Leather vs Rubber Work Boots-Which one is Better?

We all want to be prepared for the worst, but it can be hard to know what will work best in any given situation. For example, if you are out camping and your hiking boots get wet, do you switch to rubber boots or keep wearing leather?

It’s not always easy to know which is better without doing some research first. That’s why we’re here to help! Here at Boot Barn®, we have a variety of shoes that will suit your needs-whatever they may be.

Work boots are a necessity for many jobs. Which type of work boot one chooses can depend on what they need from their footwear. If you need the best protection, rubber may be the way to go. However, if you want some more flexibility and comfort in your shoes, leather is the better option for you!

In this article we will discuss which type of work boot has more pros and cons so that you can make an informed decision about which one would be best for your needs.
Work boots are a necessary evil when it comes to any job where there’s dirt or water involved! They keep our feet safe from sharp objects on floors or wet surfaces outside while also protecting us from slips and falls during inclement weather conditions.

What are the differences between leather and rubber boots?

There are a number of differences between rubber and leather boots. First, there is the material itself: what it’s made from. Rubber boots are often waterproof while leather boots may not be. Leather boots can also be less likely to smell than rubber ones after long days in wet conditions. Finally, if you need to clean your boots off quickly, water will bead up on them better with leather than rubber.

First up is leather boots.  These are usually made from cowhide or pigskin and have an oiled finish.  They repel water extremely well, but they will absorb some moisture over time because the pores in the leather open up when it gets wet which can cause them to loose their waterproofing properties over time.   Next up are rubber boots. These are completely waterproof with no need for any maintenance whatsoever!

Rubber boots have a higher cost, but they’re also more durable

If you are looking for a boot to last you at least 100 wears, rubber boots will be best. The rubber doesn’t degrade over time like natural materials might. Rubber boots tend to also offer more warmth during the winter months because of their elasticity.

However, if you are mainly wearing them for dry conditions, then it wouldn’t make much of a difference at all in terms of wear and tear. So it really depends on what your needs are or if you want boots that can stretch depending on need to accommodate tires section fluctuation, so it’s all preference!

Boots that are rubber will likely last longer than boots that are made out of other materials. Rubber has a lot of advantages to it: it’s usually waterproof, insulates better than others and is more resistant to wearing and tearing. However, because the material is so strong, the cost could be higher.

High-end or designer brands may also charge more for their rubber boots because they use different processes when creating them such as cold casting which results in a higher quality finished product.

Waterproofing can also add to the life span of these boots if you’re wanting something that can get wet without compromising their construction or lofted insulation capacity.

Leather boots can be worn with any outfit because of their neutral color

Leather boots can be worn with any outfit because of their neutral color.

The advantage to leather boots is that they are the perfect footwear for every season. With high quality, leather gloves or mittens, these footwear options will keep your feet warm; whereas without them you’ll get wet and cold fingers by the end of winter days.

And in warmer months, they’re an easy way to say put-together but casually cool! It’ll never be hard for you to find a shoe that goes perfectly with your favorite jeans or LBD. The other potential benefit is cost – instead of shelling out $200+ for each year’s new trend (that may not happen again next season), this investment will last your whole life!

Leather boots are actually an investment piece that can be worn with any outfit because of their neutral color (depending on the color). Plus they’re on mega sale right now which means you’ll save a ton on these quality footwear pieces!

Rubber boots are better for rain or snow because of their waterproofing quality

The waterproof qualities of rubber boots make them a better selection if you want to walk in the snow or in heavy rain. Rubber boots protect your feet from moisture, keep them warm and can be worn with many different outfits.

Plus, rubber absorbs rather than reflects sound. This means that rather than dampening sounds around you, rubber adds a layer of soundproofing to eliminate any outside noise that may disturb your peace and quiet.

Rubber boots are better in rain because it is a high-absorbent type of material, but the water will eventually start freezing if isn’t dried.

