In this Guide
Standing on your feet all day takes a toll on your body all by itself. Once you add concrete floors into the equation, you’re looking at a serious threat to your feet, back and joints! A lot of work boots just aren’t up to the task of keeping you comfortable and safe on concrete. Luckily, we know of some that are!
Our crack team of reviewers have compiled a list of the best pairs of boots to wear on concrete. No matter what industry you’re in, we’ve found something that will meet your needs. This guide will introduce you to the most durable, comfortable, and safe boots on the market!
Below, we’ve put together in-depth reviews of all our favorite work boots for standing on concrete. There are men’s, women’s, and unisex boots here, and there’s something for everybody! We also included a handy checklist for finding your perfect pair when you work on concrete!
Let’s cut right to the chase with a glance at the Top Three!
Best Work Boot Reviews: For Standing On Concrete Floors
- Birkenstock Men’s Hancock
- Keen Utility Men’s Pittsburgh
- Keen Utility Men’s Milwaukee
- Timberland PRO Men’s PittBoss
- Keen Utility Women’s Detroit
- The Original MuckBoots Adult Chore Steel-Toe
1. Birkenstock Men’s Hancock
Our first recommendation for men on concrete is technically a hiking boot, but we think these Birkenstock’s make excellent indoor work boots. We suggest them for anyone whose job is relatively clean and safe. They don’t have steel toes or waterproofing, but if you work in a furniture shop or a hosiery, for instance, they’re a comfortable, durable choice!
They’re the most comfortable boots here, even if they’re not as industrial as our other recommendations! A lot of work boots include ergonomic features as an afterthought, but Birkenstock’s are centered around the idea of having healthy feet! So, they have more anatomical support and comfort features than any other boots we’ve found!
First off, they have a wider, roomier toe box than a lot of American shoes. That’s important for work, since your feet expand naturally over the course of the shift. So, you need some extra room for them to do so comfortably.
Thick rubber soles absorb a lot of the impact you feel from concrete floors. They keep your joints comfortable and cushioned from the repetitive jolts you’d otherwise feel on concrete. They also happen to give you great traction!
A balanced footbed keeps your foot level, as opposed to pointed down like you’d see with other boots. That’s better for your metatarsal area, which is a common pressure point where workers feel foot pain.
The Hancock’s also have Birkenstock’s signature cork footbeds inside. If you’ve ever worn Birkenstock sandals or clogs, you know how comfortable and supportive these things are. The cork footbeds give you lots of arch support, metatarsal relief, and heel cushioning.
Cork molds to your feet and becomes more comfortable with wear. By contrast, the foam cushioning in our other recommendations will become less comfortable over time. The cork footbeds will eventually wear down, but they last a long time and are easy to swap out.
They’re a superb choice for anyone who’s work has given them plantar fasciitis or other chronic foot issues. They also promote good posture, so they’re ideal for people who stand and walk for long periods of time.
They’re very high-quality. These boots are made completely in Europe, from high-grain leather and rubber. The upper is all-leather, and so is the lining. All the hooks are sturdy metal. All the materials are top-grade, and the build quality is excellent. As long as you’re not going to subject them to extreme conditions, we don’t think there’s a flaw in their construction!
As long as you don’t expect them to hold up in extreme, industrial settings, we have very few complaints about the Hancock’s. They’re ideal for finish carpenters, warehouse employees, and other jobs which don’t require steel toes.
You wouldn’t want to get them wet or dirty. They’re fine to get sawdust on them or something similar, but they’re not waterproof, and they’re too nice to use for painting or spray jobs. They’re much better for people working in relatively clean, tidy environments.
They’re not safety rated at all. If you need steel toes to protect you at work, keep reading! All our other men’s picks have steel toes inside.
They’re expensive. Birkenstock’s are premium shoes, and they come at a premium price. These are an excellent investment for any worker, but you wouldn’t want to use them in environments where shoes get destroyed regularly.
2. KEEN Utility Men’s Pittsburgh Steel Toe Work Boot
These Keen’s are a versatile choice for someone who works indoors on concrete, but who also needs to go outside or deal with particularly messy conditions inside. They’re rugged, they have excellent traction, and they’re super comfortable wherever you’re walking. These are Keen’s best-selling boots for a reason!
