Circular Design Series

The summer of 2023 marked the hottest our species has encountered. This keynote delves into how we can redesign products so they are sustainable at their core, looking at the innovations at Hylo Athletics who are taking on the challenges around shoe waste and protecting the future of running and sport.

One of the founders of Hylo, Michael Doughty, talks about how footwear requires a high level of performance and therefore is the 17th largest polluter. “I knew nothing about shoes and very little around sustainability three years ago.”

Doughty discusses how Hylo’s goals is to match performance and sustainability in its footwear. “All performance shoes are propagated on fossil fuel petrochemical derived materials like nylons. Our focus is around renewable materials and we leveraged nature to achieve goals towards performance.” Materials like natural rubber, algae bloom are mixed with low portions of polyester for the Hylo footwear.

When questioned about moving away from easy to use materials like polyester, he replies, “in your hierarchy of decision making, if climate and actual impact is at the top, you will find solutions. They will be compromised in areas, but that is how you enact change.”

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