10 Best Leather Boot Brands Reviewed & Rated
One of the core items in anyone's closet is a quality pair of footwear they can put on whenever the weather turns for the worse. A pair of comfortable leather boots can be a versatile option, depending on your choice, or can provide you with performance features that will protect, warm and keep you dry in winter and autumn. If you take care of their leather surface in the right way, your leather boots will not only give you an elevated stylish look but will also last for a long time. Choose a sturdy pair of work boots, some fashionable high heeled ones, or even a Chelsea style with lots of broguing for fancy occasions - you will hardly go wrong with any of these. If you're not into cowhide leather, you may even opt for suede or synthetic, both beautiful options that have their own advantages.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 14 hrs of research
Cushioned For Comfort
Pull Tab At Heel
Top 10 Leather Boots
1. Dr. Martens Pascal
Cushioned For Comfort
Pull Tab At Heel
Long Break In Period
An iconic style made famous by the punk scene, the Dr. Martens Pascal was originally made for workers who needed a pair of sturdy boots and high-quality outsole that wouldn’t slip in wet and oily conditions. Today, these are available in a huge variety of upper materials and patterns, including leather, vegan options, fabric, and even glittery styles. No matter which of the colorways you go with, you’ll be getting the standard air-cushioned sole, and the durability these Doc Martens are so well known for.
There’s a lot of features you may want in a pair of shoes you’ll be wearing to school, work or for running errands, but cushioning should always be towards the top of the list. The sole on these boots will absorb a lot of shock that is generated from walking, making you able to go further, with less muscle fatigue and joint pain.
The traditional 8-eye Dr. Martens boot is easy to put on, thanks to a lacing system that allows for maximum fit customization. To make walking out the door even quicker, the heel features a pull tab that’ll definitely come in handy on those mornings when you’re in a hurry. Doc Martens shoes last a long time, ask anyone who’s ever owned a pair. The Pascal is no different, and with a price that’s slightly above average on this list, that makes it an excellent choice if you’re after something that will put up to aggressive daily wear. Just take good care of the upper, and you’ll be happy with these for years to come.
2. Red Wing Iron Ranger
Amber Harness Leather Upper
Water, Stain & Perspiration Resistant
Goodyear Welt Construction
Requires Plenty Of Care
Ask any worker or fashion conscious man, and they’ll tell you that you can’t get much better than Red Wing boots. Made with protection in mind, but featuring a beautiful and stylish silhouette, these boots are the perfect pair to pair with some raw denim for a look that can go either casual or dressed up. Red Wing footwear is known for its exceptional quality, and with proper care, timely visits to the cobbler and some love, you’ll be wearing these for life.
If you’re shopping for boots to actually wear, you’ll want something resistant that won’t get ruined after a few months. The oil tanned Amber Harness leather used in the Iron Ranger is water, stain and perspiration resistant, so you won’t have to worry about your shoes becoming unsightly.
The outsole on these shoes features mini lugs to give you the grip you need on any surface, while the Goodyear welt construction ensures that these are resoleable should you find that you need to update to protection on the bottoms of your feet. Red Wing boots cost a pretty penny, and the Iron Ranger is no different. You might have to save up to afford these, but you’ll be more than happy from the moment you first put them on. Not only is this product made with the highest quality materials and attention to detail, but it’s also a piece of fashionable footwear you’ll proudly wear on any occasion.
3. Durango Slouch
No Break In Period
Moisture Wicking Lining
Narrow Heel Area
This classic western style slouch boot will look great on a multitude of occasions. With fine stitching and acute attention to detail, these boots are as comfortable as they are pleasing to the eye. Made of soft durable leather these boots are lined with a moisture-wicking material that will help your feet stay cool, dry, and comfortable even during long wear. The heel on this boot is just under two inches and helps keep pants dry and legs looking long.
Many of the boots we find today offer zippers, straps, and a variety of other features that are not necessary and also time-consuming. This boot offers a simple pull-on style that makes them easy to put on and easy to take off. Life is hard enough don't let your boots slow you down.
