Leather is most commonly used to make work boots, so it can be challenging to navigate a shoe store and find the perfect pair of vegan work boots. Luckily, Amazon has plenty of vegan steel toed boots, vegan boots for women, and more.
I tested ten products and found Bogs Vegan Rancher Forge Steel Boots to be the best boots overall.
However, everyone’s work conditions are different. Some vegan work boots may be a better choice depending on your preferences, environment, and use.
Vegan work boots are more than just alternative leather. Sometimes, other materials, such as glue, are made from animal parts. Some brands claimed to be vegan, but it didn’t check out in the end. To find the best vegan work shoes, I ensured that each work boot not only uses an alternative leather but is entirely vegan and cruelty-free.
Additionally, I wanted to ensure that each work boot on this list is high quality, durable, and comfortable.
Below are the top choices I have found that combine cruelty-free with comfort and durability.
The Rancher Forge Steel boots are vegan work boots that suit just about any working man’s needs. Don’t let their lightweight feel fool you; these vegan boots are extremely durable.
No matter what your work conditions look like, these boots will keep your feet dry and comfortable, even in the muddiest environments. Though they are insulated and keep your feet toasty, they use max moisture wicking to remove sweat. Additionally, the DuraFresh biotechnology will eliminate harsh odors that come with hard work.
This vegan steel-toed boot offers toe protection. The outsole is BioGrip slip-resistant and the insole is cushioned and comfortable. Built from a natural rubber that lays over a stretchy bootie, you get a seriously durable boot overall.
- Insulated for extra warmth
- DuraFresh biotechnology to control odors
- Sole may split easily
In the early ’70s, Dr. Martens would produce the first 2976 Chelsea boot. These boots have had decades of innovation from this well-known shoe brand. Today, this vegan boot is not only tough as nails but is a fashionable boot that men can wear from work to wherever he needs to head to next.
Not only are these boots made from non-leather materials, but all of the materials and manufacturing methods are also entirely vegan compliant. These shoes are produced without the help of any animal products. Their iconic AirWair Bouncing Soles are oil-resistant, slip-resistant, and a Goodyear-welted product.
Rather than using glue, Dr. Martens boots heat-seal and sew the sole and upper. This Chelsea-style boot is slip-resistant and water-resistant. Keep in mind, these do not feature a steel toe cap and might not stand up to extreme weather. Though this review is based on the men’s boot, Dr. Martens Women’s 2976 Chelsea Boots are also available.
- Entirely vegan compliant methods and materials
- Oil and slip resistant
- Heat sealed for extra durability
- May run small
Construction workers have worn Cat Footwear boots for decades because of their high reputation, and they have vegan work boots made with the same great quality. The Cat Footwear’s Ease footbed gives workers all-day cushiony comfort with shock absorption and energy return.
These steel toed vegan boots feature oil and slip-resistant rubber. The multi-layered rubber also provides durability at key stress points to help keep feet from becoming sore throughout the workday.
The stabilizing outsole is a key feature that makes these boots great for construction workers. No matter where you need to take your next step, the outsole helps to handle uneven terrain to keep you steady as you walk. You also get electrical hazard protection against up to 600 volts in dry conditions.
- Multi-layered rubber provides long lasting comfort
- Steel Toe offers premium protection
- Stabilizing outsole great for construction workers
- May rip easily allowing water to enter
If your job requires a lot of walking throughout the day, you may find some comfort wearing Will’s Vegan Shoes Men’s Work Boots. The insoles are removable, cushioned, and anatomic. Your feet and ankles are supported by padding around the collar and on the tongue.
While the insides of these work boots provide comfort, the outside offers durability. The Vibram injection outsoles include areas for traction, grip, stability, and breaking. Additionally, the outsoles are ballistic-welded to the uppers, so they will not tear or break open easily.
Using CAD design technology, they simulate the different phases of walking to create more ergonomic boots. These lab-tested work boots are waterproof, have waterproof seams, a sealed tongue, and a breathable waterproof membrane that keeps water from penetrating.
- Water resistant
- Vibram injection outsoles for great traction
- Created with Italian vegan leather for stylish design
- Stylish design may not suit some working environments
With over three decades of experience, Amblers Safety is a leading British footwear brand that offers comfort paired with ruggedness. These vegan steel-toed boots utilize an industrial standard 200J steel toe cap paired with steel midsole protection.
