Welding is a dangerous occupation; if you aren’t covered with personal protective equipment (PPE) from head to toe, you risk your health and safety. Although fashionable helmets with auto-darkening shades attract most of the attention of the welding world, welding boots are every bit as essential in protecting you from molten metal, heat, flames, and crushed toes from falling objects.
Welding boots are designed with heat-resistant leather and typically include a steel-toe cap to protect your feet when you drop a heavy metal part on them. And while most boots can keep you safe, it’s challenging to find a pair that’s protective, sturdy, and comfortable at the same time.
To help you choose the best welding boot, we’ve put together a list of the ten best welding boots that offer you better-than-average value, comfort, and safety features. We try to be objective in our picks but admit that this is not an exhaustive list, and some fine brands did not make our list.
What should welders look for in a welding boot?
Welding boots are a significant but necessary investment, so you want to get it right. Here are a few factors to consider as you do your research:
- Steel toes to protect your feet from falling metal.
- Non-slip treads
- Boots that extend to the calf
- Ankle padding to guard against impact
- Metatarsal guards to protect the upper part of the foot
- Arch and heel reinforcement
- Covered laces
Welders spend long days on their feet, and those days will be miserable in an ill-fitting boot. Look for moisture-wicking lining, inner padding, thick insoles, and lightweight materials. Rubber or flexible synthetic soles keep you comfortable when you’re on your feet for long periods.
Your boots will take a beating in most welding environments, so they have to be tough to withstand it and continue protecting your feet. Ensure they are manufactured from long-lasting, sturdy, and impact-resistant materials.
Here is the final cut containing standard and pull-on styles:
1. Iron Age Ground Breaker IA5016 Welding Work Boot
It happens all too often: you drop a heavy piece of metal that misses your steel toe cap and lands on the top of your foot. However, these Iron Age welding boots have a built-in met guard to protect the metatarsal bones and a steel-toe cap, so your foot’s entire top and front are protected when that weldment slips from your grip.
The boots are made from full-grain leather and have oil and slip-resistant outsoles, giving welders excellent traction on slippery and uneven surfaces. Their EVA-cushioned footbeds offer the comfort of exceptional arch support for well-rested feet at the end of the workday.
Also, the Iron Age Ground Breakers have Goodyear Welt construction, recognized for reliability in bonding the work boots’ materials.
- Build-in met guard
- Durable full-grain leather construction
- Wide assortment of sizes
- Oil, slip, and chemical-resistant outsoles
- Breathable mesh linings that wick moisture
- EVA cushioned footbeds
- Goodyear welt construction
- Semi-exposed laces
- They tend to run a bit wide
Price: $94.99 Amazon
2. Timberland PRO 53580 Metguard Welding Work Boots
The Timberland PRO 53580 welding boots have gained a reputation for safety and comfort. In fact, in many circles, they are considered to be the most comfortable boots for welding. They have a metatarsal guard to protect your feet from the molten metal spatter from welding and the heavy objects that occasionally land on your feet.
The Pro 53580 boots have rubber outsoles that are abrasion, slip, and oil-resistant, preventing slips and falls on hard surfaces. The outsoles have been explicitly designed to withstand contact with hot surfaces, a critical feature for a welding boot. They include steel toe caps for extra protection and waterproof membranes to keep feet dry and comfortable when welding outdoors.
- Manufactured with 100% waterproof leather
- Metatarsal guard flap for added protection
- Steel toe caps
- Abrasion, slip, and oil-resistant outsoles for traction
- Welt Construction
- They often run a bit narrow
Price: $167.95 (Size 9) Amazon
3. Martens Men’s Steel Toe Welding Boots
Many welders ask: Can you weld in Doc Martens? The answer is “Yes.” These welding boots are officially named the Dr. Martens Men’s Icon Industrial Strength. They slip on and off easily and stay on your foot securely without laces and with a high level of comfort. They also feature the Dr. Martens antibacterial Smartmask, adding comfort to the boots while eliminating bad smells.
Ankle protector padding in the boots’ sides keeps your ankles from getting smashed in an accident, and air-cushioned soles make standing for long shifts much more comfortable. Although these soles are not as durable as rubber soles, the cushioning makes up for this minor shortcoming and is slip-resistant to oil, water, and solvents.
- Made from 100% leather
- Air-cushioned PVC soles
- Ankle protector padding
- Oil- and water-resistant
- Antibacterial Smartmask
- Heat-resistant soles
- Electrically safe
- Steel toe caps
- No Kevlar stitching
- Soles are not as durable as rubber
Price: Temporarily out of stock Amazon
4. Wolverine W10318 Cabor Welding Work Boots
These Wolverines are another quality pair of slip-on welding boots with plenty of support to help you get through long days on your feet. They have composite toe caps for maximum toe protection without adding too much thickness or weight, and the metatarsal guards provide extra foot protection.
The Wolverine’s “direct-attach design” and waterproof leather ensure endurance and dry feet throughout the day, even in the dampest weather. The incredible arch support for these welding boots comes from cushioned EPX footbeds, which is especially critical for welders spending long periods on their feet.
