Straat talk: Sustainability in streetwear

Straat talk: Sustainability in streetwear

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In this edition of Straat Talk, we discuss sustainability in streetwear. As usual, we asked you to share your views on the balance between looking fresh and staying green. Here are some of your responses.

Straat talk: Sneakerheads' thoughts on sustainability in


2020 saw sustainability become the top priority in streetwear brands’ collections and sneaker drops. Brands started developing ways to close the loop by introducing products that are constructed out of recycled or upcycled materials. Adidas ramped up its sneaker releases in partnership with Parley for the Oceans, Nike launched the “Space Hippie” collection and New Balance dabbled with the “Undyed” 327 and Visionracer.

Treading lightly with greener thread

But it wasn’t just the sneakers. Brands also found greener ways to manufacture their apparel collections. Alyx Visual, Patagonia, Nike, Noah and Adidas have refined their supply chains, committing to incorporate, to varying degrees, more renewable or sustainable resources for production.

Nike joined the Sustainable Apparel Coalition and launched the “Move to Zero” initiative. Adidas’ partnership with Parley for the Oceans entails a commitment to yearly sustainability targets, while the folks over at Patagonia completely revamped their supply chain and even discourages customers from buying more than they need with the “Worn Wear” program. Noah takes it a step further by supporting “aggressive non-violent” non-profits that focus on wildlife conservation.  

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But do these sustainability efforts actually make a difference in reducing our carbon footprint and are sneakerheads invested in the cause? We ran a poll and here’s what you thought.

Q1) Have you ever bought sneakers or apparel that was marketed as sustainably made?

Straat talk: Sneakerheads' thoughts on sustainability in streetwear

Green tip: If you are planning to cop fresh kicks, check if there is a sustainable version of the silhouette you like. To make sustainably made sneakers more accessible and accepted by the community, a few brands have begun incorporating sustainable production methods or material into existing models. The Adidas Primegreen Stan Smith and Nike Air Force 1 Crater are two good and affordable options to check out right now.

Q2) Are you more likely to buy a product if it is sustainably made?

Straat talk: Sneakerheads' thoughts on sustainability in streetwear

Green tip: While buying sustainably made sneakers or apparel are a good way to go, the best way to live sustainably is to actually consume less—the less you buy, the less pollution is created and fewer resources are being used up. So be selective and ensure the sustainably made item, whether sneakers or apparel, are items that you can get plenty of wear out of.

Q3) What are some steps you’re taking to reduce your carbon footprint?

Straat talk: Sneakerheads' thoughts on sustainability in streetwear

Green tip: We can lead a more sustainable lifestyle by changing what we buy and how we buy. If you need to keep your rotation fresh at all times, consider trading sneakers with other sneakerheads in forums or social media groups. This way, you’ll be saving money and the earth.

[pullquote] “Buying vintage and bringing my own tote bags instead of plastic bags” – @aliff.naufal [/pullquote]

Q4) Do you think sustainably made products can reduce negative impact on the environment?

Straat talk: Sneakerheads' thoughts on sustainability in streetwear

Green tip: If we all start to make the correct choices, we can collectively make a difference. Get more wear out of the items you purchase, support sustainably made products, but more importantly, buy less, if you can!

[pullquote]”Yes and even support communities. But reducing consumerism is also important” – @blazebox [/pullquote]

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