The Best Work Boots Review

Health and safety are some of the most important things to prioritize, especially in the workplace, where anything could happen. Whether it may be an incident or an accident, safety must be prioritized.

Accordingly, this is one of the reasons why many employers insist on the use of work boots. Although the existence of work boots has been seen already in the late 19th and early 20th century, their importance is much more highlighted today.
As a result, numerous brands and manufacturers today have become very persistent to produce different kinds of work boots and safety shoes. Not only that they are found to be very helpful in certain tasks, but because these pieces of footwear have become a requirement for many industries.
Which is why the rate of their prominence and popularity have doubled since then. And they became very in demand today.
But why would you need one anyway? What are they really made of? Are these pieces of footwear have become the ultimate tool to promote safety in the workplace? If they are, what are the most appropriate types for you? And certainly, which is the best work boots on the market today?
If you are asking these kinds of questions, then this is for you.

The Hottest Picks For The Best Work Boots Today

irish setter men's ely
Best Work Boot for Your Budget

Irish Setter Men’s Ely Steel Toe Work Boot

Made for heavy-duty purposes
Inexpensive
Ideal boots for electrical sites
Check Latest Price
timberland pro men's boondock
The Most Fully-Featured Work Boot

Timberland PRO Men’s Boondock

It comes with innovative applications
All-inclusive pair of work boots
It features an anti-fatigue technology
Check Latest Price
keen utility men's pittsburgh
The Most Comfortable Work Boot

Keen Utility Men’s Pittsburgh Work Boot

Very comfortable
Great for running and walking tasks
Very effective waterproof feature
Check Latest Price

Work Boots and How Are They Different From The Rest

Work boots are far different from your normal shoes and boots. This is because they possess several features that are essentially designed to provide safety and security. Although shoes, in general, are designed to keep the feet from harm and danger, work boots offer much more efficient and specific safety measures, not only to the feet, but to the user as a whole.

Historically, the first generations of work boots are first used utilized after World War II. The initial goal of these pieces of footwear is to provide safety and security to the soldiers. But after the war has ended, workers of several industries have seen the importance and benefits of using work boots.

Although the official work boots are only seen after the war, workers utilized leather and wooden clogs to protect their feet during working hours in the early years. Hence, the idea of work boots existed long before the actual manufacturing of the official boots.
They are quite different from the rest of the shoes and boots in the sense that they are essentially designed to be used only at work. This is because they have certain features and functions that only they can provide to the users.
Features like toe reinforcement, mid-sole plating, and safety-related certifications are only some of the things that make them quite different. And much more today when innovations of technology have entered the manufacturing and industrial sector.
Moreover, work boots come in different variations. There are pairs that are only fitting for climbing and there are pieces as well that are only designed for handling chemicals and harmful solutions. So, each type has their own characteristics and standard features.

The Need To Own A Pair of Work Boots

Not everyone is actually required to have their own work boots. However, if you are working in a technical-related industry, the chance of needing such pairs of footwear is quite high. This is because the workplace safety standards have been enforced by the government.

a pair of work boots
And failure to imposed or even recognized these safety standards in different industries would entail sanctions and violations of the Act. And this is a real bad news for employers and businesses.
This is the reason why you would see or hear the Personal Protective Equipment or PPE in several industries. Without these tools and equipment, one cannot continue to do the tasks at hand. And as it happens, work boots are a major part of it.

But, aside from avoiding violations from the said Act, there are several other reasons why you may need to own a good pair of work boots. And here are some of them:

For Safety and Protection

The main reason why workers would need to use a pair of the best work boots is due to the promotion of safety and protection. Keep in mind that the Occupational Safety and Health Act revolves around these two factors. And there are actually 5 “P”s that focus on this aspect:

Protection from Punctures and Cuts

A great pair of work boots will help the users protect themselves from cuts and punctures. These shoes are constructed by using durable and thick materials to avoid the feet to have contact with sharp objects.

Normally, all types of work boots have this feature. It is pretty much the basic feature and purpose of work boots.

Protection from Falling and Flying Objects

In a site or workplace, especially the ones that are seen in the industrial sectors of the society, the chances of falling and flying objects to occur is very large. Workers under such industries are very much exposed to these incidences. And you’ll never actually know when would these objects will hit you.

