If you are looking for a wedge sole boot, you may be an electrician, a mechanic, or a warehouse employee. You spend large amounts of time standing or walking on hard surfaces. Well, then you would benefit from a boot that protects you from falls on smooth floors that can get slick quickly. You also need to be comfortable all day. Let’s have a look at what makes the best wedge sole work boots:
Updated October 2022 by Tony Bleak
In a Hurry? The Top Pick
We have a tie! Depending on if you prefer a lace-up or a pull-on boot: The Timberland PRO Barstow Work Boot & the Ariat Rambler Recon Boot, Read on to see why.
|ROCKROOSTER Boots||Resistant||Soft||Rubber outsole|
EH safety rating
|Ariat Rambler Recon |
Slip- & Oil resistant
|Timberland PRO |
Barstow Wedge Boot
EH safety rating
Slip- & Oil resistant
Wedge sole boots need to provide great slip-resistance.
The essence of a wedge sole is that all of the outsole contacts the floor or ground. This means that wedge soles SHOULD be slip-resistant. The rubber or synthetic sole needs to grip the surface, dispel moisture, and provide sure footing. Any wedge sole boot that doesn’t provide great slip-resistance isn’t doing the job.
After slip-resistance, the key feature for wedge sole boots is comfort.
Look at various manufacturers’ websites and you’ll notice that their wedge sole boots have a limited number of features compared to what other types of boots offer. That’s due to the fact that wedge-sole boots are most often worn indoors on factory or warehouse floors or outdoors on smooth hard surfaces like loading docks and inventory lots. Workers wearing wedge soles don’t often need the warmth of an insulated boot or the protection of a metatarsal guard. Those features are relatively rare.
Workers wearing wedge soles need boots that will cushion their feet and support their arches so that they can work comfortably on very hard surfaces like concrete. Many wedge sole boots are also lighweight. This feature adds to the boot’s comfort.
The 3 Best Wedge Sole Work Boots
ROCKROOSTER Boots, 6 Inch Soft Toe Boot
The Rockrooster Men’s 6” soft-toe work boot is a water-resistant breathable leather boot with a lot of features, including an EH safety rating, an anatomically contoured footbed, and a moisture-wicking insole. It is heavy for this type of boot and imported from China.
- EH rated
- Moisture-wicking insole
- Anatomically Contoured Footbed
- Not waterproof
Ariat Rambler Recon
The Ariat Rambler Recon Square Toe Boot is the only pull-on boot among our 3 best. It’s a basic square-toe, unlined boot with cowboy styling and Ariat’s 4LR (4 layer) footbed. It is water-resistant and oil-resistant.
- Oil resistant
- Slip resistant
- 4LR footbed
- Not waterproof
- No safety toe
Timberland PRO Men’s Barstow Wedge Work Boot
Timberland PRO Men’s Barstow Wedge Work Boot has a white wedge sole and a leather upper. The rubber sole is slip-resistant and EH rated for electrical safety. The boot is not waterproof. It does not have a safety toe.
- EH rated
- Bullet list
- Anti-fatigue midsole
- Not waterproof
- No safety toe
There’s a big difference in weight.
The Rockrooster boot is very heavy for a wedge sole. It weighs more than twice what the Timberland boot does and a bit more than the 10” tall Ariat boot does. It still gets very good reviews, though.
Here’s what reviewers say about each product.
- Timberland PRO Men’s Barstow Wedge Work Boot–The very best feature of this boot is its comfort. Reviewers repeatedly praise how great the boot makes their feet feel, even if they work long hours on concrete floors. More than one person finds them the “most comfortable boots ever.” Some rate them as comfortable as sneakers. Almost all of the disgruntled reviews deal with one of two issues. For some, the boot’s soles or stitching–or both–gave way very shortly. A few others found the boots very uncomfortable for a long time.
- Ariat Rambler Recon Work Boot–Over half of all the reviewers say this boot is comfortable. That’s an unusually high percentage. Several commented on how light the boot is, too. The Rambler Recon is the best boot that a handful of reviewers have ever worn. The few negative comments mention defective soles and sizing that varies considerably between boots purchased in a brick-and-mortar store and those purchased online.
- Rockrooster Men’s 6” Soft-toe Work Boot–Customers generally say this boot is well-made and very comfortable. They see it as a good value. For many it was comfortable right out of the box. It does have some size inconsistencies, and a few found it to need a longer time to break in.
All 3 of the best wedge sole work boots get good reviews. Most men find them comfortable and durable. The Rockrooster Men’s 6” Soft-toe Work Boot provides a lot of features for a relatively cheap price. It’s a “best-value-for-your-money” choice. Our “best-of-the-best” option is very difficult to call. If you want the ease of a slip-on boot, choose the Ariat. If a lace-up is better for you, then the Timberland is an excellent option.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What are the shortcomings and the benefits of wedge sole work boots?
Wedge soles are a great choice–sometimes–and a poor choice at others. If you are a logger, a commercial builder, an ironworker or a lineman who climbs a lot, you don’t want a wedge sole. When you traverse acres of forested land, you’ll need the traction that a lugged sole and 90-degree heel provide over rough terrain.
And if you climb up and down ladders, you’ll really benefit from the extra protection afforded by a heel that can hook a ladder rung. Wedge soles can’t deliver in those situations. (That’s why you see so few wedge sole heavy-duty boots that offer the extra protection of a met guard, a puncture-resistant sole, or the warmth of an insulated boot for outdoor winter wear).
However, if you work inside on smooth, hard surfaces, or outside in a level setting, you’ll find that wedge soles are a wonderful choice and benefits of wedge sole work boots start to shine. One reason is that all of a wedge sole grips the work surface. There is no cut-out area between the ball of the foot and the heel. Even the area under your arch contributes traction. This means that wedge soles are grippy and non-slip.
