Eco-friendly shoes and sneakers: how production works and how to recognize them

Today more and more people are mindful of environmental health.

Raw materials run out every year in less time, the planet is overheating, and waste is increasing. All these factors have led the world population and, in this case, the Italians to worry much more about the well-being of the planet.

What does it mean to care about the conditions of the environment? It means making conscious and sustainable choices.

During the day we perform thousands of small gestures that, although harmless, deeply affect the health of the planet. Thinking about throwing away a dress that we no longer wear, or buying plastic rather than glass bottles of water.

One of the areas in which these gestures risk becoming really harmful is that of clothing.

Fashion change quickly, and brands, to meet the ever increasing demand, quickly produce garments with chemicals that are harmful to the environment.

Does this mean you have to give up on buying new items? Absolutely not. The important thing is to know how to choose carefully what you buy. One of the most famous phrases that Mother Teresa of Calcutta always repeated was:

"What we do is just a drop in the ocean, but if we didn't do it the ocean would have one drop less".

ACBC is a company particularly mindful of environmental health, and its products are a mix of green technology and ecological materials to promote circularity.

The sneakers produced by ACBC are ecological, created with the best eco-friendly materials. We offer our customers products made in factories that strictly respect workers' conditions and environmental standards. We also use sustainable materials and production processes.

Loving the planet does not mean having to give up fashion, but making smart choices.

What are eco-friendly sneakers and shoes

Eco-friendly shoes and sneakers

Eco-friendly sneakers are called so as being innovative in many different ways. First of all, they are made with recyclable or biodegradable materials. This means that specific processes, (such as vulcanization) to combine the different parts of the shoe, are made without using glue or other chemicals.

But the most important aspect that distinguishes eco-friendly shoes is the use of plant and non-animal materials.

Alongside sustainability as a reduction of waste and a boost to the circular-economy, we feel the will of people to reduce the involvement of animals in production. Animal products are often used to produce shoes and, if this was a source of pride before, today it is less so.

For the production of eco-friendly sneakers we at ACBC use very different materials and all of vegetable origin:

  • Seaweed: used for the insole and midsole, it guarantees lightness and flexibility;
  • Eucalyptus: for the insole and midsole, because it is soft, breathable, and its color lasts over time;
  • Corn: used due to its durability and water resistance;
  • Grapes: like corn, it is durable and waterproof;
  • Cork: one of the most sustainable products in the world and harvested according to a process that allows the tree to live up to 300 years; it is used for the insole because it absorbs humidity and has antibacterial agents;
  • Pineapple: it is a durable and waterproof material;
  • Recycled polyester (which does not require new plastic for production): used for the lining and upper material because it is waterproof and breathable;
  • BCI cotton: also used for lining and upper material, it has breathable properties and prevents humidity.

All ACBC shoes are designed with natural materials, therefore in harmony with the environment, and processed through innovative systems.

What are the benefits of wearing an ecological shoe?

The first benefit of buying ecological sneakers is to encourage a circular economy.

What does this word mean? If the materials are organic, it also means that they are biodegradable and recyclable. And this is certainly a huge step forward for a society that used to produce new objects with enormous use of materials like plastic. And, consequently, it helps to reduce waste.

Secondly, products that do not use animal-derived materials allow us to protect their rights and reduce the number of killings.

However, the production of ecological shoes is not only a benefit in a broad sense to the planet. It is also a more direct and immediate benefit to those who wear a product of this kind.

What happens when chemicals are used? It happens that the foot, a very peculiar part of the body, can manifest severe allergies.

Leather tanning, for example, requires the use of potassium dichromate. It is a particularly widespread hapten that can cause quite severe allergic dermatitis. Those who are sensitive to this product will instantly notice the immediate benefit of a shoe made with plant materials.

The foot, being forced to remain closed in a shoe for many hours a day, is directly affected by the materials used. It notices, for example, when these are breathable and do not absorb sweat. This is the reason why we use plant materials able to satisfy the needs of our customers, and allow any type of foot to be at ease.

Therefore, eco-friendly shoes are suitable for all those who want to make a kind gesture towards the planet but are even more recommended for those suffering from irritation or allergies because they prevent the formation of bacteria and fungi that can also create serious problems.

