Steely nerves meet steel toes with these top women’s cowboy boots
The term “steel-toed boots” may bring up some cringe-worthy mental images of construction guys in clunky footwear. Heavy feet, unflattering designs, and things you’d never wear in public. Well, think again. (Take these gorgeous Twisted X kickers for example!)
A good steel toe work boot is essential for life around the barn or ranch. Your footwear has to be tough, comfortable, and — most of all — protect your toes. Not just from horse hooves either.
We’re all capable of a toe-stubbing moment and general clumsiness. But limping is lame, if you’ll pardon our pun.
So we scoured the footwear world for the best cowboy boots a hard-working woman can wear. With an eye towards comfort, looks, and injury prevention, 7 options rose to the top of our list.
7 Best Women’s Steel Toe Cowboy Boots
|Irish Setter Marshall||Best for Adding Fun to Your Chores|| |
|Durango Rebel||Best All-Around|| |
|Justin Gypsy Steel||Best Boot with Rounded Toe Shape|| |
|Twisted X Bomb Lite||Best Show-Off Boots|| |
|Justin Ladies Deanne||Best Lace-Up|| |
|Dan Post Parkston Steel Toe||Best Classic Cowboy Boot|| |
|Durango Lady Rebel Patriotic Flag||Best for Keeping the Pep in Your Workday Step|| |
Without further adieu, let’s dig into our favorite boots!
Irish Setter Marshall Pull-On
For a tough boot, the Irish Setter Marshall sure does bring on the smiles. The buffed metallic finish of the teal-colored uppers is definitely not your typical chore-busting look – which is why we love it.
This square-toed western boot is built for comfort, with a dash of unicorn sass.
Irish Setter, made by Red Wing is known for serious footwear, and the Marshall boot has all the features of a good work boot. It pulls on easily, and the 9” height falls at mid-calf.
Toes stay protected, and there’s an additional metatarsal guard that covers the top of the foot.
The slip-proof rubber soles also meet ATSM safety standards for electrical safety and heat resistance to 475º F. The brown full-grain leather looks nice anywhere – and the whole boot is waterproof!
- Fun metallic colored upper
- A true work boot
- Available in Medium and Wide widths
- Not a traditional look on the shaft
- Some prefer a taller boot
- Daily wear
- Anytime you need to throw on boots and run out the door
Durango Women’s Rebel RD3315
For someone who needs to be in the saddle as much as they’re out, the Durango Rebel is a handsome solution. With a versatile chocolate brown leather, fancy stitching, and a traditional dipped topline, these boots go with everything.
They’re also designed for comfort on long days with a mesh lining that cradles your leg.
Down on the ground, you’re walking on a cushioned footbed with a steel shank and toe. The 1 ¼” rocker heel is a hybrid of a sneaker and a riding boot, making these comfortable as you cover distances.
In the saddle, the Rebel is cool and light, with a top that jeans skim over without tugging.
This pair can do the work of two pairs of boots, and still look nice at the grocery store!
- Classic good looks and fancy stitching
- Great walking heels
- Works well for riding
- Might be a tighter fit for those with high arches
- Insoles may require adjustment for best fit
- Anyone in and out of the saddle all day
- Days with lots of walking
Comfort your top priority? Check out our 12 most comfortable cowboy boots for walking.
Justin Ladies Gypsy Steel
We like the general idea of a Steel Gypsy, but that’s not the only reason to admire these round toe leather boots! For some, square toes just aren’t their thing — maybe they don’t like the looks, they’re awkward to walk in, or their feet don’t fit the shape well.
This traditional cowboy boot style is a super choice for someone looking for a more feminine-looking pair.
Justin has mastered the idea of a sensible work boot that still looks cute. Yes, it’s possible! The Gypsy has oodles of fancy contrast stitching on a chocolate-chip leather shaft.
A steel toe and instep protects the foot, while their J-Flex Flexible Comfort System® keeps your step springy all day long.