Wanting your purchase to last a long time should not be a problem, especially when investing in a great pair of quality leather boots. The stitching in this boot is not only attractive it is also durable. Due to the superior stitching, you will have a pair of boots that will stick with you through miles of use. These fall into a bit of a higher cost when you look at their price tag alone. When you start to consider the longevity of wear and the overall appeal reduces the cost. Add to that the variety of outfits that you can wear these boots with and even more so you can see why these boots are actually quite affordable.
4. Caterpillar Echo
PU Foam Footbed
Electrical Hazard Protection
Sizing Runs Small
Offering superior protection for those with tough, dangerous jobs this boot also offers a unique sense of style. If you lead a busy life and want to transition a great pair of steel-toed boots into an evening at the movies these may be a great choice for you. This boot is comfortable like a sneaker due to great technology and superior design. Working on your feet all day can finally be comfortable and protected at the same time with the CAT Echo.
CAT has taken the comfort of a boot and actually made it comfortable. Using body mechanics and durable yet flexible materials these will really move with you. Offering your feet, joints, and muscles the support they need for a long day's work. We find that insufficient impact absorption at the mid-sole of the shoe is to blame for a lot of foot discomfort. These boots offer superior cushioning in the midsole to not only absorb shock but disperse it evenly. This makes long hours feel like nothing and allow you to enjoy your evening even after a long day.
The advanced features and trendy design will cost you a bit more than quite a few on our list. Fitting them into the budget may be a stretch for some. Finding the room to do it will give you a great fitting, comfortable, and unique pair of tough boots built to last a great amount of time.
5. Timberland Premium
Premium Nubuck Upper
Seam Sealed Waterproofing
Padded Leather Collar
Runs ½ Size Large
Designed more than 40 years ago, the original Timberland boot has become a fashion staple that is easily found in almost anyone’s closet. One of the best choices for winter wear, these waterproof 6” boots will keep your feet dry, your arch supported, and your steps safe. Plus, they come in a variety of colors, so you can choose from the recognizable yellow to the more subtle black and grey options. Want to stand out? That’s ok too, as there are plenty more colorways to go with.
For those who tend to walk a lot, or stand on their feet for prolonged periods of time, the technology found in these premium boots will make their days go by much faster. Using a specially designed cone support in the midsole, these shoes will cushion, absorb shock and give plenty of energy return to a more pleasant wearing experience.
The insulation in these boots is made from 50% recycled plastic bottles, and synthetic fibers, giving you the warmth you need during cold days but being gentle with the environment. This means that by purchasing this product, you aren’t contributing to pollution, which is quite an important achievement in our book. With a cost that’s average, this is a pair of boots that is highly recommended if you’re looking to purchase just one style for winter use. While it’s more on the casual side and won’t work for fancy occasions, it’s practical, warm, slip resistant and cushioning, all of which are important features for a pair of winter boots to have.
6. Thursday Boot Company Captain
Leather or Suede Upper
Sophisticated and comfortable is the best way to describe the Captain by the Thursday Boot Company. Developed with the idea of offering customers a fairly priced, handcrafted, high-quality boot, the Captain is the perfect addition to anyone's wardrobe and can be dressed up or down depending on your personal needs. It'll look exceptional with almost anything, from jeans to slacks, and will protect you in most weather conditions, including rain.
While you can opt for a full grain leather or a suede version, you can rest assured that you'll be receiving a pair of footwear made from high quality, genuine leather both on the outside, as well as on the inside. The glove leather lining is soft to the touch, durable, and highly breathable, making it the perfect option for fall wear.
Durable, reliable and flexible, a Goodyear welt is always a great option, especially when combined with performance features such as a supportive cork footbed, a shock absorbing insole, and an antimicrobial treatment that prevents odor development. You'll also appreciate the rust-proof hardware and waxed laces that add to the overall quality of this item. This pair of boots is a great investment for those who are looking for something both sophisticated, comfortable and versatile. It'll definitely get plenty of use, and you'll notice that the fit will only get better with time as the entire boot adjusts to the shape of your feet. You should also consider that TBC believes in fair labor and sustainability, without charging you outrageously high prices for a quality, handcrafted product.
