The Best Waterproof Work Boots (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
With the right pair of waterproof boots on your feet, you can do anything.
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BY Andra DelMonico / LAST UPDATED ON March 25, 2021
You work hard and give it your all, whether it’s working on the car, heading to the office, or tackling the latest home improvement project. You need a pair of work boots that can keep up with you. They should be tough with durable construction and protective qualities. Your feet should feel comfortable throughout the day. Don’t waste your time blindly buying work boots and then finding out too late that they just don’t cut it. Set yourself and your feet upright with a pair of boots that you can depend on. This guide will help you find the perfect pair by explaining the crucial features that boots should have. Make your feet happy and put them in a quality pair of waterproof work boots.
These durable boots come in brown, tan, or black. They’re constructed of 100 percent leather with a rubber sole. They have steel toe protection and a shaft that measures 5.5 inches from the arch.
- Meet ANSI safety standards
- Slip, oil, and abrasion-resistant outsoles
- Cuts in at the ankle
- Seam in the heel is uncomfortable
These boots may look similar to rain boots, but they’re protective work boots. They are made from PVE polyblend and injection molded. They’re 100 percent waterproof.
- Seamless construction
- Scalloped top-line
- Can crack across the toe
- Sizing runs large
These 100 percent leather boots have a rubber sole. The shaft measures 5.25 inches from the arch. The interior of the boots has a waterproof membrane and steel toe.
- Breathable leather upper
- Slip-resistant outsole
- Lacks durability
- Steel toe uncomfortable
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Benefits of Waterproof Work Boots
- Safety. Work boots have additional protective qualities built into the boot. This protects your feet from injury and stress while working or on your feet all day. This could be toe protection, insulation, and ankle supports.
- Comfort. You’ll appreciate how comfortable these boots are. They’re designed for wearing all day, so they have shock absorption and arch support built into the midsole. The upper comes up over the ankle to give them support and prevent rolling.
- Style. Just because these boots are safe and supportive doesn’t mean they can’t be stylish. The boots come in various colors and designs. Many people wear them as a fashion statement and not for their work function.
Types of Waterproof Work Boots
If you’re working in cold weather, then you need boots with insulation. This extra layer gets built into the boot and reflects your body heat towards your feet. The insulation should be compact and lightweight. This keeps the bulk and weight of the boots down, making them more comfortable. The boots should also be breathable. This prevents too much heat from building up and your feet sweating.
If you work on a construction site or work with heavy machinery, then you’re probably required to wear steel toe boots. This protective footwear has a steel plate built into the boot’s toe to protect your feet from heavy falling objects. Work boots that have a steel toe and are waterproof protect your feet from work and weather hazards.
Modern innovations have led to the development of strong and protective materials. Composites are lighter weight than steel toe yet just as protective. Some boots have additional supports through the midsole and in the upper around your ankle. For all of its benefits, some worksites still don’t allow composite and require steel.
Founded in 1953, the Timberland name has become one of the most trusted in work boots. They produce stylish and attractive boots that are also durable, reliable, and protective. The Timberland Pro Boots have a classic look everyone loves while also being waterproof, slip-resistant, and have a steel toe.
Founded in 1883 in Rockford, Mich., this legendary company made a name for itself with the “1,000-mile shoe”. It has since become one of the most trusted names in industrial footwear. The Wolverine Overpass Composite Toe Waterproof Work Boot is comfortable enough to wear all day.
Founded in 1925 in California, Cat Footwear makes a wide range of durable and protective work boots. The Caterpillar Waterproof Steel Toe Boot will provide you with the maximum amount of support and protection.
Waterproof Work Boot Pricing
- Under $100: The boots in this price range may have a simple design, but they can still adequately keep your feet dry. They tend to be made of a rubber-type material and lack lacing.
- $100 to $150: Boots in this price range are durable and dependable. They have a variety of features that will keep you dry and your feet protected.
- $150 and up: The boots in this price range are packed with features and technology. They have extra features like insulation, Gore-Tex membranes, and fiberglass shanks.
The whole point of buying waterproof boots is to keep your feet dry, so look for features that can accomplish this goal. Some boots are constructed of waterproof materials. Other boots have an additional membrane liner that keeps the water out. The seams should be taped to prevent leaks. There should also be a membrane on either side of the tongue to prevent leaks from the front.
The boots you choose should have a durable construction. This prevents them from falling apart while you’re wearing them. The material upper should be a strong leather or synthetic that attaches to a solid and thick sole. Reinforced or welt construction stitching should hold everything together. Extra bumpers on the toe and heel prevent premature wear.
The shoes you put on your feet need to fit. Otherwise, you won’t want to wear them. Boots that are too big won’t support your feet and can move around while you’re walking. Boots that are too small can pinch, causing blisters and pain. If they’re too tight, they can cut your blood circulation off, making your feet go numb. This is dangerous.
- Safety Features. If you plan to wear your boots while working, then you’ll want them to have several safety features built-in. This includes a steel toe, a non-conductive sole, and waterproofing. This will protect your feet from getting crushed and you from getting electrocuted. These boots should also have a non-slip outer sole to prevent you from losing your footing on wet or slippery surfaces.
- Sole Construction. The construction of the sole is important to ensure the durability and longevity of the boot. If you’re wearing them for work, you’ll likely be walking a lot. A poorly constructed sole will wear through quickly and develop holes. You won’t be able to have the sole on a low-quality boot replaced, requiring you to buy a new pair of boots. High-quality boots will last longer and can have their soles replaced.
- Ankle Support. Does the pair of boots have an upper that comes up over your ankles? If so, then you have a basic level of ankle support. This prevents your ankles from rolling and ensures you have steadier foot placement. For even more support, look for boots with additional supports built into the upper. This reduces your flexibility but increases your protection.
Best Waterproof Work Boot Reviews & Recommendations 2021
- Let your boots air and dry out between each time you wear them. This prevents bacteria from growing and building up in the boots, which can cause foot health problems.
- Spray your boots with an additional waterproofing treatment. This will ensure your boots are completely waterproof.
- Consider investing in a high-quality pair of boots. They will last longer, and you can get them repaired for an even longer useful life.
Q: Are waterproof work boots worth it?
Yes, waterproof work boots are worth the investment for their comfort, support, protection, and water repellent abilities. Your feet, legs, and back will feel less strained.
Q: What are the best waterproof work boots?
The best boots can vary depending on where and how you plan to use them. Choose a pair that fit, offer the right amount of protection, and can keep your feet dry.
Q: Are waterproof boots really waterproof?
Yes and no. Some boots prevent any water from getting in by being completely sealed. Others are more water repellent, keeping light rain and water sprays out.
Q: What are waterproof boots called?
Many people call waterproof boots “rain boots” or “Wellingtons.” However, neither of these are work boots and won’t provide the right level of protection.
The Timberland Pro Pit Boss Steel Toe is a reliable boot that meets safety standards and comes in four attractive colors. For an affordable option, the Servus PVC Steel Toe Work Boots have seamless construction and are 100 percent waterproof.