Waterproof, with rubber outsoles, these are a boot that can handle puddles, barn accidents, spills, and compliments with aplomb.
- Comfortable round toe
- Practical and safe rubber outsole
- Riding heel
- Less grip than some other boots reviewed
- Smooth finish can show some scuffs
- Occasions that require safety AND nice boots
- Days with unpredictable weather
- Anyone who dislikes square-toed boots
Twisted X Bomb Lite
These are the boots that cross categories and come out on top! The Twisted X Bomb Lite has all the features of a steel-toed work boot, but has added stylish floral embroidery to the 11” shaft.
The result is a style that can literally take you from the worksite to the barn and then out dancing with a skirt.
As for comfort and safety, the Bomb Lite performs very well. It features the Twisted X patented XSD insole for fit and stability, as well as a moisture-wicking, machine-washable footbed. The neutral brown Bomber leather is impervious to scuffs and cleans up easily.
The rubber outer sole is slip and oil resistant, and the long base heel provides stability without looking clunky.
If you need three pairs of boots, but only have the budget for one, this could be the winner.
- Cute and tough
- Washable insoles
- Tend to run a half size small
- Definitely a girly look, if that’s not your thing
- Wearing day through night
- Any situation where steel-toed boots are advised
- Showing off
Justin Ladies Deanne
Not all cowboy boots look the same! Lace-up styles are favorites for their ankle support and more customizable fit. These qualities make them the only choice for some hard-working ladies.
Justin has been making this style for decades, and their Deanne boots are the latest update in their safety-toed style.
It’s not just the decorative details we love — these are solid work boots.
They’re waterproof. They’re comfortable. They’re stylish. Yes, one look at the scrolled stitching accents and details, and you may be ready to take them home.
But structure is also important. With a Nano Comp composition toe and a full orthotic insole, your feet are protected and supported no matter what activity.
Round toes and rubber soles also add comfort.
If you have to wear ANSI approved boot styles for your job, why not head out there in something that looks great?
- Walking heel and rubber sole
- Great looks and contrasting scroll stitching details
- Lace-up style
- Shoelaces may cause problems in your work environment
- Sole not as grippy as some other styles
- Anyone who needs a little extra help fitting boots
- Jobsite wear
- Those who prefer a round toe on their boots
Men feeling left out? Head over to our best cowboy boots for men and women.
Dan Post Parkston Steel Toe
Dan Post shoots and wins with this no-frills, classic cowboy boot. Always appropriate, this brown leather model has a steel toe, waterproof boot construction, and an Oil and Heat Resistant Rubber Outsole.
Wear them anytime safety is important, but don’t be afraid to wear them in the saddle. They have a comfortable walking heel that also fits into the stirrup nicely.
Overall, these boots can take a lot of abuse and still look presentable. Tough work environments won’t phase them, and they’re a comfortable fit for almost anyone. The leather feels broken in from the first wearing, and they come with a removable airflow orthotic insole.
The taller shaft will look great with jeans tucked in, as well.
Anytime you want to just throw on a sweater, jeans, and boots, they’re ready to go.
- Classic and sharp
- Look good with jeans tucked in or left out
- Great neutral brown
- Tends to run a ½ size small
- Design may be too basic for some tastes
- Everyday wear for work
- Classic wardrobes
Durango Lady Rebel Patriotic Boot
We get it. Sometimes you don’t want to wear boring boots! Durango’s rebellious answer to everyday safety needs is this coolly patriotic style. Each shaft has the American flag boldly stitched in with white embroidered stars.
Once you’ve established that you’re not a Boring Barn Babe, you can get to work, knowing that you’re totally protected. The Lady Rebel has the full complement of safety features built in.
Steel toes and shanks protect not only your little piggies, but your instep. Plus, the sole is designed for slip resistance.
Inside, the Durango Suspension System works together to give wearers a cushioned, well-ventilated fit and arch support.
