Best Work Boots for Men: 2020 Expert Reviews

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best work boots for men

Work boots are an essential part of a working man’s day. Work boots for men come in all shapes and sizes.

Some are specialized for individualized jobs, while other work boots are versatile enough to double as casual wear.

Whatever the situation, a good pair of shoes should be tough on the job but also gentle on your feet.
Safety toe work boots keep your feet safe and comfortable as you grind through the concrete and metallic pieces in your work area.

But with most of today’s work boot reviews being given out by manufacturers, it is difficult to get honest reviews of the best work boots for men in the market.

That’s why we took our time to research on, analyze and familiarize our self with the leading work boots in the market today so that we can give honest reviews based on real customer reviews, budget, features and performance of the different work boot.

1. Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot

Highlights

  • A perforated footbed that wicks away moisture and create breathing space.
  • An underlying collar tongue that eases the pressure exerted by the laces.
  • A durable, full-grain waterproof leather.
  • B.S.F.P. system for improvement support.
  • Light in weight
  • Miss a strengthened toe cap thus unsuitable for industrial working environments
  • Lack electrical hazard protection capabilities

Fact is, there are but only a few work boots for men that offer safety and still remain stylish in different work set ups.

But Timberland White Ledge boot satisfies both of these conditions.

This work boot’s biggest selling point is in its minimal design and its light weight which makes the boot incredibly versatile safety wear.

The boots are made of full-grain waterproof leather that protects you from rain drops and early morning dew.

A breathable footbed adds to the comfort of wearing the boot while the multi directional rubber lugs come in handy whenever you want accelerate, brake and climb with ease.

2. Caterpillar Men’s 2nd Shift 6″ Plain Soft-Toe Work Boot

best safety toe work boots for men
  • A Polyurethane sole which gives the boot a beautiful appearance
  • An oil and slip-resistant traction outsole.
  • A Nylon Mesh Lining
  • Climasphere‚ĄĘ Sock Liner

This particular men’s work boot represents the ultimate result of continuous research and improvement of Caterpillar‚Äôs safety foot wear.

The rugged Caterpillar 2nd Shift Work Boot is durable, has an outstanding design and it meets the set Safety standards to the letter.

While the boot is made of the long lasting full grain leather, the upper parts of the boot have a feet-friendly nubuck material for improved ventilation.

3. Maelstrom Men’s Tac Force 8 Inch Zipper Tactical Boot

best steel toe work boots for men
  • Trusted and dependable on/off zippers.
  • A polishable and water-resistant leather for protection and high gloss shine.
  • A thermoplastic board for improved support on heel and toe areas.
  • An oil and slip resistant rubber outsole.

Working in areas such as the security enforcement zones leaves little room for experimenting with flexibility and safety of your feet. 

The Maelstrom work boot comes with a heavy duty¬†YKK‚ĄĘ¬†Zippers and Shock-absorbing midsole making this boot a dependable resource for professionals working in the security and law enforcement agencies.¬†

The boots oil and lip resistant outer soles further makes the boot ideal for those who spend their days trudging muddy grounds and harsh environments.

4. Sorel Mens Conquest Boot

Boot Highlights

  • Sturdy steel shanks for a strong frame.
  • Multi-directional rubber lugs to enhance outsole traction.
  • Drawstring collars that help keep out the snow.

If you come from the snowy areas of the country, you will affirm that winter work boots are a necessity. That’s why Sorel went out of their way to bring you Sorel Mens Conquest Boot that will not only help you cruise through the numbing ice but also keep your feet warm and comfortable. 

This men’s work boot, to be specific, is made of a proprietary leather build and a 400g Thinsulate Ultra insulation.

5. Timberland PRO Men’s Direct Attach Six-Inch Soft-Toe Boot

Top rated steel toe work boots for men

Work Boot Highlights

  • Padded collar for added comfort
  • An inbuilt Mesh lining enhanced with antimicrobial treatment
  • A non-marking, oil-resistant rubber lug outsole for great traction
  • A 200 g Thermolite¬ģ insulation for added comfort

If you are looking for a sturdy but lighter work boot, then this is the work boot to go for. It’s actually an ideal alternative to the heavier steel toed work boots for men.

The upper body of this work boot is constructed of seam-sealed waterproof leather making the boot an all purpose work wear. With regard to the sole, the manufacturer uses the trusted but rugged Timberland PRO rubber which increases grip and boot resistivity to puncture.

6. Timberland PRO Men’s Pitboss 6″ Steel-Toe Boot

best steel toe boots for working men
  • Goodyear welt construction that holds together the sole components
  • Added foot comfort from the padded collar
  • A treated Fabric lining that eliminates odor.
  • Steel toe protective feature

The Timberland Pitboss exhibits unmatched lust for the hard life. The sturdy body build, stylistic design and the comfort it offers to its users make it one of the most used safety wear today. 