Safety rating: Meets or exceeds ASTM F2412-11 and F2413-11 I/75 C/75 EH standards
Unlike the Hancock’s, these are safety boots. They’re rated to the latest safety standards, for both electrical hazard protection and slip resistance. They’re fully-qualified for hazardous workplaces.
They’re also loaded with steel toes, to protect you from falling objects and crushing hazards. We love that Keen’s steel toes are designed asymmetrically, so that they fit comfortably on each foot without pinching anywhere!
These things are really made for the rough and tumble. They’re oil and slip-resistant, so you can use them without hesitation in breweries, truck garages, and other places where wet or greasy floors are commonplace.
Unlike our other recommendations for men, they’re phenomenal work boots for outside jobs as well. The Pittsburgh’s have lugged outsoles for outdoor terrain as well as concrete. So, if you’re in and out of buildings with concrete floors, these are perfect.
They feature Keen’s signature wraparound outsole, which stretches up and over the toes. It’s a patented feature, so you won’t find it on any other boots. We think the extra coverage is a really great idea, especially for kicking doors shut, knocking equipment, and protecting the seam between the upper and the soles.
The uppers are mostly leather. Unlike the Milwaukee’s and the Timberland’s we’ve recommended below, the Pittsburgh’s also have some mesh sections around the cuff and along the tongue. They give you some extra ventilation, which is ideal for hot places and stuffy warehouses where your feet build up heat quickly!
They’ve also got reflective webbing for safety around the boots.
These are completely waterproof boots, so you won’t have to worry about spills, puddles, or other wet problems. The waterproofing goes right up to the cuff, thanks to the liner inside the tongue. Moisture-wicking, breathable linings keep water out without keeping heat in!
Inside, they have Keen’s anatomical footbeds. They have great arch support, and a nice amount of cushion throughout the foot. Keen use EVA and PU midsoles and molded EVA footbeds for durable cushioning and support which doesn’t wear down quickly.
They’re extremely stable, too! Heel locks around the back of the boots and a torsion plate across the entire bottom of the boots keep you walking evenly, even across funky terrain. They’re safe for ladders, steps, and any other tricky maneuvers.
Overall, they’re very comfortable for long shifts, even on concrete the whole time! The Pittsburgh’s are very popular choices for airport workers who are on concrete and asphalt all day, as well as warehouse workers. Reviewers said they made their backs and joints feel much better on hard surfaces than other boots had.
They have a short to nonexistent break-in period. A lot of buyers said they were comfortable on day one, and even those who needed to break them in said they were perfect within a week.
There’s a lot of room in the toe box, too. As we mentioned with the Birkenstock’s that’s important for making it through the whole shift comfortably. It also keeps you from having to worry about running against the steel toes.
They last a long time, and have much better durability and quality control than more popular brands like Timberland. You can easily expect to get a year or two of daily wear out of these. A lot of buyers said they were coming back for their second or third pairs, because they hadn’t found anything else that felt as good or lasted as long!
They aren’t very good for welding, since the lacing and mesh on the uppers are exposed (and therefore flammable).
Overall, the Pittsburgh’s aren’t quite as industrial as the Milwaukee’s below, even though they’re more versatile. They’re better for airport workers than for smelters, for instance. They’re waterproof, but if you’re standing in deep water, some may eventually get through. If you get slag on these, there’s going to be a permanent mark.
Some buyers reported slight quality control issues, like leaks or popped-off lace hooks. However, they’re covered by a 1-year warranty, and Keen have a good reputation for customer service. In any case, their quality control and build standards are much better than other brands.
If you don’t like anatomical footbeds, you won’t like Keen’s. We think it’s important to have a decent amount of arch support in your work boots, but if you’re used to flat insoles, these will be a big change.
They’re expensive. Expect to pay at least $150 for these!
3. Keen Milwaukee’s
These Keen Milwaukee work boots are our most comfortable and durable choice for men on concrete floors. They’re rock-solid, all-leather, and up to the most industrial jobs. They’re not as happy outside as the Pittsburgh, but if you work on concrete most of the time, you shouldn’t have anything to complain about! We don’t think you can do any better for a men’s work boot to handle hard surfaces.