7. Chippewa 6-inch Leather
Goodyear Welt Construction
Protection doesn’t get any better than Chippewa’s 6-inch leather boot design. Like every Chippewa product, these leather boots are made from premium raw materials and “handcrafted by people who care” as their campaign says. The leather is highly protective and easily flexible, allowing users to walk comfortably. This 6-inch approach works as both a service boot and a very fashionable complement to fall and winter outfits.
The Italian-made outsole offers great traction, as well as a smart outsole pattern that doesn’t mark or skid the surfaces. The V-Bar sole is highly efficient in terms of durability, flexibility, and grip. It also works as a firm and steady platform.
The Chippewa boots count with double and even triple hand-stitched frame. The Goodyear welt construction, as well as the built-in outsole, prevent some of the most common accidents that would normally damage your shoes or rip your soles. Chippewa boots are significantly costlier than your average boot – but they’re significantly more efficient and durable, too. If you like top-notch product lines, and you can afford the investment, then you might get a good deal out of this pair.
8. Ariat Groundbreaker
Genuine Leather Upper
Oil & Slip-Resistant Outsole
Runs Slightly Small
A work boot designed for those in search of a sturdy pull-on style with a quality outsole, high levels of comfortability and a supple upper that'll easily adapt to the shape of the foot for the best possible fit. Made with a combination of full grain leather and suede, it'll provide a good combination of protection and flexibility, without stifling your foot or allowing for moisture build up. The two pull tabs ensure a quick on and off, making these one of the best choices for those in search of hassle-free footwear.
One of the biggest advantages of this style over others available is the shape which was designed so as to provide the highest possible level of comfort. The round toe won't pinch or rub, and is even suitable for those with wider feet. A high rebound insole provides great cushioning, making these appropriate for all day use.
The outsole used on the Groundbreaker is made for those who need a reliable base to stand on, often on slippery surfaces, or even those stained with oils and chemicals. Preventing you from slipping in such circumstances (thanks to the deep lugs), you can rest assured that these will work perfectly in a variety of conditions, including rain. The Ariat Groundbreaker comes at a slightly higher price than average, but it's an investment that's worth making for those shopping for work-ready footwear. It can also be used as a tough everyday shoe, thanks to the quality construction and protective components used.
9. Harley Davidson Randy
Keeps Debris Out
Harley Davidson is known for superior motorcycles and gear. The Randy Engineer boots combine comfort, durability, and style very nicely. A cinching strap around the ankle, durable rubber sole for great grip, and iconic styling are only a few of the reasons we love this boot and so do many others. They offer a cement technology that attaches the sole and full grain leather that will last through years of use with proper care.
Boots are not always known for great breathability. This means they need to depend heavily on their lining to keep your feet comfortable during extended wear. The mesh lining used by Harley Davidson will help wick moisture away from your feet. Thus keeping you dry and comfortable regardless of how long you wear your boots.
Pulling your boots on and off can be difficult, especially when they go over any part of the calf. Yanking on them can stretch the upper opening and lead to an ill-fitting boot. The stretch panel on the top of this option allows you to pull the boot on and off easily and help the boot maintain its shape.
Falling into the middle of our price range these boots may take a bit of adjustment in the budget to buy. Due to the increased durability and length of wear most boots cost a little more than sneakers and the like. These comfortable well-made boots will go the extra mile even though they cost a few extra bucks, you will find them to be a great investment.
10. Crevo Denham Chelsea
Memory Foam Footbed
Flexible Side Gores
Sizing Runs Large
Chelsea boots are making their way back into fashion with the upcoming seasons, and Crevo’s Denham Chelsea hits the nail on the head. A leather upper build and a synthetic outsole make a durable combination, reinforced by goring side panels. The comfortability of this design is remarkable thanks to the cushioning memory foam footbed, as well as the flexibility of the materials.
