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7 Best Insoles for Red Wing Boots: Stride Comfortably and Supported

Andrew is a kayaker, paddleboarder, runner, weightlifter, former martial artist, DIY handyman/home improvement nut, tech geek, headphone-addict, sci-fi and fantasy author, and lover of comic books, movies, and TV shows. He's interested in pretty much everything, and takes becoming an expert very seriously--but nothing more seriously than analyzing every stitch, thread, and seam of what makes his favorite boots so freakin' comfortable. Read full bio.


Last Updated: Apr 3, 2024
12 min read

Add cushioning, support, and stability to your favorite Red Wing boots with these game-changing insoles. Ideal for any situation, we’ve got insole options aplenty to make your boots ultra-comfortable with just one simple addition.

I love my Red Wings.

The Classic Mocs combine the moc-toe style I love with an eye-catching copper-toned leather that pairs perfectly with jeans, chinos, cargo pants, and technical pants.

Plus, the wedge sole is awesome for a big, heavy guy like me.

But not all Red Wing boots have the same built-in support.

Some of Red Wings’ boots, particularly those designed more for style than work, need a bit more cushioning to be comfortable over a long day spent walking around or running errands.

A good pair of insoles can make all the difference in the world, providing that extra support and padding the boots are missing.

How Did I Come Up With My List?

I’ve been a Red Wing guy for almost five years, but I’ve been big and heavy (6’6” and 250 lbs.) for a lot longer than that. Red Wings don’t come with insoles, but instead feature a leather footbed, meaning I often have to look for a solution to provide the cushioning I need.

Consequently, over the past decade-and-a-half, I’ve been a bit obsessed with finding the perfect insoles.

I’ve researched every aspect of insoles—from materials used to arch height to multi-layered construction—to find the absolute best for any pair of boots.

It’s safe to say I’ve tested at least twenty different options over these years, and researched dozens more.

All of my research has led me to assemble a great list of what I believe are the best insoles to wear with my Red Wing boots.  

My Recommendations

Best Overall: Tread Labs Ramble Comfort Insoles

Tread Labs Ramble

I’ll be honest: I first tested these Tread Labs insoles in my Danner Pronghorn hunting boots. But after wearing them for two years and loving their support, I bought a pair for my Red Wings, and I haven’t regretted it once.

The Ramble Comfort Insoles are built for runners, hikers, and people who spend all day on their feet. They’re fantastic for an hours-long stroll around town, running errands, or hoofing it around a job site.

At five millimeters, they’re among the thicker insoles I’ve tested. Their open-cell polyurethane construction makes them highly resilient and springy, great for providing a bit of extra bounce in every step.

Tread Labs ramble green soles

But what makes them my absolute favorite is their two-piece design. The molded arch “base” stays in your shoe, but the removable cover “top” can be changed when the foam condenses.

Now that I’ve found the arch height and shape that suited my feet best, I never have to change out the insole, just the foam top.

What I Like

  • Fully replaceable cover, but the base is reusable over and over.

  • Available in four arch heights: extra high, high, medium, and low.

  • Made from 100% recycled polyester.

  • Naturally odor-repellent.

  • Approved by the American Podiatric Medical Association.

What I Don’t Like

  • The foam cover wears it a bit more quickly than I’d like. However, the fact that I can replace just the cover and don’t need to break in/re-size a whole new base more than makes up for the occasional purchase of a new foam cover.  

What Other Reviewers Say

Out of the over 500 reviews, there are only a handful of negative comments about the Ramble Comfort Insoles. Users had only minor issues with the foam lacking their desired density or not fitting their feet just right—problems that are very user-specific, indeed.

The vast majority of the reviews were overwhelmingly positive. Reviewers say they use their Tread Labs insoles for sports—everything from running to cycling—and couldn’t be more comfortable.

The replaceable design also earns a lot of praise from users who love this particular high-value-low-cost feature.

The Verdict

I like the Tread Labs Rambles so much I’ve started using them for all of my boots, including my Red Wings and my hiking and hunting boots. Between their versatility, high performance, springy feel, and excellent value for money, they’re a pair of insoles I’ll gladly recommend to any boot-wearers needing more comfort and support for their feet.

