Best Casual Boots Reviewed & Rated
Criteria Used for Evaluation
When you think about casual boots, you think of something that is easy to throw on and will effortlessly match with whatever it is you’re wearing. A simple, no-fuss boot that will not only look nice but will feel great on your feet too. Whether you are running out to do some quick errands, or have a full day ahead of you, it is important to ensure you are comfortable.
When going out your first instinct is to reach for a pair of high heels, or dress shoes that you know don’t feel nice at all but look stylish. With casual boots, you get the best of both worlds. You can enjoy a boot whose number one priority is comfort, yet it is easy enough to dress up and wear anywhere. What makes a boot comfortable? Firstly you want to ensure that it has a well-cushioned insole.
Insoles are one of the most important features in a shoe, especially a boot. You want it, along with the midsole to properly absorb impact and keep your feet absolutely pain free. Most insoles are memory foam and provide a sufficient amount of cushioning, depending on what exactly the boot will be used for. If you have medical issues and require your own orthotic insoles, most boots give you the option to remove the original insole and insert your own, optimizing comfort.
Some boots can be relatively heavy, so having a soft inner lining will keep your feet protected from possibly scratchy, uncomfortable materials, and will also create a soft, warm environment for them. Depending on what the boot is made for, some linings will be warmer than others. Winter and rain boots are made to throw on on cold rainy days and their one main purpose is to keep your feet dry, so they should be almost completely seamless and have soft material inside.
The break-in process should be relatively short, and these should become your go-to boots very quickly. Any shoe that has an extended break-in period, is not only a pain but makes for a very uncomfortable experience. Although they are a pair of shoes you want to wear, the thought of being in pain all night and potentially having irritations like blisters does not make it worth it. It is important to find a pair of shoes that fit great right off the bat and feel good for extended periods of time.
The second you finish putting your boots on, they should instantly feel and fit perfectly. No doing a quick walk around the house to figure out why the right shoe is slightly pinching your toes, or why the top of the boot is rubbing uncomfortably rubbing against your ankles. Similar to any shoe or boot, the fit is always extremely important and goes hand in hand with other aspects of the shoe, such as comfort. If a boot does not fit your foot properly, it will not be something you ever reach for in your closet and will, in turn, be a large waste of money. Finding the perfect fit for you is crucial, especially when it comes to casual boots.
Throughout the day feet tend to swell, depending on what you are doing. If you are seated at a desk this shouldn’t be much of a thought, however, if you are running errands and spending the day on your feet, the fit of your boot will change and it could become increasingly uncomfortable. That does not necessarily mean you need to go up a size, but depending on your lifestyle and the boot itself, you may want to really consider sizing and the long-term difference it could make.
When purchasing certain boots be mindful of not only how you will be wearing them, but with that as well. Winter boots, for instance, are generally worn with thick socks, and even an added in-liner to ensure warmth, if that is the case, getting your exact size with not fit. Consider going half a size to even a full size up in that case. Whereas with ankle boots you will be wearing thin socks, and you want a rather snug fit, as to not have them move around and rub against your ankle.
The way your feet fit into one shoe will be completely different than how they fit into another so never buy a pair of shoes blindly, based on the size you think you are. There is nothing worse than dying to put on your new shoes, only to find out the fit is completely off. If they do not fit, it is very important to not try to make them work and to immediately exchange them for a larger size. Trying to just wear thicker socks, or wearing no socks and squeezing your foot into a boot that is definitely too small, will simply cause unnecessary pain and even possible injuries.
Nothing screams casual and comfortable more than a soft, cozy fabric; from suede to fuzzy fur-lined boots, casual boots should not only feel great but look it as well. There are many levels of “casual” and many people have different ideas on what makes up a casual boot. Whether you are strictly wearing them to run errands, and take the trash out, or to work – deciding on the proper material can be important.