What you need to consider before buying eco-friendly sneakers or shoes

Eco-friendly shoes and sneakers

Now you know what an eco-friendly shoe is and what are the many benefits that you can get from purchasing this product. But are all eco-friendly sneakers the same? Absolutely not. That's why we want to give you some indications to guide your purchases towards a product that suits your needs.

First of all, when you want to buy eco-friendly sneakers, you must consider the materials with which they are made, which should be indicated by the manufacturer. From the list we made at the beginning, you should have understood what type of materials to look for (recycled and of plant origin).

Buying shoes with recycled materials means that less waste ends up in landfills or, worse, is left in nature.

In addition to paying attention to materials, you have to pay attention to manpower. It would make no sense to use ecological materials but then exploit underpaid labor for production. This is why it is important to inquire with the manufacturer about the production process by which shoes are created and put on the market.

Finally, eco-friendly sneakers are much more durable than shoes made from synthetic materials and chemicals. If the latter force you to constantly buy new ones because they become unglued or the sole breaks, with ecological shoes you will not have these problems. Buying a good that lasts longer allows you not to waste your money and to create less waste.

How to recognize ecological sneakers

Eco-friendly shoes and sneakers

The traditional shoemaking process is quite long and elaborate, with a huge amount of materials involved. The production of ecological sneakers does not only concern the materials used, but the whole process that leads to their creation.

The raw materials have a low ecological impact, come from renewable or recycled sources. But the production chain also has some peculiarities because it tries to reduce energy consumption and the use of water, to use innovative technologies, and to eliminate all the chemicals involved in the process.

The ecological sneakers are identified, trivially, also by the logistics. The packaging is made with as many ecological materials and also the means by which the products are shipped try to be more sustainable.

Companies that produce ecological sneakers often affix an information box where you can read what is the environmental impact that caused the production of that particular shoe, which chemical agents were used, and how the materials can be recycled.

For the certification of sustainable shoes, brands in the EU have also made some changes, such as Ecolabel, which allows evaluating the reliability of the product. A shoe that bears an environmental certification mark is more likely to have been produced following the process and according to the canons we have talked about so far.

Brands of this kind certify products on the basis of rigorous criteria designed by the European Union which certify the impact of products on the environment. To obtain these certifications, brands must respect the entire production process precisely.

How the production of ecological shoes works

As we said, almost all the phases that characterize footwear production have a great impact on the environment.

The treatment of raw materials, forming, cutting, skiving, joining, assembly, finishing, and packaging carried out according to traditional methods involve high consumption of raw materials, energy consumption, and water consumption, as well as atmospheric emissions and production. of waste.

The production of new objects involves unimaginable amounts of CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. In particular, the production of a single pair of shoes disperses 13.6 kg of carbon dioxide. Try to think about how many tons of CO2 are produced by the footwear sector if we consider all the pairs of shoes on the market and the entire process from production to distribution.

This is one of the reasons why in the last 10 years, companies have tried to rethink production by choosing more innovative methods and technologies that allow a lower environmental impact and lower exploitation of raw materials which, by definition, are not infinite.

In addition to using recycled materials and vegetable fiber, the use of chemicals harmful to health, solvents, and toxic volatile substances has now been significantly reduced.

Among the main interventions that have been made in the production cycle, we find the use of water-based products for the treatment of raw materials and for finishing shoes, the use of solid hot-melt adhesives for the joining, and the use of cross-linkable with UV radiation to glue and print with the screen printing method.

Summary

We live in the world, we are the world. All of us.

Environmental health is not something we can ignore because, at the moment, there is no other planet to escape to when we will have devastated the one we are on. This means we have to take care of it right now.

Nobody says we should deprive ourselves of the purchases we would like to make. It is okay to buy what you need, but we must learn to make our choices consciously. Just as we do separate waste and try not to waste water by keeping the tap open unnecessarily, we can also be oriented towards a sustainable perspective during shopping.

Buying a pair of eco-friendly sneakers instead of a normal pair of shoes may seem like a small gesture. But what would happen if billions of people made this small gesture? Millions of tons of CO2 would be saved, as well as tons of raw materials and ultimately waste.

If you too are ready to change the world with your decisions, visit our store and discover all the models of ACBC ecological sneakers that we offer.

You can make a difference, don't hold back!


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