20 Brands Keeping this Summer Cool: UK Ethical Sandals

20 Brands Keeping this Summer Cool: UK Ethical Sandals

Girl on UK beach holding ethical sandals

From cute crop tops to trendy shorts, summer fashion can be truly iconic. And a stylish pair of sandals can top off your outfit. When it comes to trendy footwear, there are some great brands making ethical sandals for UK shoppers that will keep you looking cool all summer long.

From chunky casuals to strappy statement pieces, most high streets will have a range of sandals populating shop windows. However, sustainable footwear brands offer a more considered approach in helping us to create an eco-friendly wardrobe.

What Makes a Brand Ethical?

While different brands will have different policies, materials and individual commitments, there are some key things to look for when seeking ethical footwear companies:

Sustainable Materials – Organic and recycled materials from well-managed sources are a good indication that a brand is working to reduce its environmental impact. Products like organic cotton and cork are often used in sustainable footwear. 

Animal Rights –While vegan shoe brands have the least space for animal rights issues, if you are buying from a non-vegan brand make sure any animal products come from certified sources. Also look for brands that source from farms that have robust animal welfare policies. 

Fair Supply Chains – Fair and safe conditions and pay for workers are crucial for a brand to be able to call itself ethical. Strong worker’s rights policies and traced supply chains as well as external certifications, are a good indication of an ethical company.

Certifications  – Certifications can be one way to avoid falling victim to greenwashing and ensure an ethical brand is living by its claims. Some that we like include Fair trade, PeTA Approved, Global Organic Textile Standard and Global Recycled Standard.

Girls in ethical sandals UK
Photo by N B on Unsplash

Ethical Sandals for UK Shoppers

To help you in your quest to find the best ethical sandals, we´ve rounded up a list of our favourite sandal brands. Whatever your style, these brands offer some of the quirkiest, sleekest and most comfortable ethical sandals around.

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1.

Seasalt

Based: UK                       Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: India, Spain
Range: Women’s sandals, men’s and women’s clothing and accessories
Price: £15 – £50
Sustainability creds: Some vegan styles, Net Zero targets, sustainable packaging, member of the Leather Working Group

The masters of comfort and casual style Seasalt is the ultimate place to find the perfect sandals for a seaside escape. These great ethical UK sandals embrace the colours of the Cornish coast. Seasalt styles incorporate features such as adjustable straps and cushioned insoles for maximum comfort.

The brand is a member of the Leather Working Group as well as offering some vegan styles.

2.

Komodo

Based: UK                       Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: China, Indonesia, India, Nepal 
Range: Men’s and women’s clothing, shoes and accessories
Price: £35 – £50
Sustainability creds: GOTS Certified Cotton, Recycled Materials, Vegan products

Featuring a summer-ready range of sliders and flip flops, Komodo’s ethical sandals embody an effortlessly boho vibe. Designing with the environment as well as fashion in mind, materials including organic cotton and even upcycled tyre rubber can be found in Komodo sandals.

Featuring funky fabrics, these are sandals made for summer fun.

3.

Teva

Based: USA                    Ships to: Worldwide
Range: Women’s, men’s and kid’s shoes
Price: £22 – £85
Sustainability creds: Member of Better Cotton Initiative, sandal straps made from recycled plastic, vegan styles available

A brand unafraid to make an impact, Teva’s fantastic footwear embraces both bright colours and muted tones. Their vibe feels almost retro in inspiration. Since 2020 the brand has made straps from Repreve, a fibre made from recycled materials. In doing so, it has diverted an impressive 24 million plastic bottles from landfill.

Leather used in the Teva range is certified by the Leather Working Group. Its use of recycled polyester has also been recognized by the Textile Exchange Leader Board. 

For more kids’ shoes check out our ethical kids’ shoes guide.

Leather style sandals
Photo by Wander Fleur on Unsplash

4.