Best Overall
Tread Labs Ramble Insoles

The Ramble is my favorite insole that I've tried from Tread Labs. It offers plenty of cushion for the ball of my foot, and the extra flex in the mid-foot boosts the stability of my boot without affecting my arch too much.

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Best on a Budget: Dr. Scholl’s Massaging Gel Insoles

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I love my Dr. Scholl’s gel insoles!

I started using them for sports (running and lifting weights), but over the last few years, I’ve inserted them into my work boots, too. They’ve been a game-changer for reducing foot fatigue if I’m working long hours on my feet, and they’re pretty affordable when it comes to price, too.

The insoles incorporate a “massaging gel” right into the footbed. The combination of the gel filling and textured surface lightly massages my feet with every step to reduce pain and strain. The gel also adds a bit of rebound, so I’m lighter on my feet.

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Since I started using these insoles three years ago, I’ve experienced less muscle pain and fatigue, and I’m just more comfortable in my boots.

What I Like

  • Light massage does wonders to reduce foot fatigue and pain. They’ve been great for preventing plantar fasciitis.

  • Designed specifically for people with muscle fatigue, as well as bigger, heavier guys like me.

  • Easy to insert and switch out.

  • These insoles last longer than most of the others I’ve tested. I’ve only had to change them once in my running shoes, and the pair in my work boots are still going strong.

What I Don’t Like

  • I have no complaints about these gel insoles. For the price, I think they’re great! The only thing I could say is that they may be slightly better suited to athletic shoes than boots for some people, but the majority of folks will be fine wearing these with Red Wings.

What Other Reviewers Say

With over 8,000 reviews and a 4.3-star rating, there’s no doubt in my mind that the Dr. Scholl’s Massaging Gel insoles live up to their reputation.

A few individual pairs of insoles have fallen foul of quality control issues, with users complaining that they peel or fall apart within a few weeks of use.

However, this is made up for by thousands of five-star reviews highlight their comfort, reliability, accurate fit, and the extra thickness at the heel and arch to maximize support.

The Verdict

If you’re active and on your feet for long hours, I strongly recommend Dr. Scholl’s. The massaging gel will do wonders to stave off foot fatigue, reduce pain, relax tension in your muscles, and provide a lovely amount of “bounce” to lighten every step.

Best on a Budget
Dr. Scholl’s Massaging Gel Insoles

Dr. Scholl’s Massaging Gel Insoles don’t seek to change the wear of your shoes or add arches where there are none. They simply add a layer of super comfortable cushioning. It lacks a lot of extra features, allowing the gel technology to shine.

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Great Value: Red Wing Leather Footbed

Many Red Wing boots have a leather footbed already built into the boots.

Leather is ideal for insoles because it molds to your feet as it compresses. Over time, it conforms to fit your feet perfectly, leading to a more snug fit.

Red Wing makes their leather footbeds with tough, full-grain leather. They’re hardy enough to suit any dress boot and will last you four or five years before needing replacement.

Thanks to the light rubber cushioning on the underside, they’ll stay firmly in place and provide you with extra cushioning than pure leather could alone.

What I Like

  • The ideal addition to any Red Wing “style” boots (rather than work boots).

  • Sleek, sturdy, and comfortable.

  • The leather and rubber together provide good cushioning and will mold to your feet as you break them in.

  • These are simple inserts that just get the job done.

What I Don’t Like

  • The inserts aren’t suited for work boots. They’re easily damaged if they get wet (like all leather). Better to keep them for your Red Wing casual or dress boots.

What Other Reviewers Say

Red Wing boot owners have many great things to say about these insoles. Their unisex design makes them compatible with all boot types, and they earn rave reviews from wearers looking for simple yet reliable leather insoles.

A few people experienced quality control issues, with their inserts arriving damaged or defective. One user found that even if they were cut flush to fit the shoe, they still pinched and caused blisters.  

However, the majority of wearers had only positive experiences. The Red Wing leather insoles delivered on quality, reliability, and a precise fit.

The Verdict

If you’ve got a pair of Red Wings with leather footbeds that need repair or replacement, these are the best choice for you. They’re custom-built specifically by Red Wing for Red Wings, and they’ll fit inside your boots to make them look and feel almost as good as new.

Red Wing Leather Footbed
Red Wing Leather Footbed

If you’ve got a pair of Red Wings with leather footbeds that need repair or replacement, these are the best choice for you. They’re custom-built specifically by Red Wing for Red Wings, and they’ll fit inside your boots to make them look and feel almost as good as new.

