The following article was written by guest writer Sean Collander.
When thinking about switching to a vegan lifestyle, most people focus on what they eat and forget about other aspects of everyday life, like shoes. I was one of those people. However, after being vegan for some time now, I have been able to discover plenty of great options. Below are a few finds from my own personal wardrobe:
I was surprised to learn from a friend who has been vegan way longer than I have that most men’s sneakers are vegan. The main (but not the only) thing to look out for is leather. Luckily, Zappos has an entire section dedicated strictly to vegan shoes, which is where I found these bad boys. (Not all the Onitsuka Tigers listed are vegan, but the ones that are vegan have “vegan” in nice bold font in the description.)
Running: It’s good for you. You get exercise and fresh air, and you build up those endorphins that make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. The best part is that most shoes designed for this activity are vegan. HOORAY! Specifically, I chose to go with the Nike Lunarglide. Not only are they vegan, they also use crazy Nike technology inspired (I assume) by the moon.
Alright, so we’ve covered casual, and we’ve covered sweaty. Those were easy. When it comes to finding a shoe to help class it up a bit, well, that can be a bit more difficult. Unfortunately, leather seems to be the “go-to” material for about 90 percent of dress shoes. You always have your options with faux-leather (Alternative Outfitters has a few great choices), but I most recently found a great pair of canvas dress shoes at my local Urban Outfitters. I decided to go with the grey pair (they match my pinstripes), but you can also get them in tan or black.
Tip: If your local Urban Outfitters doesn’t have these shoes in stock, ask to have them ordered for you in the store. They ship to your house, and the company will waive the shipping fee.
I have been able to adjust to a vegan lifestyle pretty well in a relatively short period of time. Shoes were the biggest hurdle I had to jump. And as I always say, “If in doubt, search it out” (OK, I just made that up). But it’s true. If you are unsure whether a particular brand or style is vegan, the Internet can be your best friend. I mean, come on, where are you reading this?