Løci wants to explode the way shoes are made, in a sustainable way

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There’s no shortage of “vegan” shoes on the market, but one design house is determined to make vegan shoes the norm, not just an alternative to leather. Løci does more than reinvent the way shoes are made – the brand blurs the lines between ‘sneaker’ and ‘shoe’. Celebrities and their fans take notice: one model, the Løci Nine, has sold out eight times since its recent debut.

For starters, Løci says he is determined to end the use of all animal products in the fashion industry and seeks to stem the flow of plastic into the world’s oceans. This commitment is both visible and felt in the upper of all Løci shoes: they don’t appear to be leather, but neither do they look like your ordinary canvas or polyester sneakers. The shoes offer a strength and shine that together make its owners want to wear them with jeans – or even with a suit.

Then there are the insoles of the shoe, and again Løci stands out. The brand uses cork, which underfoot is strong yet soft, safe and lightweight. Løci says he also uses cork because it’s hypoallergenic and allows the foot to mold comfortably into the shoe.

Beneath the insole, Løci says they only use natural rubber for the soles of their shoes. Bamboo and recycled nylon make up the lining of the sneakers. Even the eyelets, through which the shoes are laced, have a reputation for durability: they are made from recycled brass.

Beyond shoe design, Løci seeks designers who share the brand’s spirit of sustainability. Designers Ilaria Urbinati and Laura Sophie Cox, for example, recently launched a collection of eco-focused unisex shoes – with more collaborations rolling out over the coming months.

So far, the company claims to have stopped 1 million plastic bottles from ending up in the world’s oceans; each pair of shoes contains the equivalent of 20 PET bottles. Løci also donates 10% of profits from all shoes sold online to various wildlife and environmental nonprofits.

Løci and other fashion industry disruptors face many uphill battles. According to the brand, 8 million pieces of plastic end up in the world’s oceans every day; more than a billion animals are killed every year to meet the global demand for leather; in turn, cattle ranching is the main cause of deforestation and loss of animal habitat. But considering the A-listers buying these shoes, Løci might succeed in bringing together some voices that can amplify how the fashion industry is wreaking havoc on the planet – and show how better products can help curb these trends. worrying.

Image credit: Léon Kaye

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