Nike's summer sneaker range, which includes new Cosmic Unity colors, features recycled materials. | Eileen W. Cho for LIVEKINDLY

Nike’s ‘Move to Zero’ Sneaker Range Is One of Its Most Sustainable Yet

Nike's latest round of sneakers includes one of its most sustainable designs to date, made with recycled materials.

Nike has announced its latest round of sustainable sneakers made from recycled materials.

The shoes are part of its Move to Zero initiative, the popular sneaker brand’s “journey” towards zero carbon and zero waste.

The initiative involves changing the way it sources, process, and manufactures materials. Instead, it’s using more existing materials, like plastic, yarn, and textiles, and repurposing them. Sustainable materials in the brand’s repertoire include: recycled polyester (made from plastic bottles), recycled cotton, certified organic cotton, and recycled nylon (which includes material sourced from old fishing nets and carpets).

The new designs for summer include the Air VaporMax 2021, which, according to the brand, is one of its “most sustainable shoes to date.” The Air unit, which runs from heel to toe, features 75 percent recycled materials, and the toe tip contains around 60 percent.

There’s also the Air Max Pre-Day, which contains a minimum of 20 percent recycled content by weight, and the Plant Cork Pack, which includes the Air Force 1, Blazer, and Daybreak. Each of the designs features 9 percent recycled cork, some of which is a byproduct of the wine industry.

It doesn’t stop there. There’s also the Nike Crater Impact, which builds “off the learnings” from Space Hippie, the recycled trash-based sneaker it launched last year. The new design features about 25 percent recycled materials.

Also featuring recycled materials, the sneaker brand is launching new colors of Cosmic Unity, Air Zoom SuperRep 2 Next Nature, and the Nike Victory G Lite.

The new sneakers are part of Nike’s Move to Zero “journey.” | Nike

Sustainable Sneakers

Nike has competition in the sustainable sneaker game. 

Rival brand Adidas, for example, consistently launches new designs made from vegan or recycled materials. Most recently, it launched its iconic Stan Smiths in several new styles, each was made with recycled polyester.

New Zealand-American shoe brand Allbirds also recently announced it was working on the world’s most sustainable plant-based leather alternative. And last year, the brand teamed up with Adidas to launch the world’s most sustainable shoe.

Some of Nike’s new sustainable designs are already available to order from its website, while others will be steadily available throughout the season. 

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