The Best Boots for the Everyday Commuter

The Best Boots for the Everyday Commuter

Here at Everyday Carry, we like to talk a lot about the tools and accessories we carry to get the job done. But for some people, being on their feet is the job. Whether they're military/LEO, EMTs, doctors and nurses, or those working in heavy industries, many people rely on what's on their feet as much as what's in their pockets.

So we've put together a list of great boots. Boots with the same quality and performance you would expect from a tool you carry and use every day. Any of these boots can last a lifetime with the proper care. And while you may be paying a bit more than generic department store fare, you get much more robust materials, construction, and comfort in return.

Whether you're looking for the longevity a Goodyear welt provides, the breathability and waterproofing from GORE-TEX, or the rugged classiness of a well-worn pair of work boots, in this guide, we've got a pick for you.

Dr. Martens Combs

It would have been easy to pick the iconic Dr. Martens 1460s and called it a day. Instead, we recommend a newer model from the DM catalog: the lightweight, nylon Combs. If you like the toughness of a boot but prefer a lighter pair you can wear every day, then these are the boots for you. Synthetic leather and tough nylon get the Goodyear welt treatment onto DM's signature oil- and fat-resistant AirWair sole, giving you performance without the added weight.

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5.11 Taclite 6” Coyote

5.11's a brand that needs no introduction for EDCers, with packs and apparel with a long history of performance and quality. Their Taclite Coyote boot is designed for high-performance in hot climates thanks to a breathable and lightweight design. An Ortholite sockliner, EVA midsole, air mesh panels, side vents, and EVA foam ankle padding all come together to give maximum comfort during hard use, with a 1200D nylon and suede upper and synthetic outsole rounding out the Taclite's construction.

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Bates Delta-6 ICS

Bates is a longtime LEO/military favorite, with our pick putting together a tidy list of features for comfort and performance. The Delta-6 comes with Bates's signature iCS comfort system that uses a disk in the sole you can adjust to your preferred comfort level. GORE-TEX lining keeps your feet dry, while a YKK side zipper ensures easy entry.

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Wolverine Raider

Wolverine's a well-known American brand known for their work boots, and our pick the Raider comes with the features you would expect from a boot that needs to work as hard as you do. Built with an athletic feel, the Raider comes with a full-grain leather upper with a breathable CK mesh lining for comfort during long days. The boot also uses Wolverine's Contour Welt construction that combines a resilient outsole designed to bend and flex as needed with a shock-absorbent system that uses compression pads for comfort and support.

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Thorogood 6” Moc-Toe

Thorogood is an American heritage brand best known for their moc-toe boots like the 6” seen here. It features black walnut oil-tanned leather Goodyear-welted onto Thorogood's signature oil- and slip-resistant polyurethane wedge outsole. If you're on your feet for long periods, a polyurethane footbed with a Poron 4000 comfort cushion and a rubber midsole keeps things comfortable.

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Chippewa Apache Classic Lacer

Chippewa's been making quality work boots in the USA since 1901, with the Apache one of their most popular and enduring models. It's got a classic look you can wear every day with any outfit, packing quality materials and construction like antique brass hardware, heavy-duty laces, and a Goodyear-welted Vibram outsole.

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Thursday Boot Company Captain

Thursday Boot Company walked onto the scene on the heels of a successful Kickstarter campaign that offered inexpensive but sleek work boots. The Captain is one of their flagship models with its minimalist cap-toe design that dresses up any outfit, featuring chrome leather with full glove leather lining for a comfortable fit. A cork footbed and EVA comfort strip adds even more comfort when worn, while Goodyear welt construction gives the expected water resistance and re-soleability to keep the Captains walking.

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ECCO Track 6 GTX

ECCO's Track 6 boots came to us highly recommended by people who spend most of their day on their feet, vouched for their comfort and longevity. The 7” boot comes with a leather upper and leather sole, with speed lace hardware and a thick padded collar for the best fit and comfort during long use. A GORE-TEX liner keeps your feet waterproof, while the Track 6's understated design lets you wear them with pants, jeans, or uniforms as the task demands.

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Danner Light II

When you think of Danner boots, the first models that come to mind are most likely their military combat boots or their iconic Mountain Light hiking boots. For our pick we went with the Light IIs, a model with a good balance of classy design and high-tech boot features. Leather and 1000D nylon lend durability and quality to the Light's uppers, with GORE-TEX lining and a Vibram outsole keeping your feet waterproof and stable on both wet and dry surfaces.

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Red Wing Iron Ranger 8119

This American brand has been setting the bar for work boot styles and quality for over 100 years(!), with iconic models like the Iron Ranger seen above. The 8119 features a Vibram outsole for extra grip combined with the Iron Ranger's Goodyear welt construction, premium Oxblood Mesa leather, and triple-stitched fit and finish to give you the last pair of work boots you'll ever need to buy.

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Do you have a pair of boots you wear every day? Let us know your favorites in the comments below!

Header photo submitted by Jeff.