In general, rubber boots can be helpful when walking through snow because they provide an excellent grip on slippery pathways and sidewalks. However, if your feet or legs stay wet for too long it can lead to skin diseases such as Athlete’s Foot or yeast infections from candida that could be very uncomfortable and even painful.

This is the primary disadvantage of using rubber boots over more breathable types like wool socks (which would absorb some moisture).
It’s important to make sure you dry your rubber boots after wearing them; this prevents any rotting bacteria from getting inside the boot and wreck.

A disadvantage to wearing leather is that it’s not as warm in winter months

The problem is that leather just doesn’t provide enough “loft” to really be warm. This makes sense when you think about the origins of vellum – which is even thinner and an even poorer insulator.

Not surprisingly, this poor insulation ability also explains why many people are allergic to leather since they are allergic to hair follicles – the only time thick hair can provide enough protection against cold temperatures!

But there’s no need to worry! There are plenty of materials that offer better insulation qualities for winter wear, including woolen coats with down collars, wool gloves with knitted wool lining.

It’s true that leather isn’t as warm in winter months because leather can sometimes come from animals who are much thinner skinned at that time of year. However, one good point to make in favor of wearing it is the fact that when you wear silk during cold weather, your body heat will always be fighting with the outside temperature in an intense struggle for control over how you feel.

The thing about silk is this – When fat or muscle cells are exposed to freezing temperatures they retract and their surface area decreases. By doing this, these cells are acting like tiny canteens – Retracting, cooling off before they have a chance to freeze externally.

The best time to buy work boots is during the summer when there’s a sale going on!

It depends on your needs for work boots.

You should consider the type of work you do, where you need to travel, your lifestyle (compartmentalized or international), how much weight you will be carrying, and the type of surface that is beneath your feet before deciding if summer is an ideal time to buy work boots. So it would be best to consider these factors before purchasing any footwear.

The best time to buy work boots is before it gets cold.

The problem is, there are not many boots available in summer. But you can save big bucks by buying winter boots now and use them all season long. You could also upgrade to lightweight hiking or running shoes that are much more comfortable for working out on your feet all day, but heavier-duty steel toe shoes might be necessary for snow jobs or jobs with heavy lifting requirements.

The benefits of each type of boot

Leather boots. They look nicer and last longer than rubber boots. While they cost more, the price will be easier to stomach once you realize how infrequently you’ll have to buy another pair of shoes thanks to the durability of leather goods.

Another benefit is that latex rubber products such as gloves can’t usually be used when handling chemicals due to their porous nature and inability to form a protective barrier, whereas leather products may not 100% protect your hands but it will help prevent exposure before lengths–especially when in continuous contact with water. This means for jobs like dishwashers (where 80% sulfuric acid and 20% hydrochloric acid are mixed together), maintenance under sinks or in hazardous facilities.

How to take care of your new boots

It’s best to keep the boots in the box they came in, and use a shoe tree if possible, because it’ll help maintain their shape. The box should ideally be lined with soft felt to protect the leather.

To reverse any damage that may have been done to your new boots while wearing them, take a damp washcloth and wipe down around the area where you wear out soles first—the heel. Then work your way back up, getting all of your scuffs off with ease. If you are looking for other ways try answering “best way start?” or “.”
As using shoe trees can also help maintain shape by supporting them when they’re not being worn!

You need to let the shoes go through a series of walks with at least 256 steps per stride, so the rigid structural elements in the leather will soften and conform to your feet’s contours. For best results, lace up and walk on an incline, so than when your body weight depresses down onto the footbeds it has some downward force.

Be sure that water doesn’t get into seams near base of boots or when its raining if they’re not waterproof. This is because water can cause salt residue from skin to form there which can lead to an unpleasant osmosis reaction when too much moisture gets trapped inside.

Pros and Cons of both types of boots

Leathher and rubber boots both have their pros and cons. The former is typically more stylish and yet more expensive, while the latter is resistant to water, offers a tighter fit, but can make your feet sweat.