Talking of the boot’s finer details, the Pro boot has it’s upper body constructed from a rugged full-grain leather and makes it ideal for use in tough work zones such as in construction sites and logging zones. 

Further on, the protective steel toe is designed such that it leaves enough room for free movement of the toe movement and for breathability purposes. As a result, your feet remain comfortable in the boot even when you have won the boots for long periods of time. 

Talking of the boot’s sole make, the lower sole features a traction-grip layer that makes it safe to walk and work even on slippery surfaces. Lastly, a removable, sock liner provides for a soft and comfortable landing for your feet.

There are a few other Timberland Pro work boots that are definitely good competitors to this one. And I have done what I consider to be a very fair comparison of them in a nice guide that you can find here. If you’re considering going the Timberland Pro way, this guide is a must read.

Buying Guide

Why Work Boots?

Working in industries such as in construction sites can be a tough job. And the footwear you put on to work tell a lot about how you value your own safety while sweating the days off in your work area. Truth is, there is little room to experiment with a work boot given that there are hundreds of deleterious accidents can happen in your place of work.

The Best Work Boots for Men Offer Protection

A work boot keeps your foot your from the harm of falling debris, hard blocks and everything else that can injure you as you go through your line of duty.

Work Boots for Comfort

Whether you work in water logged zones, walk through dew and simply had to get yourself wet, work boots keep your feet dry and essentially warm amidst cold surroundings.

Flexibility

As you work through the debris, you’ll, once in a while, be forced to make that awkward landing that lead to a fall or a disabling injury. Fortunately, work boots are designed to allow for such awkward movement and also provide a soft landing.

Feel confident

You will definitely have a peace of mind when you know you are protected from possible accidents in your line of work.

Longevity

The best work boots for men are made of sturdy materials that withstand harsh terrains and all the odd jobs that can come their way. With a good selection, you can be sure of having your boot for years.

 The 3 Classes of Safety-toe Work Boots For Men:

Work boots are classified according to the type of toe cap used:

Toe Cap: This is the protective cap that is built into the toe box of the given boot. A toe cap serves to protect the the toes and the feet of whoever individual wearing the work boot.

Toe caps are broadly categorized into 3 main categories of steel toe, composite toe, and soft toe. Let’s have a look at each of these in some more detail.

1. Steel-toe Work Boots.

Best work boots steel toe cap

Courtesy: Vegan line

Typically, these are working boots that have a steel cap at the toe area. They are designed to give you maximum protection while you ago about your duties. The toe box¬†is wide enough to give your toes room to spread out. As such, you won’t feel uncomfortable even on wearing these boots for ¬†long duration.¬†That’s not all, the design of the boot’s toe region is¬†asymmetrical ¬†and mimics the shape of your foot and this ultimately makes for a good fitting boot. Steel-toe boots often designed as¬†Lace-up so that you can tighten them to your comfort. The¬†out soles are made of hardened rubber making them slip, and abrasion-resistance. ¬†A padded¬†collar adds an extra layer of protection and comfort to the front parts of your feet. The raised side covering means your ankles are less exposed to hazards as such as protruding edges, falling objects and electrical devices. Not to forget, the outer cover is made of durable leather meaning it can service you for extended duration and help you save some bucks in the long run.

Recommended Best Steel Toe Work Boots

Caterpillar Men's Diagnostic Waterproof Steel-Toe Work BootGW Men's 1606ST Steal Toe Work BootsKEEN Utility Men's Pittsburgh Steel Toe Work BootAriat Men's Workhog Steel Toe Work Boot
Caterpillar Men’s Diagnostic Waterproof Steel-Toe Work BootGW Men’s 1606ST Steal Toe Work BootsKEEN Utility Men’s Pittsburgh Steel Toe Work Boot.Ariat Men’s Workhog Steel Toe Work Boot
Price: $$$Price: $$Price: $$$Price: $$$
Body Make: LeatherBody Make: Full-Grain Nubuck Leather.Body Make: Leather and FabricBody Make: Leather
Sole Make: RubberSole Make: RubberSole Make: RubberSole Make: Rubber

Steel toe work boots are further classified into Men’s¬†and Women’s¬†steel-toe Work Boots.

 


2. Composite-toe Work Boots.

Composite toe cap

For those looking for lighter, non-metallic footwear, composite-toe boots offer an excellent alternative to work boots with a steel-toe. For composite-toe boot, the toe cap is made of a composite, non-metallic material. The key ingredients of the composite material include Kevlar aramid fiber, plastic and carbon fiber. These types of boots are ideal for individuals who work in metal-sensitive areas and who often have to pass through metal screening detectors in their line of duty. If you work in one of these areas, then a composite shoe is your best fit: airport, a nuclear laboratory and security departments.

