The 5 best vegan boots for men that are sustainable and stylish if you eat vegan for the sake of the environment or for your concern for animal welfare, as well as for your personal health, you may ask yourself what the next logical step is to align your values and your purchases.

We went on the search for the best vegan non-leather boots for winter and came up with some surprisingly chic, not-too pricey eco-friendly options that are from companies concerning themselves with sustainability and lowering the footprint (pun intended) of the shoes and boots they make.

Just because something is "vegan" doesn't mean that it's good for the environment, and in fact most rubber is made of PVC, a highly toxic plastic compound that when it is done -- because it cracks or wears out and the owner chucks it -- ends up in landfills and slowly  leaches into the groundwater in a decidedly unchic way.

So check out where your rubber boots are made, and the materials used, and look for natural rubber of Recycled rubber, reclaimed rubber, and products made from the Para tree sap, since all of these are more sustainable materials. For more information on what your clothes are made of  I recommend watch the eye-opening documentary, The True Costs, to learn about the impact of unethical clothing and manufacturers.

It's a good thing designers are finally rethinking the materials they use to create the fashions we wear and are making it easier for consumers who want to put their dollars where their values are to shop smarter and find products to love, that won't hard the planet we love. Here are some of the most common alternatives to the un-eco friendly PVC based rubber:

Microfibers: A durable and breathable cloth usually made from cotton.

Hemp:  A plant fiber which grows rapidly and is easy to care for. There are no pesticides or harmful chemicals in the process of growing this plant, it's easy to care for and maintain. The texture of hemp feels natural since it's used in raw form.

Cork: Yes, this is the thing you have a hard time taking off wine bottles, but it keeps it fresh, just like it does with shoes. Cork is very environmental-friendly, all-natural and acts as an anti-bacterial, meaning, it keeps away germs and keeps your feet nice and clean! On top of this, cork absorbs CO2, so your wine and feet will stay fresh.

Natural Rubber: Sourced from the "rubber tree," also known as the fig plant, this rubber can also be grown in sustainable conditions and used to make soles of shoes or the outer layer of rain boots. Other options are recycled rubber that reuses existing materials to save resources.

Ocean Leather: This material looks and feels very similar to actual leather but it's made from kelp, a large and thick-textured seaweed. There is an abundance of kelp so it's very resourceful and makes a smart ecological choice.

So now that so many companies are taking seriously the impact of creating the supply chain of fashion, there are no excuses as to why you can't buy vegan and eco-friendly shoes that are both chic and climate-friendlier. Here, we provide you with five sustainable, ethical, and vegan shoe companies to shop now, and to let you feel guilt-free with every step you take.

1. Avesu Vegan Shoes (Men and Women)

This is the largest vegan shoe store in the world, founded by a pair of vegan entrepreneurs from Germany. We love the fact that it carries all types of shoes, from boots to dressy women's Mary Janes and is a great gift-source for your vegan family members. They vet all their shoe vendors for vegan, sustainable and ethical treatment of their workers, so when you shop at Avesu, you know you are putting your dollars to good use.

2. Vegan Outdoor Adventures

This is a great resource for anyone who wants to see the latest gear for hiking and outdoor fun, reviewed and vetted by the Vegan Outdoor Adventures founder, Jessica Ryle. She touts herself as "helping vegans get outside with cruelty-free gear lists." Write to her with questions and requests and she will do her best to accommodate your needs in the shopping vegan for outdoor fun category.

3. Moo Shoes

Highend is the word that comes to mind when you look at the Moo Shoes collection. No one would have a clue when you walk into a power meeting that your shoes are vegan or that you chose them from a line of cruelty-free footwear. Make the effort to visit one of their stores in NYC and LA, where you can check out the non-leather and have one of those "I can't believe it's vegan" moments. Bring the pets, but know that on any given day you'll probably find a stray in residence there.

4.  Brave Gentleman

Launched nearly a decade ago, this shop is known as the first all-vegan lifestyle brand for men. Joshua Katcher is a fashion plate himself and has been covered by Vogue, Paper Magazine and others, for his voice as an author, activist, educator (who taught at Parsons) and as a fashion designer. His shoes have been on the cover of British GQ, so if channeling your inner Benedict Cumberbatch is your mood, then head to BGM for your next chic boots.

5.  NOAH Italian Vegan Shoes

When you think of Italian men's leather shoes, hancrafted and lovingly made footwear comes to mind. With NOAH, started back in 2009, that is all true other than the part about the leather. These vegan shoes are made by Italian shoe makers but are totally vegan made out of micro-fibers, yet in the same factories as the highest end shoes you can find. The fabrics, whether Micrnappa or Microsuede, are soft to the touch but strong, breathable and easy to clean, and the soles are natural and  recycled rubber. Treat yourself or the man in your life to a pair for his next occasion.





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