When thinking about the cross between wellness and sustainability, typically the feet are not the first thing that comes to mind. The intricate bones, tendons, ligaments, and muscles of the feet all work together to support the weight of the body and absorb the impact from walking and other activities. These small but mighty structures are critical when it comes to the overall well-being of our bodies. However, most shoes are lacking the proper arch support and often cause minor imbalances throughout the day that leads to aches and pain in the back, knees, joints, and hips. For anyone hoping to boost their current footwear, insoles are a fantastic way to correct misalignment and ensure all-day comfort. The majority of insoles on the market are either expensive and uncomfortable or cheap, ineffective, and made from harmful plastics, gels, and petroleum-based foams. Until now! Enter Fulton: an effective, comfortable insole option made from high-quality, renewable resources that work together to provide proper support and stability!

Fulton founders, Libie and Daniel, understood that there needed to be another way to promote overall health while also being kind to both people and the planet, and it all started with their feet! They consulted with podiatrists, chiropractors, physical therapists, biomedical engineers, and academic medical professionals and they all came to the same conclusion: most shoe options did not provide proper arch support (we're looking at you, flip flops!). They looked to insoles for the solution, but couldn't find ones that were functional, affordable, and also sustainably made. After noticing the major gap in the market, Libie and Daniel set to work innovating a plant-based option that's great for everyday walkers, athletes, and eco-enthusiasts alike!
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A Better Way to Walk

For those concerned with making choices with the environment in mind, insoles have long been a product that did not carry much of a sustainability story (if any!). From the beginning, Fulton has placed a strong emphasis on sourcing sustainable, plant-based materials. After extensive research and testing, they found the perfect combination of cactus leather, natural latex foam, and cork that together, provide comfort, stability, and support. Top Layer: Vegan Cactus Leather: New to the vegan leather realm, cactus leather provides an extra soft, plant-based foundation for the foot. It's made from nopal, the mature leaves of a cactus. By employing the mature leaves, the remaining cactus continues to grow making it a useful and renewable resource that also uses a minimal amount of water. Following their harvest, the leaves are then mashed and set out to dry in the sun. Once the correct level of moisture is achieved, the mash is mixed and attached to a backing, making it soft, durable, and pliable. Even better, cactus leather is free from toxic chemicals, phthalates, and PVC and may be composted at the end of its life! Middle Layer: Natural Latex Foam: Natural latex comes from the sap of a rubber tree. In a process called ‚tapping,a shallow cut is made in the bark and the milky latex is collected. After a few hours, the tree naturally slows the dripping by coagulating. Unlike synthetic rubber made from petrochemicals, natural latex does not produce any harmful off-gassing and is biodegradable. It is stretchy, strong, and antimicrobial making it the perfect center for insoles so feet will stay fresh and supported! Base Layer: Cork: This durable, anti-microbial, shock-absorbing, and sustainably harvested material molds to the wearer's unique foot shape. Cork provides natural support for the feet that is both bouncy and sturdy at the same time. By working with producers in Portugal, Fulton ensures a carbon-negative process where the production and harvesting of cork is highly regulated, adheres to leading sustainability values, and supports a centuries-old agricultural industry and thriving ecosystem. The process of harvesting cork is harmless to the trees as the material forms just under the top layer of bark. Once harvested, the tree begins its steady regeneration, absorbing and converting carbon dioxide at an even greater rate than unharvested cork trees. Cork is an exceptional renewable resource and can even be recycled or composted!

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