A second benefit of wedge soles is that they are generally very lightweight and cushiony. If you work in a welding shop and spend many hours standing relatively still on a hard floor, you may find that a wedge-sole boot with a non-metallic safety toe may be a comfortable, sensible choice. Wedge soles are also often used by delivery drivers if they’re avoiding heeled boots.
Wedge shoes can also be used for other types of work.
How many varieties of Carolina wedge sole boots are there?
Carolina makes wedge sole boots in a variety of heights, styles and features. Although Carolina makes heavy-duty boots that offer the extra protection of a met guard or a puncture-resistant sole, these features are not available in their traditional wedge-sole boots. Nor are any of the Carolina wedge sole boots insulated.
- Carolina’s 8” Amp USA–This boot comes in a moc-toe version and a round-toe version, each with a steel toe or a soft toe option. The Amp USA has a steel shank, welt construction and a removable polyurethane footbed. The soles resist slipping, are EH rated and oil-resistant.
- Carolina’s S-117–The S-117 comes in two styles–a short, casual, work boot or a casual work shoe. Both styles have an aluminum safety toe and a slip-resistant rubber outsole that dissipates electrostatic energy. The S-117 features a mesh lining and removable EVA footbed.
- Carolina’s Sway–The Sway is a synthetic leather boot designed for VEGAN workers opposed to wearing leather from animal hides. The Sway also comes in 2 variations. One is waterproof and comes with a composite safety toe. The other is an unlined soft toe that is water resistant. Both have welt construction, a steel shank and are EH rated.
I am looking for a pair of wedge sole pull on work boots. What are some good options?
There are 2 basic types of pull-on work boots. One is the more traditional leather work boot. It comes as a short boot and a taller boot. The other type is made of rubber, or a combination of rubber and synthetic materials. These wedge sole pull on work boots also come in a range of heights, some of which extend all the way to the base of the knee.
Virtually all of the best-rated boots with wedge soles feature an upper made largely of leather. Rubber boots usually have a 90-degree heel.
Here are 3 that get good customer-satisfaction ratings. These all have soles that are slip-resistant. A couple are oil-resistant or abrasion-resistant.
Ariat Rambler Recon Boots–An unlined boot with a leather and textile upper and a rubber sole. (This is one of our 3 best wedge sole work boots because of its great customer reviews. See the chart for details about this boot.)
Golden Fox 12″ Work Boot Pull On Wellington Wedge–This boot is tough enough for construction workers, farmers and ranchers, but still is lightweight. The anti-fatigue insole adds to the boot’s comfort level.
Georgia Boot Men’s Georgia Giant Casual Work Boot–-The Georgia Giant is a short slip-on boot with a rubber, non-slip outsole. It is designed for workers who need a comfortable boot that won’t face rugged terrain or harsh work conditions. The Goodyear welt construction means that this boot is repairable if you need to resole the boot.
Can you recommend a few good 8 inch wedge sole work boots for me to consider?
Here are 4 in the 8 inch wedge sole work boots category. They are all lace-up boots that get good reviews. They offer a variety of features, and are in basically the same price range. If you suffer from pain in your legs or joints, read this article first.
- Thorogood Men’s American Heritage 8″ Moc Toe – The American Heritage 8” boot is a leather boot with a synthetic slip-resistant outsole. It features a non-steel safety toe, a fiberglass shank, and removable shock-absorbing insole. It is made via the Goodyear storm welt construction method.
- Danner Men’s Bull Run 8-Inch BRN Cristy Work Boot–Danner’s 8” Cristy also is a leather boot with a synthetic outsole that is slip-resistant. The sole is also non-marking, resists oil and is EH rated for safety.
- Irish Setter Men’s Wingshooter Steel Toe 8″ Work Boot–The Wingshooter by Irish Setter is a leather boot with a non-metallic safety toe, and a rubber-EVA Traction Tred sole that is heat-resistant and EH rated. The Wingshooter is a waterproof boot.
- Georgia Boot Men’s 8″ Wedge Work Boot–Georgia Boots uses Goodyear welt construction to make its 8” wedge work boot with a leather upper, a steel shank, and a synthetic outsole that is non-slip and oil-resistant. The insole is cushioned.
What companies make black wedge work boots?
Many companies manufacture at least one line of black work boots. Here are some popular lines. (Nike, Skechers, Diehard, and Carhartt don’t have lines of black wedge work boots available.)
- Danner--Danner’s Bull Run line has a black boot that comes with or without a safety toe. These boots have a leather upper, a steel shank, and a moc toe. The wedge boots in the Quarry line by Danner also get good reviews, but there are no black boots in this product line.
- Harley-Davidson–The Bosworth line is a wedge sole that comes in black or brown. These are made of full-grain leather and a rubber outsole joined via the welt construction method.
- Georgia Boot Small Batch Black Wedge Boot–This limited-edition boot has a leather upper, a removable polyurethane insole, and a non-slip Vibram sole.
- Thorogood–The American Heritage line by Thorogood is a broad line that includes wedge boots in a variety of heights and colors, including tan, brown and black.There is even a roofer’s boot with the lace-to-toe feature.
- RedWing–Their Heritage line includes the Rover, which is a black wedge boot with a round toe.
- WOLVERINE– The men’s Rigger WPF Composite-Toe Construction Boot and the W08289 Steel-toe boot are both wedge boots that receive good ratings and are available in black.
- KEEN Utility Men’s San Jose 6″ Alloy Toe Waterproof Wedge Work Boot–-This is a waterproof “almost black” boot (officially brown/black) with a wedge sole. As long as you don’t need an absolutely black boot, this is a good option.
- Timberland— Their PRO line includes black wedge boots, a few of which have styles that are waterproof and include a safety toe.