6 Most Breathable Work Boots for Sweaty Feet in 2021

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by  Karlton Miko Tyack | Last Updated: 

Sweaty feet in work boots are uncomfortable and distracting on the job site.

If you find your feet perspire more than the average guy, check out our picks below of the six most breathable work boots for sweaty feet.

Best Overall
  • Mesh-lining is antimicrobial, moisture-wicking, and breathable without compromising protection
  • Outlast technology regulates temperature
  • Timberland’s ComfortFit system is ergonomically designed, providing comfort and moveability
Best on a Budget
  • With its steel toe, leather construction, and ASTM EH-rating, this boot punches above its ~$50 price point
  • Relaxed and roomy fit for effective airflow
  • Memory foam offers a cushy and comfortable footbed for all day wear
Best Breathable Steel Toe Boots
  • Steel toe meets ANSI safety standards guaranteeing reliable protection
  • Durable and rugged Goodyear welt and nubuck leather construction
  • Moisture-wicking lining treats odors and provides ventilation
Best Lightweight Breathable Work Boots
  • A pair weighs 46oz, lighter than most work boots, allowing for all-day ease of movement
  • Breathable membrane liner lets moisture out without letting moisture in
  • Anti-fatigue compression-resistant midsole significantly gives energy back to your foot
Best Winter Work Boots for Sweaty Feet
  • Thick insulation, lugged soles, and high heels make this boot effective in snow and cold weather.
  • Moisture fighting lining keeps your feet dry, while the waterproof membrane lets air escape
  • Goodyear welting, EH rating, and 100% leather construction provides superior durability and protection
Best Breathable Pull-on Work Boots
  • The mesh lining provides airflow and breathability
  • Ariat’s rebound technology, slip resistant sole, and 90-degree heel make this boot stable and versatile for indoor and outdoor work
  • Stylish western look complete with decorative stitching on the upper

There’s nothing more distracting on the job site than sweaty feet.

Think about it. 

If you’re a logger climbing up a tree, it’s as if you’re stepping into a puddle every time your foot hits that next mark. If you’re in construction and operating a forklift, it feels like your feet are sitting in two mini Louisiana swamps.

For you extra sweaty gents or guys who work in hot conditions, we’ve come to the rescue.

We’ve rounded up the most breathable work boots.h They’re easily the six best work boots for sweaty feet.

Let’s get to it.

How Did We Come Up With Our List?

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These entries are based on our own experiences on the field and on the jobsite, as well as on in-depth research. We ensure that all of the options have features that deliberately accommodate sweaty feet. They’re also all worksite appropriate, offering protection and durability. 

Without compromising the priority moisture-wicking qualities, each choice has a distinct strength, with the Timberland PRO Titans being the best overall. 

6 Best Work Boots for Sweaty Feet

Best Overall: Timberland PRO Titan Safety-Toe

1.
Timberland PRO Titan Safety-Toe Work Boot

Though they aren’t meant to last forever, the Timberland PRO Titan wastes no time and can be used right out of the box. The comfort technology is sophisticated and detailed, and the moisture-wicking lining is effective, temperature regulating, and antimicrobial---precisely what you need for sweaty feet.

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The Timberland PRO Titan Safety-Toe Work Boot achieves the holy trinity of dealing with sweaty feet: comfortable, moisture-wicking, and antimicrobial. 

If you’re familiar with Timberland PRO, you’ve probably read about the in-house ComfortFit system the brand loves to brag about. Their pride is justified. ComfortFit is ergonomically sophisticated, giving you ease of movement and flexibility right out of the box.

I appreciate the considerate design detail in the Titan. The tongue is contoured for reduced bulk without sacrificing security and the toe box is wide for breathability. Also, the alloy safety toes give you protection without the extra weight.
At the frontline of the battle against sweat is the antimicrobial, moisture-wicking spacer mesh lining, and the Outlast technology which absorbs, stores, or releases heat for optimal temperature regulation.