This is why work boots are usually equipped with the right toe capping or material to prevent risks and accidents of these instances. And when an object falls or flies on or towards your feet, it will be protected well and won’t be hurt at any cost.

The most apparent workers and laborers who use such work boots are the ones who work on construction sites.

Prevention of Falling, Tripping, and Slipping

Falls, trips, and slips are also common to different workplaces. And the right work boots will prevent the users from having these accidents. This is because the right work boots for this aspect normally feature good treading and traction.

Effective grip and lugged sole are also featured in these types of work boots.

Typically, these kinds of work boots are the ones that you would see from lineworkers and loggers. And it is all because they are the ones who are more exposed to climbing.

Protection from Energized Spaces and Equipment

If you are working in the electrical industry, you would know how it is very crucial to wear a pair of work boots that are insulated and waterproof. And these kinds of work boots apparently protects the workers like lineman, apprentices, and electricians from electrical shocks and static build-ups.

Usually, these types of work boots come with certain standards and certifications. And they are normally marked with the right electrical guidelines as to where they are most suitable to be worn.

For Comfort and Support

Just like any pair of shoes and boots, work boots are naturally designed to provide comfort and support to the users. They also help prevent the users from experiencing too much stress and fatigue in their legs and feet.

Almost all work boots have been said to provide enough comfortability, support, and stability. This is because aside from the primary features that they are designed for, users, especially the workers, would need to have great comfort, support, and stability as they do their respective tasks and jobs.

However, it is important for you to note that not all work boots may provide the same intensity of comfort and support. Some others would have much better of these things. So, it will be essentially dependent on how you use it and where you would use it.

Different Types of Work Boots

Having a great pair of work boots is one. But this won’t actually work for you if you don’t get the right type of work boots. Apparently, the type of work boots largely depends on the things that your work demands. And this is an important matter to regard.
 types of work boots

Keep in mind that it’s not really about having the best work boots on the market. It’s all about having the best work boots that are right for your career, job, and tasks. So, you must know which of the types that will suit your needs according to the demands of your profession.

It will be a complete useless purchase if you choose to have the wrong pair. Yes, work boots, in general, are meant to provide safety and protection. But having the wrong type of footwear will not only ‘unprotect’ you but it may cause much more accidents in the workplace.

Safety-Toed Work Boots

Safety-toed work boots or shoes are the most common type of work boots. They are equipped with a toe reinforcement to keep the feet from different dangers and risks. Usually, the materials that are used in the toe capping are steel, alloy, and non-metallic toe caps.

And depending on what your profession demands from you, the capping material must be chosen with the right knowledge and eye.

Steel Insole Work Boots

If your work revolves around driving, running, and walking, you might need a pair of work boots that have great and effective support and comfortability. Stability is also another thing that this work boot focuses on.

Normally, the people who utilize this type are the ones who focus the weight on their joints. So, this pair of work boots can help the users prevent bone and joint injuries in the long run.

Electrical Hazard Work Boots

Work boots that have electrical hazard rating, obviously, are designed for people who work in the electrical industry. This is because such type of boots has certain features to keep the feet and the user from being electrocuted.

The features that are normally found in these work boots are insulation, waterproofing, and shock-proofing. Also, they are normally tested to pass the electrical hazard standards. So, they are, most of the time, found with a certification.

Metatarsal Work Boots

Metatarsal work boots are normally utilized by people or workers who work with lifting objects. This is because such work boots have certain features that protect the bones, feet, and toes from injuries and other risks.

Most workers in the construction and engineering industry are found to be fond of the metatarsal work boots. But since some of the institutions would require the workers to wear a safety-toed type, several manufacturers have produced variations of work boots that feature the two types.

Metal In-Step Work Boots

The metal in-step work boots and shoes are typically required for those who work in industrial factories. They are actually designed to keep the feet from sharp and pointed objects.

And just like the metatarsal work boots and shoes, there are brands and manufacturers who offer this kind of feature combined with a safety-toed style of work boots.

Now, these are only some types of work boots of today. And there are quite a lot more if you or your employer choose to be specific when finding for the best work boots on the market.