Leather right away makes you think of a shoe that is perhaps for more formal occasions and isn’t something I would reach for to throw on for a low key day. When you imagine a pair of stiff leather boots, would you categorize them as formal or casual? That is not to say that you cannot find a nice pair of leather ankle boots, that are beyond versatile and can be dressed up or down. Many brands are continuously trying to put out shoes that can fit every part of your life and are essentially an all in one kind of shoe or boot.
The chukka boot, for example, is the epitome of a casual yet classy and stylish boot. When looking for a boot that can go from running morning errands, to work meetings and then to a nice dinner later that evening, the chukka boot with effortlessly do the job. They come in many different materials, and designs which can dramatically change how and where you would wear them.
When you think of a casual boot something stylish and expensive may not be the first thing that comes to mind, but because a boot is considered casual does not mean it isn’t stylish as well. Casual boots are easy to dress up or down, and match with almost everything in your closet. There is a huge variety of styles to choose from, so it is easy to find the exact pair of boots that will fit your lifestyle and needs. From rain boots to a nice pair of chukka boots, anything that is going to fit comfortably, and be easy to put on when you are in a rush is considered a casual boot. Pair any of these boots with jeans and a t-shirt and you look effortlessly put together.
A Chelsea boot, for instance, is one of the most versatile casual boots there are because of how easy it is to style. Although classified as casual, this boot is a go-to for almost any occasion; from work to a nice dinner or event. With simple outfit adjustments like the pants you pair them with, they can go from casual to formal in seconds. A shoe that is versatile should not only be a staple in your closet, but is also worth splurging on because it will be something you reach for on a regular basis, and you want it to be a quality shoe that holds up with wear.
Thinking about style, and whether or not you are purchasing a trend or something that is timeless is very important. It’s great to follow trends (although not crucial) but they come and go very quickly, and big amounts of money should not be spent on an item that no one will be wearing in months to come. Where you want to splurge is on a staple, classic items that will always be fashionable and will always leave you with compliments.
Invest your money on an item that you know you will not only get a ton of use out of but also that is well-made and will last for years and years to come. Everyone should have staples in their closet that have been there for a long time, that they rarely have to repurchase. Why have a closet full of rain boots, when all you really need is one maybe two pairs, depending on style; for example, short or high rain boots. Depending on where you live, and what the weather is like most people will only need one pair that they reach for any time it rains, and they should be worn in, comfortable and do the trick.
Versatility is absolutely key to finding the perfect casual boot for you, and depending on where you live it is very crucial to consider what conditions your boots could potentially be exposed to. If you opt for a nice comfortable pair of suede boots, but plan on wearing them almost daily and live in a rainy city; those boots will not hold up very long, and will quickly be thrown in the garbage. Always factor in, the use of the boots and the general weather in your city during the time of year you purchase the boots. Although suede and fur-lined boots are great in colder months, they should more so only be used as either inside shoes or when it is cold but not wet out.
It’s no secret that an easy way to judge the quality of a shoe can be by simply just looking at it and determining the material used to make it. Synthetic materials, or obvious, cheaply made faux fabrics not only make the boot look cheap, but will not last over time. Take the time to check what fabrics your boots are made of, and take into account the amount of use these shoes will be getting. Regardless of what you’re looking for, you should almost always go with quality over quantity, for the simple fact that long term it is worth it. If you purchase a shoe for the simple fact of it being less expensive than others, it will deteriorate quickly, and you will quickly be on the market for a new pair – which can become an expensive unnecessary pattern.
10 Best Casual Boots
1. Thursday Boot Company Captain
This pair of lace-up boots are the perfect choice for those looking for a versatile footwear option that can be worn on absolutely any occasion. With eleven color options, you can choose from polished blacks and browns that will go great with your work outfits, or rugged tans that will look best with jeans. Another thing to note is that Thursday Boot Company boots are made with high-quality leathers that will develop a patina over time, which means that the appearance of these shoes will only get better with wear.
The Captain is made with attention to detail. First and foremost, the type of construction used is the Goodyear Welt, which is extremely durable, weather-resistant, and allows you to easily repair and resole your favorite pair of boots. It also means that the midsole uses cork, which offers a good combination of support and shock absorption, while the steel shank and Poron shock-absorbing insoles contribute to an even more comfortable wearing experience. The outsoles are made with rubber, with studs to increase surface grip.
