5 Best Breathable Work Boots for Sweaty Feet | Tested By Experts!

Last Updated on August 17, 2023 by Sarah Jaffe

Best Breathable Work Boots for Sweaty Feet

Are you tired of having to deal with sweaty, uncomfortable feet during those long work hours? Do you dread having to take off your boots at the end of the day, only to be hit with a wave of unpleasant odors? Well, don’t worry, because we’ve got just the solution for you – the best breathable work boots for sweaty feet.

So, what sets these boots apart from the rest? They are made with high-quality, breathable materials such as mesh or perforated leather. Plus, they often feature moisture-wicking technology that pulls sweat away from your skin, keeping your feet dry and cool. Some even have odor control systems to combat the stench that comes with sweaty feet.

List of the Best Breathable Work Boots for Sweaty Feet

1. KEEN Utility 1022098 Lansing – Best Breathable Work Boots

2. Reebok RB4142 Sublite – Best work boots for sweaty feet on a low Budget

3. Thorogood 804-6292 Crosstrex Series – Best breathable work boots with composite toe

4. Carhartt Men’s CMH4251 – Best steel-toe work boots for sweaty feet

5. WOLVERINE B0C6B2Q6HM Overpass – Best WaterProof Breathable Work Boots 

Best Breathable Work Boots for Sweaty Feet – Our Top 5 Picks!

Here are our top recommended products:

1. KEEN Utility Men’s Work Boot – Best Work Boots For Sweaty Feet

KEEN Utility Men's Work Boot

Key Specifications:

ColorRaven/Tawny Olive
MaterialLeather and Rubber
Special FeaturesWaterproof, Steel Toe, Slip Resistant, Electrical Hazard Protection

These KEEN breathable Work Boots have a premier Dry waterproof system. As someone who works in construction, I often find myself in wet and muddy conditions. I put this mechanism to the test, both at work and at home, and I can confidently say that they kept my feet dry throughout. Even when crossing puddles or working in light rain, the waterproofing held up exceptionally well.

They are also electrical hazard rated, which makes them an excellent choice for electricians. It provides an added layer of safety and peace of mind when working around electrical equipment. As someone who occasionally handles electrical tasks, I appreciate the extra protection they offer.

Living in a region with scorching hot summers, I was particularly drawn to the breathable panels on the vamp area and sides of the boots. These panels help to regulate foot temperature and promote airflow, keeping my feet feeling fresher during those sweaty summer days.

While it’s important to note that some sweating is inevitable in such weather, these boots did an excellent job of minimizing discomfort.

Moreover, they are equipped with padding around the calf and tongue, adding an extra layer of comfort. I found this padding to be incredibly beneficial during long hours on the job.

It provided cushioning and support, reducing fatigue and enhancing overall comfort throughout the day.

KEEN Utility 1022098 has an asymmetrical steel toe cap. Unlike traditional round or square toe caps, these caps conform to the natural shape of the foot, providing more room and overall comfort.

Having worn work boots with standard toe caps in the past, I immediately noticed the difference. The asymmetrical design alleviates any discomfort or cramping typically experienced with other footwear.

  • The mesh and leather upper allows air to circulate, preventing excessive sweating and odor buildup.
  • With its removable insole, you can customize it or replace it with a more supportive one.
  • Have a high-quality EVA midsole with excellent arch support.
  • Its non-marking rubber outsole gives excellent grip on various surfaces, including wet and oily surfaces.
  • Due to the Lack of ankle support, it is not suitable for individuals with weak ankles.

2. Reebok Sublite Construction BootBest work boots for sweaty feet

Reebok Sublite Construction Boot
ColorWheat Nubuck, Brown, Black
Material100% Nubuck Leather
Special FeaturesSteel-toe shoe, Slip-resistant, Oil- and abrasion-resistant outsoles, Electrical Hazard protection

Reebok RB4142 has a waterproof upper leather construction, which means you don’t have to worry about your feet getting soaked during rainy days or when working in damp environments. This not only keeps your feet dry but also adds an extra layer of durability to the shoes.

You will like that it employs Alloy toe that surpasses the ASTM F2413 standards. It delivers exceptional durability and impact resistance, which is crucial in tough work settings where heavy machinery or falling objects are present. Plus, it is composed of a lightweight metal alloy that outperforms conventional steel toes in terms of strength and durability. 

