Go to the main content Menu
Back
Nagaba
Sponsored Fashion & Beauty
Kayla Pasko Kayla Pasko

What Makes a Shoe Vegan?

Nagaba Vegan is an eco-conscious company that specializes in making fashion-forward shoes with 100% vegan materials. Learn what makes a shoe vegan.

Step out in style with Nagaba Vegan Footwear. Nagaba Vegan specializes in crafting handmade shoes that are lightweight, breathable, antibacterial, weather-resistant, and—most importantly—fully vegan, with market-recognized Vegan Action certification. Read on to learn what makes a shoe vegan.

What Makes a Shoe Vegan?

The word vegan refers to a lifestyle that excludes all products derived from animals, such as meat, dairy, and eggs, as well as clothing and accessories that contain animal-based materials. So what makes a shoe vegan? Vegan shoes are constructed without the use of leather, suede, silk, fur, wool, or glues made from the remains of an animal. Instead, a vegan shoe is crafted solely from synthetic materials, such as rubber, faux leather (polyurethane), microfibers, and recycled plastic.

What Makes a Shoe Sustainable?

We know what makes footwear vegan, but what makes a shoe sustainable? Sustainable shoes are made from materials that typically include natural fibers from sources such as mushrooms, hemp, and pineapple, or upcycled and recycled materials, which in turn reduces their carbon footprint. At Nagaba Vegan, each shoe is handmade using simple, eco-conscious materials such as microfiber, recycled shoe soles, polyurethane, and car tires that mimic the characteristics of natural leather. The company also tests each fabric in independent laboratories to ensure they are free from agents that are harmful to health and the environment.

The sustainability of footwear is not only dependent on the fabrics being used in the shoes but also the ways in which they are sourced, as well as the employees’ work conditions. As a small family business, Nagaba Vegan takes care to ensure that all of their workers and vendors are treated as extended family and that the materials they use are sourced from companies that share the same values and responsible practices.

Long-Lasting Vegan Footwear

We often hear the term “fast fashion” being used to refer to low-quality shoes that are worn a short time and then thrown away. This is due to the fact that shoes made from low-grade materials often break down quickly and become less wearable after a short amount of time.

Nagaba Vegan takes pride in being a slow-fashion company, which means that they create long-lasting vegan footwear by using durable, weather-resistant materials. This not only gives the consumer more bang for their buck but also reduces the environmental impact of the shoes.

Meet the Nagaba Vegan Founders

Nagaba Vegan was founded by two lifelong friends, Ewa Nagaba and Ula Balcerek, who met in their early childhood and have been inseparable ever since. When Ula moved to the United States with her family, Ewa remained in Poland along with her husband to operate their shoe factory—Nagaba. The two friends remained in contact despite living in separate countries. After Ula made the transition to a vegan lifestyle, she had been searching for a pair of shoes made from leather alternatives but found it difficult to find footwear that was both high-quality and eco-friendly. Ula decided to ask Ewa to create a special vegan pair for her, and as a result, Ula received a beautiful pair of vegan sneakers. This inspired the friends to set out to create their own sustainable brand—Nagaba Vegan—so that more people would have the chance to experience these one-of-a-kind vegan shoes for themselves.

We spoke with Ula and Ewa on the inspiration behind their brand, what sets them apart from other shoe manufacturers, and their future plans for the company.

VegOut (VO): What is the inspiration behind Nagaba Vegan?

Nagaba Vegan (NV): There were two main drivers to establish Nagaba Vegan Shoes. One, innovation in combination with the vegan and ecological movement to promote a new, better lifestyle and fashion. The second factor is that we, Ewa Nagaba and Ula Balcerek, decided to join the forces and build a new brand in 2020—Nagaba Vegan.

VO: What makes Nagaba Vegan stand apart from other shoe manufacturers?

NV: We are convinced that our main differentiator is high-quality, handmade vegan certified shoes manufactured by a family business. We carefully choose and test materials for our vegan shoes. We want to ensure the shoes are built to last for much longer than any others. Our customers tell us that they really see and appreciate the quality we brought to the market. We also verify if the materials are compliant with vegan requirements, and we certify them. As a family business, we treat our customers, employees, and vendors as our extended family. We work with people and companies who share the same values and are happy cooperating together. In short, Nagaba Vegan Shoes stands for Good People Good Shoes.

VO: Which shoe is your bestseller?

NV: As a slow-fashion company, we do not intend to introduce many more new shoe models. At the same time, we would like to provide our customers with different styles of shoes, from sneakers to dress shoes as well as really heavy duty, steel toe boots. We also have the option to customize shoes for people who want to have their very own personally designed vegan shoes. As far as bestsellers, we would list the following styles: Sylvia—comfortable and stylish women’s shoes; Joaquin—a classic look appreciated by our customers, and finally, the Charley boots—steel toe boots which really ROCK.

VO: What’s next for Nagaba Vegan?

NV: We are continuing to execute our commitment to provide high-quality vegan, eco-friendly shoes. We put in effort to make the vegan lifestyle more and more popular. We also want to show and convince people that wearing vegan shoes does not mean sacrificing quality and style. We would love Nagaba Vegan Shoes to be worn by vegans and people who care for the environment. As our market presence grows, we will keep the personal, family business touch to our shoes and service.

To learn more about Nagaba Vegan or to order a pair of sustainable shoes, visit NagabaVegan.com.

Kayla Pasko

@kaylapasko

Kayla, a Midwest girl living in NYC, is a writer with a background in media sales. When she’s not scoping out trendy vegan spots, she’s usually taking a yoga class, shopping at Trader Joe’s, or catching a Packers game.

Articles by Kayla

More from VegOut

See the article ann arbor, michigan encourages residents to adopt plant-based diets

Ann Arbor, Michigan Encourages Residents to Adopt Plant-Based Diets

Ann Arbor’s A2Zero Carbon-Neutrality Plan calls for promoting plant-rich diets within the community.

Anja Grommons Anja Grommons
Ann Arbor
News
See the article rza teams up with violife to award five black-owned restaurants $100k

RZA Teams up with Violife to Award Five Black-Owned Restaurants $100K

The new grant program aims to make plant-based eating more accessible, affordable, and delicious in local communities.

Kayla Pasko
RZA
News
See the article starbucks is testing vegan whipped cream at two seattle locations

Starbucks Is Testing Vegan Whipped Cream at Two Seattle Locations

We’re crossing our fingers it launches nationwide!

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Starbucks
News
See the article the best store-bought vegan pumpkin spice coffee creamers

The Best Store-Bought Vegan Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamers

You need these festive non-dairy coffee creamers in your autumn morning routine.

Anja Grommons Anja Grommons
Laird Superfood
Food & Drink
See the article this multivitamin was made specifically for plant-based diets

This Multivitamin Was Made Specifically for Plant-Based Diets

This supplement was made specifically for plant-based eaters.

Anja Grommons Anja Grommons
Hippo7
Sponsored Shopping
See the article 30 vegan pumpkin products to try this fall

30 Vegan Pumpkin Products to Try This Fall

You won’t want to miss these vegan pumpkin-flavored products!

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Laird Superfood
Food & Drink
See the article orlando’s top 10 vegan desserts

Orlando’s Top 10 Vegan Desserts

Central Florida has a sweet tooth, and we’re not complaining.

Allison van Tilborgh Allison van Tilborgh
Winter Park Biscuit Co
Food & Drink
See the article where to get impossible chicken nuggets

Where to Get Impossible Chicken Nuggets

Offering everything from sausage to beef, Impossible Foods recently added a new product to their lineup—Impossible Chicken Nuggets!

Natalie Brown Natalie Brown
Impossible Chicken Nuggets
Food & Drink
See the article la’s honeybee burger is opening a location in new york city

LA’s Honeybee Burger Is Opening a Location in New York City

The LA-based vegan burger joint is expanding on the East Coast!

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Honeybee Burger
News New York
See the article fifth annual lancaster, pennsylvania vegfest takes place this weekend

Fifth Annual Lancaster, Pennsylvania VegFest Takes Place This Weekend

The Pennsylvania festival is back for two days of vegan fun September 18-19.

Cayla White
Lancaster VegFest
Things To Do
See the article women-owned vegan cafe and grocery store opens in greenpoint, brooklyn

Women-Owned Vegan Cafe and Grocery Store Opens in Greenpoint, Brooklyn

Grab your morning espresso and a snack or two at Brooklyn’s newest plant-based concept!

Kayla Pasko
GreenPot
News New York
See the article this instant vegan coffee creamer is perfect for your busy morning

This Instant Vegan Coffee Creamer Is Perfect for Your Busy Morning

Laird Superfood makes convenient and nutritious coffee creamers in a handful of delicious flavors!

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Laird Superfood Creamer
Sponsored Food & Drink

Newsletter

We’ll keep you updated on new information,
upcoming events, and the best deals in your area.

By signing up you agree to receive emails from VegOut Magazine
and accept our terms of use, privacy policy, and cookie policy.

Subscribe Now

Get the premier vegan food and lifestyle magazine delivered to your door (or inbox!)
Order the magazine!
Awards Issue
The Wellness Issue
The Holiday Issue 2020

Navigation

Awards Issue

Subscribe Now

Order the magazine!
Close

Filters

Cities

The Most

Writer