Are Nike Air Max Shoes Vegan? Complete List

Are Nike Air Max Shoes Vegan

It may be one of the most popular shoe models out there, but are Nike Air Max Shoes Vegan?

Here’s the complete list of all Nike Air Max shoes and which are vegan. The main issue with buying vegan Nike shoes is the leather. They started using vegan glue some years back, meaning that’s not an issue for newer models.

However, you need to make sure you buy newer models. Older models from before 2015 may use non-vegan glue. Also, please note that information in this article is based on Nike’s official website. It’s thereby the most current and reliable information available to us.

Air Tailwind

The Air Tailwind Nike shoes first came out in 1978. They were considered a revolution in shoe manufacturing when they first came it. That’s because these shoes contain air cushioning technology. Features such as this may be a standard now, but was a whole new thing back at that time.

That’s why this serious of sneakers went to to gain much success, and are now the first Nike shoes in a long line of many models. The original shoe was not vegan, as it used non-vegan glue, and leather in the upper.

Sadly, the Air Tailwind Nike shoes still use non-vegan materials. Although, many different options are available, none are vegan.

Nike Air Max 1

As with many older Nike models, the Nike Air Max 1’s are usually not vegan. It has the same functionality as the previous, and were first introduced in 1987. It’s rather difficult for vegans to purchase any older shoe models, since many of them have animal-derived glue.

However, many of the Classic Nike shoes have newer versions, meaning there could be some vegan options. Nike started using vegan glue back in 2015, so you always need to buy models made in newer times. They the model itself can be old, but the shoe itself cannot. Meaning Nike shoes designed back in 1990 are okay, as long as they are produced after 2015. -Which almost new shoe you purchase are.

Although other options may be available to you, few Nike Air Max 1’s are vegan. Most of them are made mostly of textile, but have a leather overlay, making it not vegan.

Nike Air Max 90

It seems that most Nike Air Max 90 are not vegan, but some are. Many of them have a mixture of textile and leather on the top, but some are actually 100% vegan. It may be one model, but they come in so many different colors and materials.

You need to avoid all the kinds that say either “leather” or “synthetic and leather”, none of these are vegan, as they both have leather. All you need to make sure is that the shoes are from after 2015, as this ensures the glue is vegan as well.

The issue of glue may not be a large concern for all of you. Some vegans are fine with compromising a little, while others would never dream of it. Have a look at the Nike Air Max 90 through the link to read more.

Nike Air Classic BW

This pair of sneakers are actually quite cool. They are definitely just as sleek now, as they were when they first came out in 1991. However, the issue remains whether or not they are vegan, and here I’ll have to disappoint.

The Nike Air Classic BW shoes are not vegan because they have leather and are most likely with animal-based glues. That’s because it’s an older model that doesn’t seem to be in production anymore. -And older models use non-vegan glue.

Although, these shoes are not for everybody anyways. They are incredibly expensive due to their rarity, with prices around $600 a pair. Take a look for yourself, through the link.

Nike Air Max 180

Nike Air Max 180 are usually not vegan, because they have leather. That’s true for most Air Max 180, but some do have vegan materials. It’s an incredibly popular model, and so Nike makes many different versions of it.

However, the thing about shoes are that the different models, within the same model, are made in small quantities and are quickly sold out. So it’s all about keeping an open eye to see if they release anything new.

Make sure you only buy shoes from after 2015, which should not be a problem, and lastly avoid any sort of leather. Have a look at the shoes above to see what a listing with leather looks like.

Nike Air Max 93

Most nike Air Max 93 are not vegan because they have leather. The reason being that these remakes of older models want to recreate the old. It’s pretty cool that they take old designs and introduce them again, but the leather is an issue.

It’s time they realize that though the design may look cool, traditional leather is something that should stay in the past. There may be some vegan options available, as the only problem appears on the upper.

The Nike Air Max 93 usually has a small amount of leather on the upper, but you may be able to find a pair that’s not. Have a look at the shoes above.

