Choosing good safety shoes starts with handpicking the characteristics that are right for your job. It starts with the shoe size you will need to define as best as possible to support your foot while being loose enough to feel comfortable. So, what to look for when choosing your work boots for comfort and safety?
1. Try to find a perfect size: When you try on, be able to insert a finger into the back of your heel as you slide your foot towards the front of the shoe.
2. You should pick up a new shoe at night: We advise you to try them when your foot is slightly more swollen.
3. There is a straightforward way to find your shoe size: Place your bare foot on a white piece of paper propped up against a wall and draw a line at the end of your big toe. Measure the distance and you will have the length of your foot in centimeters. To calculate your shoe size, add 1 to the result and divide it by 0.66.
4. If you are in doubt about your safety shoe size, choose a larger size: You will always have the option of filling the space with thicker socks.
5. If you are purchasing safety boots, you will need to measure your calf circumference: To do this, sit on a chair with your foot flat on the floor with your ankle at a right angle. Measure your calf at the thickest place with a tape measure and you will get the measurement, expressed in centimeters.
Table of Contents
- What Safety Features Do I Need in My Work Boots?
- Buying Steel Toe Boots
- Buying Oil Rig Work Boots
- Buying Two-Toed Boots
- Our Selection of Safety Shoes
- Type of Fit
- Safety Shoes By Profession
- Caring for Your Safety Shoes
What Safety Features Do I Need in My Work Boots?
As we said above, the chief characteristic of a safety work boot is to have a protective shell resistant to a pressure of at least 200 joules. If your job does not include the transport of such heavy objects, you can opt for so-called protective shoes according to the EN 20346 standard.
They withstand a pressure of 100 joules of an object weighing 10 kilograms with a height of one meter. Finally, EN 20347 standard shoes do not have a protective shell.
We also mentioned that the outsole of safety shoes is an integral part of the standard EN 20345. They all have a superior grip than a classic pair. But it can be much better depending on the characteristics chosen. So, if you are working in a tiled factory where there is a risk of splashing water, you will need the SRA standard.
The anti-puncture layer is also essential for certain trades, especially in construction, where the risk of stepping on a badly planted nail or a badly cut pipe is important. These functions do not reduce your comfort, which can only be beneficial.
Rod is the upper that designates the upper part of the shoe. Leather is the most widely used and recommended material for most trades. Indeed, it is resistant, flexible after a few uses, and requires minimum maintenance.
For boots and models intended for outdoors, the upper will most often be in leather or PVC to ensure total waterproofing. A microfiber or nylon lining will ensure greater comfort and better thermal insulation that is ideal for work in a snowy environment.
The outer part of the sole is not the only one to consider. The interior should be comfortable, suitable for the width of your foot, and antifungal to prevent infection from prolonged wear and sweating.
Buying Steel Toe Boots
To be compliant, the steel cap shoes must comply with the CAN / CSA-Z195-02 standard. This standard is ideal for evaluating protective footwear. You should consider the shoe design, toe protection, resistance to electric shocks, and resistance of the sole.
Safety standards prevent many accidents at work. Remember that wearing a proper steel cap boot is mandatory on any construction site or other place where the feet are exposed to danger.
It is vital to choose the right weight for the right tasks to ensure the comfort of the foot. If you have to cover great distances, opt for a lighter model that breathes better. Also, pay close attention to the materials used by the manufacturer and compare them with your needs.
Buying Oil Rig Work Boots
Protective elements, such as the steel toe cap or metatarsal protection, are what distinguish an oil rig work boot from a conventional work boot. We must choose protective elements because of the risks for which the worker must be protected.
We integrated the puncture protection during the manufacturing process, between the insole and the outsole of the shoes. There are two types of puncture protection; steel or woven materials.
The steel shield is an economical choice for a thin shield offering an excellent protection factor. The more flexible woven material protection also has the advantage of being non-conductive for situations where metal-free boots are vital.
Buying Two-Toed Boots
The quality of the sole of your two-toed shoe is essential. Here are some important criteria to evaluate it:
- Grip to the ground
- Bending resistance
- Shock absorption
Seek the advice of a podiatrist before choosing a model of a steel cap. They will know how to assess the sole and the quality of the shoe and help you make the best choice.
The grip of the shoe gives you stability when you need to adopt a precise working posture. To ensure that your shoe is as grippy as possible, watch out for:
- The shoe should not be too worn
- We must not crush the sole
- Work floors must be clean and dry
Thus, the maintenance of the steel cap shoe is important to ensure a good level of grip on the ground.