But even so, these are found to be the most common types of all due to the demand and popularity.

The Best Work Boots of 2018

Red Wing Iron Ranger Boots

Material: 100% Leather
Toe Type: Cap Toe
Construction: Goodyear Welt Construction
Shaft: 6 inches from arch
Sole: Nitrile Cork for Outsole; Leather for Insole
Applications: Oil-Resistance
Price: Below $400
The Red Wing Iron Ranger Boots is one of the most durable work boots of today. The materials used are pure leather in the core and nitrile cork for the outsole.
The shaft is measured at 6 inches from the arch. It also features 1 inch of heel and .5 inch platform.
According to actual users:
“They have a leather sole, and mold to your foot, do not expect these to be comfortable immediately. People often complain about the break in period, and how stiff the leather is, but it’s supposed to be!”
PROS
Comfortable and easy to use
Durable and sturdy
It has waterproof applications
CONS
Expensive
It has no insulating properties
It always needs maintenance
Looking for a durable and sturdy pair of work boots? Try this one from Red Wing today!

Timberland PRO Men’s Hyperion Waterproof Work Boot

Material: 100% Leather
Toe Type: n/a
Construction: n/a
Shaft: 4 inches from arch
Sole: Vibram Outsole
Applications: Waterproofing Membrane
Price: Below $200
The Timberland Pro Men’s Hyperion Waterproof Work Boot is a great footwear for outdoor purposes. Although this is designed mainly for outdoor uses, many workers are seen to use this pair.
This lace-up work boot is very comfortable. And its padded collar feature is the very reason why the pair is quite comfortable to use.
Actual users state that:
“Fit great right out of the box. Very comfortable too, no break in period. They are light and waterproof as I have gotten them nice and muddy already.”
PROS
Very comfortable
Inexpensive
It comes with an effective waterproofing application
CONS
Not entirely ideal for workplace use
The stitching is not really great
Not quite durable
A pair of work boot that is perfect for outdoor adventures? The Timberland PRO Hyperion Waterproof might be the one you are looking for.

Timberland PRO Men’s Pit Steel-Toe Boot

Material: 100% Leather
Toe Type: Steel Toe
Construction: n/a
Shaft: 5.5 inches from arch
Sole: Rubber Sole
Sole: Rubber Sole
Applications: Slip-resistance; oil-resistance; ANSI Safety Standards
Price: Below $150
The Timberland Pro Men’s Pit Steel-Toe Boot is one of the pairs that Timberland takes pride in. With its certifications to passing the ANSI Safety Standards, many employers require this pair of work boots to their site workers.
In addition, this pair of boots features slip-resistance and oil-resistance applications which are very useful in many industries.
According to one user:
“This boot is also a great all around work boot, I have a pair that I wear at home that is several years old with no significant wear on it.”
PROS
All-inclusive work boots
The boots have passed the ANSI Safety Standards
Effective steel-toe reinforcement
CONS
Not waterproof
No specific construction stated
Not quite comfortable
Timberland Pro Men’s Pit Steel-Toe might be the one for you if you are looking for an all-inclusive work boot to break in!

Danner Quarry USA Work Boots

Material: 100% Leather
Toe Type: Cap Toe
Construction: Handcrafted and Stitch-Down Welt Construction
Shaft: 7.75 inches from arch
Sole: Synthetic
Applications: Oil-Resistance; Slip-Resistance; Water-Resistance
Price: Below $300
The Danner Quarry USA work boots use 100% full-grain leather in its structure and core. Together with its synthetic sole, this pair is quite popular to many work boot lovers inside and outside the industrial sector.
In addition, durability and stability are very well secured in this pair of work boots due to its stitch-down welt construction.
According to some of the users of this boots:
“These boots are probably the stiffest boots I have ever worn but the quality and craftsmanship is well worth the time and pain of getting them broke in.”
PROS
Durable and sturdy
Waterproof
It features a fiberglass shank
CONS
It is not a steel-toe
It does not come with insulation properties
It does not come with certifications and EH ratings
Are you looking for a pair of work boots that has great support due to its shank? Take a look at the Danner Quarry USA, you might find what you are looking for!