Continue reading>>>>>

 3. Soft-toe Work Boots.

Milwaukee Men's 6

Non-Protective toe boot

Sometimes a soft toe comes with an added burden weight on the feet. For those who do not necessary work in tough conditions but still want to adorn a work boot, a soft toe is an ideal alternative they can turn to.

A soft toe work boot differs with both composite and steel work boots in that they don’t have a hardened toe area. Even then, they still offer other protective properties present in composite and steel toe boots. These include protection from electrical hazards, are water proof, the sole offer¬†offer durable traction and the interior lining offer support and comfort to the feet.

 

Does a Soft-toe Work Boot Fit Your Working Area?

Soft toe boots are ideal for people working outside of construction and industrial sites. These people may include landscaping professionals, hiking enthusiast, and pretty any one who stands or walks for long duration but aren’t in direct line of hazards such as falling objects.

Why it’s Important to Buy Top Quality Work Boots for your Employees.

Work sites pose a lot of hazards that can lead to disabling injuries and financial losses if there aren’t proper safety measures put in place. Besides such losses, it’s a law¬†requirement¬†that for employees who are at risk of injuries caused by¬† crushing, punctures, sprains and lacerations should be provided with safety toe boots at no cost. These also includes industries where employees can suffer trips, slips and falls.

Basically, these are the five main reasons to provide your employees with safety toe work boots:

“Č ¬†¬†To Safeguard the welfare and health of your employees

Work boots reduce the occurrence of injuries in work place. The employees can go about their duties with some piece of mind knowing they are protected from every day hazards such as slips, lacerations, punctures and occasional trips.

“Č ¬†¬†Compliance with government regulations

Different governments have laid down regulations regarding the safety of employees in various. As an employer, it’s important to be on the right side of the law by availing the necessary safety wear for your employees working under your watch.

“Č ¬†¬†Avoid/ minimize law suits resulting from work place injuries.

If an employee is injured while working for your industry, they are entitled to compensation packages based on guidelines existing in different states. Without providing protective footwear to your employees, your establishment can face numerous law suits resulting from injuries- even those that may have resulted from carefree attitude by employees.

“Č ¬†¬†A Form of motivation

Let’s face it, no employee would have the urge to work harder in an environment where they feel they employees don’t care about their welfare. By providing the right boots and under no conditions makes them feel valued and likely to put more thought in their line of work. The motivation will reflect on the overall performance of your company.

Work Boot Leather Variation- Choose Your Style.

Leather used in making work boots come in four grades; Top-grain, Full-grain, Split leather and Corrected grain. The quality and the grade that a leather belongs to is majorly determined by the refining done to remove imperfections on the leather.

Top-grain leather.

The top layer is split out and separated from the rawhide so as to create a smooth end product. The surface of top grain leather undergoes¬†buffing, sanding, stamping to make the surface smooth and¬†remove scratches,¬†insect bites, and other unsightly markings. It’s then dyed to produce a sleek finish. Top grain leather is used in making high end leather projects.

Full-grain leather.

Typically refers to the leather that has not been snuffed or sanded. It thus retains it imperfections. It’s, however, far stronger as the fiber layout remains intact. Aniline dyes are used to furnish the surface of full-grain leather and give it an appealing natural look. This kind of leather is often used on quality footwear products such as the ARCTIV8 work boot.

Corrected-grain leather.

As opposed to full-grain leather, corrected-grain is given a nominal level of artificial grain to mask out surface defects such as scratches and insect bites. This kind of leather is often used in manufacture of heavy duty products such as household furniture and work boots.

Split leather.

It’s created out of the¬†fibrous part of a¬† rawhide. The split leather is reinforcing¬†artificial layer embossed into it to bulk out the thin layers. If you have ever owned a pair of suede shoes, then that was split leather that you won.

You will be pleased to note that there are tens of outstanding split work boots on offer. Here are our top 2 Picks:

Maelstrom Men’s Tac Force 8 Inch Zipper Tactical Boot:

Maelstrom Men's Tac Force 8 Inch Zipper Tactical Boot

This boot is made with security and work professionals in mind. Maelstrom boots are light in weight, durable and waterproof. The boot’s inner linings are made of¬†Dri-Lex¬†waterproof membrane liner that avails enough movement and breathing space, a soft and comfortable foot bed and a side zipper so that put them on and off with ease.

What’s more? The¬†TAC FORCE 8′ boot features an¬†athletic design ¬†ideal for people who are always on the move.

Pros:

~ Light thus ideal for walking long distances and standing for long periods.

~ A side zipper that makes it easy to remove or wear the boot.

~ The Dri-Lex membrane liner protects your feet from moisture.

Cons:

‚Čą Lack arc support functionality.

Read Customer Reviews Here.