As for materials in the upper, you’ll love the genuine leathers used, as well as the reinforced eyelets, the Kevlar-blend (indestructible) laces, as well as the genuine leather lining that lets your feet breathe even if you wear these for hours on end.
Something else to keep in mind about the Thursday Boot Company Captain is that these boots are handcrafted, which ensures attention to minute details. Still, the price is lower than what you’d expect from this level of quality, making this one of the best choices out there.
2. Timberland Premium
For a moment in the past decade, there was no way you could walk down the street and not see a pair of wheat-colored Timberland’s. But the fact remains that these are some of the best boots you can invest your hard-earned money in. Whether you’re in need of protective footwear to wear to work, want something to keep you dry in the rain and snow, want something that will work for both hiking and casual wear, or just want to look good, it’s definitely a good choice.
The upper of the Premium is made with nubuck leather that looks great and doesn’t require as much care as suede. The construction is seam-sealed which ensures that you’ll remain dry, and you can increase water protection by applying a protective spray. There’s 400g of Primaloft insulation included, ideal for cold weather, and the leather collars are padded so that you don’t experience rubbing or chafing.
Timberland footwear often includes their patented anti-fatigue technology that works to absorb and dissipate shock, thus protecting you from the impact that happens when walking. It’s also suitable for workers who spend their day walking on concrete floors. The outsole has rugged lugs to grip all types of terrain (including wet surfaces), and the stability factor ranks high, ensuring foot health and proper alignment.
These boots tend to run ½ a size large, but if you want to wear custom insoles, this extra space will come in handy, seeing that the insoles aren’t removable. As for price, expect to pay more than average, but then to be able to wear these for years to come.
3. UGG Neumel
You can’t go more laid-back than the UGG Neumel. This California leisure-inspired pair of chukkas are the no.1 choice of those who want something that will look good but feel like your favorite pair of house slippers. The numerous color options allow you to determine the style, with darker versions looking a bit more dressed-up, while lighter colors such as the classic chestnut work best for weekends, days off and running errands.
The upper of the UGG Neumel is made with a supple suede which is extremely easy to break in, offers high levels of breathability, and is a durable material that won’t become damaged with wear. It is important to note, however, that it’s not suitable for wet weather wear, so if you’re going out in the rain or snow, make sure your shoes are protected with a spray. The inside is lined with UGGpure wool, which offers great temperature and moisture control.
As for the outsole, it’s made with lightweight and flexible EVA foam which does a great job of absorbing excess shock from walking and standing. It’s topped with a wool insole for a further increase in comfort, but you can easily replace it with custom orthotics as well. The laces on these boots are supposed to be worn loose for a casual feel and look, and the heel pull tab makes on and off quick and easy.
As for cost association, the UGG Neumel ranks about average compared to the other items listed, which makes it a great choice for people on a budget, but still after something of truly high quality.
4. Hunter Short Rain Boot
There are many occasions that call for rain boots, but wouldn’t it be nice to have the waterproof protection without the bulk of a tall rain boot? Wear these stylish boots in many casual situations, not just in your garden or while it’s raining.
Enjoy fully waterproof exterior materials with a comfortable liner to keep your feet comfortable. The outsole is high-traction for all terrains and crafted from natural vulcanized rubber.
Hunter boots have developed a great reputation in the boot world. Each pair is handcrafted to ensure functionality, comfort, and attractiveness. The boots come in a variety of colors and all feature the iconic Hunter tag on the front.
5. UGG Bailey Bow
The tried, true and trusted UGG shoes have continued to create the most comfortable casual styles. The Bailey Bow Boot is a twist on the original design. This boot is ideal for traveling to and from the gym, a long day of running errands, attending class, and all of your casual outfit needs. The second your foot touches this boot, you will not regret your purchase.