Nike Air Max 94

Nike Air Max 94 are defiantly not the choice for vegans. They have a lot of leather on the upper, making them not suitable. Although, it’s not a very popular shoe anyways, so I think you can find better besides this one. Have a look at this list of vegan Nike shoes, or read further down this list, for more inspiration.

Nike Air Max 2

Nike Air Max 2, also known as Max2, has multiple vegan options. The newer versions of this iconic shoe retain the old design but use vegan materials. While the traditional models used a leather upper, the newer ones use synthetic leather.

The upper is made to optimize breathability with a mesh and synthetic upper. That’s actually something that’s even better with synthetic leather, as the traditional kind is not breathable. So you could say that it’s actually an accidental vegan Nike Air Max shoe, as the vegan materials are not designed with vegans in mind.

Nevertheless, great news for vegans, as this is one of the sleekest Nike Air Max shoes. Have a look through the link above and read more about this one.

Nike Air Max 2 Light

The Nike Air Max 2 Light are largely vegan, and made of both textile and synthetic materials. They come in many different colors, but one thing remains true for almost all of them. They are all made of vegan materials.

The reason being that it’s a light version, and synthetic leather is more lightweight than the traditional kind. Thus it may not even be possible to find ever newer versions that are not vegan. That said, buying old versions of the same model are problematic.

This Nike shoe model is from 1994, meaning it used to be with non-vegan glue and may have been real leather. So buy the newer versions. This includes anything sold in retail stores online, as these are regularly switched for newer versions.

Nike Air Max 95

The Nike Air Max 95 is incredibly popular and so comes in many different varieties. Not only are there many different colors available, but also different materials and other small changes. The primary design, of cause, is the same as it’s all from the same model.

They have some vegan Nike Air Max but not all of them are. The sub models Utility and SP are both available for vegans. These are made of either synthetic leather or other textiles.

Which Nike Air Max 95 Are Vegan?

  • Air Max 95 Premium
  • Air Max 95 Utility (VEGAN)
  • Air Max 95 By You
  • Air Max 95 Essential
  • Air Max 95 SP (VEGAN)

Nike Air Max 95 Utility

This model is designed as a winter model. It becomes quite apparent once you realize the the design looks very much like winter boots. They may be warm, but it’s not a recommended shoe instead of actual winter boots. Nevertheless, a good vegan sneaker.

All the materials are entirely vegan with synthetic upper, tip and rubber sole.

Nike Air Max 95 SP

This particular model is made with breathability in mind, hence the upper is made of textile. This also increases flexibility, which is perfect, if you intent to do any form of exercise in these Nike shoes. Including long walks.

Nike Air Max 97

This model comes in many different colors and materials, many of which are vegan. You can see an example of a vegan version above. This one is made of only vegan textiles and synthetic materials. Although some of the models have a small amount of leather.

You can clearly see which have leather and which don’t as it’s stated so in the listing. So it’s reasonably easy to find vegan Nike Air Max 97, and there are plenty. They are a little pricey compared to many other models, but they have a very cool design.

The Nike Air Max 97 are quite popular among both vegans and non-vegans. It’s mostly suited for both groups, so this definitely a vegan shoe. -Mostly.

Nike Air Max 98

Many versions of the popular Nike Air Max 98 are vegan, but you need to avoid the Premium model. Premium in this case seems to relate to the use of leather. After all, many associate leather with quality, hence the name. Although, it’s surely not suitable for vegans.

The other 98 models are almost always vegan. However, there are quite a few versions so just double check before any purchase. Would be a shame if you accidentally bought one of the few non-vegan options.

Nike Air Max Plus

As with all Nike shoes, this one comes in many models. The regular Max Plus is usually vegan but the versions such as the following use leather.

  • Nike Air Max Plus III
  • Nike Air max Plus 3

Also, don’t ask me why they have two models named the name but with different symbols. However, what’s important here is that these are not vegan. The regular, on the other hand, use synthetic leathers, which is entirely vegan.

So vegans can definitely buy the regular kind, just stay away from all that extra stuff. That’s actually a quite common thing with Nike shoes. All the premium stuff often has leather.

Nike Air Max Deluxe

The Nike Air Max Deluxe only use synthetic materials, making it 100% vegan. I’m not sure exactly why these are called deluxe. They are neither of leather or much different from the others. In fact, even the prices are quite similar.