Brave Soles

Based: Canada                    Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Dominican Republic
Range: Men’s, women’s and children’s shoes
Price: £30 – £65
Sustainability creds: Partnered with Green Story, uses recycled products, works with artisans, supports ethical production

With beautiful shoes that keep tyres out of landfill, there is nothing not to love about Brave Soles. The brand’s high-quality footwear is made by artisans in the Dominican Republic and produced in small batches.

Soles are made from upcycled tyres, while other incorporated products include certified and ethically sourced leather. To date, the brand has recycled over 3,000 tyres.

5.

Matt & Nat

Based: Canada              Ships to: Worldwide
Range: Women’s sandals, outerwear, knitwear, bags and accessories
Price: £45 – £90
Sustainability creds: Cruelty-free and vegan, SA8000 factories

Standing for the protection of animals and the planet, Matt & Nat are the vegan and cruelty-free shoe specialists. Find flat sandals perfect for a casual Sunday or seek out sleek heels for when you are feeling fancier.

Matt & Nat’s ethical footwear range is inspired by the world and is the offering of a company whose motto is to ‘live beautifully.’

6.

Girlfriend Collective

Based: USA                     Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: USA
Range: Activewear and shoes
Price: $58 (around £48)
Sustainability creds: Recycled and recyclable, vegan, cruelty-free

Famous for its activewear styles, the Girlfriend Collective range is now also home to its casual, comfortable slides. Perfect to complement your summer wardrobe. These laid-back sandals are made from a blend of innovative bio-based materials, waste products and used shoes. What´s more they are produced with zero-waste.

They are available in a range of muted hues, making them versatile to style with any outfit. Fully recyclable, Girlfriend Collective has made the perfect sandals for sliding into summer!

Birkenstock style ethical sandals
Photo by Natallia Safonava on Unsplash

7.

Will’s Vegan Store

Based: UK                     Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Europe
Range: Women’s, men’s and kid’s clothing, shoes and accessories
Price: £45 – £90
Sustainability creds: Carbon Neutral certified, vegan, return to recycle program, PETA Cruelty-Free, use of recycled materials

Launched in 2013 as a vegan shoe company, Will’s Vegan Store are the cruelty-free creator of some seriously on-trend UK ethical sandals. These vegan fashion masters have everything from sturdy slides to fashionable espadrilles to even ruffle-embellished heels.

The brand uses recycled and natural materials, runs a carbon-neutral operation and allows you to return your worn-out items to be recycled into new shoes.

8.

Wildling

Based: Germany                Ships to: Worldwide
Range: Men’s, women’s and children’s shoes
Price: £50 – £70
Sustainability creds: 1% For the Planet, Rewilding Europe, 2021 Deutscher Gründerpreis Winner, certified B corporation

Helping us all walk in harmony with the natural world, Wildling shoes are cleverly designed to encourage free and natural movement. Lightweight and yet durable, footwear from this B-Corp brand takes its inspiration from the design on ninja boots.

Although it doesn’t host a huge sandal range, the sandal styles on offer at Wildling are sure to leave an impression. 

9.

NAE

Based: Portugal             Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Portugal
Range: Vegan shoes, bags and accessories
Price: £53 – £105
Sustainability creds: Vegan, local manufacturing, use of recycled materials, Global Recycled Standard, PeTA Cruelty Free, sustainable packaging, ethical factories

Passionate about environmental sustainability, NAE is the home of classic footwear made with a vegan philosophy. Incorporating materials such as cork and vegan leather created from apple waste, NAE styles are enviably comfortable and always in fashion.

With a name that stands for No Animal Exploitation, NAE has a cruelty-free outlook woven into its DNA.

Photo by Tofros.com on Pexels

10.

Alohas

Based: USA                   Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Spain
Range: Shoes, clothing and accessories
Price: £52 – £166
Sustainability creds: Pre-order production system, Leather Working Group certified suppliers, Mindful Tips series, vegan range

Operating with a pre-order system, Alohas is working to combat overproduction in the footwear industry. Through this on-demand model, the brand minimises its risk of excessive waste through only creating the items it knows it can sell.