Red Wing Heritage Classic Moc Boot

Material: 100% Leather
Toe Type: n/a
Construction: Triple Stitch Goodyear Welt Construction
Shaft: 5.5 inches from arch
Sole: Synthetic Outsole
Applications: Stain-resistance and perspiration-resistance
Price: Below $400
The Red Wing Heritage Classic Moc Boot features 100% leather and a triple stitch Goodyear Welt construction. And these are all parts of the reasons why this pair of work boots is quite durable.
Along with its durability, this pair from Red Wing Heritage is also comfortable to use. And with its pleasing appearance, many work boot lovers would surely want to have this pair today.
According to users:
“Man are these some good looking boots! Comfy too. They blow iron rangers away on comfort. Once broken in these will go in the rotation of my work boots (iron rangers and beckmans)”
PROS
Very comfortable
Quite durable
The quality of the construction is on point
CONS
It takes time to break in
The sizes are not accurate
Expensive
Want a triple stitch Goodyear welt construction for your work boot? Here’s the Red Wing Heritage Classic Moc Boot. Check it out now!

Danner Bull Run Work Boots

Material: Leather
Toe Type: Cap Toe
Construction: Handcrafted and Stitch-Down Construction
Shaft: 8.5 inches from arch
Sole: Synthetic
Applications: Electric Shock-resistant; Oil-resistant
Price: Below $200
This handcrafted and stitch-down work boot from Danner is quite extraordinary. Unlike other Danner pairs, the Danner Bull Run is designed for entry-level users. But while the features and applications may seem too basic, this is a very ideal pair of work boots for many workers and laborers today.
In addition, it is quite ideal for people who are working as an apprentice to various line workers and electricians.
According to the users of this boots:
“These by far has been the best on my feet, break in is not bad. Comparable to the red wing 877. Will definitely buy more in the future.”
PROS
It features great support and stability
It comes with great treading and traction
It offers a very pleasing appearance and style
CONS
Not ideal for heavy-duty purposes
It lacks other essential features and applications
No specific toe capping
Are you looking for an entry-level pair of work boots? The Danner Bull Run might be the best as it can provide you with great support and stability!

Timberland PRO Men’s Boondock Work Boots

Material: Leather
Toe Type: Steel Toe
Construction: Three Quarter Goodyear Welt / Cement Heel Construction
Shaft: 6.5 inches from arch
Sole: Synthetic Outsole
Applications: waterproofing, slip-resistance, abrasion-resistance, and oil-resistance
Price: Below $250
Similar to the other Timberland work boots, the Boondock model offers a very distinct feature that makes it quite different from the rest of the product line.
It comes with a steel toe that is well supported by its three quarter Goodyear Welt construction. Also, it features several industrial applications that can offer safety from several risks.
As what others would say about this pair:
“These are very nice, comfortable boots. I have owned Dr. Martens and Keen work boots.. and both of them had the sole of the boot split within a year of purchasing them. I have had these Timberlands for nearly two years now”
PROS
It comes with innovative applications
All-inclusive pair of work boots
It features an anti-fatigue technology
CONS
Not quite durable
The sizes are too big
The steel toe is too heavy
A pair of work boots that offers innovative features and all-inclusive applications? It is possible with the Timberland PRO Men’s Boondock Work Boots!

Keen Utility Men’s Pittsburgh Steel Toe Work Boot

Material: 100% Nubuck Leather
Toe Type: steel toe
Construction: Dry-Lec footwear lining
Shaft: <8 inches from arch
Sole: Rubber
Applications: slip-resistance, waterproof, and oil-resistance
Price: Below $200
The Keen Utility Pittsburgh Steel Toe Work Boot is designed for medium duty purposes. Its contoured heel lock, steel toe capping, and dry-lec footwear lining are spot on to be very effective.
In addition, the Keen Dry feature is also a great detail to highlight. The brand essentially takes pride in this technology since it really keeps the feet dry all throughout the usage.
According to the users of the boots:
“Great shoes! This is my second pair. I had the same shoes for about 4 years [working 45 hours per week] and they fit great. Very comfortable and held up better than other shoes”
PROS
Very comfortable
The waterproof feature is very effective
Great for running and walking tasks
CONS
Not very durable
Materials tend to crack after a few months
Ideal only for medium duty purposes
A work boot to support your legs and back? This Keen Utility Pittsburgh Steel Toe Work Boot might be the one!

