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How To Break In Work Boots

How To Break in Work Boots (2022 Easy And Proven Ways)

If you’re like most people, you probably hate having to break in a new pair of shoes. But what if those shoes are work boots? Breaking in a new pair of work boots can be torture, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

In this blog post, we’re going to share with you some tips on how to break in work boots fast. So read on and learn how to make the process a little less painful.

How To Break in Your Work Boots: Top 10 Ways

Here is the list of top 10 ways to break in work boots:

  1. Ensure you have the correct size
  2. Always Use comfortable thick socks
  3. Wear boots in the house
  4. Rock the boots back and forth
  5. Walk in the boots outside
  6. Use a leather conditioner
  7. Use a shoe tree with your work boots
  8. Wear your new work boots frequently or daily until they get fully broken in
  9. Use boot stretchers
  10. Hair dryer can be handy

1. Ensure you have the correct size

The size of your new work boots is as essential as their quality. Always ensure that you know the exact size of your boots, and if somehow you don’t know the exact size or are unable to measure the shoe size by yourself, you can seek help from the sales representative and ask them to measure your feet.

Apart from the correct size, you should check if there is sufficient space between the toe and the instep. Additional space in these areas is important as it is directly related to the comfort of your new shoes.

Ample space in these areas means that your toes will have enough space to wiggle, and your arch can move without any issue.

2. Always Use comfortable thick socks

When trying to break in leather work boots, you should wear thick and comfortable socks. Using thick socks is a vital step and ensures that you will remain super comfortable in your new work boots.

Wearing comfortable and thick socks can help you to break in your work boots fast, and socks will also help you to:

  • Soothe your feet and help to soften the work boots.
  • If you have leather work boots, they will help to stretch the leather a bit more according to the feet’s size.
comfortable and thick socks

However, in a few cases, your new work boots might feel a bit snug when you wear them with a thick sock. In this case, we recommend you to remove the insoles to get more room and comfort for your feet. This method works well with leather work boots as well as for safety work boots.

3. Wear boots in the house

The best way to break in your work boots is to wear them in your house for around 1 to 3 hours. This method is handy in many ways and prevents your new boots from picking up dirt and grime.

This method also comes in handy if you don’t want to keep the pair. In this way, you can easily return them or exchange them with any other pair.

While wearing your new work boots in the house, you need to be extremely careful. Similarly, you should be careful about how your feet feel inside the shoes.

Lastly, while doing so, you need to confirm and check whether any part of your foot looks and feels tingly.

4. Rock the boots back and forth

When it comes to breaking in work boots, perhaps the quickest way is to rock them around the toe area, the instep, and the ankles after every few hours.

It will also help stretch the work boots, and you will feel that the leather fibers around these areas will lose. At this stage, you will see creases on the shoes.

Rocking your new work boots back and forth will also make you understand whether the shoes fit you perfectly or not.

5. Walk in the boots outside

This method is simple. Wear your new work boots, go outside and walk in them for a mile. However, don’t walk in your new work boots for more than six miles.

This is the best way to break in your leather work boots, and it provides more opportunities to measure the fit and comfort of your new work boots.

This method also gives you a clear picture of how your feet are responding to the new work boots, especially if you wear them for a longer period.

Wear the work boots, and try to run, walk fast, or hop so that you can get a clear picture of how your shoes are performing and working.

6. Use a leather conditioner

This method is the most effective when you have leather work boots. It helps to ease the stiff areas in your work boots.

Furthermore, using a leather conditioner or a mink oil will ease and relax the leather on your new work boots; as a result, the leather fibers in your work boots will stretch, making them much more comfortable.

This also helps to ease the foot pain, and you won’t feel any tight areas in your new pair of a work boots.

7. Use a shoe tree with your work boots

When breaking in your work boots, put a shoe tree inside and thrust it deep into the boot’s toe box to get the maximum stretching. Putting a shoe tree will also help maintain the shape of your work boots. Then place them in any dry place and let them rest.

Another benefit of using a shoe tree is that it helps to keep the inner side of your safety boots dry and free of sweat.

shoe tree

8. Wear your new work boots frequently or daily until they get fully broken in

Another hack that you can try to stretch your new work boots is to wear them daily until they are stretched. You’ll know when your work boots are fully broken in the most obvious sign is that you will not feel any pain, foot fatigue, or discomfort while wearing them.

9. Use boot stretchers

A shoe stretcher is a handy device made up of wood. You can insert it into your boots to make them fit better. Leave the stretcher inside the shoes for one day, and you will see the results the next day.

10. Hair dryer can be handy

If none of these methods work for you, we recommend using a hairdryer to break-in your work boots. However, you need to be extra careful while doing it.

Apply direct heat only on the areas that you want to stretch. After that use boot oils and a blow dryer to prevent the leather from drying out.

Bonus Tips

Below are some useful tips while shopping or breaking in your new pair of work boots:

  • If your feet’s shape and size are not equal, always buy the new work boots that ideally fit your left foot.
  • If your budget does not limit you, we recommend getting a customized work boot: this way, no need to think about the boot’s fit and comfort.
  • When breaking into the work shoes, keep an extra pair of shoes and socks ready this will come in handy if your boot stings and the pain gets unbearable.
  • If you have high arches, you can ease the pressure by skipping the shoe eyelets that hit your arches. In this case, you can run the shoelaces to the next eyelet.
  • Adjust the shoelaces until you feel the desired comfortable and tightness according to the feet’s shape.

How To Break In Work Boots: (Frequently Ask Question)

How do I break in steel toe work boots fast?

Above are some of the best ways to break in your steel toe work shoes fast. Remember, all the hacks mentioned above are tested and tried by us, and all of these methods are simple to follow and highly practical.

How do I stop steel toe work boots from hurting?

Steel toe shoes are great for safety, but they can cause foot pain. Here are some simple and easy tricks to avoid the discomfort:

  • Trim the Toe area of the insoles of the shoes.
  • Always Wear Thick and comfortable woolen socks.
  • Insert tongue pads.
  • Try to use laced steel toes work boots.
  • Before buying, consider the steel toe’s shape and size.
  • Adequate arch support is vital, and it is related to comfort.
  • You can also wrap the Band-Aids on your Toes while wearing the shoes.
  • Use Vaseline on the toes.

How long do work boots take to break in?

New work boots usually take up to 70 to 100 hours to break in properly. Having said that no need to wear your shoes continuously for four consecutive days and you are allowed to take a break.

In our opinion, the best way to do so is to spread the time to about 2 to 3 hours per day and use the second pair of work boots in-between.


So now that you know how to break in work boots, it’s time to put this knowledge into practice. Follow any of the methods we outlined, and be sure to give your shoes plenty of time to conform to the shape of your feet.

Soon enough, you’ll have a comfortable pair of shoes that will help keep you safe on the job site. Do you have any tips for breaking in work boots? Let us know in the comments below.

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