What I Like

  • The mesh-lining provides airflow and moisture-wicking without compromising the boot’s secure fit and protectiveness.

  • It’s equipped with Outlast technology, which regulates temperature.

  • Timberland’s ComfortFit system is ergonomically designed, providing flexibility and movement right out of the box

  • The dual-density polyurethane footbed that doesn’t compress, offering durability and comfort.

  • It’s antimicrobial treated to fight odor and bacteria. 

What I Don’t Like

  • The cement construction makes the boot easy to break in, but it also means it can’t be resoled easily. This boot is meant to be used up then replaced.

What Other Reviewers Say

Most reviewers are shocked at how immediately comfortable the Titans are right out of the box. The phrase “zero break-in time” is used on almost every other review on the internet.

After scouring countless reviews, I can confidently report that those with sweaty feet find the Titans to be an effective solution. Some mention that you might need to pair them with absorbent socks if you’re extra sweaty. I recommend doing that anyway.

The main complaint is that the boots aren’t built to last, referring to the cement construction. They’ll give you a good couple years though, and since there’s no break-in period, many reviewers mention they’ll just buy the Titans again.

The Verdict

Though they aren’t meant to last forever, the Timberland PRO Titan wastes no time and can be used right out of the box. The comfort technology is sophisticated and detailed, and the moisture-wicking lining is effective, temperature regulating, and antimicrobial—precisely what you need for sweaty feet.

Best Overall
Timberland PRO Titan Safety-Toe Work Boot

Though they aren’t meant to last forever, the Timberland PRO Titan wastes no time and can be used right out of the box. The comfort technology is sophisticated and detailed, and the moisture-wicking lining is effective, temperature regulating, and antimicrobial---precisely what you need for sweaty feet.

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Best on a Budget: Skechers Industrial Boot

2.
Skechers Industrial Boot

If you’re looking for a basic budget work boot that still provides effective breathability, the Skechers Industrial Boot is for you. It’s EH-rated, features a steel toe and leather construction, and the comfortable and ventilated fit works well for sweaty feet.

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For usually just around $50, the Skechers Industrial Boot serves up leather-constructed steel-toe footwear complete with an ASTM electric hazard rating. It’s an overall basic work boot, but it checks all the boxes.   

Its sweat-fighting arsenal is a mix of good old-fashioned roominess and a memory foam footbed. The relaxed fit allows for effective airflow, while the comfortable footbed takes the stress off of your feet.

If this lightweight best-seller isn’t fulfilling specific needs for you, don’t give up on it too quickly. If the extra room bothers you, try adding thick but absorbent socks. The Skechers Industrial Boot isn’t antimicrobial treated either, but you can use foot antiperspirants and bacteria-fighting inserts. You’d be surprised at how just a few cheap add-ons can level up budget boots.

What I Like

  • The leather construction, steel toe, and ASTM electrical hazard rating makes this boot effective for most jobsites.

  • The relaxed and roomy fit provides breathability to fight sweat.

  • Memory foam offers a cushy and comfortable footbed for all day wear.

What I Don’t Like

  • This shoe isn’t antimicrobial, so make sure you get an antibacterial insert or antiperspirant.

  • The roomy fit gives the impression that it runs large, which can be confusing when choosing a size.

What Other Reviewers Say

Despite their affordability, the reviewers ran the gamut from farm hands to upscale chemical plant scientists. Most agree that they’re immediately comfortable, and many even comment on how stylish they are. I love the brown versions with the red accents, myself.

Reviewers point out that the shoes feel bigger after a few days. While Skechers mentions that these are supposed to offer a relaxed fit, those who prefer snugger shoes may either want to size down or invest in a more expensive pair. Since these are a no-frills work boot, they aren’t loaded with a bunch of technologies and it’s this roominess that provides the necessary ventilation.

The Verdict

If you’re looking for a basic budget work boot that still provides effective breathability, the Skechers Industrial Boot is for you. It’s EH-rated, features a steel toe and leather construction, and the comfortable and ventilated fit works well for sweaty feet.

