The right woodworking shoes for you make all the difference!
Either you will have sore feet and have to endure that pain for most of the day, or you can walk comfortably and safely through your workplace.
Which one do you choose?
The right woodworking shoes will not only keep you comfortable while working and will increase your results, but they will also protect you from potential hazards.
Investing in the right shoe to wear in your workshop brings many benefits and quickly pays for itself several times over.
In this article, you’ll discover in just 5 minutes what to look for to find the best woodworking shoes for you.
Let’s go find those woodworking shoes for you!
- Why wear custom shoes when entering a woodworking workshop?
- How do I choose a work shoe? 3 Things to keep in mind
- What shoes do woodworkers wear?
- What are the best woodworking shoes to buy?
- What are the best work boots to buy?
- How to keep your work shoes in good shape?
- When to replace safety shoes?
- Some more safety inspiration
Why wear custom shoes when entering a woodworking workshop?
Wearing appropriate shoes when entering a woodworking workshop will not only increase your safety but also your comfort.
If you work in a woodworking shop, you better be aware of the dangers that exist there.
For example, there is the danger of floating dust, synthetic substances that you can inhale or there are power tools that can hurt you.
More and more DIYers and hobbyists are becoming aware of those dangers and protect themselves, but relatively few people think about protecting their feet.
Just like your eyes, lungs, or hands, there are also dangers to your feet in a woodworking shop.
Wearing protection for your feet is just as important as wearing other personal protective equipment because you never know what will happen. A nail lying on the floor, or a heavy wooden beam falling on your foot, are just a few examples.
With the right shoes for woodworking, you will be protected from those dangers.
Safety is one thing, but then there is also the aspect of comfort.
The best shoes for woodworking will ensure that you can easily get through those many hours of walking around and standing up.
This will increase your productivity so that you can get more things done in the same amount of time.
So you will have to think about which woodworking shoes are most suitable to wear in your workshop.
How do I choose a work shoe? 3 Things to keep in mind
If you want to buy the best shoes for woodworking to wear in your workshop, there are 3 things you should pay attention to when you compare different brands and price ranges: Safety, comfort, and Solvent permeability or absorbency
- Safety — Think about what can happen in a wooden workshop! Your shoe can get perforated by, for example, a nail, but you can also get a heavyweight on your foot.
Make sure that the woodworking shoes you buy has a Kevlar sole and steel toe.
- Comfort — Make sure that the shoe fully support your foot and look out for soft materials that move with the shape of your foot as you step or bend your knees.
Cheaper models of woodworking shoes usually contain stiffer materials that will make your feet hurt quickly.
- Solvent permeability or absorbency — As woodworkers, we all use solvents such as sealer, paint, and other liquids.
Remnants of this can always end up on the floor at one time or another.
Make sure that the woodworking shoes you buy are resistant to these solvents and do not absorb these substances.
This way you avoid the absorption of these solvents into the bloodstream, but also that these solvents will make your shoe sole slippery, resulting in the risk of a fall.
What shoes do woodworkers wear?
When looking at woodworking shoes, there are two types of shoes that are best suited to wear when entering your workshop.
On the one hand, woodworkers wear low work shoes and on the other hand, high work boots. These give you the best protection while working in your workshop.
Below is a description of both with their pros and cons, so you can decide which type is the best woodworking shoes for you.
Type #1: woodworking shoes (low model)
Shoes for woodworking are a derivative of the standard leather shoes of the past.
Due to the many years of improvements and the lowering of the instep of the shoes, these types of woodworking shoes are comfortable and practical.
This type of shoe is lighter to wear, making it easier to walk and wear longer during the day.
With this type of woodworking shoes, your foot will not be completely enclosed, so you are less likely to heat up and sweat.
Because this is a low shoe, it offers no protection to the ankle. Not being fully enclosed in the foot increases the risk of tripping or spraining the foot.
In some places, wearing this low safety shoe can be discouraged, and a high work shoe can be preferred. So always take into account the regulations of the workshop you visit or the place where you will work.
Type #2: woodworking boots (high model)
Most woodworkers will choose this type of woodworking shoes to work in their workshop.
Simply because this type of shoes for woodworking offers better protection for your feet compared to low woodworking shoes due to their high instep.
There are many models available, and companies are always coming up with new and innovative boots.
So there is a wide possibility of choice to find what perfectly suits you and your circumstances.
Personally, I am a proponent of wearing boots.
My boots have often protected me against all kinds of dangers.
Boots are usually slightly more expensive than shoes, but to me, my boots have been invaluable considering how much they saved me from pain and unemployment because of injury.
This type of woodworking shoes will support your foot better so that there is less chance of hitting your foot. The high boot also protects your ankle against falling pieces or bumps.
Your foot will warm up and sweat faster in this type of shoe.
What are the best woodworking shoes to buy?
Let me give you some examples of woodworking shoes that are extremely suitable for wearing in your workshop.
Click on the images or the button below to compare them and find the best woodworking shoes that suit you best.
best Woodworking shoes for men
Best Woodworking shoes for women
What are the best work boots to buy?
Here are some examples of woodworking boots that are perfect for wearing in a woodworking workshop.
Click on the images or the button below to compare them and find the boots that suit you best.
Best Woodworking boots for men
Best Woodworking boots for women
In my opinion, the woodworking boot is the best choice you can make for your workshop.
However, on hot days, this shoe can cause your feet to warm up faster and therefore make it more difficult to wear them for many hours at a time.
A solution can be to go for a combination of both types and to alternate depending on the conditions and temperatures. It may seem like you’re making a double purchase, but in the end, your shoes will last twice as long.
How to keep your work shoes in good shape?
With these simple tips, you can significantly extend the life of your safety shoes:
- Air your work shoes daily
- Air your insoles daily
- Use two pairs of work shoes and change daily
- Remove dirt and dust from your boots at least once a week with warm water, soap, and a sponge.
- Use polish on your boots after cleaning to keep them from getting dirty.
- Keep your boots dry. If they are wet, let them dry completely before wearing them again.
When to replace safety shoes?
Keep these three rules in mind when determining when to replace safety shoes:
- After 12 to 18 months
- If any zone of the shoe has been pierced or cut
- If you can recognize a worn sole.
If you wear safety shoes on a daily basis, it is recommended to replace them at least once a year.
The resilience of the shoe sole decreases with a lot of walking or standing, which entails a reduction in comfort.
If damage has occurred to the shoe during work, such as piercing with a nail or cutting with a knife or grinding wheel, it is recommended to replace the shoes. With regard to damage, this shoe can no longer offer a full safety guarantee.
Because the sole of the shoe is important for comfort when walking around or standing up, it’s a good idea to check the shoe area regularly for wear or small cracks.
In case of excessive wear or too many tears in the sole, it is good to replace the safety shoes.
Some more safety inspiration
It’s a good thing you have read this article and know where and how to find the best shoes for woodworking. Now you can work in a safer way in your workshop.
Safety is one of the most important things in a workshop, so, try to think as much as possible about how you can increase the safety level of your workplace.
Beside wearing safety boots and protecting your feed, I highly recommend you to check out the following blogs to level up your safety. In these articles, you can find out what actions you can take in your workshop to make it a safer place and to prevent possible accidents.
Hold down stick for table saw safety | FREE PLANS
How to make a power tool safety switch | FREE TEMPLATE
Workshop safety | What to put in a first aid kit | Free checklist
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I hope this information on how to find the perfect woodworking shoes was helpful, and that this blog and video inspires you.
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Christophe, founder of Christofix.com
Woodworking | DIY | Home decoration