Claiming that a product – any product – is carbon-negative is a pretty bold claim. That’s precisely what SOLE is doing with their latest release. It started with a thorough 3rd-party life cycle analysis, and then they did some extra calculations for how much carbon a forest of cork can sequester (you can read more about that here), which then leads to these insoles.

The SOLE Performance Medium insoles start with a foundation of cork – recycled cork, to be precise. Cork is a great material, as it gives you cushioning and spring, and as you wear them, the cork will help form to the shape of your foot for a custom fit (there’s a reason that brands like Allen Edmonds use cork in their soles). On top of that, then, you’ve got the cushioning layer that SOLE is known for.

Now, why think about your insoles? I mean, your shoes probably came with them already. Well, perhaps you like the fit of your shoes, but you just want something different directly under your foot, either given due to your own physiology, or just plain more comfort. Or, perhaps you’ve been really putting your running shoes to the test, and now the insoles are worn out and chock full of odors. In which case, new insoles to the rescue.

As with any aftermarket insole, these new carbon-negative ones from SOLE are not guaranteed to be an exact fit for your shoe (whereas the stock ones would be). Still, with standard sizing and regular width, they should be fairly close, and perhaps need just a small bit of trimming to get the fit how you like it. These carbon-negative Performance Medium ones come in at $59.99, and they’ve got other styles (thicknesses, shapes, materials, etc) out there as well – not to mention footwear with the tech already built in (spoiler alert: they’ve got some new shoes in the works, and we’re in talks to get a review sample in). You can check it all out over at

Details from SOLE

  • Reduces plantar fascia strain
  • Suitable for any arch height
  • Provides cushioned support
  • Improves balance
  • Promotes natural foot alignment
  • Distributes weight and pressure equally
  • Zero drop from heel to forefoot
  • SOLE signature shape for everyday comfort
  • Heat and wear moldable for customized fit
  • Polygiene® stays fresh technology
  • Significant benefits of recycled natural cork
    • Width – Forefoot (approx.)
      • Men’s 10 – 98mm
      • Women’s 7 – 87mm
    • Length – Heel to toe (approx.)
      • Men’s 10 – 290mm
      • Women’s 7 – 245mm
    • Cushioning: 1.6mm
    • Total: 3.2mm

By Patrick Kansa

A big data developer and leader with a penchant for gadgets, books, watches and beverages. You can find my work on WristWatchReview, Knapsack.News, and Slushpile. If you're on Twitter and/or Instagram, you'll find me there as @PatrickWatches.

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