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Best for Flat Feet: NAZAROO Shoe Insoles

My youngest son has flat feet, and finding boots for him has been challenging.

Now that he’s an adult—and a welder on top of it—we’ve been researching solutions to keep him comfortable over a long day standing and working on his feet.

The Nazaroo Shoe Insoles popped up on our radar as being specifically built for people with flat feet, so if you can’t invest in a pair of work boots for flat feet, these might be the next best thing. After testing them for the last four months, my son has confirmed they’re the addition his boots need.

The medical-grade inserts are made using EVA foam for the base and a multi-layered cushion top. The top is covered with fabric that is breathable enough his boots don’t get stinky and swampy even after a long day on the job.  

The design is specific for people with flat feet, but it can also be used by those with plantar fasciitis or heel spurs. These Nazaroo insoles feature a heel cradle providing specific support where my son needs it the most—and he’s already bought another pair to replace these when they wear out. 

What I Like

  • Medical-grade orthotic insoles built for people with flat feet, plantar fasciitis, heel spur, and heel pain sufferers.

  • Long-lasting cushioning doesn’t compress quickly but remains springy and supportive for up to a year.

  • An affordable price tag, backed by a 100% money-back guarantee.

  • Deep heel cradle design is excellent for improving foot positioning for flat feet.

What I Don’t Like

  • My son’s one complaint with these insoles is that they are very wide. He had to cut them way back to make them fit into his welder’s boots, and even then, it’s still a snug fit.

What Other Reviewers Say

With over 6,300 reviews and a 4.3-star rating, it’s pretty clear Nazaroo has built a quality product. Users praise the cushioning, fit, and quality construction, as well as their reasonable price tag.

A few other reviewers complained about the insoles’ width. They also had to trim them significantly to fit them in their boots or shoes.

However, most of the reviewers with flat feet sang the insoles’ praises, emphasizing the comfort of the medium-firm cushioning and ideal support for their arches.

The Verdict

If you’ve got flat feet, the Nazaroo insoles may be just what your Red Wing boots have been needing. The heel-cradling design will maximize support for your flat feet, while the medium-firm cushioning reduces impact with every strike. They’ve made long work days more comfortable for my welder son, and they can do the same for you.

Best for Flat Feet
NAZAROO Shoe Insoles

NAZAROO Shoe Insoles offer the best arch support for its price range. These are for you if you have flat feet or if you need insoles for your work boots as well as your trainers.

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Best Heavy Duty: VALSOLE Heavy Duty Support Pain Relief Orthotics

I got a pair of these Valsole Heavy Duty insoles for my mechanic son last Christmas, and he’s been over the moon about how effectively they cushion and support his feet. He walks around all day in heavy steel-toed boots, but thanks to these insoles, he’s less tired at the end of his work shift.

The Valsole insoles are made using three layers: a shock-absorbing poron for the heel pad, hard TPU for the arch support and heel cradle, and a layer of fabric to improve freshness and provide odor control.

The combination of a very high arch and deep heel cradle provides a significant amount of support that, paired with the insoles’ thick cushioning, makes for maximum comfort over a long day of work.

What I Like

  • Very thick insoles offering an impressive amount of cushioning.

  • Compatible with all Red Wing work boots.

  • Reduces foot pain, fatigue, joint stress, and tendon pressure.

  • Great for heavier wearers—designed specifically for people over 220 lbs.

What I Don’t Like

  • Because of how deep the heel cradle is, the arch feels a bit too high for my use (I have “normal” arches). However, they’re ideal for my son’s high arches.

What Other Reviewers Say

These Valsole insoles get a lot of love, particularly from guys who work in heavy-duty trades. Users praise them for their support, cushioning, and substantial, sturdy feel. With over 2,700 reviews and a 4.3-star rating, many happy customers insist they’re a smart investment for anyone who spends long hours working under heavy loads.

There are a few negative reviews, though. Some wearers didn’t like how noisy the insoles were, creating a “slapping” or “frog-like” sound when walking. Others found the insoles wore out quicker than expected, though that seems to result from quality control issues and not the insoles’ durability.