#clothing-accessories #buying-guides #best-everyday-boot #everyday-boots #everyday-boots-mens #danner-vs-thursday-boots #boots-for-everyday-wear #high-speed-commuter-cycling-winter-boots see all

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Discussion (49 total)

An boot list with no mention of Whites Boots!? Best boots made.
There are some fantastic White's and a few were on the short list but I had to bump them off to try and fit in some cheaper options. They're a bit on the top end of the boot price range!
I'd be curious to learn if anyone has tried out Thursday boots and what their thoughts might be...

In other news, I can easily recommend the Redwings!
I know a guy at work who's dad has been selling red wings for years and he himself wears them at his position in Costco (I work there too). He swears by them and I have heard that from a few. I just have to make the investment lol.
They are amazing, my only problem with them is that the leather scratches easily. Fortunately for me I have a good polishing I like to use, and its not much work covering up the marks and scratches. Asides from that, I love them and they were a perfect option for me and my tight budget.
I enjoyed this article though I rarely use boots here in Las Vegas, otherwise known as the surface of the sun. However, I can't help but throw out a boot I bought at Costco for less than $40 - Khombu Ravine. Pretty nice boot and it will be getting more use once Fall hits. Comfy boot too.
Thanks for the suggestion! I like boots of all kinds. How are the Ravines holding up for you?
I can't give a fair/accurate reply yet since I haven't worn them since Feb/March then onto other shoes but they were quite durable, breathable and with nice bottom soles for hiking or dirt and gravel usage. I had to get a size 10 for a 9.5 foot and yeah they seem to be a true to size boot so I wear thicker socks and lace up as tight as I can for decent wear. Costco didn't have the half sizes at the time but if they come back in stock again with half sizes I'll be all over them. Highly recommend oh I mentioned the "true" size as that is an issue I have read among people who buy good (expensive) boots (Massdrop community).
Great list although being a Brit I don't know some of the US brands. I want to throw in another Doc Marten boot - the ForLife 1460. They are quite pricey ($230) but they are superb. AirWair soles and the most supple leather you have ever seen. I have worn my pair daily for over 2 years now, and walked probably a thousand miles in them and they are only just starting to wear on the sole. They are the most comfortable boot by far that I have ever worn!
I was just talking to someone comparing break-in periods among boots--he was complaining about the stiffness of his while I was telling him both of my DMs needed no break in whatsoever and were comfortable the day I put them on. I want to get my hands on the ForLife 1460s myself for sure!
Sorry to go on about this but if you think "regular" DMs are comfortable you'll be in heaven when you try ForLife - imagine a really soft driving glove for your feet!!!
I own one of the MiE models, the Arthur. It has worn on me incredibly, and other than a few blisters was perfectly fine on my feet for 20,000+ step days. I'm pretty sure I'll enjoy the ForLifes if I ever get them!
Another benefit of the For Life range:
+1 for red wing iron rangers, mine are on year 4 at least, woot woot.
I have the Wolverine Raiders for heavy work days on the mountain. They are a really tough boot for the price. I also have the Wolverine 1000 Mile ( Redwing Iron Ranger equivalent) for nice casual wear. They are Horween CXL leather, so for a leather snob they are amazing!
An EDC Boot List with no Rocky S2V??? I don't believe it!! Many of the boots listed are very heavy and stiff with extensive break in required. These Rocky's are incredible.
Not doubting Rockys but kept the boot picks' height to 6" for more general-purpose/use. Thanks for the suggestion, though, always appreciate learning more about other brands/models!
Original SWAT. I wear the 9 inch classic side zip as a duty boot. Safety toe, puncture resistant footboard, and as comfortable as a pair of running shoes. Going to have to disagree strongly with the Bates. I don't know how they have such a lock on the LE/military market. I hate those boots! In fact, my department will pay for my boots if I use a specific local vendor. That vendor carries a big selection of Bates. I spend my own money to buy the Original SWAT.
What are the 4 pairs in the main pic?
In Australia, it's hard to go past the RM Williams Craftsman for comfort, quality and versatility. Issued to our Army Officers as dress uniform, worn by farmers and businessmen alike. Big investment up front, but will look good forever. Treat yourself!
I'm a huge fan of any sort of military boot, and wow those look pretty damn nice! I've been meaning to get Chelseas for the longest time, and this isn't helping, haha.
I like Danner Tachyon GTXs as they give me technical performance, light weight, and waterproofness without the overly tactical look. Since they're more of a 'sneakerboot' I can wear them in the city with street clothes. Pop in a pair of Superfeet since they don't come with much support and they're awesome, just wish they weren't so high at 8".
What, no mention of Taft boots?
In the combat boot category I am a fan of the Bates Lightweight Durashocks. The boots will need to be replaced every few years as the soles will eventually shred, but for the performance gains due to weight savings I think it is a solid trade-off to pay such a "tax".
I've eyed the Chippewa service boots for a long time; they're beautiful. I have an excellent pair of Red Wings (technically they're Irish Setters, so not USA made, but still top quality Red Wing construction) that are coming up on two years old now and better than when they were brand new!
Carolina work boots. Used to buy Danner's but they discontinued the boots I wore. Hard use, I wear em till the rubbers gone, lucky to get 2 years, but very comfortable and very well built. Will never buy tennis shoes again.
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