Our Selection of Safety Shoes
DUNLOP Purofort S5 CI SRA Boots
Are you a farmer and need a pair of sturdy safety work boots? Specialized in tires, the manufacturer Dunlop also offers high-quality safety shoes. This model is available for polyurethane and is resistant to cuts and tears. The CI standard is perfect since these boots offer perfect insulation down to -20 Celsius degrees. Finally, the SRA standard guarantees you to stay on your feet even in the event of a flood.
PARADE Sylta S3 High Shoes
These high safety shoes from the Parade brand offer you optimal grip thanks to their 4mm crampons and the SRC standard. The protective shell and anti-perforation sole provide ideal protection, while the textile-lined full-grain leather upper gives you great flexibility of movement.
LEMAITRE Soul S3 Low Shoes
These low shoes from the manufacturer Lemaître offer you all the protection of the previous model by adding a water-repellent upper and a breathable sole for better comfort. The sole is flat for greater comfort but is SRC standardized, guaranteeing you an ideal grip.
DASSY Corus S3 Safety Trainers
For more active jobs, nothing beats a pair of safety sneakers, combining comfort and style. This model from the Belgian manufacturer Dassy offers you lightweight materials without compromising on safety. The anti-perforation shoe sole and the shell are present on this model with a modern look, and the upper is both breathable and water-repellent.
Type of Fit
The first criterion is also the most important, the model of shoes to choose. Depending on your job, you will need to protect your calf or a pair that allows you to walk for a long time without getting tired. There are four different types:
- The low shoe: It is a classic model, The low shoe is ideal for indoor trades requiring optimal ankle mobility to kneel easily, such as electricians, plumbers, or tilers.
- The high shoe: covering the ankle, limits the risk of sprain. It reduces the mobility of the foot and effectively protects against bumps and minor splashes.
- The boot: It is the boots with a safety toe cap complying. With the EN 20345 standard, they are ideal for outdoor work, such as agriculture, horticulture, and certain building trades. They protect you effectively from humidity and cold since they go up to the middle of the calf. We lined some models with more insulation.
- The basketball: If your job requires you to cover long distances on foot every day, you can opt for a model approximating sneakers. Lighter than the others, they offer you the same protections with greater comfort so you do not end your days covered in blisters.
Safety Shoes By Profession
Building Trades and Green Spaces
For trades in the light industry including people working in construction (see work boots for construction), green spaces, and finishing work, nothing beats a pair of high shoes. They will protect your ankles from shocks and prevent you from having your feet soaked in poor weather or working on wet ground.
You can choose a leather upper that will be less flexible at the start, but much more resistant and insulating than the fabric models. Finally, the anti-perforation sole will be essential.
If you are a craft worker or in a trade that requires frequent bending down, you will need a pair of low-cut safety shoes. You will lose protection but have much more mobility in the ankles. It will prevent you from wearing out your Achilles tendon prematurely.
Jobs in Agriculture
Are you a farmer, breeder, or horticulturist? You will need rubber work boots. Made from polyurethane, they are fully waterproof and offer high resistance to cuts and tears. It will protect you in the event of heavy rains and you will limit the risk of being crushed by animals and cattle.
In addition, most models come with a lining meeting the CI standard that protects you from the intense cold and is practical for working in all serenity in winter. This material also protects you against oils, animal and vegetable fats, fertilizers, solvents, and other disinfectants.
For optimal protection of people working in heavy industry, exposed to chemicals, or working outside in sometimes extreme conditions, it is ideal to adopt the S3 standard coupled with the SRC. An anti-slip and anti-perforation sole will be essential to adapt to slippery floors and the risk of the presence of sharp or sharp objects.
Caring for Your Safety Shoes
Your safety shoes need you to take care of them to make them last. For leather, nothing beats lubricating grease to keep its flexibility. Shoe polish will guarantee its shine. For nubuck, a maintenance balm will serve as a waterproofing agent besides nourishing and softening it.
Presented as an aerosol, the waterproofer covers the top of your waterproof work boots with a protective film. It prevents the leather or nubuck from being damaged in contact with humidity. There are formulas for fabrics, natural and artificial in case you have a lighter model. Either way, the regular application will slow down wear on the upper and allow you to keep your shoes on for longer.