The upper is of a vegan-friendly, microfiber, and breathable mesh to keep your feet comfortable during intense work conditions. Its padded collar and tongue provide additional support and limit chaffing on the job. The pull-on loop lets you slip these work boots on easily.
These boots are a great choice for both men and women who are looking for tough, yet fashionable boots free of animal cruelty. These boots contain no animal products, including any colorants, glues, or adhesives.
- 100% vegan and free from animal derived colorant, glues, or adhesives.
- Padded collar offers comfort from rubbing
- Easy slip-on design
- May not be suitable for heavy duty work
Will’s Vegan Shoes has an excellent option for women who need tough work boots that look good. Created with Italian vegan leather, these work boots are breathable and water-resistant. These boots aren’t clunky like other work boots and can easily be worn from day to night.
The water-resistant vegan leather can keep your feet nice and dry with rain or snow. However, they are not 100% waterproof, so avoid submerging them in water or puddles. As with animal leather, you can easily polish these boots to make them shiny and return color.
The outsoles are a studded rubber design and the insoles are constructed with recycled rubber. Though these shoes are incredibly sturdy, they feel lightweight on your feet. These boots make a great addition to just about any working women’s closet who wants to be comfortable and fashionable at work.
- Deep tread for added grip
- Environmentally friendly
- Lightweight for comfort during long durations
- Not completely waterproof
Carhartt is a well-known brand that has a reputation for creating durable and comfortable work shoes. If you are looking for vegan work boots, this can be challenging in itself. Finding the best vegan work boots that can support wide feet poses its own sort of challenge, but Carhartt has your back. Each size comes with the option of “medium” or “wide” so you can get a perfect fit.
Built with cement construction, these boots are incredibly flexible and keep your feet feeling comfy. The only downside of this construction is if there is damage to the sole, you can not simply replace it. The upper features nylon mesh and a synthetic fabric that wicks away moisture and keeps feet dry.
Not only are these boots comfortable, but they also meet high electrical standards. These rugged boots protect against contact with electrical circuits of 18,000 volts or less when dry. They are also heat resistant, abrasion-resistant, and slip-resistant for ultimate protection.
- Cement construction for added durability
- Flexible sole for long lasting comfort
- Resistant to up to 18,000 volts
- Sole may be difficult to replace if it is broken
These may not be your typical work boots; however, they are a great option for a protective and durable boot. Both men and women can wear these boots to work or out afterward. On the outside, these boots may look simple. However, Doc Martens boots utilize multi-layered Goodyear Welt construction.
This unique construction process is what causes these high-quality boots to cost more than some other brands. The process is labor-intensive and complex. With other constructions, if the outsole gets damaged, you will need to replace the shoes or pay a high price to resole them. With Goodyear construction, you are able to replace it. Because of the multiple layers, they may seem a little stiff for the first few uses.
Many users say that it doesn’t take too long to break these boots in, and they quickly become comfortable to wear regularly. The soles on these boots are not only air-cushioned, but provide excellent traction and offer oil and slip-resistance. Because of the construction, you will have long-lasting, durable, and comfortable vegan boots.
- Oil and slip resistant design
- Goodyear construction for durability and easy repair
- Well-trusted brand
- Requires a break-in period
When it comes to buying vegan work boots, there are a few factors you want to consider before making your choice.
Ensure Boots Are Actually Vegan
For shoes to be considered vegan, they should not contain any animal products or traces of animals. Though most people are well-aware that leather is not vegan, there are other products used to craft boots that may be overlooked.
For example, the glue used to create shoes and boots contain animal products. There are also colorings or chemicals that could have traces of animals. So, a synthetic leather work boot may appear to be vegan but uses a non-vegan product to hold it together. Unless a company explicitly states that its boots do not contain any animal products, you cannot be certain that they are fully vegan.
The selection of 100% vegan work shoes is somewhat small because of these circumstances. For vegans, this can make shopping for work boots somewhat challenging. While crafting this list, I did my best to research each company and find options that used all vegan products to make your search a bit simpler.