One of the best things about this unit is the presence of mesh air holes. These tiny openings promote better air circulation, ensuring that your feet stay cool and ventilated throughout the day. This feature is particularly beneficial for individuals with sweaty feet as it helps prevent excessive moisture buildup, reducing the chances of discomfort and odor.

Continuing with the theme of combating sweat, it incorporates a moisture-wicking nylon interior. This specialized lining pulls away moisture from your feet, actively working to keep them dry and fresh. Now you can put an end to that icky feeling of sweaty socks and move on to a more comfortable and hygienic work experience.

Reebok RB4142 boasts a memory tech massage footbed to provide some serious comfort. This innovative technology adapts to the contours of your feet, offering superior padding and support. It’s like giving your feet a little massage with every step, which is a welcome relief during those long, arduous workdays.

  • The extra wide toe box accommodates wider feet and helps prevent blisters.
  • Its rubber outsole has an anti-slip tread that ensures traction on slippery surfaces.
  • Outfitted with full-foot flex grooves that allow the foot to move more naturally and flexibly.
  • Have a Sublite foam midsole to absorb shock, which can reduce the risk of injury to the feet and legs.
  • Runs small, need to get a bigger size for comfort and toe space.

3. Thorogood Men’s Boots – Best Breathable Work Boots With Composite Toe

Thorogood Men's Boots
MaterialLeather and Nylon
SizeVarious (8-14)
Special FeaturesWaterproof, Insulated, Slip Resistant, Removable Single-density Polyurethane Footbed

The Thorogood 804-6292 combines a durable leather upper with breathable lace. The leather upper provides excellent protection and cushioning, while the strategically placed breathable laces allow air to circulate around my feet, preventing excessive sweating. This design made a huge difference for me keeping my feet cold and dry throughout the day.

All of the reinforced stitching in the high-wear areas of the shoe gives me confidence in its long-term durability. I’ve put them in demanding conditions, and the suture has held up remarkably well, with no signs of wear or tear. This attention to detail in boot construction ensures they can cope with my harsh office environment.

Another fantastic feature of this model is the removable polyurethane sole. It delivers shock absorption and additional arch support. As someone with high arches, finding adequate arch support in work boots has been a challenge. However, these shoes have provided exceptional support, reducing fatigue and discomfort during long hours on my feet.

Furthermore, it has an innovative Crosstrex 360 outsole that can prove to be of immense value to workers across multiple industries. This specialized outsole has been designed to deliver an exceptional grip and traction on both wet and dry surfaces, meeting the stringent ASTM F2913-19 Slip Test Standards. 

Thorogood 804-6292 is equipped with a composite safety toe, which provides protection against potential impacts or falling objects. This aspect not only enhances safety but also provides peace of mind for those working in hazardous conditions. Moreover, the composite material is non-metallic, which means it won’t set off metal detectors. 

  • Made with a Composite shank to provide increased stability and support to the foot.
  • Have a lace-up closure system to ensure an adjustable and secure fit.
  • The mid-top silhouette provides additional ankle support, reducing the risk of injuries.
  • Rear pull tabs make it convenient to put on and take off.
  • They take a bit longer to break in completely.

4. Carhartt CMH4251 Steel-toe Work Boots

Carhartt CMH4251 Steel-toe Work Boots
MaterialLeather and Nylon
SizeVarious (8-15)
Special FeaturesWaterproof, Lightweight, Composite Safety Toe, Advanced Footbed, FastDry Technology

 Carhartt CMH4251 utilizes moisture-wicking FastDry technology. The interior lining is designed to efficiently absorb and dissipate moisture, ensuring that your feet stay dry and comfortable throughout the day. No more dealing with soggy socks or that unpleasant feeling of wetness. With these boots, you can bid farewell to the discomfort caused by excessive perspiration.

Besides that, it has strategically placed nylon mesh panels. These panels permit air to circulate freely, creating a refreshing flow that keeps your feet cool and dry. Whether you’re working in hot and humid conditions or engaging in physically demanding tasks, they will help regulate your foot temperature and prevent excessive sweating.