The 1 ¼” heel is perfect for walking or riding. They’re a great boot for factory floors, the barn, or anywhere you’ll be on your feet for long hours. Why not have a little side of fun with your workwear?
- Unique styling
- Supportive design
- Made for walking
- Can be tight on larger calves
- Shaft treatment is not leather
- Daily wear
- Big personalities
- Anyone who loves red, white, and blue
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the most comfortable steel toe boots for women?
The most comfortable steel toe boot is the one that fits your unique feet! Every woman will have a different requirement. Someone with narrow feet and high arches may not be comfortable in the same boot that their flat-footed friend loves.
Keep in mind your need for arch support, more room for toes, and even the heel height you’re used to. Some boots, like a lace-up, can provide a more customized fit. If you’re used to wearing special orthotics, they can probably be inserted with no problem in the boots you purchase.
If we had to pick only one, the Twisted X Bomb Lite is the best place to start!
No matter what, be sure to try them on with the socks and/or supports you always wear, to ensure that the fit is correct.
What are the best women’s work boots?
Steel toes are a working woman’s best friend. It’s not just about a horse standing on your foot. Accidents happen. If you’re working in an environment that exposes you to anything heavy that could drop or roll onto your foot, make the move to a style that offers (at least) toe protection.
Other important features to look for are sturdy construction, strong stitching, and support for your feet. Just like a sneaker, quality work boots can keep your feet comfortable and make walking easier.
What are the best steel toe shoes overall?
When you’re deciding on the right footwear, look for shoes that cover all your requirements. Some work situations require soles that can withstand heat or oils, in addition to the protection a steel toe provides.
If you’ll be working on slippery surfaces or in wet areas, make sure that your shoes are waterproof and have good sole grip.
Just as important? Even with everything checked off on your list, your shoes are no good to you if you can’t wear them for extended periods. The best ones have lots of comfort features built in. Hop back to the top of our list for 7 great options.
What’s the difference between a composite toe and steel toe?
Composite toes are also approved for ASTM standards, but are made of a physically lighter material, such as carbon fiber, fiberglass, or Kevlar.
Overall, they’re lighter, but are bulkier than a steel toe model. At this point, we tend to see more style options with steel toe boots, due to this limitation.
Are steel toe boots dangerous?
You may have heard that steel toe boots can break and cut someone if enough pressure is applied — this is a myth.
Actually, they are the best choice for protecting your feet in cases of compression, impact, piercing, or cutting.
What are the best cowboy boots for walking?
We wrote an entire article about the most comfortable cowboy boots for walking.
Can women wear men’s work boots?
Absolutely! I struggle to find a good pair of work boots designed for women in most stores, since I prefer to buy boots in person.
I’ve found the men’s options work just as well. A good rule of thumb is to go down about one and a half sizes. Once you figure out which size works best for you, it’s all about which brand or style you like best.
I’d recommend wearing thicker socks, as men’s boots are typically wider, and investing in a good pair of insoles with excellent arch support (as men’s boots tend to have lower arches).
What is the difference between men’s and women’s work boots?
In a quality boot, the biggest difference should come down to colors, designs, and styles. There are a few differences in build, too, since men often have wider feet and lower arches. Women’s boots will be narrower (with some women needing a wide option) and have higher arches.
Regardless, women can have no problem going with a men’s option, provided you get a different insole with the appropriate level of arch support. Another problem can be finding a shoe that’s the right size. Men’s and women’s shoes are sized differently, so it can take a bit to find the right size.
Even the most skeptical have warmed up to steel-toed cowboy boots in recent years. As manufacturers keep improving their designs and the way they use metal, safety boots have become less clunky, more streamlined, and suitable for everyday wear.
The right pair can let you get around the barn, oil field, construction site, or factory floor looking and feeling stylish and comfortable.
All it takes is one escape from a foot-targeting heavy object to make a believer out of a new steel-toed boot wearer!
P.S. Enjoy this article? Trot on over to:
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