Best on a Budget
Skechers Industrial Boot

If you’re looking for a basic budget work boot that still provides effective breathability, the Skechers Industrial Boot is for you. It’s EH-rated, features a steel toe and leather construction, and the comfortable and ventilated fit works well for sweaty feet.

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Best Breathable Steel Toe Boots: Timberland PRO Pitboss Steel Toe

3.
Timberland PRO Pitboss Steel Toe

The Timberland PRO Pitboss is a strong workhorse boot for those who sweat easily, whether that’s through heat or stress. It offers certified protection, while also providing sufficient airflow and odor-combatting properties.

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How can a robust and thickly-built steel toe like the Timberland PRO Pitboss boot also be breathable? 

That Timberland magic takes the form of an antimicrobial mesh lining. It keeps the moisture off of your foot, so it stays cool and dry. Then when you remove your shoes at the end of the day, all that moisture dissipates back into the environment.

On extra sweaty days, you can remove the footbed to let it aerate. 

The Pitboss boasts a steel toe that meets ANSI safety standards and a fatigue-reducing insole. Its famously durable leather upper is Goodyear welted to its anti-slip rubber outsole.

What I Like

  • The steel toe construction meets ANSI safety standards, providing work-certified protection.

  • The Goodyear welt and nubuck leather construction is rugged and durable.

  • Despite the robust build of these shoes, their moisture-wicking lining gives your feet room to breathe while also treating odors.

What I Don’t Like

  • These boots can take anywhere from two weeks to a good month to break in.

What Other Reviewers Say

A majority of the reviewers online are satisfied construction workers, which is a testament to the Pitboss’s practicality. Reviewers enjoy the boot’s comfort and its ability to hold up in high-impact situations. 

One reviewer boasts how his Pitboss boots survived a major motorcycle crash, while another mentions how he prefers them over his expensive Red Wings.

The Verdict

The Timberland PRO Pitboss is a strong workhorse boot for those who sweat easily, whether that’s through heat or stress. It offers certified protection, while also providing sufficient airflow and odor-combatting properties.

Best Breathable Steel Toe Boots
Timberland PRO Pitboss Steel Toe

The Timberland PRO Pitboss is a strong workhorse boot for those who sweat easily, whether that’s through heat or stress. It offers certified protection, while also providing sufficient airflow and odor-combatting properties.

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Best Lightweight Breathable Work Boots: KEEN Utility Chicago Boot

4.
KEEN Utility Chicago Boot

If you’re a distance hiker or if your job has you on your feet all day, the KEEN Utility Chicago Boot is the best lightweight option for sweaty feet. In addition to weighing only 46oz a pair, the energy-returning midsole and membrane provide comfort and breathability.

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The KEEN Utility Chicago Boot is as comfortable and lightweight as it gets for a work boot. The soft-toe version we’re looking at weighs 46oz a pair. There’s a protective toe version, the Utility Chicago Composite Toe, which is obviously heavier. At just 52oz though, it isn’t as heavy as most other composite toe work boots.

The lightness in weight is a huge boon for those with sweaty feet, but it doesn’t stop there. It also has a breathable membrane liner that lets vapor escape, while keeping outside water out. On top of that, the compression-resisting midsole returns 50% more energy to your foot than an EVA foam. 

I will say that the arch feels low. For most, the energy return factor will make up for this, but if a remarkably higher arch is important to you, this may not be your pair.

What I Like

  • Coming in at 46oz a pair, this boot is lightweight and gives all-day comfort.

  • The membrane liner is breathable because it lets moisture out without letting moisture in.

  • The anti-fatigue compression-resistant midsole significantly gives back energy, allowing you to be on your feet all day. 

What I Don’t Like

  • The cemented welt makes these shoes impossible to resole.

  • The arch feels low, so these may not be ideal for you if you need extra support.

What Other Reviewers Say

A popular outdoorsman boot, several reviewers praise the KEEN Chicago for surviving hours-long hikes. The lugs are grippy but not so deep that huge clumps of dirt and leaves will stick to them, and the lightness helps keep you spry for hours at a time. 