Nevertheless, a vegan choice and a very cool Nike shoe. One thing you get from the Nike Air Max collection is a different looking shoe, and also the comfort that it provides. So go ahead and buy this if you are interested.

Nike Air Max Dia

The regular Nike Air Max Dia are entirely vegan. Without any leather, animal-based glue, or other animal products for that matter. It’s actually quite an amazing shoe as it’s incredibly flexible yet stylish. -And most importantly, vegan.

There are quite a lot of different Nike Air Max Dia models with different names and slightly different designs. Although, most the same. These are some of them:

  • Nike Air Max Dia Winter
  • Nike Air Max Dia LX
  • Nike Air Max Dia SE

One thing all of these shoes have in common is the material. They are all made of 100% vegan materials. Now, they have synthetic leather, but that’s totally fine as it’s not from an actual animal, hence synthetic.

Nike VaporMax

Nike recently made a revamp of the vastly popular Nike VaporMax shoes, which was first introduced in 1998. While the older models use non-vegan glue, the newer models are actually entirely vegan.

Now, there are quite a few different VaperMax shoes available from Nike. Luckily, all the shoes researched seem to be entirely vegan. It’s made comfort and flexibilty, which makes the synthetic materials the best option. So it’s not really surprising that this new release is suitable to vegans.

So what VaporMax shoes are vegan?

  • VaporMax Utility
  • VaporMax Flyknit
  • VaporMax Flyknit 3
  • VaporMax Plus

The models above are all 100% vegan, although there could be other models that I’m not aware of. So either buy the models from this list or do some research yourself. It’s rather easy to identify vegan from non-vegan. Simply check out the listen on Nike’s official website.

Nike Air Max 270

This popular Nike shoe is mostly vegan, but there are many versions available. The ones I mention here are all vegan, but I encourage you to always double check. I find that all of them are vegan, but the vast amount of versions means there could be one with leather.

However, the plain 270 model is vegan, if nothing else is specified. So you can definitely give it a try if you are look for a new pair of vegan sneakers. As we go further down this list, the models get newer. Meaning the technology in these are vastly superior to many other sneakers.

Nike Air Max 720

The Air Max 720 is entirely vegan if you choose the right model. There are plenty of different versions made of slightly different materials, and well colors. So while they’re usually vegan, it’s still important to make sure.

All the versions I found are made from a mixture of synthetic materials and textiles. These are all vegan as they’re not derived from an animal.

Which Nike Air Max Shoes Are Vegan?

Nike Air Max ModelVegan?
Air TailwindNo
Nike Air Max 1Some
Nike Air Max 90No
Nike Air Classic BWNo
Nike Air Max 180Some
Nike Air Max 93Maybe
Nike Air Max 94No
Nike Air Max 2Mostly
Nike Air Max 2 LightYes
Nike Air Max 95Many
Nike Air Max 97Mostly
Nike Air Max 98Mostly
Nike Air Max PlusSome
Nike Air Max DeluxeYes
Nike Air Max DiaYes
Nike VapormaxYes
Nike Air Max 270Yes
Nike Air Max 720Mostly

Disclaimer: Please note that this table is based on the information found on Nike’s official website. The data you see in this table reflect the information that Nike has provided, and so any misinformation is are not assumptions but rather misrepresentations on their site.

Please also note: The purpose of this table is to give an indication as to which Nike Air Max shoes are vegan. These answers are a result of Nike’s own website, and could change in the future. Please let me know if you find any mistakes, or changes to the official website.


So there are definitely plenty of vegan Nike shoes in this collection. It’s important to note that this list is made of the remakes of older models. Many of the models you see in this list are old, some being more than 20 years old.

The original shoes were not vegan as they had non-vegan glues. Luckily Nike started using vegan glue some time back, so now the most crucial point is whether it has leather. So glue is not considered an issue in this article, as long as the shoes are from after 2015.

Please always double check for yourself as models can change and the materials can change over time. However, this should give you can indication as to which Nike Air Max shoes are vegan.

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