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Adidas Parley running the show in 2019!

Adidas Ultraboost Laceless Parley

Many Adidas fans are probably aware by now Adidas has announced they’ll be moving completely away from virgin plastic by 2024. While many eco warriors might question why it would take till 2024, most don’t realize the scope of work required to make such a transition. There’s a balance that needs to be maintained while executing such a large-scale transition. With their recent partnership with Parley and introduction of several popular Adidas brands (Ultra Boost, Deerupt, Terrex, Adizero, Alpha Bounce, and most recent NMD-R1) it’s apparent they’re moving swiftly in the transition. They’ve even begun converting apparel to the recycled ocean plastic by Parley, more on this in future blogs.

As a conscious consumer, I've begun the transition to more ecofriendly brands and products and in my last blog covered the Costa “Untangled” sunglass series, Compelled by the quality of the sunglasses, I decided to look a comparable brand of shoes. My second most important fashion item next to sunglasses.  Most people who know me well, can confirm both sunglass and kicks (shoes in general) have been my kryptonite. I buy way more than I need and outpace my girlfriend by 8 pairs to 1 over the last 22 years. When I became aware of the Adidas Parley partnership and saw the first few series of shoes using the recycled ocean plastic, I loved the concept but not the initial product offerings. It wasn’t until recently that I found a few pair that I really liked the shape of and color options. The two pair I’ll be reviewing today, Ultra Boost Laceless and NMD-R1


are both made with Parley material and are constructed of woven Primeknit. Nike first introduced me to the knit sock design (Flyknit) and I really loved my first pair made with this flexible shoe material.

Now when I saw there was an Adidas/Parley Primeknit (lace less) shoe that caught my attention I had to purchase a few pair to try out.

I purchased these primarily for cardio on a treadmill and lifting and was more than exited to give them a go and see how they performed. My initial impression upon unboxing both pairs I could tell quickly I preferred the design and construction of the Ultra Boost over the NMD-R1. The Ultraboost Primeknit weave had a much firmer construction vs. the NMD-R1 as well the sole of the NMD-R1 vs. Ultraboost just doesn’t look to be as well made and may not wear well over time.

I really wanted to love both pairs but after trying both on and evaluating comfort and quality I decided to return the NMD-R1 and purchase another pair of the Ultraboost.
I have to say the Ultraboost Laceless are a well-designed pair of running shoes, cardio sessions I see no arch fatigue or shin pain. I’ve been wearing them for a few weeks now and even during intense leg training sessions they offer a solid stable base for squatting. I’m extremely optimistic about the future if more legacy brands like Adidas adopt the use of recycled materials. From my experience in just the two brands I’ve explored, both offer fashionable, top quality products in the ecofriendly sector. The more popular this category becomes we’ll see larger brands take notice of this emerging ecofriendly trend. Hopefully, we’ll see more tier 1 brands partnering with Parley in 2019 across more categories?

You can to lean more on Adidas commitment to sustainability in the link below:

https://www.adidas-group.com/en/sustainability/compliance/environmental-approach/

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Costa’s “Untangled” series are they worth the price?

 

Costa Pescador sunglasses with side skirt and box, part of the "Untangled" eco-friendly series
Costa Pescador sunglasses with side skirt and box

If you’re an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys spending time outdoors and can appreciate a quality pair of sunglasses, these might just be for you. Costa Del Mar recently partnered with Bureo and launched their “Untangled” series of optics.  Introduced in summer 2018 the “Untangled” series is Costa’s first step in exploring eco-friendly materials. I’d like to commend Costa on being one of the first major sunglass brands to explore more eco-friendly materials. The eco-friendly concept of re-purposing used or discarded commercial fishing nets is a great idea. This series features 4 different styles of optics, Pescador (one reviewed), Victoria, Baffin, and Caldera. To learn more about Costa’s “Untangle-our-ocean” initiative you visit can the link below to lean more: https://www.costadelmar.com/us/en/inside-costa/protect/untangle-our-oceans

First I’d like to say no compensation has been paid by Costa for this blog review. I’m a sunglass junkie and the “Untangled” eco-friendly message is one that spoke to me. I’ve had several pairs of Costa sunglasses over the years and enjoy their quality, mostly used for light fishing and boating their polarized lenses are top quality. Being a sunglass “connoisseur” I bought my first pair of Oakley Blades back in middle school and would estimate I’ve owned more than 50 different pair of glasses over the last 20 years. 

Mostly active lifestyle brands such as Oakley, Dragon Alliance, Spy, Revo, & Costa Del Mar, to fashion brands like Gucci, Prada, Ray Ban, and Chrome Hearths. I’ve always appreciated a nice pair of shades and have noticed the quality in craftmanship decline with some brands these last few years. I’m a big fan of Spy Optics and love their Happy Lenses which haven’t been as resilient to scratches as the 580’s. But still I enjoy the crisp clear view from behind their Happy Lenses.

To be fair, I wanted to wait a few months so I would have a chance to see how the Costa’s performed when I boated, fished and bicycled with them. I do quite a bit of leisure boating but wanted to put them to the test while being more active. While they weren’t the most affordable pair of Costa glasses I’ve purchased the messaging on the “Untangled” series is on I wanted to support.

  1. My initial impression upon unboxing, the appearance of the Pescador look similar to a 90’s style Ray Ban but with the recycled material and a detailed routed rim. They’re lightweight yet feel fairly solid. One concern I had upon checking the fit was the lack of rigidity in the ear arms, this may be due to the use of recycled materials vs. virgin plastic. This may be an issue with wear over time and might need to be addressed by Costa. Maybe inserting an aluminum core to reinforce and allow forming if needed. As you can see I have a large cranium and need a solid ear arm to wrap and add grip for my noggin. To resolve this issue I purchased a pair of Cablez for $14.99 to make sure they didn’t slip off my face while bending over attempting to land that 16lb snapper.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          In Costa defense they did attempt to combat this potential issue by inserting a form of rubber composite in the tail end of the ear arms and nose area.
  2. 580 Lenses, can’t say enough about these lenses. Crystal clear polarized lenses that so far haven’t had any issues with scratching. I’m a sunglasses junkie and notoriously drop and scratch glasses after only a few weeks. I’m guessing the Cablez lanyard will keep these scratch free for longer than my typical pair.
  3. Blackout side skirts, I know these are an additional option but if there’s one area that needs to be improved it would be here. As I grow older I look for glasses that give greater coverage and this pair looked promising. I’ve been wearing Spy Optics for years and absolutely loved their Touring model (whitewall color) because of the coverage. The Costa side skirts are made from some type of material that feels like a dense crape fabric with a wire frame. After only a few weeks of wearing them in humid Florida weather and a few fishing days they’re already showing signs of separating at the seams, and exposing the wire. If these were made of a textured hard recycled plastic it would definitely improve the lifespan. One thing to note as well these side skirts don’t come as a standard with the glasses and boast a pretty hefty upgrade cost of $50.

Summary – I really appreciate Costa’s progressive thinking by partnering with Bureo with this eco-friendly net recycling concept. Be on the lookout for more progressive moves across different industries. One thing I think would be good for Costa to implement with this initiative is actual data on fisheries net waste and how often fisheries replace nets. It would also be great info if Costa were to track how many pounds of netting equal X amount of “Untangled” sunglasses. Also, what portion if any of the sale they contribute to technology to improve this this type of waste recycling? There are new materials available today that weren’t available in the past which are more eco-friendly, could these materials be options vs. current netting material? The Costa “Untangled” collection definitely comes with a premium price tag (like many eco-friendly products), there should be some opportunity to invest some of the resources into developing netting with some of the new more eco-friendly materials