The elastic gore panels on the sides of this Chelsea boot make each fit a custom experience. The elasticity of the shoe allows you to obtain an optimal snugly fit, adequate for the dimensions of your feet. The synthetic sole covers the aspects not present in traditional rubber soles. By being more flexible, the outsole relieves a considerable amount of stress off your feet when walking for long. Furthermore, it counts with a non-slipping design.
Crevo’s Denham Chelsea is slightly over the average value of the list. The shoe counts with slim, yet durable materials that won’t break so easily. Additionally, you might get away with wearing these any time of the year.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
When it comes to leather there is a wide variety of options. From exotic skins like Snake, Alligator, or Buffalo to the more commonly seen Cow or Pig leather. They each have a place in the world of shoes and offer different features that can be considered for pros and cons. For example, Snakeskin boots are very delicate and require more extensive care. If you are inexperienced at taking care of boots it would be smart to do your research as improper care can reduce the overall look and feel of your boots. In addition, improper care can lead to cracking and splitting in the upper of your boot.
Finding the perfect boot for any situation can be tough. Deciding what material is going to work best for your need is even tougher. Let's look at a variety of leathers used for leather boots and some of the information that is important for you to consider before deciding what you want to purchase.
Regardless of the type of leather you choose know you are getting quality material that will last with you no matter the activity you choose. If you find yourself anywhere from a renaissance festival all the way through to a good round of golf, there is a leather boot out there that is made to keep you comfortable and supported.
The biggest downside of boots is often their weight – especially if we’re talking about a leather boot. Boots are considerably bigger than regular shoes; not just in height, but they’re also larger, denser, and simply require a greater amount of materials in general. This adds up to a considerably heavier build in comparison to a sneaker or just a regular shoe.
Because you don't typically wear boots for running the added weight of your boot choice probably won't play an integral role in your decision making. There are some common problems seen when people wear shoes that are higher in weight.
Added weight can cause:
Keep in mind, though, that boots are generally heavier than any other shoe regardless of the materials that compose it. This is because many people wear boots for their protection. By this we mean they wear them to protect their feet from dirt, debris, and water. These type of things really help to understand why the overall weight is more.
While the upper plays a big part in the weight of your shoes, there are a couple of other factors to consider:
Shoe leathers vary and depending on how casual or formal you are in need of being different styles will suit your purpose better than others. Style should not be confused with type. In our previous sections, we looked closely at the different types of leather. Style has more to do with the overall eye appeal and look of the boot. We will break it down from the most casual to the more formal styles so you can understand just exactly what you should be looking for.
These different styles of leather are only part of the tough decision you are trying to make. With all of the options available and all of the great choices choosing one is difficult. Take the time to think about yourself and how often you plan on wearing your leather boots. This will help you make a sound investment and know that you are getting a quality product that will suit your situation no matter what it may be.
No matter the style and materials you choose for your next pair of boots, you’ll want to pay special attention to how they feel on your feet, especially if you’re shopping for work or occasions where you’ll be doing a lot of standing, walking or dancing.
To make sure that you purchase the correct size, there are a few rules to take into consideration:
Other aspects that you will want to look for in a new pair of shoes are the lining materials, cushioning, support, as well as the adjustability.
Ideally, your boots will be lined with soft, breathable materials that will prevent moisture buildup, and will be gentle in contact with your skin. Leather is a good option, but so are mesh and textile. To ensure comfort during the colder periods of the year, look for models with added insulation such as the Timberland Premium which is the perfect indoor-outdoor shoe for mildly cold winters.
The insoles in your footwear (flats, sandals and boots alike) needs to provide you with adequate support in the arch and heel area, so look for supportive, anatomically shaped or shock absorbing footbeds that’ll make long periods of standing and walking more comfortable. Alternatively, you may invest in orthotic inserts that can correct pronation issues or offer added support for those with flat feet, but make sure the existing insoles are removable, otherwise you may find your boots to be a bit tight.