Safety rating: Meets or exceeds ASTM F2412-11 and F2413-11 I/75 C/75 EH standards
The uppers are made entirely from leather. As we mentioned, the Pittsburgh’s have mesh panels around the tongue and cuff, for ventilation. These are 100% leather from the cuffs down. They might not be quite as breathable, but they’re pretty much impervious to sparks, water, and other work materials.
They’re even better at keeping water out. That’s mostly because there’s more solid leather protection your feet instead of mesh, which will eventually start to leak. The only non-leather bits are some scuff-proof nylon pieces sewn onto the leather at the heel and around the toe. They’re not a weak point at all–just another layer of protection! As a result, more reviewers were impressed with the Milwaukee’s waterproofing than with the Pittsburgh’s.
Even though they’re solid leather, they have some smartly-placed gores in the upper which make it easy to flex through the boots. So, reviewers said they’re actually easy and comfortable to bend in, which is often not the case with boots this rugged!
The soles are more specifically suited to hard, concrete floors that the soles on the Pittsburgh’s. The Milwaukee’s aren’t as good on mixed terrain outside, but in return, you get an even more slip-resistant grip. These things are rock solid on concrete, even painted concrete with oil slicks.
They’re also much denser than the soles on the Pittsburgh’s. They’re impervious to nails and sharps, and they’re ideal for kicking barrels, doors, and other workplace equipment around.
Since they’re so rugged and sure-footed, the Milwaukee’s are a boot of choice for people working long shifts in chemical plants and other hazardous and harsh environments.
They have a lot of the same features as the Pittsburgh’s:
- steel safety toes
- wraparound outsoles for toe coverage
- anatomical insoles
- EVA and PU cushioned midsoles
- torsion stability plates and heel bracing
- oil and slip-resistant soles
- wide toe boxes
They have a super comfortable heel cuff that’s padded with two tiers of cushioning. It’s one of those touches which seems cosmetic, but adds up to make a big difference over the course of a long shift.
They’re actually less expensive than the Pittsburgh’s! These tend to cost about $50 less, depending on sales.
Just like the Pittsburgh’s, the Milwaukee’s can easily last 1-3 years, depending on your workplace conditions. They have an equally loyal following, too, with many buyers saying they’d bough several pairs at once for fear that Keen might someday change the design!
They’re pretty heavy. That’s due to the all-leather construction and the denser rubber soles. Most buyers were happy to make the tradeoff of a heavier boot in return for longevity and comfort, but it’s something to keep in mind.
They’re not as cool as the Pittsburgh’s. Again, that’s due to the fact that they’re all leather.
Since they’re made from more leather and are thicker overall, they take some more time to break in.
Some buyers weren’t as impressed as others by how long their boots lasted. They reported occasional issues with waterproofing, seams, and hardware–all standard fault points for work boots. Again, Keen work boots are covered for 1 year against defects and factory flaws, so you should have no trouble getting any issues addressed. The vast majority of buyers didn’t report any durability issues.
The laces are the biggest issue, though, and they’re not covered by the warranty. A fair number of buyers were annoyed by how quickly theirs gave out. You’ll probably want to get some kevlar laces for when the factory ones go.
Some people didn’t find the insoles comfortable. As with the Pittsburgh’s, they’re anatomical, and different from many standard work boots. A few workers did say that on concrete floors, they wore down more quickly, too. Replacements are pretty reasonable, though, and you can bundle a few in with your boots at the checkout.
4. Timberland PRO PitBoss
It would be impossible to get through any round-up of the best work boots without mentioning the PitBoss’s. These Timberland’s are the single best-selling model of work boot on the market, and they have an extremely loyal following across industries. We think they’re an affordable alternative to the Keen’s if you’re looking for something more “traditional.”
Safety rating: Meets I/75 and C/75 impact and compression ASTM F2412-11 and F2413-11 safety standards, meets ASTM F2412-11, ASTM F2413-11 and ASTM F2892-11 electrical hazard standards
They’re simple. The Timberland’s are all-leather boots with rubber soles, Goodyear welts and triple stitching to keep everything together. There aren’t any fancy mesh features or joints. These are for people who like a straightforward boot that doesn’t mess around!
Even though they’re less sophisticated than the Keen’s, they still have all the key features you need:
They’re steel-toed for safety, like the Keen’s we’ve recommended.
They have nylon torsion plates in the soles, a lot like the Keen’s. They have very solid ankle support, too, and overall, reviewers said they were pleasantly surprised by how stable these felt for the weight.
