The Most Iconic Shoes of All Time Are Now Vegan

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Before I went vegan, I lived in Rainbow sandals—then I discovered they were made with leather, that is, skin torn from smart, social, sensitive animals such as cows. So my feet and I were beyond stoked when the brand eventually got with the times and offered vegan options. And they’re not the only ones—not even close. So many brands now offer kinder, superior vegan versions of their iconic shoes. Discover which ones your closet is missing:

Nike Unveils Vegan Air Force 1 Sneakers and More 

Nike, one of the most iconic shoe brands, is launching eco-friendly vegan versions of its classic sneaker styles, including many options within the Air Force 1, Air Max 90, Air Max 95, and Air Zoom collections. Some Air Force 1 styles boast a canvas or flyknit version, and the top-selling Air Max lines use vegan suede and textiles. Most performance shoes are animal-friendly, such as the Next Nature, Somos Familia, and Pegasus lines, with mesh, leather-free suede, Dri-FIT, or flyknit materials. All adhesives used in the brand’s shoes are animal-free, as confirmed by Nike Experts. Whether you buy these vegan shoes to be active or to hang out with friends, you can feel good knowing that no cows were exploited to make them and that they’re much better for the environment than shoes made with animal leather, too.

Suede-Style Slip-Ons and Desert Boots

Clarks launched vegan versions of two of its classic styles—the Wallabee slip-on and the Desert Boot. Each is available in two colors and stamped with an icon so that you know it was made without harming animals. They’re both made to look like suede, but the material doesn’t come from the underside of lambs, goats, pigs, calves, or deer. Shop these exciting vegan options from Clarks.

clarks vegan shoes

All-Day Comfort Sandals

Unable to deny compassionate shoppers any longer, überpopular German shoe company Birkenstock released a vegan collection in 2017, including its most iconic styles: the Arizona sandals, the Gizeh thongs, and the Boston clogs. Shop vegan footwear from Birkenstock.

Boots Lined With ‘Fleece’

UGG boots are made of sheepskin and shearling, or the skin of animals, and there’s nothing stylish about that. Thank goodness, then, for PAWJ, which makes super-comfy, fuzzy, skin- and fleece-free vegan boots. When your feet get cold, opt for PAWJ.

Canvas Flats

As a company built on compassion, it’s no surprise that TOMS offers vegan versions of its classic shoes. We were so impressed by the company’s selection of vegan items that we even presented it with a Compassionate Business Award in 2016. Shop vegan TOMS classics.

Chunky Dad Sneakers

You know those giant Fila Disruptor sneakers? Well, none of the adult sizes are vegan. While we hope Fila will offer a vegan-friendly version soon, ASOS already does. Try the Dominic chunky sneakers from ASOS Design.

Combat Boots

The 1460 is the original Dr. Martens boot. The eight eyes, grooved sides, heel loop, yellow stitching, and a comfortable, air-cushioned sole make it the standard combat-style boot. But Dr. Martens took this classic style one step further with 100% vegan construction. Shop Dr. Martens’ entire extensive vegan line.

Essential Sandals

You can now sport TKEES sandals #WearEverYouGo and feel good about what’s on your feet, thanks to the company’s new line of vegan leather sandals. TKEES’ most classic styles—Lily, Gemma, and Riley—are all available animal-free.

Skate Shoes

Whether high or low tops, Converse Chuck Taylor All Stars are about as classic as shoes get. But did you know that most are totally animal-skin free? The equally classic Jack Purcell Canvas Low Tops from Converse are vegan-friendly, too, as are the ones from the collaboration of Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown with Converse.

Although not all Vans shoe are vegan (yet!), the company does carry a number of vegan-friendly shoe styles, including these Classic Slip-Ons and Authentic Lo Pros. The black-on-black Canvas Old Skool sneakers are vegan, too.

Surf Sandals

A few years ago, San Clemente, California, company Rainbow Sandals finally began selling vegan-friendly hemp versions of its classic flip-flops, and I couldn’t be happier. Now, I get to sport my favorite kicks while more cows get to keep their skin. Shop vegan men’s and women’s Rainbow sandals.

The Yellow Boot

Timberland, maker of the Original Yellow Boot, may not yet offer a vegan-friendly work boot, but Lugz Footwear does. The reliable boot company offers low, medium, and tall steel-toe boots in synthetic leather and synthetic nubuck that are slip-resistant and offer protection from electrical hazards up to 600 volts. Lugz also offers animal-friendly casual boots, such as the Roamer Hi, perfect for traveling.


There you have it—all the classics, none of the cruelty. Looking for even more vegan shoes? Click below to browse fully vegan brands:

Note: These companies cannot guarantee that the glue used in their shoes is vegan. We’ve opted to include them because their products are widely available. The more popular these otherwise animal-friendly shoes are, the more vegan options will be made available in the future.

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