Leather work boots are usually more expensive due to their design and natural material; they also tend not to be as breathable as rubber. But one of its major advantages over the cheaper option is that it offers heat protection when you’re in areas with machines or fireplaces – meaning you’ll keep your feet at a comfortable temperature without having to take off your shoes every half hour or so!

This material also offers some in-built insulation in cold weather environments although there’s no way around getting lost in deep.

There are individual instances in which one type of boot may be preferable to another, such as leather for those who will be working with chemicals or rubber if the job requires climbing trees (but this depends on what you’re comparing it to).

I would suggest doing your research and finding out specifically what kind of work you’ll be doing before choosing one over the other, but both types have their advantages and disadvantages – some things you might want to consider:

Longevity: Rubber boots tend not to last as long as leather boots.
Water proofing: Rubber boots don’t usually come with a waterproof coating like leather does.

What should I wear with my new boots?

Boots are one of the few articles of clothing that get an awful lot of wear for their price, so it’s important to invest in a pair you love.
I love Maximo because they feature the classic cowboy look, but no laces or buckles to deal with; easy on and off! Plus I’m not knocking any money loose all day long.

As always, quality is key if you want them to last years like mine do. That means rawhide leathers instead of man-made materials (to avoid splitting), high-quality soles (if it says “outer sole” then there should be some mention made about whether it’s synthetic or natural) since your toes take more abuse than anywhere else.


Leather work boots are expensive and may not last as long, but they can provide more comfort than rubber. Rubber work boots might be cheaper in the short term because of their durability, but leather will often give you a better fit and feel for your feet.

So what’s best? We recommend that you try on both types to see which one feels most comfortable against your skin or ask around about which type is popular among people who have similar foot shapes to yours.

You should also consider how much money you want to spend upfront when choosing between these two options since it costs less up front for rubber boots while the cost difference over time with leather could end up being negligible depending on wear-and-tear rates.


Does rubber sole last longer than leather?

Leather lasts longer than rubber.

The Association of the Footwear Industries (AFI) found in their study that leather last almost twice as long in traction tests when compared to rubber soles.

The AFI has conducted various studies that show that due to its chemical properties, looser grain and looser fiber characteristics make it more resistant to sunlight and ozone break-down, thereby allowing it perform better when exposed to ultraviolet rays for extended periods of time.

On the other hand, hardness is an important factor in determining the life span of a shoe midsole material or material application. Hardness is related not only to durability but also the ability of a surface being scuff resistant over extended periods of use due notably to friction.

Which sole is better for shoes?

Tread is an important factor in the composition of a shoe. It provides traction on any type of surface and holds out debris that may enter into the area of ground contact. Rounded treads offer superior traction than do sharp or squared, worn down treads.

While usually not visible to the naked eye, different types of soles for shoes come with certain characteristics which work best for specific needs based on foot type and arch size.

For example, some soles are shock-absorbing to lessen impact during walking or running while others are firmer with heavier lug patterns to carry you easier over rougher terrain like rocky paths; these same features can vary by sole construction as well.

Is rubberized leather waterproof?

No. Rubberized leather does not stop water from soaking into the material. It has an effect similar to that of a raincoat, in that it will help water runoff off the surface of the material, but it will still get soaked through in time if you stay outside in a rainy environment for too long.

How many miles do work boots last?

All this is going to depend on a number of things.

If you have a pair of work boots that are already worn in then they will last much longer than a new pair. If you bought them from the local sporting goods store, then the way they’re manufactured may be different and thus have worse quality soul material which can cause them to wear out more quickly.

If you spilled something toxic all over the outside of your work shoes, it could do a lot more damage depending on what it was and the concentration present at the time. It’s hard to say for sure without knowing all those factors.

Are waterproof work boots worth it?

I think for most people, waterproof work boots are worth it. I spend a lot of time outdoors in rainy climates and waterproof work boots have given me a lot of peace-of-mind.