The Verdict

My son couldn’t be happier with the Valsole insoles. They’re thick, cushioned, and supportive enough to stand up to heavy loads and heavy-duty use. Welders, mechanics, carpenters, plumbers, roofers, and pretty much any tradie will be happy to have these handy to wear in their Red Wing work boots.

Best Heavy Duty
VALSOLE Heavy Duty Support Pain Relief Orthotics

My son couldn’t be happier with the Valsole insoles. They’re thick, cushioned, and supportive enough to stand up to heavy loads and heavy-duty use. Welders, mechanics, carpenters, plumbers, roofers, and pretty much any tradie will be happy to have these handy to wear in their Red Wing work boots.

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Best on Concrete: Timberland PRO Anti-Fatigue Replacement Insole

If you’re going to be spending long hours working and walking around on concrete, the Timberland PROs are just the thing your Red Wings need.

The anti-fatigue design combines a shock-absorbing foam with extra rebound technology and just the right amount of arch support for normal arches.

The geometric design and inverted cone foam that provides impact reduction also increases the insoles’ longevity, so they last longer even with frequent, heavy-duty use.

What I Like

  • These insoles will last for up to two years before needing to be replaced.

  • Solid construction, sturdy support.

  • Anti-fatigue technology does an amazing job of reducing impact and shock from walking and working on concrete.

  • Easy to adapt to your Red Wing boots.

  • Compatible with safety toe boots.

What I Don’t Like

  • People with higher arches may find they’re not quite supportive enough. There are no high-arch options available—they’re built with a “one size suits all” design.

What Other Reviewers Say

The Timberland PROs have amassed a whopping 17,000 reviews but held onto a 4.4-star rating. Users are impressed with their durability, reliability, and performance. More than a few called them “the most comfortable insoles I’ve ever owned.”

A few people complained that the insoles had a chemical smell right out of the box, and that the scent never entirely goes away. More than a few reviewers also noted that they were a bit lower on the arches and thinner than other insoles they tested.

Overall, though, the PROs score high marks with users due to how easy they are to fit into the boot and how well they perform on the job.

The Verdict

I recommend the Timberland PROs if you’re going to spend all day working or walking on concrete. The shock-absorbing design reduces impact on your feet and staves off fatigue. Even if you don’t typically wear insoles in your Red Wings, it’s worth it to try these. They do an amazing job of keeping your feet comfortable and supported all day long.

Best on Concrete
Timberland PRO Anti-Fatigue Replacement Insole

Timberland PRO Anti-Fatigue Replacement Insoles feature their sophisticated Anti-Fatigue Technology that allows you to work on unforgiving floors for hours at a time. If you spend your work days on hard concrete or if you stand all day, these insoles will make your life easier.

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Best Memory Foam: Happystep Memory Foam Insoles

If you want insoles that get very comfortable very quickly, you’ll want to test the Happystep Memory Foam Insoles.

Memory foam compresses faster than gel, but it retains that shape for longer once it does.

The Happystep insoles will feel more comfortable and adapted to your unique physiology as the memory foam softens upon contact with your body heat.

The soft fabric top will be gentle on your feet even if you’re wearing thin socks and will help to prevent your feet from sliding around inside your boots.

Best of all, they’re the most affordable insole on my list.

What I Like

  • Solid performance at a great price.

  • The insole quickly conforms to your feet and becomes comfortable within a few minutes of wearing.

  • Memory foam “remembers” the shape of your feet, adapting nicely to your foot structure and arch height.

  • Soft and gentle on your feet.

What I Don’t Like

  • Sadly, there’s no impact reduction with these memory foam insoles. They’re better suited to use in your dress or casual boots than work boots.  

What Other Reviewers Say

Of the 8,700 reviews posted about the Happystep Memory Foam insoles, most praise their foot and arch support, thick cushioning, and adaptable comfort.

A few users had issues with the chemical smell common with memory foam, but most of those who tried out these insoles raved about the quick break-in time and easy fit.

The Verdict

If you need a pair of insoles to replace the old, worn out footbed of your favorite dress Red Wings, these Happystep insoles are just the ticket. They’ll be comfortable durable, and will ensure your feet fit snugly into your boots and stay securely in place with every step. For the price, you just can’t beat them!

Best Memory Foam
Happystep Memory Foam Insoles

Happystep Memory Foam Insoles relieve pressure points on your feet, even as they change depending on your activity. They’re thick but easily mold to your foot, making them perfect for newly developed pain.