They do really well on oil and water spills, too. The Keen’s have excellent traction, but the Milwaukee’s are the only Keen’s we’ve found that can’t be beat by oil and water slicks. The Timberland’s provide the same great traction for a lot less money–even if the soles aren’t as durable long-term. They’re ideally-suited to concrete floors!
Antimicrobial linings inside the upper and along the footbed keep things cool and odor-free. They also help prevent things like athlete’s foot, which is common among industrial workers.
PU foam midsoles and footbeds give you lots of cushioning. These are plusher boots than the Keen’s, so if you like more cushion than anatomical support, these are good choices! They’re also very easy to supplement with other insoles and cushions, since they’re not as contoured as the Keen’s. Overall, they’re right at home on hard concrete.
They’re light. The Timberland’s are much lighter than the Milwaukee’s, and reviewers noticed the difference!
They’re cheaper than the Keen’s, by a good $50-$75!
While we think the Keen’s are generally better boots, it’s hard to argue with the loyal following these boots have. They’re extremely popular, especially in the toughest industries. They’re practically standard issue in trash plants, industrial chemical facilities, and steel mills.
They have a mixed track record for durability. That’s one reason we don’t rank them as highly as the Keen’s. The Timberland’s tend to fail more often, even if most buyers’ boots hold up. The biggest problem is that the soles come apart, sometimes after just a few months on the job.
They also have spotty quality control, which means that more buyers get flawed or malformed boots out of the box.
Overall, we don’t think the Timberland’s are a bad boot by any stretch, but they’re not as consistent or reliable as the Keen’s. We think they’re a good budget option, but we wouldn’t pay full price for them if you can avoid it.
They don’t have as much anatomical support as the Keen’s. These have fairly level footbeds, which give you lots of cushion but not as much arch support or metatarsal relief. The cushioning is great for concrete, but we also suggest adding an arch support insert or swapping the footbeds for something that will help your joints and posture.
They’re not waterproof. While these are water resistant, don’t rely on them to stay dry in puddles or under a hose!
They have pretty poor traction outside. We’re recommending them for concrete, which you usually stand on indoors, but if your job involves a lot of outdoor time, go for the Keen’s.
The leather is relatively soft compared to the Milwaukee’s. The Timblerland’s scuff much more easily, so they tend to look beat up faster. They also need to be conditioned more often.
5. KEEN Utility Women’s Detroit Mid Steel Toe Work Boot
These Keen’s are hands-down our favorite work boots for women, and they’re ideally-suited to working on concrete! They’re cushioned, supportive, and highly durable. If you’re sick of making do with unisex or men’s boots that don’t properly support a female foot, these are the absolute antithesis!
They’re roughly equivalent to the men’s Pittsburgh’s we looked at above:
- They have a similar mid-height design, and a mixed leather and mesh upper.
- They’re heavily lugged on the outsole, and they breathe very easily through the tongue area.
- They’re fully waterproof up to the cuff, thanks to a breathable but impervious mesh lining.
They have asymmetrical steel safety toes inside. Just like with the men’s Keen’s, we love how the Detroit’s steel toes give you protection without pinching or rubbing. The toe boxes are wide, and the asymmetrical design keeps your toes away from the steel. You’ll have plenty of room for your feet to expand through the shift!
As with the men’s Keen’s, these women’s boots have the company’s signature wraparound outsole around the toe. It gives you lots of coverage and cushion for kicking, and protects the seams very well against abrasions.
They also mimic Keen’s hiking boots, in that they have a narrow, snug heel and a wider, more open toe box.
They have anatomical footbeds which are specifically designed for women. The biggest problem with women having to use men’s or unisex boots is that they’re just not shaped for female feet! These are. They have lots of arch support, and contours that help your feet stay happy and healthy all through the shift.
There’s a lot of padding, too, which comes in handy on concrete. The soles are thick rubber, which absorbs a lot of impact. There’s also a thick EVA midsole to take even more of the blow. All in all, many women said these were the most comfortable work boots they’d ever used!
The EVA footbeds are removable, like the other Keen’s. That makes it easy to swap them out when they wear down. You could also simply replace them out of the box, so you can use the boots with your own orthotics or your favorite insoles.
