For many trades and tasks work boots are an essential piece of kit and can save your pinkies from falling objects, impacts, scuffs, twisted ankles and underfoot penetration injuries from nails, glass and screws. They are now a mandatory PPE piece of kit on construction sites and in warehouses and factories where an employer has put safety measures in place.
Finding the best footwear is not only about the safety aspect, you must also consider carefully the levels of comfort a boot will offer you, especially when working in a job where you clock up a stack of miles, you climb up and down scaffolding on a regular basis or trudge through the fields of a muddy farm.
We’ve been selling safety footwear in the UK for several years and we’ve got to know through personal experience and talking to our customers what makes a good solid boot. We would like to help you find the perfect option based on comfort, protection levels, add-on features and price. We are only going to look at boots in the £75 or less range, so no need to worry about the bank account. So, let’s dive in and look at our top 5 picks.
First up is the Blackrock SF50 tempest. Looking great in a solid matte black with red detailing on the sole and laces, what really sets this men’s boot apart is the 360 degrees protection on offer. Steel toe caps and midsoles are complimented by a robust scuff cap on the toe-end and a rear kick plate on the heel with added support structure. The uppers are constructed from leather nubuck which is completely waterproof, and the sole is constructed from super thick PU / Rubber with slip resistance of the highest level. To finish off there are handy pull on tabs and padded tongues for added comfort. A firm favourite with our customers for several years it is designed to withstand rigorous usage from the very hardest working men on the job!
This is a beast of a boot that performs like an armoured tank with a look that shouts, “give me your best shot!”. Made from full grain wax leather uppers, it does not compromise on safety features either. It comes with steel toe and midsole as you would expect, a robust scuff cap on the front and a tough heel plate. Further to this the boot is a great winter time choice with 3M insulated lining, an internal water-resistant membrane, cemented rubber outsoles and anti-static shock absorbing heels! These have now become so popular that they are no longer just used for workwear but have garnered a substantial following amongst the hiking community due to their robustness and comfort. Choose from the two most popular colours: black and brown. Without doubt one of the best safety boots on the market!
Made in a classic style, the Result Carrick is a boot that looks the part whether you’re on a construction site or walking through town on a Saturday afternoon. The boot is made up of brown leather that ages attractively as time goes by. Features include steel toe caps plus a composite midsole (much lighter than steel), SRC slip resistance and a sole that is resistant to oil. Its prominent white stitching adds depth to the overall look. Comfort is king when buying work boots and with this one you get padded cuff and tongues, ankle support and a stretchy v-section in the upper to help with breathability and flexibility. To finish off it comes boxed with three sets of laces in different colours, so that you can choose the look that best suits your personality.
Named after the spa town in Worcestershire, UK. Malvern town sits at the foot of the Malvern hills which are renowned for hiking and adventuring. When on the trail, you need a pair of boots that are lightweight, durable and comfortable. It’s no different for the modern work man who can be on his feet for up to 12 hours day in the most testing of conditions. Enter the Blackrock Malvern work boots, combining safety protection seamlessly with comfort and style. The upper is constructed from a super smooth water-repellent leather which is double stitched for extra robustness. Steel toe caps and midsole provide the expected safety requirements. Additional to this you have a kick plate on the heel and a large scuff cap at the front. The soles have the highest level of slip resistance attainable, SRC. Designed in Britain they come in three colours: Tan, Brown and Black. A snug fit is guaranteed with speed lace up hooks at the top to make it simple to put on in the morning and take them back off after a hard day’s graft.
For those men working in airports, docks, events, security and customs entry points it is best to wear a pair of boots that are metal free (also called composite boots). These stop the triggering of metal detection equipment by accident. The uppers are a 100% water resistant black leather and there is ample padding in the ankle and tongue to provide a very comfortable fit. Like all Blackrock footwear these come in a wide fitting. What this means is, when you have been on your feet for a while they tend to heat up and expand inside your footwear, the wide fit gives you that extra bit of room to stop over-tightening and discomfort. Extra thick double density sole units provide extra comfort and protection for those on their feet for extended periods of time.
As a wise man once said, "You are either in your bed or in your shoes, so it pays to invest in both."