The Patagonia brand is no stranger to me. They have a reputation for being a very green and ethical company and their products are a reflection of that. They are also widely known by outdoor enthusiasts since so many of their products are geared towards fitness and outdoor play, whether it be their shoes or their clothing. I have wanted a try a pair of their hiking shoes for a long time and actually had a few of their products bookmarked in my web browser in preparation for purchasing a good pair of winter hiking shoes. My Vibram Five Fingers got me by in style and safety all spring and summer but I am not into the whole primal thing of hiking in the snow wearing minimalist footwear.
Patagonia footwear is also doing something really cool right now that caught my attention. They have teamed up with Healthy Child, Healthy World and are donating $10 for every pair of shoes sold until October 14. This is a great pairing because both companies care about chemical safety for our planet and for families. Healthy Child Healthy World obviously advocates for corporate policies and government legislation that protect children from environmental health risks. They also seek to increase consumer awareness so we can vote with our dollars and attack this issue from that angle as well. Patagonia is known for their eco awareness and their efforts to reduce harmful chemicals from the manufacturing and dying processes of their lines. They too are advocates for a healthier planet.
Their footwear can be purchased through shoe retailer OnlineShoes. They have free shipping and free returns which is important to me because I have lots of issues getting shoes to fit (wide feet and really high arches). For this promotion, OnlineShoes was kind enough to send me a pair of the Patagonia Hiking Boots. I got the Patagonia Drifter A/C Gore-Tex® in Canteen and Dark Celadron colors. Its a waterproof trail shoe which will be important for hiking in the snowy Ohio weather and it has a 20% recycled footbed. It is manufactured by ISO 14001 Approved Suppliers, which means that materials are sourced from companies that follow a strict set of environmental standards. It can be resoled if need be and the Vibram® Trail Ecostep outsole is made of 30% recycled rubber.
They fit like a dream and they are very comfy so far. I haven’t done any serious hiking in them yet but I am all set for our local winter hiking series now. Last year I hiked in regular tennis shoes and slippage was a problem so I can’t wait to break these babies in on the trail. I plan to pair these with a comfy pair of wool socks (see my Eco Friendly Hiking Gear for Women post for my top choice). My tootsies are gonna stay warm and dry.
Online Shoes is also offering a free pair of Patagonia shoes to one of my readers, along with a copy of the book Healthy Child Healthy World, which is an awesome book BTW! To enter just leave a comment telling me what shoes you think you would select and why. You can win extra entries by :
Giveaway CLOSED! The winner is Melissa H. Congrats!!
Giveaway sponsored by OnlineShoes.com.
It is that time of year so I have been posting regularly about greening the upcoming school year. I have been doing this for a couple years so it is habit now but yet even I need reminders and motivation sometimes. Going to Walmart and tossing the cheapest stuff in the cart as fast as you possibly can is certainly tempting when your to-do and your to-buy list is super long. If it were easy all the time then it wouldn’t be called “making an impact” would it? Even green parents can start to run low on steam and that is why I am loving the Green Your School Year challenge from Recyclebank.
Recyclebank is a community I first discovered a year of so ago. It is a place where a community of 2 million members keep track of their goals and successes while keeping it green. This is facilitated by great information and pledges to do just a little more. For this school year they kicked off a challenge to help parents keep the school experience green. In the first phase you walk through a nifty tutorial for shopping for greener school supplies. Right off the bat they recommended carpooling with another parent or family so you are conserving resources just making the trip to your local store. This was a step that escaped my mind for sure. Pledge to carpool and you get your first 10 points in the challenge!
Next up… pledge to buy green, recyclable, or recycled school supplies for another 10 points. As an added bonus they also have a download for you with a checklist of items to check/consider when researching companies and brands that you may purchase from. I love, love, love that they encourage people to research the ethics, certifications, and integrity of the companies and products you want to purchase.
The next screen had two quiz questions.. which I got right. Ding, ding! No doubt this feature is designed to help educate us on what to look for in these products and also make us aware of trends in family spending. They should turn this into a video game. ;) A link follows this page and and it provides a resource for you to recycle qualifying electronics and they offer up to 200 bonus points in return. I saved this info for future use.
Further on there more polls and informative links for keeping school supplies sustainable, including the wardrobe. It was a VERY fun tutorial and I enjoyed participating. I think I got all the available points could, minus the extra credit recycling points but I may end up finding some stuff to recycle and claim some of those too. When the challenge concludes they will be awarding some great prizes to some lucky winners including Bodhi Electric Bicycles (Yowza!), a solar backpack, gift certificates to department stores and grocers, lunch kits, vitamins, etc.
