For some professions, steel toe boots with either F2412 or F2413 ASTM standards are essential to provide the necessary protection required. Therefore, we’ve researched the best work boots out there in order to find the ones that offer the best performance.
In this guide, you will discover the Best Steel Toe Work Boots For Men that you can buy online:
- Made In The USA: Thorogood American Heritage
- Arch Support: Timberland Pit Boss
- Made In The USA: Chippewa Apache
- Logger Boot: Carolina Elm
- Rigger Boot: Dr Martens 2295
- Under $100: Caterpillar Threshold
Every entry above is ASTM approved and you can learn about each of their ratings in this guide. If you want to jump ahead, use the links above. Furthermore, we’ll also cover the benefits of steel toe work boots.
Quick Buyer’s Guide
If you’re in a rush and just want to check out the boots directly from the retailers, use the Quick Buy Guide below. Otherwise, scroll down and learn more about each boot in detail.
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What Are The Steel Toe Work Boots For Men?
Thorogood is a heritage American brand that has been producing boots in their Wisconsin factories since 1892. As such, these quality work boots carry the name well by expressing the brand’s pedigree heritage with pride.
These boots feature a full ASTM rating with both impact and compression resistance thanks to their steel toe caps. Furthermore, they’re constructed using a storm welt, which offers extra water resistance compared to a typical Goodyear. They also feature non-marking outsoles with strong traction and a 90° heel.
Although only available in a “Crazy Horse” brown, we do love the contrast stitching, especially with the Moc Toe that offers extra visual interest.
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An affordable pair of boots at just over the $100 mark, these stunning steel toe capped boots come with a plethora of safety and protection features. Overall, these boots provide you with exceptional value for money.
As well as the protective steel toe, you get a Goodyear welt construction, which offers durability and the opportunity to recraft the soles. Furthermore, the combined open-cell PU footbed and Comfort Suspension technology ensures all-day comfort for even the toughest sites.
We’re particularly fond of the Nubuck leather. However, you can also opt for the black or brown leathers instead.
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Chippewa is another heritage American brand that we’ve come to love. Founded in 1901, they continue to produce footwear in downtown Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin today. Handmade from genuine Apache leather, they offer a truly premium experience.
Excluding the steel toe protection, these ASTM-approved work boots also come with a 5 Iron TEXON insole for added flexibility as well as a Vibran Stockbridge outsole for extra traction. Furthermore, the drill vamp lining offers added water resistance.
Only available in a chocolate brown Apache leather, these have a wonderful antique look about them that contrasts nicely with the midsole and American flag on the base of the laces.
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Designed specifically for logging, we love the Carolina Elm boots that offer a premium feel and fit. A tall 90° heel doesn’t just add to their authenticity but ensures extra grip when working with fallen lumber.
As well as the steel toe, you have a triple-rib steel shank with both compression and impact resistance for extra protection. Furthermore, the Scubaliner waterproofing system’s effectiveness is boosted by a welt construction.
Crazy Horse brown seems to the be fashionable colour choice for work boots as these are only available in that like the Thorogood American Heritage above.
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From the iconic British brand’s work range come these fantastic rigger boots that were inspired by the traditional footwear first worn in the UK’s North Sea. Not only are they protective but also comfortable thanks to the Smartmask insole and the brand’s celebrated air cushion.
Compression, impact and electrical resistance are added benefits of these boots that also include steel toe caps. The classic Dr Marten sole is also anti-corrosion and slip resistance.
There are a very colours to choose between Gaucho Volcano Brown, Tan Greenland as well as Black Industrial Greasy. We like the Nubuck-style Gaucho Volcano but they all look pretty slick (pun intended).
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Another affordable alternative to the Timberland Pit Boss boots, we were blown away by Wolverine’s Caterpillar brand offering. Steel toe, ASTM standard protection as well as waterproofing at a sub-$100 price is impressive to say the least.
As mentioned above, you have the impact, compression and electrical resistance that accompany the steel toe cap. Furthermore, these are made from full grain leather and feature the brand’s ERGO comfort technology cushioned footbed.
You can opt for either brown or jet black with a yellow Caterpillar logo. We tend to have a fondness for rugged, brown boots. However, we do like stealthy look of the black ones here.
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Why Wear Steel Toe Cap Boots?
For some time, there was the misconception that steel toe caps were bad for you feet and in fact more dangerous than soft toe boots. However, Mythbusters actually debunked this theory back in 2005 and proved that they can indeed by lifesavers!
However, that doesn’t mean that they can stop bullets so please don’t try (warning: very graphic and NSFW link so don’t look if you have a weak stomach).
Nevertheless, what are the benefits of wearing steel toe boots and why should you wear them?
Firstly, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration introduced regulations in 1994 that certain professionals are required to wear protective footwear just like hard hats.
Furthermore, these regulations highlighted that all protective footwear must comply with ASTM safety standards. This is why we have made sure to only to feature approved boots in our guides.
Overall, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration states that the correct footwear should be worn by all professions where there may be piercing, falling or electrical risks.
Not only is this an obligation for the employer but not wearing the correct footwear may also void any insurance policies.
Even if your profession isn’t one covered by OSHA regulations, why take the risk if you face similar hazards? Whether you hold a manual profession or even something where there are risks, steel boots might well be a potential lifesaver.
For instance, you may work in deliveries and carry heavy packages. Alternatively, you might be in a kitchen where pots, pans or even sharp knives could fall on your feet. How about whether you work in the wild? Steel toes will protect your from falling hooves and surprise snake bites.
Even the emergency services such as paramedics or lax enforcement may benefit from the extra protection offered by steel toes. However, you might want to check with regulations as some agencies may frown upon steel toe. Nevertheless, you could opt for a composite toe instead.
That said, even if it’s not professionally-related, you may still be exposed to daily risks. If you’re passionate DIY enthusiast or have a hobby that involves manual work, you may want to consider taking steps (pun intended) to protect your feet.
Although steel toe boots are associated with big, cumbersome boots that you stomp around in, they can look great. Thanks to the steel frame, the toe won’t be prone to wrinkling and may wear differently over time.
For example, military parade boots will often feature a steel toe. This is so that they retain their shape and are much easier to buff into a mirror shine. Take a page out of the Queen’s Guard’s book for a cleaner and sleeker look.
Even if you like wearing rugged hunting boots, they have a tendency to age better over time and are easier to maintain.
This links back to the previous suggestion in that steel toe boots are much easier to maintain. Similarly, they tend to last much longer and have a greater longevity than soft toe boots.
Although this is partly thanks to the steel toes themselves, it’s also because the construction as a whole is often of higher quality. After all, a boot with a steel toe needs to be hardier in order for it to stay in place without falling apart.
As such, steel toe boots usually have a more robust construction and are built to last.
It may sound surprising but steel toe boots can be particularly comfortable. This is because they’re usually designed with extra cushion so that the steel toe doesn’t cause any discomfort.
Furthermore, steel boots have a tendency to be quite heavy so they’re constructed with extra support and padding to prevent this becoming a burden. However, if you find that steel boots are too heavy, consider composite boots as an alternative.
Just add a pair of warm, thick socks and your feet will be cocooning while the rest of you works through your 12-hour shift!
Now that you have discovered the best American-made boots for men, why don’t you check out some of our related shoe guides for a wider perspective?
- Top 10 Boots For Men
- Best Men’s Boots For Winter
- Best Work Boots For Men
- Best Waterproof Work Boots For Men
- Most Comfortable Men’s Shoes
- Best American Made Work Boots
"Really helpful guide! Needed ASTM approved steel toe boots for work and this guide provided all the info I needed."Rating: 5.0 ★★★★★