In addition to that, it is outfitted with a slip-resistant rubber outsole. This outsole is particularly beneficial in environments where slippery surfaces are common, such as wet floors or oily surfaces. It provides reliable traction, minimizing the risk of slips and falls.

By incorporating a PU strobel pad and dual foam Insite Technology footbed, this product gives unparalleled softness and resilience. The PU strobel pad lays the foundation for a stable base, while the footbed provides targeted support in key pressure points, such as the heel and ball of the foot. These design elements work together to alleviate fatigue and discomfort, even during long periods of wear.

Carhartt CMH4251 has taken safety into consideration. They have a steel toe cap that meets ASTM safety standards, protecting your feet from impact and compression hazards. Whether you’re working on a construction site or in an industrial setting, you can have peace of mind knowing that your toes are well-protected.

  • With a weight of just 1.38 pounds, they won’t add unnecessary weight to your feet.
  • The wider 11 inches opening facilitates easy entry and exit of the foot, even while wearing thicker socks or pants. 
  • It is made from CMEVA midsole to help minimize the pressure of your feet hitting the ground.
  • Meets ASTM 2413-11 EH safety standards to protect you from electric shocks up to 18,000 volts.
  • They are not suitable for extreme winter conditions.

5. WOLVERINE B0C6B2Q6HM Overpass Work Boots 

WOLVERINE B0C6B2Q6HM Overpass Work Boots 
ColorSummer Brown
Material100% Leather
Special FeaturesSlip-, oil- and abrasion-resistant outsoles, Electrical Hazard protection

WOLVERINE B0C6B2Q6HM is manufactured using Contour Welt technology. It adds some feel, making them perfect for jobs that require a lot of bending and crawling. As an electrician, I often sit in these positions, and the flexibility of these shoes has greatly enhanced my comfort and ease of movement at work

Sweaty feet can often lead to unpleasant foot odor and bacterial growth. However, it has been speculated that this brand has added an antibacterial agent. This treatment prevents the growth of odor-causing bacteria and keeps my feet fresh and odor-free. So I don’t have to worry about embarrassing foot odor even after a long day at work, thanks to the addition of this consideration.

The removable Ortholite insole is a special mention. The shoes come with a unique insole that provides incredible support for my arches and heels. Not only does the cushioning provided by this insole keep my feet comfortable throughout the day, but it also helps keep my feet tired. I appreciate the attention to detail that Wolverine has put into ensuring the utmost comfort for wearers like myself.

In terms of durability, these boots have surpassed my expectations. I have been wearing them for several months now, and they have withstood the test of time and rigorous use. The materials used in their construction, particularly the leather and synthetic blend, have proven to be highly resistant to wear and tear. This durability adds to the value and longevity of the shoes.

WOLVERINE B0C6B2Q6HM is crafted from Composite Toe that has got ASTM F2413-11 M I/75 C/75 EH certification. This certification guarantees that the shoes have undergone testing and approval to deliver protection against impact and compression of up to 75 pounds. Furthermore, the EH rating of the footwear indicates that they give an additional layer of protection against electric shocks.

  • Its waterproof design keeps your feet dry in wet conditions.
  • The rubber outsole gives good grip and stability on various surfaces.
  • Have 5 inches high shaft to provide the necessary support and protection for the ankles and feet.
  • Comes with a Spacious toe box to prevent moisture buildup and the associated discomfort.
  • The spacious fit may be too wide for individuals with narrow feet.

Things to Consider When Buying the Best Breathable Work Boots for Sweaty Feet

For those with sweaty feet, it is crucial to find work boots that are highly breathable to ensure maximum comfort during long work hours.

To help you choose the best breathable work boots for sweaty feet, here are some key factors to keep in mind when making your purchase.

Things to Consider When Buying the Best Breathable Work Boots for Sweaty Feet


Breathability is a crucial factor to consider when buying work boots, especially if you have sweaty feet. Sweaty feet can cause discomfort, odor, and even infections if left unattended. 

Breathable materials are recommended by the American Podiatric Medical Association for shoes to be worn by people with sweaty feet. These shoes are designed to allow air to flow through the shoe, preventing the accumulation of moisture within the shoe. This helps to keep your feet dry, comfortable, and healthy all day long.

