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Meghan Markle Effect Gives Sustainable Sneakers a Boost, Lyst Says

The Meghan Markle Effect has struck again—this time giving a boost to sustainable footwear.

Lyst, a global fashion shopping platform, compiles a quarterly Index detailing brand and product rankings for each three-month period. For the fourth quarter of 2018, Lyst said eco-friendly French sneaker brand Veja landed in its top-trending women’s products, thanks to the Duchess of Sussex stepping out in a pair of black-and-white trainers while touring Australia in October for the Invictus Games.

The royal’s appearance in the sustainably stylish sneakers drove brand searches up 113 percent, the fashion search platform said, noting that the Veja V10 style bearing France’s patriotic red-and-blue colors took the No. 3 spot behind Gucci’s Soho Disco bag and logo belt. Lyst noted that searches for Allbirds, another eco-conscious shoe brand are up as well and Veja’s appearance marks the first time a sustainable brand has cracked one of its top-10 lists since the Index launched two years ago.

Overall, footwear put in a strong showing, taking six of the top 10 spots for trending products.

Ugg’s Fluff Yeah slide appears at No. 6 in a nod to the comfort-driven slipper trend, with Lyst noting that searches for the brand have jumped 350 percent over the past six months. Along with Ugg, Dr. Martens (No. 8) and Fila (No. 9) are “enjoying a moment of reinvention,” Lyst said.

On the men’s side, consumers responded to functional, technical-minded performance gear. Aside from Nike’s Air Force 1 ’07 LV8 Utility Volt sneakers taking the No. 1 spot and confirming the neon trend, the trailing three positions went to the Nuptse jacket from The North Face, Patagonia’s Retro-X fleece jacket, and Fendi’s playful Bag Bugs windbreaker—which retails for a cool $1,690 on Farfetch. Moncler’s Maya Jacket showed up at No. 6. Footwear filled in the bottom two spots on the Lyst, with the No. 9 position going to the Converse x Off-White Chuck 70 hi-top sneakers and RS-X Reinvention sneakers from Puma.

To compile the quarterly Index, Lyst monitors the search, browsing and buying behavior of more than five million shoppers across the thousands of designers and online stores aggregated on its platform. It also factors in Google search data, product conversion rates and sales, and how both products and brands perform on social platforms, from mentions to engagement.