tanning is used on 10% of VEJA styles, and 1 of 4 models is 100% vegan.
UPCYCLING WITH IMAGINATION
VEJA is the first ever sneaker company to use a fabric made entirely from plastic bottles. On average, only 3 plastic bottles are needed to make a pair of VEJAs with B-Mesh. Recycled jute, cotton, and polyester in jersey form are used to create J-Mesh as well as the linings in many VEJA styles.
More than anything that makes VEJA one of the most ethical sneaker companies around is their fairtrade practices. Every shoe they make contributes positively to the welfare of the people who made it from working directly with cotton and rubber suppliers in Brazil and paying above market prices via long-term contracts, to giving vulnerable individuals a second chance at work in their Paris distribution center.
our picks for pairing
Here's what we're wearing with our VEJAs right now.