Here’s a comprehensive table showcasing different work boot materials and their respective degrees of breathability, sweat-wicking properties, and suitability for various applications:

MaterialBreathabilityMoisture and Sweat-wicking PropertiesSuitable for
LeatherLow to ModerateModerateConstruction, Outdoor Work
NylonHighHighHiking, Outdoor Activities
MeshHighHighLight Industrial, Warm Climates
CanvasModerate to HighModerateLight to Moderate Industrial
Gore-TexHighHighWet or Rainy Conditions
SyntheticModerate to HighHighGeneral purpose, All Conditions
RubberLowLowWet or Hazardous Environments
SuedeLow to ModerateModerateLight to Moderate Industrial
MicrofiberModerate to HighHighAll-day Comfort, Long Hours
PVCLow to ModerateLow to ModerateChemical or Wet Environments
NeopreneModerate to HighHighCold or Wet Conditions
Breathable MembranesHighHighVersatile, All-weather

Safety Standards

While the primary objective may be to find boots that allow proper ventilation and moisture management, neglecting safety standards can have serious consequences for foot protection in hazardous work environments. 

It’s essential to choose boots that comply with ASTM F2913-17 slip resistance standards to ensure that you have the necessary grip and traction to avoid slips and falls. Moreover, search for boots that meet ASTM F2413-18 electrical hazard standards, which guarantee that the boots can endure 18,000 volts of electricity at 60 hertz for one minute without any current passing through them.

Antimicrobial Treatment

Antimicrobial treatment is a crucial factor that is frequently disregarded, particularly among individuals with sweaty feet who work for extended hours in hot and humid conditions. Wearing work boots for prolonged periods can cause sweaty feet, which can result in the development of bacteria and fungi. 

These microorganisms can produce disagreeable smells and infections. Antimicrobial treatment can aid in preventing the growth of such microorganisms, keeping the shoes and feet hygienic and odor-free.

Weight of the boot

The weight of the footwear can greatly affect the overall comfort and support of the foot, especially when it comes to long periods of use. The average weight of a pair of breathable work boots is approximately between 1.3 pounds and 4 lbs. 

This range of weight is important to consider because a boot that is too heavy can cause unnecessary strain on the feet and legs, leading to discomfort and even injury over time. On the other hand, a shoe that is too lightweight may not provide enough support and protection for the foot, leaving it vulnerable to injury.

Final Thoughts

Based on our extensive research and analysis, we have determined that the KEEN Utility 1022098 Lansing Work Boots is the top-performing product. These shoes tick all the boxes when it comes to breathability, comfort, and durability. Notably, they come equipped with a premier Dry waterproof system, asymmetrical steel toe cap, and a removable insole that can be customized or replaced with a more supportive option.

Remember to steer clear of boots made of non-breathable materials such as rubber or plastic as well as those with thick, heavy padding that can trap moisture. It’s also a good idea to avoid footwear with a tight fit, as this can restrict airflow and cause your feet to sweat even more.


Why am I sweating so much in my work boots?

Work boots can cause your feet to sweat excessively due to a number of reasons. The most common factor is the material of the boots. Synthetic materials often do not allow for sufficient ventilation, trapping heat and moisture inside. This increases perspiration. Prolonged standing, high ambient temperatures and heavy physical activities can also contribute to sweaty feet

Are Waterproof Work Boots Breathable?

Many people presume that waterproof work boots are not breathable. This is not always true. The breathability of waterproof boots depends on the technology used in their design. Some boots utilize membranes that are both waterproof and breathable. One prominent example is Gore-Tex®, which allows moisture to escape without letting water in.

How breathable are leather boots?

Leather, particularly full-grain leather, is inherently breathable due to its porous nature, allowing air to circulate and moisture to escape. However, the breathability of leather boots can vary based on factors like the leather’s quality, the boot’s design, and any waterproof treatments applied to the leather.

How do you clean sweaty work boots?

Cleaning sweaty work boots requires some diligence. First, remove the insoles and laces, then wash them separately. Using a mild soap, scrub the inside of the boots, paying particular attention to areas that are typically sweatier, like the toe box. Rinse thoroughly and air dry. To combat odor, consider using a boot deodorizer or baking soda.