Caterpillar Women’s Jace Waterproof Work Boot Steel Toe – P90562:

Caterpillar Women's Jace Waterproof Work Boot Steel Toe - P90562

This rugged suede are made for the hardworking ladies in need of stylish yet protective work boot. They are slip resistant and have enhanced electrical hazard technology. The PVC Midsole makes a soft landing for the feet. This is of great help to ladies who start for long hours during their duty.

A combination of a sturdy T1170 Outsole and a Goodyear welt construction makes the boot ideal for even the most rugged work sites that a lady can work in.

Pros:

  • The upper part of the boot is made of a soft woolen cover that makes it enticing.
  • The boot’s protective toe cap is wide enough for easy breathing and maximum protective.
  • The leather used is easy to clean and is durable.
  • A Nylex sock liner provides for a soft landing of the foot.

Cons:

‚ČąThose with narrow feet may be forced to wear padded socks so that the boot fits on them perfectly.

You will be pleased to note that there are tens of outstanding split work boots on offer. Here are our top 2 Picks:

Read Customer Reviews Here

‚Ć™‚Ć™‚Ć™¬†A bonus Tip: How to Tie¬†Work Boot Laces for Most Comfort

Lacing your boots provide a better support to your feet and can also add a tinge of style if they are done rightly.  The fact that work boots have longer laces than your ordinary footwear means that tying them needs might require you to spend some more time on it and some skills to do right.

Keeping the laces in place is especially if you work with machines that can grasp loose end and cause accidents. This video helps you understand how you can tie your work boot laces and step out in style. Watch it out.

How to Maintain and Care for your Leather Work Boot.

Any time your wear your leather work boot you mean serious business. This means grinding through rocks, wood cuttings, mud and such. Unless you take good of your loved and  most comfortable steel boots, they will fall apart in a matter of months. Here are some great tips to keep your pair of work boots  in great condition.

♦ Clean and wipe away the embedded dirt.

First remove the shoe laces and inner soles to make cleaning much easy. The two should be washed separately in some soapy water, rinsed and dried.

Now the boot is a little more free, its easier to clean it off. Use a soft-bristle brush, such as one made of a nylon,  to remove the loose dirt and the accompanying debris.

  • Double Sided Sneaker Cleaning Brush

    Double Sided Sneaker Cleaning Brush

    It’s important to avoid using brushes that have hard bristles as they can easily graze your work boot’s¬†leather surface. Once you remove the loose debris, untie the laces and wash them in some soapy water. Using a soft cloth and warm¬†soapy water, clean the outer surface taking care of the hard to clean areas such as the collar padding and the interiors. You can remove the inner soles and wash them separately. Place them on an exposed patch to dry out. It’s good practice to give your boots a thorough scrub once a month to keep them in top condition.

Note>> Avoiding using detergents and every day bar soaps on leather work boots as they make the leather dry and thus susceptible to cracking.

‚ô¶ Dry and condition the boot

Leave your clean work boots a well ventilated and airy room so that they dry out. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight as this may cause rapid drying up and possible cracking. Too much shade will also mean your boots will take much longer to dry out.

‚ô¶ Polish up the surface.

Once your boots are  completely dry, apply a layer of mink oil to condition them out. Saddle soap is also an ideal alternative to mink oil as it also possess softening and preservative compounds that are ideal for leather. Check out how saddle soaps work.

♦ Apply a waterproofing product.

There are different approaches that you can apply to waterproof your work boot. You can either opt to use wax, or creams or paste or alternatively opt to use waterproofing sprays that are much easier to apply than creams.

‚ô¶ Store the boots appropriately when not in use.

‘DuOllieroo Men's Twin Tube Adjustable Red Cedar Wood Shoe Trees US Sizemping and heaping’ your work boots can cause moisture accumulation, maligning of the inner soles, build up of¬†acidic conditions and the ultimate loss of shape and occurrence of cracking. It’s a good practice to place your boots on some¬†cedar shoetree supports as they help absorb the moisture and keep the boot in shape.

‚Ć™‚Ć™‚Ć™ Pro tip:

It’s important to chat with other work boot users from time to time to know about selecting the most suitable work boot, the best way to maintain your work boots and generally anything else that concerns work boots. You can join forums such as this,¬†or peruse through customer reviews on credible websites such as Yelp.


Wrapping it all;

A work boot is one of your most important assets in your line of work. For this, you should ensure you choose an ergonomic, durable and stylish boot that can survive even the most rugged environments. A good starting point is reading through expert reviews on the different categories and brands of work boots. This way, you will be in a position to choose a boot that fits your needs.


Also on Enoughwork.com;

‚ô¶ Steel-toe Work Boots for Men
‚ô¶ Steel-toe Work Boots for Women
‚ô¶ Best Composite-toe Work Boots
♦ Best Therapeutic Work Boots for the Diabetic
♦ Timberland
‚ô¶ Caterpillar Footwear
♦ Best Winter Work Boots
♦ Best Work Boots for Construction