I don’t generally do product reviews, but I took this one on as safety footwear has been pretty close to my heart for years. In my long career in supply chain operations I always viewed a change of footwear with both joy and trepidation. Getting a new pair of smart boots to wear, perhaps in a new style or with some new development in footwear technology, was a potentially positive experience. But, I also knew only too well that the first few weeks of sporting my shiny new boots would also come with a great deal of pain. Maybe it was the styles I liked, or maybe I was just unlucky for a couple of decades. But I can say that my experience of new safety footwear has generally been painful!
So I accepted a request to review a pair of Warrior work boots by Shoes For Crews (Europe) Ltd. They’re a pair of black safety boots that comes with the tagline “THE SHOE THAT GRIPS”. I’ve worn them, on and off, for a few weeks now so I can give you a real wearer’s point of view. And, for the record, this is an unpaid review. It’s the way I like it as it gives me the freedom to tell it how it really is.
The boots arrived on a next day delivery and came in a SFCE branded box, all nicely wrapped and well presented. A nice touch is the inclusion of a sole cleaner which is designed to get any unwanted grime out of the grooves in the sole. I’d never seen one before. The boots themselves are black leather lace-ups and include a removable padded insole. There’s a padded collar and tongue and a rubber front area on the toe.
I spent over 20 years in warehousing and I know well how painful and annoying a poorly made pair of safety boots or shoes can be. Yes, a well-placed Elastoplast can help your feet get used to the contact points, and those blisters and cuts will go in time. I put the boots on for the first time and wondered if I’d be disappointed. Well, you’ll be glad to know that the era of “breaking in” your safety footwear is over!
A wearer’s view
These boots are really comfortable. This is very important for me as I absolutely hate uncomfortable footwear. I like to wear boots with my customary second pair of socks and so I was pleased to find just a little bit of extra room in the length of the boots.
The leather is surprisingly supple and there are no rough points at all. I also noticed that the boots are much lighter in weight than others I’ve used. This is important if you need to wear safety footwear for long periods of time. They feel robust enough to handle just about any bumps and scrapes you are likely to encounter and I think that they will be hardwearing. I’ll report back on this aspect after six months’ wear. The grip soles are pretty good – you feel that they are non-slip on most surfaces. I’ve tried them on frosty ground and they were solid. Trying these out in the northwest of England means that the waterproofing gets tested just about every day too, and the boots are waterproof.
I would say that these safety work boots will be useful in a wide range of work applications. Loads of people in manufacturing and general applications would find them very wearable. Laced boots take a while to get on and off, so they wouldn’t suit those that would find themselves doing this. But, I think that the comfort value will be of real benefit to those that need to wear safety footwear constantly for a whole shift. They probably wouldn’t suit working in overly muddy circumstances, for example in some construction roles, however, for many work environments they will be just fine.
Ok, these are excellent work boots, but what about the negatives. Well, there are two that I found. The first is that the nature of tough boots means that they are more difficult to get into. With work boots in particular you don’t want to be faffing about when you are trying to get them on. This is why I think the manufacturer should have included a tab at the top of the collar that would make it easier to pull the heel of the boot up when putting it on. It’s an omission in loads of work boots, but it’s a real pity with this style as it is such a comfortable product.
The second downside to bear in mind is that the boots do slip on at least one surface I walked on. Granted, it was wet decking, but it did show that there are limits to the extent of grip that the boots supply. These downsides are important, but I think that they are also elements of most safety footwear and they wouldn’t stop me using the boots or renewing them in the future.
I think that these safety work boots are better than the ones I’ve worn in the past. They are much more comfortable than others I have worn and the quality is very good. Apart from a couple of annoying negatives, I have to say that I would recommend them to people who need to spend a whole shift in their safety footwear.
If you want to have a look at the details and purchasing options then visit the appropriate page on the Shoes For Crews (Europe) Ltd website. On this product page you’ll see the product specification and conformance information as well as pricing.