Last but not least, consider the closure type on your new boots and determine whether it’s the right choice for you. While pull-ons may seem like a great choice, some people find them hard to get off after a long day. Others (especially those with wide feet or high insteps) may find laces time consuming and prefer a zipper closure. Models with elastic goring are often a great choice, but they won’t provide the same level of ankle stability you get from a securely laced shoe, so take that into consideration, especially if your shopping for work.
Footwear that's well taken care of can last you for years, or even a lifetime. Seeing that you’re looking for leather boots, you need to be aware of the fact that this type of footwear will need some care and attention, but in return, you will get a comfortable, stylish and long lasting product.
Before making a final purchase, you should consider the following aspects to determine whether a pair of shoes is worth the investment:
In addition to these, you’ll want to carefully read the manufacturers instructions on cleaning and conditioning, as different types of leathers require different products and procedures. A good rule of thumb is to make sure you clean any dirt from your footwear as soon as possible, but also make sure you wear them on appropriate occasions and conditions. While your suede chukkas may feel great, they’re unlikely to be appropriate footwear for heavy snow or messy work environments - heavy-duty work boots will be more suited for these situations.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Leather boots will take you a long way if you care for them properly, which only takes a bit of time every couple months.
Shoe protectant sprays keep water or liquid stains at bay, and can easily be applied before stepping out the door.
Leather conditioner can be applied every 3-6 months, and helps keep leather from creasing and cracking due to wear or dryness.
Leather polishes help to cover up scuff marks, but also give your boots a shiny appeal and luster.
Leather footwear has long been around for protecting workmen's feet, mucking around the farm, and general style and fashion.
Modern day companies have created leather boots in styles and fashions that keep that same quality protection and construction, but give a bit more sophistication to the boots.
When you pick your next pair, look around for color options, structure, and design elements that can help you express your individual style!
Other Factors to Consider
There you have it: our top ten choices of leather boots. With plenty of features to choose from, you'll certainly be ready for any of life's adventures. Make the right choice, and you'll be reaching for them every day. Before you go any further, ensure that you've considered all the pros and cons and that you've made the right decision in terms of protection, fit, comfort and style. For a bit of additional help, do read on.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: How long do leathers last?
It really depends on the type of leather as well as the use of the boots. In addition, proper maintenance can greatly increase the life expectancy of your leather boots. Leather typically gets better with age and with regular cleaning and conditioning you could be in need of re-soleing before needing to worry about the upper.
q: Is waterproofing really necessary?
While most leather is water resistant, this does not mean they are waterproof. Waterproofing means that when submerged in water the boot will not allow the liquid to penetrate into the inside of the boot. If you are planning on wearing your boots for work in the outdoors or you lead an active spontaneous life you really may want to consider waterproofing. In addition, waterproofing will extend the life and look of your leather ensuring your feet stay dry and happy through any task you may find yourself doing.
q: How far should I stretch leather boots?
First off, we recommend always using a cobbler to stretch your boots, preferably with experienced assistance. That being said, boots shouldn't be stretched any wider than one size (meaning if you're D, you shouldn't go any further than E). Lastly, boots can't be stretched in length, just width.
q: How should leather boots fit?
Leather boots should fit just like any other regular shoe; a comfortable type of tight. Preferably, you want the collar to slightly compress your shin or ankle, as a loose collar allows air and even water in. You want to make sure there is enough room in the toe for your toes to wiggle and splay naturally. This will help alleviate painful pressure areas and ingrown toenails.
q: Can I weatherproof my leather boots by myself?
Yes you certainly can! Today's market offers a variety of items that make weatherproofing your boots a breeze. many you simply have to spray on and let it dry completely. That's it, waterproof and weatherproof boots. Others you may have to rub a treatment into your boots and of course, there are completely natural ways to do this with waxes. You will want to look into the type of leather you are wearing and check the best method for that particular material. It is important to note what works for one boot may not work for another and could cause damage or staining to the leather. A little bit of online research will tell you everything you need to know about keeping your feet dry and your boots looking great.