UGG uses fabrics that naturally retain heat and wicks away moisture, keeping your feet nice and cozy. The comfortable lining feels like a dream as you slip on your UGG Bailey Boot. The fashion-forward bows placed on the back of the boot will add a splash of interest and seamlessly matches the quality on the rest of the shoe. You can purchase a spray that will protect the outside of your UGG boot and keep it looking brand new.
One of the more unpleasant thing about purchasing new shoes is the time it takes to break them in. These boots will instantly provide you all day comfort. If you like a more snug fit, order one size down as the boot will stretch out a little bit. If you like to have some room in your shoe, order your true size.
6. Red Wing Iron Ranger
The genuine leather and durable toe cap allow this model to transform from work to everyday wear. The appearance matches stitch for stitch the incredible structure of this boot. Red Wing strives to make a boot that is practical and will last you for years to come.
The outsole is composed of rubber, the midsole of nitrile cork, the insole of leather and the boot also features a steel shank. To maintain the leather, run a soft dry cloth and lightly buff out any scuffs that occur. The construction is secured by a stitch-down welt to add another layer of durability.
You can select from a range of natural leather colors and lace pairings. The boot is classic in appearance and will never go out of style.
7. Teva Foxy
When selecting a great casual boot, you may also be looking for a chic balance in appearance. The Teva Foxy Ankle Boot is a really nice blend of both casual and fashion forward. Another factor to consider with casual models, if you want something that will be able to stay in your closet for years to come. This boot will blend all of those needs into one and will win you over the second you zip them up.
A durable metal zipper is a game changer if you have never owned a pair of boots with this feature. You don’t have to mess around with laces, you can quickly slip your shoe on and off, and there is no design distraction in the front.
The look of the front of the shoe is simple and chic. The back features a design that nods to the company’s outdoor roots. The simple touches, such as the zigzag by the zipper and triangle metal pieces add interest.
8. Blundstone Super 550 Series
Just when you thought Blundstone’s couldn’t get any better, the Super 550’s were released, and these small changed actually make all the difference. These boots may look heavy duty, but they are extremely lightweight and over time completely mold to your feet. These boots are built to go anywhere and do anything, making them the perfect everyday boot that will hold up against whatever life throws your way.
Sourced from some of the worlds best, ethical tanneries the leather used for these boots not only wears beautifully over time it also provides you with extreme protection from the elements, making these exceptional for wearing any day, anywhere.
When you think of everyday boots you automatically think of Blundstone, they are a brand you either already own or want to. Since 1820, this company has been creating products you can count on, with quality materials, and constant research to ensure the newest technologies are being utilized in each pair.
9. TOMS Desert Wedge
If you haven’t heard of TOMS, it is a great company that is built on a one-for-one practice. For every pair sold, a pair is given to someone in need. The appearance of this wedge is not fussy. This wedge comes in a range of suede and linen colors and patterns, allowing you to encompass the perfect casual look.
Each wedge features the iconic TOMS patch on the back, and the overall feel is authentic of the brand. There is almost a wrap feel to the toe, which is a feature on many TOMS shoes. Plus, the lacing system is easy to use.
Wear this wedge all day and night, dress them up or dress them down. The height is just on the ankle, so you will feel supported. After you break in the shoe with a few short-time wears, you will find this is one of the most comfortable wedges you have ever owned.
10. Ariat Heritage Roper
What says casual more than a simple western boot? Again, this boot is so perfect for this list of the best boots because it can be worn in for practical reasons and for style. Picture yourself enjoying a nice beverage on your porch in these boots, now go place your order.
Even if you don’t wear these boots for work-related purposes, you want to be comfortable. The Ariat Heritage Roper Boot has a moisture wicking and gel-cushioned footbed. The forked shake is a lightweight composite to add stability to the shoe. The tread on the outsole is constructed for maximum wear resistance, so you don’t have to worry about your boot falling apart.
If you are looking for a boot that looks a tad worn and loved, this is the perfect boot for you. By no means does it look haggard, but the distressed leather heads just enough into the direction of casual.