Irish Setter Men’s Ely Steel Toe Work Boot

Material: 100% Nubuck Leather
Toe Type: Steel toe
Construction: Antique Brass Stud Hooks and Eyelets
Shaft: 6 inches from arch
Sole: Synthetic Sole
Applications: Slip-Resistance, Safety Toe, ASTM F2413-11, Electrical Hazard Standards
Price: Below $150
This steel toe work boot from Irish Setter is quite inexpensive. But while having a very low cost, users could expect this pair to last for years. And this is very beneficial to people working in the electrical industry.
Its features are all parallel with the electrical hazard standards. Also, the pair passed the ASTM F2413-11 standard. And this is very important to anyone who wants to use the boots, especially if they are working in a very risky site.
According to the users of the Irish Setter Steel Toe Boots:
“So far I've had these for almost 2 months and I have not seen any corrosion yet. The boot uses a paracord type lacing, so it will last forever. I was expecting a break in period, but it felt good the first day I wore it. I would recommend this boot if you stand a lot and work on slippery surfaces. “
PROS
Made for heavy-duty purposes
Inexpensive
Ideal boots for electrical sites
CONS
Not very durable
Poor customer service
The warranty terms are not reliable
A pair of boots that comes with the right set of certifications and standard ratings? Try the Irish Setter Steel Toe Work Boot now!

Timberland PRO Men’s Titan Alloy Toe Boot

Material: Leather
Toe Type: Titan Alloy toe
Construction: n/a
Shaft: 6 inches from arch
Sole: Rubber Sole
Applications: Nylon-Diffusion Shank, Safety Toe, Rubber Traction, Anti-Microbial
Price: Below $200
Out of all the Timberland work boots in this guide, the PRO Titan Alloy Toe Boot is pretty much the most different. With its Titan Alloy toe and anti-microbial treatment feature, it is very alluring to many prospects and interested buyers.
This safety shoe is comfortable. However, before one could attain the most comfortable state, the pair must submit first in the long break-in period. And during the break-in period, it might cause a little pain and irritation to the feet.
According to the actual users of this Timberland Work Boots:
“Very comfortable boots. As a HVAC Technician, I work a lot in tight areas (crawl spaces, attics etc.) so the comfort is a plus. However, the outer soles peeled off in about 4 months."
PROS
Innovative applications
Very Comfortable
Suitable for different workers from different industries
CONS
Not very durable
The break-in period is too long
It will hurt your feet during the break-in period
An alloy-metal feature in its toe capping? Check this Timberland PRO pair today!

The Things To Consider When Looking For A Work Boot

The variations of work boots on the market today is quite wide. And aside from the variations, there are tons of brands and manufacturers as well to choose from. So, it may be quite challenging for some to choose the best work boots for them.

Nevertheless, just by considering the right factors and variables, a certain pair or type of work boots will make sense as a whole. And if you are facing a few mishaps and challenges in your own search, you may want to check these things first:

1. The Risks and Dangers In Your Workplace

One of the most important things you must consider is the risks and dangers that you are exposed to in your workplace. Just by learning and knowing these efficiently, you will know easily which type of work boots will be the best fit for you.
Although some employers and companies would have their own requirements and standards, others, however have to know for themselves.
So, here are some of the most common risks and dangers in the workplace. And for each risk, there is a specific type of work boot designed to counteract the risk:
  • Electric Shock and Electrocution
  • Falling and Flying Objects
  • Sharp and Pointy Objects
  • Falling and Slipping from Heights
  • Explosive and Fire
  • Exposure to extreme weather conditions
  • Exposure to chemicals and harmful solutions
  • Uneven terrains and surfaces

2. The Safety Marks and Symbols

You may have seen a marking on your previous work boots. But do you know what these markings and symbols mean?
As it happens, these marking are the specific safety symbols that the work boots is featuring. And for each type of work boots, there could more than one or two symbols.
Usually, they can be very confusing and challenging to remember. But just by knowing the risks that you have in your workplace or the ones mentioned above, you will know easily what will fit best for you and for your needs.