The technique used to make boots can sometimes determine their quality. Many brands, such as Dr. Martens, have innovated construction methods to create blends of durability mixed with comfort. Below are the three main types of construction.
As the name suggests, cement construction refers to a method in which the upper is stuck to the sole with cement. With this construction, you get lightweight boots that have flex and are comfortable to wear. This is one of the most common methods of attaching the sole of boots.
The only downside to this type of construction lies in resoling the boots if they become damaged.
Blake welting is a simple and less expensive form of construction than a more complex and laborious construction, such as Goodyear welt.
Unlike cement construction, Blake Welting involves a stitch to hold the upper and sole together. Because of this, if the sole becomes damaged, it can easily be resoled. However, even though re-soling can be done, it can only be done with a blake machine, so it is typically more costly than resoling Goodyear Welts.
Because it doesn’t have as many layers as the Goodyear Welt has, it is a more flexible fit. However, it has wicking properties that can cause water to pool up.
The Goodyear Welt is one of the most difficult, but more long lasting of the three. Though it can be done with a machine or by hand, it involves multiple steps.
Because the Goodyear Welt requires more materials and a more challenging process, boots with this construction tend to be more expensive. Extra layers can make the shoe somewhat less flexible as well.
Features Required For Your Specific Needs
Each work environment will require a different level of durability for shoes. Carpenters or other workers that pose the risk of having heavy objects fall on them will likely need a vegan steel toe boot. Outdoor jobs require boots that are 100% weatherproof, but a steel toe cap isn’t a necessity.
Take into account what exactly you are looking for out of your boot. Obviously, comfort will be a huge factor for just about everyone. However, there are many features that will likely benefit you more than others might.
Waterproof vs. Water Resistant
Do you work in a potentially muddy or snowy environment? If you answered yes, then you know that these conditions can get your feet soaked in the wrong shoes. If you are searching for a waterproof pair of boots, ensure that the seams of the shoe are tight enough to keep the feet from getting wet.
In certain occupations, such as construction work, sharp objects like nails are usually present. Having workboots that have strong midsoles that incorporate steel or aluminum provide a high level of protection. If you work in an environment where sharp objects may be a hazard, a having puncture-proof work boot can provide superior protection.
Just about every work environment has the risk of slipping and hurting yourself. In order to protect yourself, it is important to look for a work boot that has traction and a slip-resistant sole. For workplaces that have a higher risk of slipping, it is even more essential to prevent falls with the right boots.
For hot environments, having a breathable shoe can alleviate a lot of discomfort. Hot and sweaty feet can not only be distracting while at work but may lead to foot issues and even infections. Additionally, sweaty feet can produce a pretty harsh odor. Opt for a pair of vegan boots that have a good amount of airflow to keep your feet comfortable in high temperatures.
However, boots that have breathability will likely not be waterproof. So, if you work in wet environments, a waterproof or water-resistant boot may be a higher priority.
Comfort and Flexibility
Finding comfortable and flexible vegan boots can be the difference between sore feet or feeling little soreness after a long day. Look for a pair of boots that feature flexible materials. Some boots will need to be broken in a bit for full flexibility.
The Perfect Pair of Vegan Work Boots
While each pair of vegan work boots has its pros and cons, the best overall in my opinion is the Bogs Vegan Rancher Forge Steel Boots. Not only do they have just about every safety precaution you may be looking for, but they are also extremely comfortable making them one of the best vegan work boots. If you work in an environment where there are occupational hazards, these work boots will give you the greatest protection.
For those who want durable and comfortable work boots, but don’t need all the bells and whistles, I recommend the Dr. Martens Vegan 2976, Chelsea Boot. These boots offer comfort and durability for those who are on their feet all day. However, they do not feature a steel-toe boot. They are water-resistant and stylish, so they can be worn from work to the grocery store to a gathering.
If you have wide feet and worry you cannot find a boot that will fit properly, look no further than the Carhartt Vegan Steel Toe Boots. These boots offer durability, comfort, and protection much like similar brands. However, you can opt for a wide-fit so that your feet can feel comfortable and not crammed in.
Call to Action
While looking through this list, keep in mind any factors that are important to you in a vegan work boot. If you saw a pair of boots on this list that fit all of your needs, you can find each of them on Amazon. Each option has a direct link to purchase.