When you realize that it is time to start looking for the best pair of equestrian boots – whether you're trying to catch up on the latest style trend or you're an actual rider – it can be difficult to weed through all the brands that are available.
It's even more difficult if you actually want a pair that will hold up to the rigors of horseback riding.
You also might want that to be fashionable and not just durable if you're riding in front of crowds of people who like to watch sports with horses.
Riding boots aren't a cheap investment, especially if you purchase a pair that is made to last. They'll last you for many years, depending on how you take care of them anyway.
Picking the Right Equestrian Boots
Picking out the right pair of riding boots is just as complex as the number of boots that are out there. First, you want to know about the different types of boots. Then you need to consider what you're using them for, as well as fit. You want both comfort and safety, and maybe even style.
Different Types of Equestrian Boots
Riding boots vary by style, height, and price, among other things. Here are the basic riding boot types out there.
- 1Paddock Boots
Paddock boots are also known as short boots. You can wear them as short boots or add half chaps to the ensemble to recreate the looks and feel of tall boots. Not a good choice if you're a show rider, but they are comfortable for all-day wear.
- 2Field boots
Field boots and dress boots are similar. Filed boots have laces on the tops of the boots. They are also more flexible to make them work well for those that ride for jumping, and they're ideal for shorter stirrups as well.
- 3Dress boots
Dress boots are a rigid boot, so they are better with riders that don't need a lot of flexibility. These are common for hunters, dressage, and sometimes even English disciplines.
- 4Tall boots
There are different styles and varieties of tall boots, but in general, they are made for comfort when riding. They sit just below the knee, as a general rule.
Picking the Proper Size and Fit
Once you've decided which style of boots will work for you, it's time to get the right fit. There are many things that can go into choosing the right size of equestrian boots. It's about more than just which size shoe you wear.
You want your boots to stay up (if you've invested in tall boots). They should be tight enough to stay in place, but you don't want them to cut off your circulation. When you go shopping for them be sure to wear the pants you intend to wear with them since the thickness of your pants can affect fit. Make sure they zip properly as well.
Do you want tall boots or short boots? If you're buying tall boots, you also need to consider that they might not sit as tall once they're broken in. You might want to start with a field boot that reaches the middle of your kneecap if you're worried about shrinkage. For dressage boots, they should be just under the kneecap.
Consider your comfort, from tightness around the leg to how they feel on the pad of your foot. You want your foot to fit comfortably. If the boot is fitting too tight, your foot can go numb. If they're too loose, you can get blisters.
Best Equestrian Riding Boot Brands
Now that you know the basics of equestrian boots and how to pick the best ones to fit your feet, and style, here are 11 of the best brands. If you want a pair of riding boots that you can trust, any of the brands below will answer your needs.
Ariat is a well-known name when it comes to equestrian apparel. If you're looking for a quality boot with durability that can stand up to anything you give it, Ariat is a name you can trust. They are made for long-wear, so you won't have to worry about tired or sore feet.
Ariat makes boots for both men and women. They come in varying designs, even animal print. They come in tall and short, and you can get a pair of field boots for $180 to $290 on Amazon.
- 100% waterproof construction for optimum protection
- Shock-absorbing, anti-microbial insole to fights odors
- Contoured foam interior provides custom and secure fit
Noble Outfitters is another name that is becoming more popular in the world of equestrian gear. They focus more on field boots and rubber boots, but those are things riders need too. You still have to train and care for your horse, and you need to do it in the right boots.
Noble Out offers wide-calf boots to add comfort, and they're made to keep your feet warm even when you're mucking out stalls in the dead of winter. For around $100, you can get a pair of rubber riding boots from Noble Outfitters.
- The Middleburg Ladies' Zip Paddock Boot is a handsome, easy-care and budget-friendly choice for the beginning rider
- It offers state-of-the-art features including a leather-look upper and a Cambrelle lining that wicks moisture away from...
- Finished with a double-stitched toe cap and durable YKK zipper, this synthetic paddock boot cleans up with soap and...
Middleburg boots are an affordable option – and even offer children sizes – in riding boots. They have some styles that are extremely fashionable as well. From field boots to paddocks, they have everything you need in order to look like a pro-rider (even if you're not).
If you're on the look-out for a stylish pair of equestrian boots that also have form and function, you can get a beautiful pair of zipper paddock riding boots for around $60.
Parlanti is popular with show riders. They make sleek looking boots that are known to have cutting-edge technology. You can get them in standard options or have them custom-made, which makes them a step-up from some of the other brand available.
They have short and tall boot options, and they have something for every step of the riding process. They're not cheap though. You can get a flashy pair of black riding boots for just over $1000.
From custom order boot options to fashion boots, Blondo offers top quality merchandise made with sturdy materials. While you can't find these boots on Amazon, their website will allow you to see all of their luxury looking boot options.
Hunt boots, field boots, polo boots, and more – Frye is another brand that specializes in custom-made riding boots. They also offer options between Western riding boots and English style boots, which gives you the chance to cater to your riding style (or your fashion style).
You can't get these boots on Amazon. You have to supply the company with your measurements so they can make boots just for you. No worries on whether or not they fit right when they're made just for you.
Dublinis an Irish company with a U.S. distribution center. The boots from Dublin aren't really your average professional riding boots, but they have the style and durability for those that ride for pleasure or just want that look.
Probably the most stylish boots on this list, Franco Sarto is the top-of-the-line option when it comes to riding boots and equestrian boots. You'll fall in love the instant you look at their different styles and options.
You can expect boots that are both fancy and functional. The designs on some of the boots will make you feel as classy as they look.
9. Mountain HorseB002HURE5U
- Heat-insulating Thermolite lining will keep feet and legs warm
- Waterproof construction keeps feet dry up to the start of the zipper.
- Sturdy and durable YKK zipper for easy entry and exit.
Mountain Horse makes nice looking, affordable boots for riders of all ages. Just because their stuff is affordable doesn't mean it isn't quality made.
They have a wide variety of boots, including English riders. For around $100 to $130, you can snag a beautiful black pair of riding boots by Mountain Horse on Amazon.
- Fallow picture No 2 for product sizing chart
- Hand-crafted with premier soft genuine leather
- