I need to buy some slippers and so you’re getting an article about slippers! That’s kinda how this website evolves. They seem to fall into two camps, wool felt ones and recycled plastic ones. I found quite a few makers of the wool felt ones but limited this list to those that seems to be offering a bit more in terms of ethics or sustainability. I generally use looser criteria for Irish companies if there isn’t much choice. I figure supporting an Irish brand at the start of the journey to sustainability might help them move towards it.
I’ve gone in order of pricing, except for Irish brands, which I’ve listed at the top. Also worth noting that unless I specifically mention washability the slippers are not machine or hand washable.
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Irish brand Sheepwool Insulation sell 100% natural wool slippers, although the place of manufacture or source of wool is not mentioned on the website. You buy directly from the company’s website. €22
Irish Wool & More in Galway handcrafts felt slippers from Irish sheep and alpaca wool with a leather sole. €65 – €85
Weststrand by Nina handcrafts Austrian-style slippers in Co Sligo. The Austrian-style slippers are made from wool, cotton with a wool felt sole coated in natural rubber and cost €85. While her boot slippers, which are made from 100% wool with a wool felt sole coated in natural rubber cost €68
Genevieve Sweeney makes slippers in the UK from British lambswool lined with sheepskin that would have gone to waste. The slippers have rubber soles and can be monogrammed. €95
Bohemia make traditional Moroccan slippers from leather or vintage fabric called Babouche and Boujad slippers. They’re handcrafted from vegetable-tanned, locally sourced leather or vintage Moroccan fabric by crafts people in Morocco. You buy both styles directly from the company’s website or just the leather ones from the Natural Slipper shop and Baobabave. €30 – €60
Gumbies is an Australian brand with a UK office offering vegan slippers from recycled plastic bottles with recycled tyre soles and plant-based foam insoles, which they claim lowers the carbon footprint in comparison to polyurethane foam. They also sell replacement insoles. The website doesn’t mention the location of manufacturing. €45
Ego’s in Copenhagan (see top photo) make 100% wool, fairtrade slippers with a suede sole, in Nepal. They only ship within Denmark but you can buy their slipper from etailers the Natural Slipper Shop in the UK, White Lotus Living and Nature Shop. €40 – €50
Glerups in Denmark make slippers in their own factory in Romania from 100% wool from Danish and New Zealand sheep, fitted with natural rubber or leather soles. They leather they use is free of PCP, AZO dyes and Chromium-VI. You buy directly from the company’s website or from online e-tailers, Footway.ie and Hus and Hem.co.uk and Mama Owl. €59 – €90
Danish company Sanita Clogs offer a slipper made from upcycled/recycled wool from used garments (50%), new wool(20%) and 30% polyester for optimized durability. The felt sole has slip resistant rubber profile. They also have a slipper and boot style made from recycled polyester.
Giesswein is a third generation company making washable slippers from wool and cotton in Austria using 100% renewable energy. They also recycle 90% of the water they use and off-cuts into new products. The uppers are either a 100% wool, a wool / polymide blend (which makes them non-recyclable) or 100% organic cotton. The soles are either natural latex, or rubber, or synthetic rubber. €53 – €130
Betterfelt in the UK sell 100% Fairtrade wool shoes with leather soles made in Nepal. Their shoes can be hand washed. They don’t ship to Ireland but you can use Address Pal which gives you a UK address and organises customs. €60 – €76 (plus tax).
Baabuk is Swiss B-corp selling 100% wool slippers made in Nepal with New Zealand wool, an inner sole made of natural wool and cotton and natural rubber soles. The washing of the wool used for their slippers is close-loop so no contaminated water is discharged into local waterway. €50 – €89
Babbi in Belgium offer slippers made in Europe from chrome-free, vegetable-tanned British leather and sheepskin with natural rubber soles. You buy directly from the company’s website or from Toast. €80 – €150.
Mercredy in Spain make slippers from recycled ocean waste and natural rubber. The company is certified by the Global Recycling Standard for responsible social, environmental and chemical practices in production. You can buy from a multiple of outlets. €45
Onaie in Poland uses wool and sheepskin that is a by-product of the Polish meat industry. Every piece is made and finished in the Polish Highlands using age-old techniques. The company uses recycled paper and Jute string as packaging with the plastic used being the mailing bags, which they hope to replace in the future. €30 – €75.
The Small Home is a UK company uses Rolls Royce car interior off-cuts and British sheepskin for its slippers. They use unprocessed leather which they soak in a saltwater dilution and then mould with wood wood lasts to form the shape of the sole. €55 – €93
If you’re of a crafty persuasion I came across this pattern for a cute pair of boot slippers from Twig and Tale.
Thanks for reading and remember you can catch up with me on Facebook and Instagram between now and next week’s newsletter.
Written by Elaine, Revised by Sarah
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4 thoughts on “Sustainable Ethical Slippers 2023”
very well done , most interesting , thank you
I can’t see your Allbirds post but I got a pair too! Someone gave me a gift certificate for Christmas. Do you like them?
HI Jim. It was a friend who got a pair and wrote up the review. He’s very happy with them yes. How do you find yours? Elaine