Cole Haan is an American footwear retailer founded in 1928 in Chicago, Illinois, by Trafton Cole and Eddie Haan. The multinational retail company creates luxury shoes and accessories for women and men.

Cole Haan makes pumps, loafers, slippers, flats, sneakers, sandals, and espadrilles. It also offers a limited-time outerwear collection to take the chill out of colder days.

Cole Haan became an independently owned company in 2013 and operates more than 390 stores worldwide. It has headquarters in Greenland, NH, with offices in New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong, London, Amsterdam, and sourcing offices in Asia.

Cole Haan is focusing on finding innovative ways to make products more sustainable without compromising its reputation for performance, function, and craft.

It's actively seeking environmentally conscious naturally derived or recycled materials for many of its product components to complement the natural human performance.

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Sustainability Rating: 2/10

Rating FAQ

Category: Clothing, accessories, shoes, bags

For: Women, men

Type: Outerwear, flats, sandals, shoes, sneakers, heels

Style: Chic

Quality: Medium

Price: $$

Sizes: XS-XL, 2-14 (US), 4-16 (UK), 34-44 (EU), 6-18 (AU)

Fabrics: Cotton, linen, jute, lyocell, viscose, acetate, polyester, nylon, spandex, acrylic, neoprene, polyurethane, rubber, leather, wool, silk

100% Organic: No

100% Vegan: No

Ethical & Fair: No

Recycling: Yes

Producing countries: not transparent enough

Certifications: no certification

Sustainability Practices

Cole Haan doesn't use organic materials and only uses a tiny proportion of recycled materials such as recycled polyester and regenerated nylon.

Most of its fabrics are natural without relevant certifications, such as regular cotton or linen, or synthetic petroleum-based fibers such as polyester, nylon, acrylic, and more.

Cole Haan also uses semi-synthetic fibers or regenerated cellulosic fabrics such as Tencel lyocell, acetate, and viscose.

Tencel is an eco-friendly fiber made with wood pulp from certified sustainable forests. But only a tiny proportion of the materials used by Cole Haan are environmentally friendly and sustainable.

Cole Haan doesn't reveal enough information regarding how it chooses its suppliers. It doesn't publish a list of its manufacturing and processing facilities on its corporate website.

The 2021 Fashion Transparency Index gave Cole Haan a score of only 6% based on how much the group discloses about its social and environmental policies, practices, and impacts.

Cole Haan manufactures its clothes in many East Asian countries where human rights and labor law violations still happen every day.

The American retailer doesn't show any labor certification standard that ensures good working conditions, decent living wages, health, safety, and other human rights for workers in its supply chain.

Cole Haan has a code of conduct that applies to all its suppliers and subcontractors based on the regulations set by the International Labor Organization (ILO).

Cole Haan assesses compliance with its Code of Conduct through internal and external audits. It works with global non-governmental organizations to improve the working conditions in its factories.

Cole Haan doesn't use any exotic animal skin, hair, fur, or angora. But it uses leather, wool, and silk to manufacture many of its products.

These animal-derived materials are cruel and unethical. They also harm the environment by producing greenhouse gases and waste. More sustainable alternatives exist.

Sustainability Goals

Cole Haan doesn't measure its water usage, pollution, greenhouse gas emissions, and waste across the supply chain. It doesn't have any sustainability goals, science-based targets, or timelines to improve in the future.

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