They make me feel safe from injury not only by preventing the pain that would result from stepping into a puddle but by also protecting my feet against instability.

I’ve found chlorine chlorine-containing detergent to be very effective at retaining the waterproofing properties on my work boots after they’ve been washed.

The process is quite easy; just soak some old t-shirts in the solution you chose, then wrap them around your shoes or use rubber bands to hold them closed before putting them into vinegar for 24 hours.

Are leather boots good?

Yes, especially the traditional designs.
In general, leather boots are better to wear during winter because they’re warmer and more durable. Typical leather boots also come in a wider variety of styles that look nice enough to wear for many occasions.

For example, work or business meetings don’t have to be all dress up. A pair of black trousers with a black leather boot is a simple yet stylish outfit choice without being too formal for an interview or workday meeting.

When purchasing a pair of brown leather boots it’s imperative to get the right width so that your toes aren’t squished at the front and you have plenty of room in the back area just above where your heel sits on top of the foot bed.

Does rubber sole mean slip resistant?


The words “rubber” and “slip resistant” are not synonymous. The rubber soles on shoes such as combat boots, sneakers, and dress oxfords give them slip resistance they wouldn’t have had with hard leather soles – but don’t make the mistake of believing that any rubber-soled shoe is inherently stain-resistant or waterproof (though some rubber soles might be treated to be water resistant).

Can you wear leather soles in the rain?

No, leather soles are made to be worn indoors. Leather is a good material for some shoe styles but one needs to understand the sorts of conditions it can tolerate best. For example, some people think that if they buy slippery-sole shoes, they’ll stop sliding on ice.

Instead of buying these types of shoes, invest in purchasing sliders which are made for better traction on different surfaces. It costs more at first but there will be less slips and injuries down the road.

How can I make my boots last longer?

  1. Make sure the boots are clean before you wear them
  2. Wear socks with your boots to keep your feet dry and warm
  3. Apply a shoe protector spray or cream to the exterior of the boot
  4. Use a polish on leather boots for extra protection, especially if they will be worn in wet conditions
  5. Use an appropriate moisturizer on suede boots to avoid cracking and drying out – use more often during winter months
  6. Avoid wearing high heels with short skirts when wearing suede shoes because this can cause friction that damages the material over time

Are rubber sole shoes good?

The main thing is to find a shoe that fits your needs in terms of comfort, style and price. Rubber soles have been known to be the least supportive type of sole because its flexibility makes it easy for you to twist your ankle when walking on wet surfaces or uneven ground.
You’ll want a shoe with a removable fabric liner so you can throw it in the washing machine if needed. In addition, look for shoes with plenty of arch support since these are going to help keep your feet from being sore after hours on them at work all day long.
This answer gives both sides of the argument about whether rubber soles are good or not which is helpful when people might use this info to decide what they should do.

Which shoe material is best?

Materials which are breathable, durable, odor-resistant, and lightweight are best in outdoor shoes.

This is a complicated question. The answer depends on what type of activity you will be doing. For example when playing tennis outdoors, synthetic leather shoes may breathe better than canvas shoes due to the impermeability of cotton canvas to sweat absorption.

There are also many factors that contribute to whether or not materials are “best”. Some feet need more padding for comfort while others require less because any new shoe can cause blisters over time (even with socks).

Synthetic materials generally do not experience the same type of decomposition as non-synthetic materials like leather; they don’t get moldy nor dry out quickly.

What is rubber leather?

It is leather that has been created by covering animal skin with an artificial layer of synthetic rubber or latex.

Common for people to wear latex clothes, but not many people wear rubber clothes today. Basically, it’s made up of fabric (usually some kind of plastic) on the outside and sponge on the inside, which makes it resistant to water like a rubber ducky. The surface feels hard like rag yet is very stiff and durable like air-cushioned soles; it’s also elastic yet doesn’t tear easily. One problem though is that clothing made of these fabrics cost more than regular clothes because they’re usually imported from countries where labor wages are low like China or India.

You May Also Like: