The astonishing versatility of cork

23 September 2021

The astonishing versatility of cork

The astonishing versatility of cork

Who knew the same material could be styled in so many ways? Meet some of our best showstopping, vegan, sustainable cork shoes.


Cork is an incredibly adaptable material allowing for many different styles of shoes to be made that all share the same durable and practical qualities. Cork is also hugely sustainable since according to WWF, cork extraction is one of the most environmentally-friendly harvesting processes in the world.


Being a Portuguese brand, living with an abundance of cork close to home, we just had to make our shoes from it. “Portugal has the largest cork oak forest by area in the world… [and] is the world leader not only in cork extraction, harvesting 100,000 tons of it a year, but also in selling cork products.”

Before the cork begins the process of becoming a shoe, it must be stripped from the cork oak tree using specialized hand tools and expert connoisseurs. The cork is harvested in cycles of nine years, and the agricultural workers are very careful not to harm the tree as they remove the cork, since a cork tree has a 200+ year lifespan. Each time the bark grows back it removes CO2 from the air, meaning the cork forests act as carbon sinks. This is hugely important in the fight against climate change and is a big part of why cork shoes are so sustainable.


As well as having such a positive impact on the planet, cork shoes are water-resistant, hypoallergenic, and super soft to touch, making them the shoes of dreams. The versatility of cork seems endless, with different styles and designs of shoes being crafted from it with ease. We want to show you some of our favorites…


Let’s introduce you to Zoe

Zoe is a flat vegan mule made of natural cork. These vegan shoes feature intricate floral detailing of embroidered cotton onto the cork, highlighting an elegant touch to these beautiful shoes. They are lined with an eco-friendly microfiber which is hypoallergenic, antibacterial, and antimicrobial. This helps prevent odors from developing (yes, we thought of everything).


What’s more, Zoe has a neolite rubber sole, meaning even though she is a slip-on shoe, her sole certainly won’t be causing you to slip. Zoe is the perfect example of how stylish sustainable shoes can be, while also offering essential practicality.


Think office fashion. Think evening dinner. Think Urban Cork.

This classic men’s Derby shoe is both smart and comfortable making it a guaranteed all-rounder. Made from natural cork, the upper of the shoe is highly water-resistant and yet still breathable, making them suitable for any season and occasion.


They are also lined with the same eco microfiber as Zoe, a lining manufactured in a system free of CO2 emissions. With vegan waxed cotton laces and natural rubber soles, these shoes are hard to fault. They’re also hand-made in Portugal in a fair work environment, meaning their ethics are as high as their commitment to being animal and eco-friendly.


If you’re not already amazed by the ability of cork shoes to be so versatile, meet Lili cork.

These vegan ballerina flats are also made of natural cork, but this time the cork is a natural brown variety for a sophisticated look (but still just as sustainable).


Lili also features rubber soles to offer you secure footing wherever you go. These vegan shoes are additionally lined with a certified microfiber meaning they will help to repel odors as well as being antibacterial. They’re perfect for dressing up or down, and will offer you comfort while wearing hand-crafted, stunning shoes.


Read more about the certifications behind our materials here.


 Meet Paxos, the funky flat sandal made of cork.

These women’s crisscross strap sandals are eco-friendly, fashionable trendsetters, combining minimalist style with the sustainability of cork. Their straps are secured by two nickel-free rivets, giving you peace of mind about avoiding a nickel allergy. Lined with a microfiber manufactured in a system free of CO2 emissions, these vegan sandals are ideal for anyone who loves to stroll down the beach whilst wearing sustainable footwear. 


With a footbed crafted from a combination of natural rubber and cork and the bottom sole made of recycled car tires, Paxos will offer you a beautifully designed shoe with amazing arch support. 


Next up, it’s the women’s sneaker, Milan.

Just like Zoe, Milan features exquisite detailing of black cotton floral embroidery on the outer edge of the cork. The stark contrast between the patterned design on the top outer of the vegan sneaker with the block-colored white rubber sole gives Milan a statement look. 

No polish cream is needed for these shoes since the cork material naturally offers water resistance and an ecological promise. Featuring laces and a zipper, they have ease of wear at their forefront. 

Milan is lined with a breathable and anti-allergy microfiber, with a paperboard agglomerate insole, making these shoes part of the sustainable fashion crew. So, if you want a comfortable, cruelty-free, and kind to the planet sneaker, Milan is for you.


Say hello to Daros – the unisex vegan sandals made of course, with cork. 

These minimalist, toe loop sandals will offer your feet a relaxed place to be. They really are the perfect summer shoe, with their airy design and natural finish. They have a comfortable footbed made with cork and natural rubber and soles crafted from recycled car tires for extra grip. Daros is also lined with a certified microfiber, making the lining hypoallergenic, antibacterial, and antimicrobial (so you can say goodbye to odor-filled shoes).


With their ever-stylish look allowing for them to become a wardrobe favorite, and their high ecological benefits of being made from the wonderous carbon-absorbing cork, you can’t go wrong with Daros. 


Last up on our cork fashion show is Cora, the stunning women’s mid-heeled sandals.