If you spend a lot of time on your feet, then you know the importance of good quality work boots. Comfortable boots that meet safety regulations and provide good support are always worth the investment.
Since Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) requirements and hazards vary from place to place, knowing what to look for when choosing work boots goes a long way in ensuring you’re getting more bang for your buck.
Whether you’re working in building and construction, manufacturing, mining, logistics and transport, essential services, or another heavy-duty industry, we at Tuff-As have created this handy guide so you know what to look for and what are some of the best Aussie boots on the market.
Choosing Your New Work Boots
When it comes to work boots, there is no shortage of different brands, styles, materials and colours to choose from. With all these choices it can be tough to know what you should actually be looking for. Here are four things to consider before you purchase a new pair of shoes.
Depending on the type of work you are doing, safety can be a huge determining factor in which boots you choose. For certain workplaces and professions, including construction or other high-risk jobs, toe protection (impact resistance) of safety work boots (steel cap work boots) is non-negotiable.
Lightweight composite toe cap boots are another option, and often include carbon fibre toe boots, plastic toe boots or Kevlar toe boots. They offer the same level of protection as steel cap boots, but are typically lighter with the additional benefit of not getting too cold during winter or too hot in summer.
Other occupations may demand additional safety features from work boots including anti-static or electrical hazard resistant, water resistant, waterproof, penetration resistant, metatarsal guard, chemical resistant, slip-resistant or oil resistant.
You can find what safety features your boots offer in the product description of the boots online. If they don’t specify that they are safety boots or list any features, it is best to assume that they won’t meet Occupational Health and Safety standards.
If you are unsure about what safety features you need for your work boots, ask your employer or work supervisor. You can also speak to us, the Tuff-As team, we offer professional WHS Consultancy and can help you find the right safety work boots for your job.
2. Support & Comfort
Did you know your work boots absorb up to twice your bodyweight in force with every step? That’s why you need work boots which offer both comfort and support. Properly designed work boots should support you day-in-day-out. Lace-up boots are a popular pick due to the increased foot support they provide.
The type of cut will determine how supportive your boots are. Often, the higher the cut, the more supportive the work boots are to the ankle. The majority of workers find that above-ankle work boots provide better overall support for long shifts on job sites, however higher ankle boots can offer less flexibility compared to low-cut work boots because they are more restrictive around the ankle.
You can also use orthopaedic insoles to provide you with additional support. Some work boots come fitted with these insoles already but you can also use your own custom insoles to increase support and comfortability.
3. The Brand
Knowing the reputation of the work boots brand is a great way to understand whether they are the right choice for you. Ask around to find out what boot brands are popular in your industry. We also highly recommend using an Australian owned and operated work boots brand as they will be more accurate in meeting Australian safety standards and be tailored for the environment.
Being aware of the warranty for your work boots is also recommended or look for a manufacturer’s warranty. That’s a sign the safety boots manufacturer is confident their product is designed and built to face the elements and last the test of time. Talk to Tuff-As about our warranties!
Having the right size of work boots makes a significant difference in how comfortable they are. If your heels ride up or rub the back of your boots, or if your toes slide forward then your boots are probably a size too big. If your toes or any part of your feet feel an intense pressure and hit the end of the boot, your boots are likely too small.
When buying online, be sure to check the fitting or size guide carefully, as different brands may have slight differences in sizing. If you are unsure, get in touch with our team to assist you in sizing.
Our Recommended Work Boots For 2023
If you’re looking for the best Australian work boots, we’ve listed our most popular and favourite work boots. These recommendations have been carefully chosen following the criteria listed above.
Work Boots For Men
1. Steel Blue Argyle Safety Work Boots TPU
Steel Blue is 100% Australian owned and designed, and their Steel Blue Argyle Work Boots offers premium comfort without compromising on safety. The lace-up ankle boot with padded collar and tongue design provides adequate support. Due to the TPU outsole being heat resistant to 130 degrees and the 200 joule safety steel toe cap adding another layer of safety, these boots are a popular choice among builders, bricklayers, plumbers, and carpenters. The Argyle safety work boot has anti-static properties and premium water resistant leather which is available in both black and wheat colour options.
2. Steel Blue Enforcer Rubber Non Safety Work Boots
The Steel Blue Enforcer Rubber Non Safety Boots provide the best of both worlds with laces and an industrial grade zipper. Lightweight and anti-slip, these boots are a popular choice for Police Officers, Emergency Officers and Security Guards. The Blue Steel Enforcer Work Boots also feature a heat resistant nitrile outsole to 300 degrees and premium pathogen and water resistant leather which is available in black.
3. Ascent Sigma 2 4e Safety Boot
The Ascent Sigma 2 4E Boots are breaking new ground when it comes to slip-on safety boots. Providing insulation against both intense hot and cold temperatures, electric resistance and a toe cap for safety, the Ascent Sigma Safety Boots are ideal for everything from the paddock to the building site.
Work Boots For Women
1. Steel Blue Southern Cross Ladies Safety Zip Nitrile Work Boots
Specially designed for women, the Blue Steel Southern Cross Zip Nitrile Work Boots provide the perfect fit with the shorter ankle length and smaller instep. The 200J Steel Toe Cap, Nitrile sole which protects from intensive heat and abrasion, and the anti-static design means you can rest assured that your boots meet the highest safety standards while still looking good.
2. Mongrel N Series Zipsider Ankle Work Boots
You can’t go wrong with a pair of Mongrels on! As a 100% Australian owned company, these boots are built to last even the toughest of days. The Mongrel 961050 Wheat ZipSider Boot is an agile alternative to the heavier safety boots. As a non-safety boot, you still get the same coverage, shape, and material to withstand the elements. Thanks to its YKK zipper, AirZone Comfort System, and anatomical arch support, this is a boot you will want to live in. Suited for agriculture, farming, and everyday use.
3. Mongrel Zipsider Boot
Keep comfortable regardless of the conditions with the Mongrel Zipsider Safety Boots. Their temperature regulating lining, AirZone comfort system and the OrthoTec Air footbed which provides anatomical arch support enable you to stay on your feet all day. As they are slip, oil and fat resistant due to the TPU/PU ToughSider sole, these Mongrel safety boots are ideal for a range of different working environments.
Find Your Perfect Fit!
You can find the perfect work boots for 2023 by checking out our extensive range of safety and non-safety boots. If you need additional assistance in finding the right pair of work boots for you, please get in touch with us.