WE AREN'T PERFECT
BY Ben Hooke
We aren't perfect but we are impatientWe’re impatient for change. Impatient for a gigantic industry with polluting habits and processes to turn itself around. For fast fashion to slow down. For footwear to reduce its footprint problem. To put our planet over profit.
Why we are impatientThe vast majority of sportswear products are reliant on fossil fuel-derived materials. Fossil fuels are the number one cause of the climate crisis. If footwear was a country it would be the 17th largest polluter . 90% of shoes end up in landfill with limited end of life solutions. There is a more than 50% chance that global temperature rise will reach or surpass 1.5 degrees C (2.7 degrees F) between 2021 and 2040. Under a high-emissions scenario, the world may hit this threshold even sooner — between 2018 and 2037 (IPCC Report, 2023). And countless other statistics and stories…
However, we’re also very conscious of the fact that you shouldn’t throw stones when you live in a glass house. We are not perfect but we are impatient.
We are imperfectOur shoes are not yet 100% bio-based. They use some polyester - mostly recycled but some not. The RUN is 60.03% bio-based - meaning 40% is not made using renewable materials. Its carbon footprint is 7.41kg CO2e. The LIGHT is 56.31% bio-based - which leaves 45% as non-bio-based. Its carbon footprint is 6.56kg CO2e. We still use polyester in our heel counter because its performance properties are currently unmatched by any material we’ve found. We use Pebax in our midsole for the RUN which is non-bio-based - for the exact same reason. We don’t currently have a green final mile solution for delivery to our customers. The materials we use can use less arable land, less water, less carbon in production.
The biggest paradox for us is that we are creating new products that have an environmental impact when we believe that the solution is consuming less.
But the reason we exist is because we believe in consuming in better ways. We believe in buying less. And running more. Creating products for runners that last - and are loved enough to be repaired and then reused.
Why aren’t we perfect?Well, no one is.
At the moment, we are looking for alternatives to decades of industry-standard practice and entrenched mindsets - sportswear has run down the wrong path in favour of profit, over people and planet.
And our mission is to protect the future of running and sport.
Where hylo is doing well?The list above is just a few of our imperfections - we’re aware of all of them. We are a company of overthinkers but when we step back and reflect, we’re ahead of the curve on a lot.
Our balance of performance and materials science innovation is at the forefront of the industry. Our carbon number is half as big as the average running shoe. We achieved an outstanding score of 104 points on our B Corp certification. We have solid principles around our use of renewable materials. Our products are all certified vegan. We care about carbon (here’s why). Our packaging is actually pretty cool - and made with planet at its core.
Our greatest strength is that we are building from solid foundations - with principles that will serve people and the planet. We’re not knocking down the house. We’re building from the ground up.
Running like the world depends on it.
If you have any questions about our impact, we want to hear from you. This blog focuses on the renewability in our products - because that is our core focus. But we aren’t perfect in other areas. We have a dedicated email for customer questions about impact where take real time to answer honestly and in depth.