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For years, the apparel industry was among the world’s most egregious polluters. Today’s upstart fashion companies are fighting that stigma, and producing apparel that doesn’t leave a mark on the planet. Among our favorites is the Brazilian sustainable shoe company, Cariuma.
Handcrafted with premium natural materials, with an obsessive eye for detail, Cariuma uses strictly fair-trade cotton canvas, natural latex rubber, and responsibly and ethically produced leather.
The result is a comfortable, lightweight, all-natural sneaker you can feel good about buying—and wearing. They’re made with responsibly sourced materials by farmers and employees who are guaranteed fair wages and working conditions. And all Cariuma production and shipping are 100 percent carbon neutral.
What Makes Cariuma Different?
No trees are harmed in the production of these sneakers! Raw, natural latex is harvested through tapping the hevea brasiliensis tree, leaving the tree unharmed to continue to do what it does best—convert carbon dioxide into oxygen.
Cariuma leather sneakers are produced and manufactured in the most sustainable way possible, too. The leather comes from Brazil, Argentina, and Thailand. But no leather is sourced from areas deforested for cattle farming. The supplier operates under strict environmental standards (ISO 14001) that demand 100 percent of the water used in the process is reused and treated, with zero chemical waste. The tannery uses solar panels as their primary source of electricity and get the rest from hydro-generated and thermal energy. And the Leather Working Group gives it its highest rating.
Even Cariuma packaging is recycled and recyclable. Shipping and transportation is 100 percent carbon-neutral; Cariuma purchases carbon offsets, creating a footprint balance of zero.
The Men’s Journal Favorite
Ready to slip your feet inside Cariumas? They come in two main styles. OCAs are the most popular. Plain-sided and branded with a small hangtag, they come in either Low or High(top) versions. The Catibas are similar, but they’re festooned with a sporty rubber leaf logo on the side.
We really like the OCA Low sneakers. They come in a variety of colors, in canvas (from $79) and suede (from $98). But we’ll take ours in premium leather ($139). The color selection isn’t quite as wide as it is in canvas or suede, but we really like this neutral, versatile grey. It goes with everything from jeans to suits. It’s totally office-friendly, but will absolutely relish a day by the pool or a walk downtown.
You can do your part to support sustainable apparel by supporting the companies that follow responsible sourcing and manufacturing practices. You can start by picking yourself up a pair of sustainable shoes at Cariuma.
Get It: Pick up the OCA Low in Premium Leather ($139) at Cariuma.GET IT!
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