Today, there are more than 20 markings that a pair of work boots can offer. So, before heading out and make a purchase for your best work boots, you must check first the Safety Symbol Index standards.

3. Comfort vs Style

When buying the best work boots for you and for your profession, comfort must always be ahead of style and appearance. In fact, comfort and safety must never be undervalued by style and looks.
Comfort vs Style
In the previous decades, that might be very applicable. But today, due to the wide variation of work boots on the market, there are those work boots that can provide both comfort and style.
But even so, you may want to check first these points in considering comfort and style:
  • Your chosen work boot must not squeeze your feet too tight
  • The toe capping must not be felt against your toes
  • The work boot must be chosen with allowances and adjustments
  • Choose the right size. This means it must not be too narrow nor too wide
  • Before buying the pair of work boots, you must try it on first for a few minutes
  • Always wear comfortable socks
Above all else, you must understand that safety should always come first before comfort and style.

4. The Price Range

Generally, work boots are not entirely cheap. This is also a reason why you would need to consider all the affecting variables and factors before making a purchase. For conventional work boots, expect that you would need to shell out between $150 and $300.
Most of the time, the saying “you get what you pay for” applies in this case. This is because some safety features along with the finest qualities of materials would cost more than the average types.
Even so, you have to understand that safety must not be equated with a price. But this does not necessarily mean that you need to get the most expensive work boots on the market. This only means that you have to take the work boots as an investment for your health and safety.
Also, brands and names could essentially affect the price ranges as well as warranty terms, package inclusions, and additional features.

It Is Now Time To Buy Work Boots

Again, work boots are not really inexpensive. So, it is very important that you take matters into consideration first. Aside from considering the important factors given above, another thing that you have to think about first is if it is really now the best time to buy your work boots.

If you are unsure or you don’t know whether it is now time to replace your work boots or not, these points might help you out:

Wear and Tear

If you notice that your work boots have begun to show through, like a wear and tear, you may already replace your work boots. Remember, safety and security are the top priorities.

Toe Dents and Cracks

The toe capping of work boots is pretty durable and sturdy. So, when you notice that there are already physical damages like dents and cracks, it is now the best time to get a new pair for you.

Worn and Smooth Soles

There are times that the tread and soles of the work boots would smoothen and worn out due to overuse. This is just normal for any work boot, especially if you’ve been using the pair for quite some time now.

So, if it seems that the pair has lost its slip, treading, and traction, you may want to get a new pair of work boots now. Imagine walking, climbing, or running with a pair of work boots with no grip and slip-resistance, it too dangerous, right?

Leakages and Holes

This aspect is very important, especially for people who work with chemicals and other harmful liquid solutions. If the pair of work boots that you are using tends to have leakages and holes already, you must, as soon as possible, replace them. 

And this is not just about comfort. If these harmful chemicals enter your work boots, it may ultimately cause accidents and injuries not only to you but to everyone that is around you.

The Best Among All

All of the work boots listed in this guide are all effective and efficient in providing safety and security to the users. But among all the ones included here, there is only one that stands out the most. And this is the Red Wing Iron Ranger Boots.
Primarily, this pair of work boots from Red Wing is very durable and sturdy. Users can expect this boot to last much longer than the usual. In fact, it is designed for heavy-duty purposes. Not to mention the innovative features that it offers to its users are quite impressive.
And secondly, the Red Wing Iron Ranger Boots is very comfortable to use. And according to the users, it does not entirely cause any pain to the feet when in use.
Although it may cost a little more than the average range of work boots today, this pair is very much recommendable to anyone who is looking for a very beneficial and functional work boot.

Work Boots In Totality

Work boots have come a long way from being a simple wooden or leather clog. And the apparent need for such pieces of footwear has become more relevant in the recent years.
Although you may find yourself in a very challenging situation when looking for the best fit and type for you, equipping yourself with the right knowledge and senses will already help you find your best pair.
Just keep in mind that your health and safety must always be the top priorities to regard when looking for the best work boots today.
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