Other reviewers mention the low arch, which sometimes causes pressure on both heels, though these same reviewers don’t notice any substantial arch fatigue.

The Verdict

If you’re a distance hiker or if your job has you on your feet all day, the KEEN Utility Chicago Boot is the best lightweight option for sweaty feet. In addition to weighing only 46oz a pair, the energy-returning midsole and membrane provide comfort and breathability.

Best Lightweight Breathable Work Boots
KEEN Utility Chicago Boot

If you’re a distance hiker or if your job has you on your feet all day, the KEEN Utility Chicago Boot is the best lightweight option for sweaty feet. In addition to weighing only 46oz a pair, the energy-returning midsole and membrane provide comfort and breathability.

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Best Winter Work Boots for Sweaty Feet: Chippewa Logger

5.
Chippewa Logger

The Chippewa Logger is a worthwhile investment boot for those who work in cold or snowy conditions. Building a boot that can keep the cold out without stimulating overactive sweat glands is a challenge, and Chippewa succeeds with this model.

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The Chippewa Logger has everything you need in a winter work boot. The 2.25-inch feel and lugged outsole give you the traction and height necessary for trekking through snow. Meanwhile, the 9-inch shaft and 400 grams of thermal insulation provide warmth and protection from the elements. 

So how does a sweaty gent survive in so much insulation? The lining is Dri-Lex 2000, which distributes moisture away from the surface of your foot, and into the lining itself. This keeps your foot dry. The Chip A Tex waterproof membrane, which keeps the boot water-resistant, allows the air from your foot to pass through this membrane. This keeps your foot fresh.

The Chippewa Logger is also Goodyear welted, comes with a steel toe, and is EH-rated.

What I Like

  • The lining keeps your feet dry, while the waterproof membrane lets air escape, ensuring your feet don’t get too sweaty. 

  • It’s durable and protective, thanks to its Goodyear welting, EH rating, and 100% leather construction.

  • The insulation and lugged and high-heeled outsole make this boot perfect for cold weather and snowy days. 

What I Don’t Like

  • This boot runs a little small and narrow, so you may have to size up, especially if you’re planning to wear thick winter socks. 

What Other Reviewers Say

Reviewers love the high-quality materials and the fact this boot can protect you from the cold, without making your feet sweat. They’re especially enthusiastic that the Chippewa Logger is made in the USA, but not as enthusiastic about the price tag that comes with that status.

A few reviewers mention that it runs small, especially with thick socks. And a few others mention that the high heel takes some getting used to.

The Verdict

The Chippewa Logger is a worthwhile investment boot for those who work in cold or snowy conditions. Building a boot that can keep the cold out without stimulating overactive sweat glands is a challenge, and Chippewa succeeds with this model.

Best Winter Work Boots for Sweaty Feet
Chippewa Logger

The Chippewa Logger is a worthwhile investment boot for those who work in cold or snowy conditions. Building a boot that can keep the cold out without stimulating overactive sweat glands is a challenge, and Chippewa succeeds with this model.

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Best Breathable Pull-on Work Boots: Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker

6.
Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker

The Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker is a versatile boot that can take you from the construction site to the warehouse to the farm. Go for this Western style shoe if you’re looking for a pull on that gives excellent breathability and stability.

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This shoe may look like a regular stylish cowboy boot, but the Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker is souped up with a mesh lining and the brand’s Four Layer Rebound (4LR) technology.

The mesh allows efficient airflow despite the shoe’s sturdy construction. 4LR provides maximum cushioning and rebound for added support, and to keep the pressure and stress off of your foot so it doesn’t get too sweaty in the first place.

The Workhog is also loaded with stability features. The heel is 90 degrees to help you brace against any floor protrusions, and the extra metatarsal padding protects the top of the foot from compression injuries without the extra bulk of a steel toe. 

What I Like

  • The mesh lining makes this boot breathable and well-ventilated.