- Slip-resistant outsoles
- Composite safety toe caps
- Metatarsal guard to protect the top of the foot
- Waterproofing membrane to keep the feet dry and fresh-smelling
- Cushioned footbeds for excellent arch support
- Some complaints that they are too stiff
Price: $159.95 Amazon
5. Ariat Men’s Workhog Pull-On H2O Welding Work Boots
Ariat work boots have already built an excellent reputation among manufacturing workers. Still, they are getting a following with welders since all the features that made them famous before are the same traits that welders appreciate.
The Workhog has waterproof membranes that help keep the feet dry, even if the boots are exposed to the elements. And their composite toe caps enable welders to work without the threat of having crushed toes when heavy metal parts fall on them.
The boots have Duratread slip and oil-resistant outsoles, providing perfect traction on slippery surfaces that otherwise would be dangerous to walk on. Also, the welding boots have EVA midsoles and cushioned footbeds, providing arch support and shock absorption to minimize foot fatigue.
- Duratread slip and oil-resistant outsoles
- Composite toe caps for excellent toe protection
- A waterproof membrane that keeps feet dry
- EVA midsoles and cushioned footbeds for exceptional comfort
- No metatarsal guard
- Somewhat expensive
Price: $269.90 Amazon
6. KEEN Utility CSA Philadelphia Welding Work Boots
These Keen Utility Philadelphia work boots give you complete foot protection and comfort for those long shifts in the weld shop. And their metatarsal guards and carbon toe caps will protect your feet from those inevitable falling objects.
Many professional welders appreciate that these met-guard steel toe boots have waterproof membranes, keeping their feet dry and breathable. Ergonomically, the boots include air-infused midsoles and dual-density PolyAer footbeds for cushioning and comfort.
- Waterproof membrane filters out moisture
- The metatarsal guard provides added foot protection
- Lightweight carbon toe caps offer protection without the extra bulk
- Air-infused midsole for shock absorption
- CleansportNXT membrane to enhance airflow
- Dual-density footbeds cushion the feet
- Electrical hazard resistance
Some durability issues reported
Price: $174.89 Amazon
7. Thorogood American Heritage 8” Steel Toe Work Boots
The Thorogood American Heritage 8” Steel Toe work boots are made of a unique rubber formulation on their soles that contributes to their durability and require little or no breaking-in period. Many welders indicate that these boots breathe well and are comfortable over long work days.
Although these Thorogoods are not waterproof and the laces are not covered, they have extra protection around the ankle, a two-stage impact-resistant footbed, and thick insoles. They are electrical hazard resistant up to 18,000 volts, and fiberglass shanks protect your arches with more flexibility than steel, making them more comfortable for your feet.
- Durable boots
- Thick, comfortable insoles
- Oil-tanned leather construction
- Breathable design
- Electrically resistant to 18,000 volts
- Not waterproof
- Exposed laces (need to wear spats)
Price: $264.95 Amazon
8. Georgia Boot G4432 Welding Work Boots
These Georgia G4432 welding work boots offer maximum comfort, reducing foot fatigue because their insoles and shock-absorbing midsoles provide full support for the feet. They also pull on and off, so there are no laces for safety concerns.
The boots are constructed of SPR waterproof leather, one of the strongest varieties of leather, keeping your feet protected from sparks and hot metal from welding. They have oil and slip-resistant outsoles for traction on slippery surfaces and a breathable moisture-wicking lining that keeps feet dry and odor-free.
- Oil-resistant outsoles for excellent traction
- Convenient pull-on design
- Fully cushioned footbeds
- SPR leather that’s stronger than most other leather
- Waterproof membrane to keep your feet dry
- Not insulated
- No metatarsal guard
Price: $129.99 Amazon
9. Carhartt 8″ CMF8720 Welding Work Boots
The Carhartt CMF8720 welding boots have composite toe caps and internal metatarsal guards, two features that quality boots have to protect your feet and toes from falling objects. Another safety feature is that these boots shield your feet from up to 18,000 volts.
They also have a waterproofing membrane keeping all liquids out of the work boots, which is helpful if you labor in wet conditions. And the boots have padded footbeds to cushion the base of the feet for long-term comfort. Traits like their slip and oil-resistant outsoles make these boots worthy of consideration.
- Nonmetallic composite toe caps for impact and compression resistance
- Internal metatarsal guard to provide added top-foot protection
- Electrical hazard resistance
- Waterproofing membrane
- Comfort footbeds for excellent arch support
- Reflective material for high visibility
- Slip-resistant outsoles
- More extended breaking-in period than most other boots
Price: $181.40 Amazon
10. Carolina INT HI Met Guard Leather Welding Boots
Carolina Boots is known for making professional quality welding boots with design features specific to various industries. These are 8-inch work boots for hazardous work environments, including machine shops, industrial maintenance, and welders.
The Carolina INT HI Steel Toe welding boot has a full-grain leather upper and steel toe caps. It also has steel arch shanks to protect your feet from piercing hazards and covered laces to protect from welding spatter, molten metal, and laces from catching on jagged edges, machinery, and sharp corners.
The boots feature an integrated metatarsal guard and non-slip sole. They are electrical hazard rated and have a moisture-drying liner and a special insole that breathes to offset the hot conditions in a welding shop.
- Extremely durable
- Made in the USA
- DRi-LEX inner lining
- Electrical hazard rated
- Cushioned insole
- Kevlar stitching
- Sometimes hard on the arches
Price: $299.99 Amazon