The cuffs are lowered at the back, so you can get them on and off easily. That doesn’t sacrifice the heel stability, though, which is reinforced with harder leather panels and straps.
They have great traction indoors and outdoors! They’re excellent on concrete, and you don’t have to sacrifice outdoor performance either!
They’ll last at least a year, if not two! Many women said they could get two good years of wear out of these, as long as they replaced the insoles. That’s great value for money!
Some buyers thought the insoles wore down rather quickly on concrete. You’ll probably want to throw a few replacements in when you buy, so you’re stocked up! You could also go for something more durable, like a Birkenstock insert. We usually suggest the Keen insoles, though, since they’re sized exactly to the boots!
They’re more durable than other brands, but they’re not perfect. Some people ended up with boots whose treads wore down quickly on rougher outdoor terrain. If you’re working on concrete, that won’t be an issue. Besides, they’re covered by a 1-year warranty!
They’re expensive. As with our other Keen recommendations, you’ll probably pay at least $150 for these!
6. Muck Boots Original Adult Steel Toe Chore Boots
These steel-toed Muck Boots are our favorite unisex work boots, for breweries, dairy barns, truck garages, and anywhere else you need to work on wet concrete. They have great traction, ample cushioning, and a safety-rated toe cap to keep you protected against falling and crushing hazards. We don’t think there’s a single better choice for very wet, messy workplaces.
Safety rating: Meets ASTM-F2413-11 M I/75 C/75 EH
These are a hybrid rubber boot that combines a thick rubber lower section with a shaft made from a fabric membrane. The membrane keeps water out, without trapping heat in. They’re one of the best boots we’ve ever used in wet scenarios, thanks to the shaft design.
They’re up to snuff with safety regulations: these are rated for their steel toes, slip resistant soles, and electrical hazard protection.
They give you lots of protection against water and other liquids, too. The Muck Boots go up all the way to your knee, so they’re better than our other choices for using hoses, standing in puddles, or other splashy situations.
They’re completely waterproof, not just water resistant! These things are impervious to liquids and muck, unless you manage to tear through the rubber upper or the shaft membrane. You can use them with a hose, or standing in a full drainage channel, and have no worries about getting wet! You can even rinse them off with a hose when you’re done working.
They’re heavy-duty! They have a super sturdy heel, steel toe caps, and a thick, heavy sole that gives you strong footing on any concrete surfaces–as well as outdoors. There’s also a steel shank and achilles support built into the sole, to give you incredible stability and torsion control. The rubber is reinforced in both the toe and heel areas to prevent against wear and tear.
They have excellent grip, thanks to the vulcanized rubber soles. You can get sure footing on wet concrete, oil slicks and basically any other surface. They’re also impervious to sharp hazards, since they’re so thick!
The shaft material is stretchy, so they’re easy to move around in. It’s also quite breathable, and you can either insulate with thick socks, or wear them with shorts to stay cool in the summer.
There’s a lot of cushioning in the footbed. That’s thanks to the thick rubber soles, as well as foam padding in the midsole, insole, and sock liner. You can also add your own insoles or inserts, since there’s a bit of room to spare.
There’s a removable sock liner as well. We like it because you can take it out to dry at the end of the day, so your boots stay fresh.
The toe box is nice and wide. That keeps your toes away from the steel caps, and allows them to expand and wiggle through your shift.
They’re covered by a 1-year warranty against defects (including faulty waterproofing).
You wouldn’t want to use them for welding. The rubber uppers and the synthetic shaft material are definitely not safe against sparks.
They’re a bit much for casual workplaces which don’t require lots of waterproofing. If you can get away with a lower boot, you’ll probably want one. These are better for places that demand a higher boot, like a dairy barn, brewery, or something along those lines.
They don’t have a perfect track record for durability. Some buyers found that their boots sprang leaks in less than a year. That’s something that’s covered by the warranty, though, and the vast majority of buyers didn’t have any issues.
Best Work Boots For Concrete Floors: Comparison Table
|Birkenstock Men's Hancock Boots|
|KEEN Utility Men's Pittsburgh Steel Toe Work Boot|
|KEEN Utility Men's Milwaukee Wide Work Boot|
|Timberland PRO Men's Pitboss 6"|
|KEEN Utility Women's Detroit Mid Steel Toe Work Boot|
|The Original MuckBoots|
Now that we’ve had a close look at all our recommendations, let’s figure out which is the right pair for you!
