Choosing The Best Insoles for Work Boots
If you have a foot condition that makes you uncomfortable unless you’re wearing specialty footwear, wearing work boots can be a painful experience. While they can’t always solve the problem, the best insoles for work boots will bring you considerable relief.
People with flat feet or collapsed arches can have trouble finding the right fit, and there are hundreds of insoles to consider. Well, we’re going to handle the hard part for you so you can find the perfect insole for your boots.
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Considerations before buying insoles
Do you have bad feet?
It is a condition that affects millions of Americans, and while symptoms can vary wildly from one person to the next, bad feet are still bad feet. Work boots can seriously aggravate any foot condition, so proceed with caution when looking for insoles.
A good insole can freshen up your feet on the job, but choosing the wrong one can do more harm than good.
These are by far the most common type of insole and are great for folks that aren’t exactly sure what they need in their work boot.
Comfort insoles will make your feet more comfortable. This can be due to pockets of gel or additional cushioning in key areas. Some will have padding from the heel to the toe while others concentrate on specific areas.
This is the type of insole you’ll want if you have bad arches or other issues that need special care. Support insoles provide you with support where you need it most which can quick save your day on the job site.
Again, you will want to know what your particular issue is as buying an insole for flat feet won’t do you much good if your problems mainly rest in the heel.
Do you have serious foot issues and frequently visit the podiatrist?
If so, you custom orthotics are going to be the best way to go. These are tailored for each foot and made to order, so you’ll need to visit a podiatrist of specialist to pick up a set of custom insoles.
They aren’t cheap compared to other styles, but well worth the investment when comfort or support insoles won’t cut it.
Simply put, this is how much material is in your insole and something that can throw off the fit of your boot if you pick one with too much cushion.
This style of insole still has plenty of support but is better suited for low-profile boots and shoes. If you have low arches or need a thinner insole for your boot, check out this type of insole first.
They typically don’t have as much cushioning although some do have additional padding in key areas.
If you rock tennis shoes, hiking boots or need an insole with a bit thicker, this is the next step up.
Medium-volume insoles are ideal for consumers and can fit a wide variety of arch profiles. They come in several different styles and utilize a variety of materials as well.
High-arches require an insole that offers up a little something extra, and that’s what you’ll get from high-volume insoles.
These thick insoles will definitely keep your feet fresh although you will need to consider the overall fit of your boot beforehand. Additional thickness adds height, which can make boots tighter so you could need to loosen those laces or change socks.
While insoles aren’t exactly expensive, if you don’t pay attention to the quality, you are just throwing money down the drain.
By nature, insoles are going to deal with a lot of stress, and some are going to hold up better than others. That cool gel is only going to last so long, and eventually, foam will give out and begin to break down. Think about how long the insoles are rated to last and the materials they are made from.
Memory foam may be comfortable, but it might not last nearly as long as silicone-based insoles or hybrids that utilize several materials.
Insoles are usually sold in three standards sizes with Small, Medium and Large. While that varies with some manufacturers, it isn’t tough to figure out the size you need.
That said, when in doubt or on the bubble with sizing, always buy larger, not smaller. You can cut insoles to fit, and even gel-based pads have room to trim in the front or back.
The other area to consider with size actually has to do with length.
A full-sized insole will run the length of your boot from heel to toe, but there are half inserts as well that just sit in the back of your shoe for heel or arch support. You won’t need to trim these, and they are an interesting alternative if you don’t need full support.
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Top Choice: Superfeet GREEN Full-Length Insole
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Superfeet’s GREEN insole is our top choice as the best insoles for work boots. This is a full-length insole that looks pretty basic at first glance but don’t let its looks fool you.
This insole is made from high-density Trocellen foam and has a 3/4” polypropylene stabilizer cup in the heel. That means it’s narrow in the front and thicker in the back although its shock absorbing properties extend to the midsole as well.
You can pick up this insole in a variety of sizes, and the company has a handy sizing chart to help you find the right fit. They also have additional colors for different needs as Orange is their premium lineup while their Blue insoles are more for people with specialized conditions like plantar fasciitis.
Mid-tier Choice: Powerstep Pinnacle Orthotic Insoles
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Powerstep is a responsible for some of the top insoles on the market today including the Pinnacle series. They are a solid alternative to Superfeet’s insoles and are built to take a beating when you’re on the job.
A deep heel cradle provides cushioning and support whether you’re walking across concrete slabs all day or running equipment back to the truck through the rain. As a full-length insole, you’ll get support from heel to toe which is sure to add a little more spring to your step throughout the day.
The company have deemed these a “medical-grade” insole, and while they won’t replace a custom orthotic, they are a huge improvement over standard comfort insoles. They Powerstep Pinnacle Insoles come in a wide variety of sizes for both men and women.
Budget Choice: Dr. Scholl’s Comfort and Energy Work Insoles
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While they may not have taken our top spot, you can’t have a list of the best insoles for work boots without including an option from Dr. Scholl’s.
Dr. Scholl’s Comfort and Energy Work Insoles are built for men who need extra support and energized feet for long days on the job. These insoles use the company’s famous “massaging gel” which can help keep your foot cool and comfortable.
The arch support in these insoles is solid although these are built more for comfort than specialized support. These insoles come one pair per pack and fit boots from a size 8 to a size 14. In other words, you trim these to fit your boot so remember to be careful not to take too much off.
Best Insoles for Flat Feet: Samurai Orthotic Insoles
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Whether you have fallen arches or were born with flat feet, Samurai Insoles has something for you. This insole can provide instant relief for both those conditions and are biomechanically engineered for comfort.
The key to these insoles is an inner core. Instead of a solid piece of foam, Samurai Insoles have a core which adds some spring and plenty of stability. They are lightweight despite that core and are not “one size fits all” like most brands. Instead, you can actually choose a pair to match your shoe size, so no trimming is required.
These may feel a little stiff at first but will conform to your feet over time. While they are pricey compared to similar options, these are designed for specific needs and are well worth it if you have flat feet or plantar fasciitis.
Unless you have a serious foot problem that requires a custom orthotic, you will be able to find an insole for your work boots. You may also be surprised by how much of a difference one will make, especially if you have the type of job that requires you to be on your feet for hours on end.
Just keep out trimming tips in mind along with any foot conditions and your feet will thank you during your next 8-hour shift.