Corks is a first of its kind in South Africa, offering the very first locally produced cork sneaker. Corks was developed on the basis that we as society have a responsibility to improve our environmental footprint. To discover alternative, innovative ways, and means, to recreate existing products. A sneaker brand based around the idea of 21st Century living, offering a shoe made from cork fabric that is a sustainable, vegan friendly, lightweight and water resistant, and durable. A sneaker that has been developed from nature, for nature.
Corks Sneakers - South Africa's First Cork Shoe
Cork as a Material
Eco-Friendly and Natural
Cork fabric is one of the world’s strongest natural fibres and we using it to produce sneakers. A lot of people think we cut down tree’s in order to make our cork sneakers – this is not the case at all. We simply harvest the bark of the cork tree, with no damage to the tree itself, the bark regrows over time and then can be harvested again and again, making it a truly sustainable process. The bark of the cork tree can then be harvested every 8 years, and the cork oak tree can live up to 300 years.
High Quality and Durable
People often think of cork in wine bottles and that the material will easily crumble or tear, but this is not the case at all. The raw, natural cork is steamed and dried in order to get a flexible robust material. It behaves like genuine leather, but is obviously natural and sustainable, making it the perfect alternative.
Cork fabric is easily recyclable due to the rawness ad naturalness of the material, as there are no chemicals that are added in the process – cork fabric is the vegetable leather you have all been waiting for.
Style Created with Nature in Mind
We wanted to develop a sneaker that was going to be unique, edgy, and sustainable and after discovering cork fabric, and the excellent qualities that come with cork, it was an easy decision that we would produce sneakers using cork fabric.
100% VEGAN AND ANIMAL-FREE
Cork fabric is the natural and sustainable vegetable leather you’ve been looking for:
it looks like leather, but it comes from a tree. If you are committed to protecting animal life and dignity, know this: all our pieces are 100% animal-free, PETA-Approved Vegan.
FSC® CERTIFIED CORK
All our cork leather is FSC® certified. This accreditation ensures the protection and adequate harvesting of the cork oak forest, our lifeblood. Our cork is obtained by removing the outer bark of the tree, without cutting or harming it. As the bark replenishes, cork can be harvested again and again.
All our cork is FSC® certified, signalling our commitment to a sustainably managed forest, and the protection and adequate harvesting of the cork oak forest.
We believe this accreditation not only adds value to our forests and products — it supports informed purchasing choices.
Learn About Cork
Cork is the bark of the cork oak tree, and it is certainly one of the most fascinating materials. For nearly 3,000 years, the cultivation of cork oak trees has proven to be one of our planet's most sustainable and environmentally responsible types of farming.
Harvesting the cork doesn’t harm the tree itself, because only the bark is extracted. It regrows within a couple years and can then be harvested again.
Cork forests support high levels of biodiversity and foster a great diversity of plants and endangered species. Its growth reduces up to two times the amount of CO2 compared to other trees. Besides, it offers fair remuneration and a high employment rate to farmers and workers. Cork is reusable, fire and water resistant, insulating and biodegradable.
For our sneakers, we only use the highest quality cork available. This 'cork leather' gives our sneakers a unique flexibility and softness. Our combination of cork and tencel© is the only of its kind worldwide.