The Birkenstock Hancock’s are our most comfortable choice overall, and we recommend them anywhere you don’t need industrial protection. They’re good for warehouses and other more furnished, clean workplaces where you don’t have to worry about waterproofing or steel toes. They’re extremely supportive and comfortable, and have excellent durability. If you need safety features, though, look elsewhere!
The Keen Pittsburgh’s are our most versatile recommendation for men. They’re the best of our men’s recommendations on outdoor terrain, so they’re good for anyone who splits time between concrete floors and uneven ground. They’re also the coolest of our men’s boots, thanks to the mesh panels. On the downside, they’re not quite as impervious to water, sparks, and other workplace elements as the Milwaukee’s. They also don’t have quite as good a grip, even though both boots are certified as slip-resistant.
The Keen Milwaukee’s are a better choice for someone who spends all his time inside on concrete. They’re perfectly capable of walking around outside, but they don’t have as much lug for gripping into snow and mud as the Pittsburgh’s. They really shine indoors, where they have fantastic traction and lots of padding for concrete. They’re good for welding, maintenance, and just about anything else you could want to do with them! We think they’re the best industrial-grade boots here!
The Timberland PitBoss’s are a good beater option for guys who don’t want to spend much money on their new work boots. They’ll keep you reasonably comfortable on concrete, as long as you either prefer flat insoles or add your own arch supports. They’re also more durable than other budget options and have lots of padding. Just don’t expect them to last as long as the Keen’s, or to do well outside.
The Keen Detroit’s are a no-brainer for women working on concrete. They’re padded, supportive, and durable. We’d recommend them for just about everything, aside from welding or standing in deep water. They’re anatomically-designed just for women, and they can last you comfortably for years. Ladies, get them!
The Muck Boot’s are the best of the bunch when it comes to dealing with water, mud, and any other messy, wet situations. If you work in a dairy barn, or washing big rigs in a garage, grab a pair of these! They’re not a great choice for welding or warehouse work, though.
When it comes to finding your perfect work boots for concrete, keep a few specific things in mind:
Concrete is an extremely hard surface. It’s actually exponentially harder than asphalt! So, it’s easy to see why you need more padding in your boots if you stand on concrete. Without lots of cushion, you’ll be allowing a lot of the impact to translate to your joints, back, and spine. Do yourself a favor and get boots with ample cushioning!
The other thing to think about with cushioning is that concrete wears out insoles faster than any other surface. Unlike workers who are primarily outside, you’ll probably find that the insides of your boots wear out before the outsides!
So, look for insoles made from EVA foam, which is the most durable synthetic material or durable PU foam. Cork is even better, but you’ll only find it in Birkenstock’s.
Most people find that they have to replace insoles a few times over the life of their boots, if they’re walking primarily on concrete. So, make sure yours will be easy to replace!
You can also add to the cushioning in your boots with an aftermarket insole! We’ve got a whole guide to those, which you can find links for on our main work boots page!
Aside from the insoles, you’ll be relying on your outsoles and midsoles for impact protection. Expect thick, rubber outsoles and EVA midsoles for the best results!
Slip-Resistance And Traction
Concrete floors are often slippery, especially if they’re painted or sealed. So, we recommend buying boots with natural rubber soles, for better slip resistance.
You can look for slip resistance certifications as well, to help you identify boots that are tested to keep a sure footing.
Boots with relatively flat soles tend to be the best on concrete. On the other hand, if you need to walk a distance to work, or navigate rough worksites now and then, you’ll need something with more traction and tread. Try to find the best balance between slip-resistance and outdoor traction for your job!
To get a pair of work boots which tick all those boxes for concrete, you’re going to have to spend a fair amount of money. Plan to spend between $100 and $200 on your new boots, if you want them to be comfortable for the long haul!
And, of course, you’ll want to look for all the standard things you look for in a work boot! Check for the features and safety protections you need, and see our expanded buying guide on our main work boots page for more helpful hints!
If you’ve seen a pair in this guide that seems ideal for your job, click on one of the links in its review! That’s all you have to do to see more details, size options, and current prices on Amazon!
Or, if you’re not completely decided, check out our main work boot guide! We have a lot of other recommendations that we haven’t included here.