The next phase, which starts in a couple days is all about the first day of school. So after you join up and claim your points for greening the school shopping experience, make sure to check back with Recyclebank for the first day challenge. Good luck!
This post is part of a campaign sponsored by Recyclebank.
You don’t have to be a vegan or a vegetarian to be concerned about the ethics of wearing animals. While many feel comfortable eating animals they may feel a bit less inclined to want to wear them around on their feet or on their handbag… especially when there are alternatives. The animal industry has an abysmal record when it comes to cruelty. And since the animals can’t speak out about the matter ethical vegans have taken the lead in speaking for them. It is really thanks to their outspoken voices that we have so many cruelty-free options on the market today. I am not vegan and have no desire to be so but I do appreciate the availability of animal free shoes and clothing.
Choosing vegan does not mean you have to sacrifice style and comfort. As a matter of fact, vegan shoes are out there, in the same style as the latest trend in leather fashion. Dozens of vegan shoe brands are now sprouting all over, catering to the needs of those who do not want to wear shoes with faces.
They are made of plant-based materials like hemp, and some synthetic fibers. Most of the time, these shoes also consist of recycled materials such as used rubber tires, making them not only animal-friendly but earth-friendly as well. They come in different styles, too; thus making any pair of feet fashionable.
Since vegan shoes are often made of biodegradable materials and not animal-based products, wearing vegan shoes is one way to minimize our environmental footprint. What’s more, vegan footwear is really durable and longer lasting compared to its non-vegan counterparts. To give you some idea what brands of shoes hold vegan choices, here is a list.
Converse – it has a wide array of vegan shoes that are mainly made of deconstructed hemp. Converse vegan shoes are tagged with a marked hemp on he heel for the world to know that they are cruelty-free shoes.
Jambu – A reviewed a pair of these a couple weeks ago. Their water diva vegan shoes are comfortable, stylish, and cruelty free. They also use some recycled materials.
Merrell – is known for its sports and hiking shoes and I have been eyeballing these for quite awhile. If only they made their barefoot shoes (the glove) vegan because those are the ones I want. Merrell does offer some vegan shoes though that are ideal for hiking and any form of exercise. Its vegan footwear also features a pumping system that keeps water out. I love their Encore Breeze clogs.
New Balance – offers vegan shoes especially made for runners. These shoes are made with New Balance’s trademark sole-support system and also equipped with shock-absorption technology.
Okabashi Flip-Flops – Their awesome shoes (I have a pair) are made of recycled materials and no animal products.
LifeStride – offers a wide range of 100% animal-free shoes for women. Fashionable choices include high-heels, flats, sandals and boots.
The price tag can seem high on vegan shoes but they really last. If you have resolved to try and wear less animal made clothing then these vegan shoes will get you off to a great start.
2 of my 3 kids wore these amazing baby leg warmers and my 7 year old still does. Not only are they great for winter warming here in Ohio they are light weight enough to be used in summer as well… to protect that soft baby skin from the sun. LOVE their summer selections. Babylegs is having a great sale this week for Memorial Day.
A few weeks back I tested out some eco friendly flip-flops. This past week I have been wearing vegan shoes courtesy of Jambu Adventure Designs. Many of their shoes (including mine above) are vegan which makes them a great choice for ethical vegans and vegetarians who still want fashionable footwear. They also have an earth friendly bent because their outsoles are made with partially recycled and re-usable compressed rubber. They also use 100% recycled, recyclable and re-usable packaging. So while they are not the perfect green shoe they are certainly a good option for those looking to reduce their impact. A step in the right direction.
What I really like about their line is that most of the shoes seemed geared for environmentalists and adventurers. Its outdoor fashion. The shoes above are their water diva vegan shoes, which are pretty darn comfortable. And if you recall my post on barefoot running then you will know why I was excited to see they have vegan barefoot shoes too. I do not try to make every purchase vegan but where I can, I like to do so… wearing animals on our feet when we don’t have to is a huge waste of life.
Other women might be attracted to the design of the shoes with feminine floral motifs and contrast stitching. They are nice looking shoes. From the straps to the soles. They have a tribal flair that I like.
They are designed for adventuring and actual use. Jambu shoes are trail rated and they can be tightened or loosed as needed. Some are designed for use in an out of the water as well. That is the part that excites me because I am not to big on fashion but I do admit that they are snazzy shoes to look at. Any shoe company that makes ethical shoes or eco shoes need to appeal to a broad market and this brand seems to capture the green Fashionistas along with the outdoor adventuring type.
These shoes are sold via outside retailers so if you want to find them try Zappos or Amazon.
Winner Announced!! It is Tammie Hutto Egloff. Congrats!