  • Ariat’s 4LR technology provides maximum rebound ensuring pressure is minimized.

  • The slip-resistant rubber sole with 90-degree heel gives effective stability and makes this boot exceedingly versatile.

What I Don’t Like

  • Even the wide versions of these boots are quite narrow, so they aren’t the best choice for extra wide feet. 

What Other Reviewers Say

Reviewers generally believe the Ariat Workhog punches above its price point, praising the construction, durability, and immediate comfort.

Most report that this boot is a bit tight at first, but only takes a good half an hour before it stretches out to a perfect fit. 

The main complaint I find is that those with extra wide feet find the footbed too thin. Even those who have the extra wide version and one size up think it isn’t roomy enough.

The Verdict

The Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker is a versatile boot that can take you from the construction site to the warehouse to the farm. Go for this Western style shoe if you’re looking for a pull on that gives excellent breathability and stability.

Best Breathable Pull-on Work Boots
Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker

The Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker is a versatile boot that can take you from the construction site to the warehouse to the farm. Go for this Western style shoe if you’re looking for a pull on that gives excellent breathability and stability.

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5 Key Things to Look for in a Breathable Work Boot if You Have Sweaty Feet

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Sometimes those with sweaty feet simply run hot. Other times, they just have the wrong boots. To figure out what exactly you need out of your breathable work boots, here are the important things to consider.

  • Moisture-Wicking: This is the first thing you should look for if you have sweaty feet. Different work boots use different strategies, though a mesh lining is the most common because of how effective it is.
  • Sizing: Some brands generally run big and some run small. Do your research to make sure you have the right size for you. Sometimes sweat is triggered by simple discomfort and pressure in the wrong places.
  • Weight: While work boots are generally heavier than other shoe styles, the lighter the better for sweaty feet. Avoid unnecessary features that add bulk. If your job doesn’t require a safety toe, go for a soft toe.
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  • Antimicrobial Treatment: Extra sweaty feet left unchecked are a breeding ground for bacteria. To avoid fungal infections, opt for shoes, shoe inserts, or antiperspirants that are antimicrobial.
  • Temperature-regulating Technology: This is especially important in a winter work boot. Sweaty feet don’t fare well in too much insulation, but you also don’t want frostbite. 

Work Hard, Sweat Less

Overall, the Timberland PRO Titan provides comprehensive comfort, moisture-wicking, and antimicrobial properties—making it our top pick. 

Best Overall
Timberland PRO Titan Safety-Toe Work Boot

Though they aren’t meant to last forever, the Timberland PRO Titan wastes no time and can be used right out of the box. The comfort technology is sophisticated and detailed, and the moisture-wicking lining is effective, temperature regulating, and antimicrobial---precisely what you need for sweaty feet.

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If you’re saving up for a proper pair but need some work boots right away, the Skechers Industrial Boot is protective, roomy, and can always be souped up with inserts or socks.

Looking for steel-level protection without sacrificing breathability? Go for the Timberland Pitboss, though the extra light KEEN Chicago comes in a soft toe and a composite toe.

The Chippewa Logger will protect you from cold weather without overheating, while the Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker is a versatile pull-on with a well-ventilated mesh lining.

Best Breathable Pull-on Work Boots
Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker

The Ariat Workhog Groundbreaker is a versatile boot that can take you from the construction site to the warehouse to the farm. Go for this Western style shoe if you’re looking for a pull on that gives excellent breathability and stability.

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Don’t let your feet wallow in their own sweat. You, and they, deserve better.

FAQs

Why do my feet sweat so much in my work boots?

Bigger and taller people sweat more than smaller and shorter people. It doesn’t necessarily mean you’re unhealthy. Everyone’s body is different, and even many smaller people just run hot. Make sure your boots are moisture-wicking and in the right size.

How do you keep your feet from sweating in work boots?

Choose breathable work boots in the right size. You can also use antiperspirants, moisture-wicking inserts, and absorbent socks.

3 Things Every Boot Wearer Should Own

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