Alohas creates a wide range of sandal styles, shoes and boots and its vegan range is made from recycled and plant-based leathers. It also offers mindful tips to consumers encouraging a reduced consumption mindset.

11.

Noah

Based: Germany                 Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Italy
Range: Men’s, women’s and children’s shoes and accessories
Price:  €70 – €150
Sustainability creds: PeTA Approved Vegan, PeTA Business Friends, PeTA UK Vegan Fashion Awards Winner

Made in Italy and exemplifying an understated elegance, Noah has stylish shoes for the whole family. Embracing a cruelty-free attitude, this is a brand that is doing right by the animal kingdom with a string of animal rights credentials to back up its vegan claims.

Easy to wear and oozing with classic Italian style, these are the perfect shoes for an elegant summer.

12.

Vagabond

Based: Sweden                    Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: China, Portugal, Vietnam
Range: Men’s and women’s shoes and bags
Price: £70 – £145
Sustainability creds: Shoe Bring Back Initiative, supports charitable organisations, Fur Free retailer

With everything from strappy styles to fisherman’s sandals on offer, Vagabond is the one-stop shop for finding epic summer footwear. Effortlessly cool in its designs, Vagabond has created a range of shoes that are contemporary, fresh and versatile.

Vagabond encourages an attitude of conscious consumerism and works to produce products in a way that limits its environmental impact.

13.

Nobody’s Child

Based: UK                     Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Spain
Range: Women’s clothing, shoes and accessories
Price: £85 – £120
Sustainability creds: Made from natural materials, use of sustainable packaging, all products meet either GOTS, Oeko-Tex or Bluesign standards

Made from comfortable cotton and with an elegant yet modern vibe, Nobody’s Child has created the ultimate UK ethical sandals in its espadrilles range. Embracing a classic sophistication, these wedged sandals are feminine, effortless and charming.

While not yet made from organic cotton, they are looking to increase their use of responsible fabrics to 100% in the future. Watch this space.

Available in a range of stylish colours and with designs that incorporate either ankle tie or ankle band fastenings, these sustainable shoes can be dressed up or down for a timelessly chic look.

Good Guys Don´t Wear Leather ethical sandals UK
Good Guys´ sandals from apple skin leather

14.

Good Guys Don’t Wear Leather

Based: France                    Ships to: Worldwide (minimum order value for UK orders)
Made in: Italy, Spain, Portugal
Range: Men’s and women’s shoes and gifts
Price: £95 – £105
Sustainability creds: PeTA Business Friends, PeTA UK Vegan Fashion Awards Winner, Vegan, Oeko-Tex fabrics, innovative materials

As the name may suggest, Good Guys Don’t Wear Leather is the vegan shoe specialist. With styles made in Europe, these ethical shoes are sustainable, ethical and chic. Innovative in its approach, the brand is unafraid to embrace new materials.

The Good Guys material list includes everything from cork to leather made from apple waste, a sustainable vegan leather option. Cruelty-free fashion cleverly made from eco friendly materials.

Cruelty free applies to humans too, and all of their products are made under fair trade conditions.

And Good Maker Tales readers get 20% off their orders with the code GOODMAKERTALES.

15.

Thought

Based: UK                       Ships to: Worldwide
Range: Men’s and women’s clothing, shoes and accessories
Price: £90 – £140
Sustainability creds: Member of the Ethical Trading Initiative, use of recycled materials, some vegan styles, supports ethical factories

Whether you are looking for strappy sandals for a girls´ night out or a trusty pair of shoes that can be lived in all summer, Thought has you covered. Thought creates pieces made from everything from recycled polyester to corn!

While it isn’t a strictly vegan range, Thought does have some vegan shoes available and has a range of styles to elevate any summer outfit. Thought promotes sustainable and ethical manufacturing principles. Its range includes products that have been produced on demand, demonstrating a more mindful and slow approach to fashion.

Photo by THIS IS ZUN on Pexels

16.

Yogi Footwear

Based: UK                    Ships to: Worldwide (UK stockists)
Made in: Portugal
Range: Women’s and men’s shoes
Price: £130 (on sale for as low as £39)
Sustainability creds: Slow fashion principles, vegetable tanned leather, recycled shoe boxes, use of water-based adhesives

Embracing earthy tones, Yogi Footwear are sure to become a casual summer favourite. Made from high quality materials and designed for a luxuriously comfortable fit, these iconic sandals can even help improve posture.

Many of the Yogi styles are inspired by traditional Portuguese footwear and the brand operates with a sustainable outlook. It uses vegetable tanned leather and even goes so far as using sustainable packaging to ensure a lighter impact on nature.

17.

Beaumont Organic

Based: UK                    Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Portugal
Range: Women’s clothing, shoes and accessories
Price: £115 – £150
Sustainability creds: Vegan styles available, use of natural materials, biodegradable styles

Beaumont Organic’s range of ethical sandals for UK conscious consumers blends handmade elegance and relaxed sophistication for a bold look. Embracing a raw and natural vibe, the brand has sandals made from jute. If you are wanting a sleeker look, this sustainable label still has you covered, with chunky monochrome styles with foot beds incorporating natural cork. 

Thoughtful in its design, Beaumont Organic has made an ethical footwear range that is enviably versatile and unique in the marketplace.

18.

Beyond Skin

Based: Spain/UK                   Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Spain
Range: Vegan women’s shoes
Price: £165 – £240 (on sale for as low as £50)
Sustainability creds: Vegan, donates 5% of profits to environmental and social projects

Creating trans-seasonal styles, Beyond Skin is the ultimate place to find vegan shoes for whatever the weather. With shoes handmade in Spain, Beyond Skin styles rock an elegant and vibrant vibe. With strappy heels or floral mules, ethical sandals from Beyond Skin are the ultimate fashion statement.

Taking a cruelty-free approach, everything in the Beyond Skin range is vegan. The brand also donates a percentage of profits to environmental and social projects.

Photo by Yuliya Pankevich on Unsplash

19.

Stitch Fix

Based: USA/UK                Ships to: USA, UK
Range: Women’s, men’s and kid’s personal styling service
Price: Dependant on budget (items range from $10 – $500)
Sustainability creds: Worked with Better Cotton Initiative to improve sustainability in private label products, member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition

A popular online personal styling service, Stitch Fix can be the perfect sustainable solution for seasonal clothing and footwear, including summer sandals. Offering a personalised service, Stitch Fix can cater to a wide range of personal tastes and budgets.

While not specifically focused on footwear, shoe styles are a part of the styling service and the company works with a range of brands to provide quality products.

Not all brands that Stitch Fix works with are the most sustainable out there. However, it does create an alternative shopping experience to unsustainable fast fashion consumerism.

20.

Raiz Atelier

Based: UK/Spain                    Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Europe
Range: Luxury women’s shoes
Price: £320 – £380
Sustainability creds: Vegetable tanned leather, PEFC certified suppliers, use of natural and renewable materials, sustainable packaging, return to compost scheme, supports Treesisters.org

With an eco-friendly outlook and an eye for design, Raiz Atelier is the home of luxury shoes for the conscious consumer. Handcrafted in Spain, these shoes incorporate materials such as cork, wood, and wicker to create sustainable footwear that exudes a timeless elegance.

Raiz takes a comprehensive approach to sustainable fashion. As well as the use of sustainable materials, shoes can be returned to be composted when worn out, keeping footwear out of landfill.

A Summer Staple

From the casual to the sleek, the quirky to the sophisticated, brands are creating some truly iconic ethical sandals for the UK market.

Although reduced consumption is the most sustainable answer, we are buying more shoes than ever before. So the more sustainable footwear brands there are the better.

If you are specifically looking for sustainable flip flops then check out our ethical flip flop guide or if you are looking for exclusively vegan shoes check out our article on the best vegan shoes in the UK.

We think that the incredible brands in this list are helping to make a positive impact on a far from perfect fashion sector. We hope you agree, and that you have a great summer!

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