Jaden Smith Teams Up with New Balance to Launch Vegan Sneakers
Jaden Smith, artist, philanthropist and entrepreneur, has added another title to his impressive resume: Footwear designer. The star has partnered with New Balance on a totally vegan shoe collaboration which is slated to release on July 24th. The 'NB for Jaden Smith Vision Racer' will be available in multiple colorways, launching in a baby blue shade initially, with more colors to release throughout 2020. The shoe, which Smith helped "conceptualize, design and develop" will retail for $150.
In a press release, New Balance explained why Smith was a perfect partner for this endeavor, saying, "As an iconic change-maker, Jaden exemplifies the New Balance brand philosophy of fearless independence. His convention-defying work in fashion and music, coupled with his dedication to philanthropy and environmental awareness, speak to larger global issues and how they impact his generation."
Smith, an outspoken vegan, is known for being a big proponent of sustainability and eco-friendly design, and this shoe reflects his values: "Each element of the Vision Racer incorporates partially recycled materials and the shoe is vegan-friendly. The use of sustainable and vegan materials on the Vision Racer pushed the New Balance supply chain further and helped speed up the brand’s timeline to leverage more sustainable and vegan-friendly materials."
Here is a breakdown of the sustainable materials featured in The NB for Jaden Smith Vision Racer:
- Midsole with EVA Regrind: The midsole includes 5% EVA regrind, alleviating a potential waste stream.
- Partially Recycled Insole: The dual-density insert consists of foam in a heel carrier. The insert foam is made of a combination of 6% castor bean oil, 15% recycled foam, 5% recycled rubber, and 74% virgin PU. The heel carrier is made from 98% post-production leftover foam and rubber.
- Recycled Content Upper Synthetics: Synthetic leather is made from PU layered onto a thin polyester base and is a began alternative to traditional leather. The thin polyester base in these synthetic leather upper pieces is 60% recycled polyester.
- Recycled Polyester: The upper textile and upper lining, tongue textile, small webbings are made of 100% recycled polyester. The large tongue webbing is 70% recycled polyester, 30% reflective yarns. Recycled polyester used on the Vision Racer comes from post-consumer plastic rather than oil.
“Shared values of transforming the status quo; staying true to oneself; giving back to the community; and, respecting heritage while co-authoring a distinct future, are the foundation of the relationship between New Balance and Jaden Smith,” said New Balance Chief Marking Officer and Senior VP of Merchandising Chris Davis.
Beyond Smith's eco-friendly design with the launch of his Vision Racers, the star continues to be on Hollywood's front lines of activism as the founder of JUST Water, a sustainable water bottle company as well as the vegan pop-up the I LOVE YOU Restaurant Truck, which gives back to people who are food insecure across the country.