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Some Key Considerations Before Buying

What Type of Red Wing Boots Do You Need Insoles For?

Red Wing Blacksmith 7

Many Red Wing boots feature a wedge outsole that already provides ample support and cushioning to reduce impact.

For example, the Classic Mocs or Iron Rangers. For these boots, you can get away with nothing more than the integrated leather footbed or a very lightweight, thin insert.

However, for a lot of Red Wings’ work and dress boots that don’t feature the wedge sole (for example, the Blacksmith or Tradesman), a thicker, more supportive insole will provide the cushioning and support your boots need.

What Type and Level of Support Do You Need?

If you wear your Red Wings to and from an office job, or you only wear them around town or to run errands, you may be fine with just the integrated footbed or a thin insole with minimal support.

However, if you wear Red Wing work boots, walk for miles every day, or work for long hours on concrete, you’ll definitely want to look into thicker, heavier-duty insoles that provide more support and better shock absorption.

Do You Have any Particular Pain Points or Injuries?

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Suppose you have flat feet, high arches, or experience pain from foot injuries, plantar fasciitis, foot fatigue, or heel spurs. In that case, it’s a good idea to find insoles built specifically for those issues. Using the more “generalized” or one-size-suits-all insoles may not combat your individual pain points or injuries.

Which Is Best for You?

A good pair of insoles will take an already great pair of Red Wings and make them absolutely amazing.

By adding more support, cushioning, and impact-absorption, insoles will shield your feet from fatigue and combat pain.

No matter how much you walk or what terrain you’re traveling, you’ll feel better, lighter, and less exhausted thanks to the insoles.

All of my research has led me to conclude that the Tread Labs Ramble Comfort Insoles are the best overall. They not only fit my Red Wings nicely to provide the support I want, but the removable foam cover makes them reusable over and over again for the rest of my life.

Tread Labs Ramble Insoles

The Ramble is my favorite insole that I've tried from Tread Labs. It offers plenty of cushion for the ball of my foot, and the extra flex in the mid-foot boosts the stability of my boot without affecting my arch too much.

Buy Now at Treadlabs Read Our Review

If you’ve got flat feet, the NAZAROO Insoles are built specifically for you and can give you the support you need.

For my dress Red Wings, it’s easy and cheap to replace an old, worn-out insole with Red Wings’ own leather footbed.

When I’m doing heavy-duty work, the VALSOLE Heavy Duty Orthotics, but I’ll usually switch out my insoles for the Timberland PROs if I spend long hours walking or working on concrete.

Best on Concrete
Timberland PRO Anti-Fatigue Replacement Insole

Timberland PRO Anti-Fatigue Replacement Insoles feature their sophisticated Anti-Fatigue Technology that allows you to work on unforgiving floors for hours at a time. If you spend your work days on hard concrete or if you stand all day, these insoles will make your life easier.

Check Price

Dr. Scholl’s Massaging Gel Insoles proved the best of all the gel insoles I tested, and Happystep Memory Foam Insoles proved the winner for memory foam insoles.


FAQs

Do Red Wings need insoles?

Most Red Wing boots don’t need insoles. Many feature a thick wedge outsole that already provides ample arch support and a leather footbed that conforms to your feet to reduce fatigue.

That being said, I often incorporate insoles into my Red Wing boots because I like adding extra cushioning and support for high-impact or heavy-duty activities.

How can I make my Red Wing Boots more comfortable?

Break them in fully or treat them with a boot conditioner to relax and stretch the leather if they’re still feeling tight and stiff. Wear light socks (like the Camel City Mill Lightweights) if you’re strolling around town, or heavier socks (like the Camel City Mill Heavyweights) if you’re putting in a hard day’s work.

Are Red Wing orthotics good?

Red Wings’ “comfort footbeds” are well-crafted and explicitly designed to wear with your Red Wing boots. However, after testing them, I have to say they don’t quite stack up to the options I listed above. They don’t offer quite as much cushioning, support, or impact-reduction as I typically like in my boots.

Does Red Wing replace soles?

Red Wing will typically resole boots and repair most stitching issues. The possibility of repair may depend on where the damage is located.

However, be warned: you can typically only resole your Red Wings twice before the leather that attaches to the Goodyear welt will be too worn out to re-attach.

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