Protect Environment through Reuse of Old Shoes

We are poised at a point where our natural environment is begging for our care and concern. With more and more industries catering to the rising demands of consumers, one area of worry is what must be done with all the waste generated in the process.

Waste is created in every industry, in the creation of every item of utility. No different is the case of the production of shoes. The process of recycling shoes is especially tougher because they contain a wide variety of materials that are glued or stitched together, particularly sports shoes. When most of such items are disposed of in the form of garbage, they reach and choke landfills causing much environmental pollution.

Experts in the care of the environment advocate the following uses of old shoes to help protect Mother Earth:


Most of the time, we tend to hoard things that we do not actually use, like the case of shoes. When these items are recycled, they help in:

  • Reducing the accumulation of solid wastes that choke landfills.
  • Encouraging economic development in one’s region
  • Enhancing sustainability and lowering the Carbon footprint
  • Transforming waste into fashionable items

Do you have pairs of flip-flops languishing in your closet? You can convert them into new footwear, yoga mats, or doormats. There are several DIY videos on how to convert your unwanted pairs of foam or rubber flip flops into something useful in the online world. Or else, you can give away the old shoes to social organizations and independent artisans, who will recycle your old shoes and create something more useful and beautiful.


You should not throw away your pair of sports shoes simply because you have a faded fabric or a small and torn edge on them. Wake up your creative side and get artistic with your old shoes. Refurbish and repair them using appliques, waterproof paints, etc., for creating amazing new pairs of shoes. For instance, in case the shoes are totally worn out, you can transform them into quirky planters.


A good deed will be performed when you donate your unwanted possessions to the poor and needy. There is even a traditional belief that good energy is created by donating shoes. Ultimately, if you donate your pair of shoes that have been used only lightly, it will not only aid the needy but also lower the waste you would have created otherwise.


A better life is deserved by that old pair of shoes languishing in your closet simply because they were purchased on a whim and no longer suit your style. But someone out there might fancy them enough to buy them from you. Consignment shops and thrift stores, both online and offline, evaluate old shoes presented for re-sale, providing the seller a price for taking these items off their hands. In case you don’t find local thrift stores, explore online ones like eBay or Poshmark that are online marketplaces for the purchase and sale of old shoes apart from other items. You can even indulge in some amazing digital barter by exchanging footwear.


Some creativity and a bit of elbow grease can help make the best use of old and worn-out goods. By upcycling is meant the finding of new uses of old items that no longer serve their original objective. In place of breaking down old material, like in the case of recycling, upcycling involves actually enhancing the value of the product. For instance, durable shoe materials like leather can be upcycled to make funky new stitched pillows.

Green Sole

Green Sole is a unique company that contributes to social welfare in myriad ways of using old shoes. They donate recycled shoes to needy children. They empower women in rural areas through production centres for recycling old shoes. They recycle discarded old shoes into comfortable and trendy footwear. They prevent worn-out shoes from choking landfills. They retail eco-friendly shoes and refurbished footwear to support their social venture.

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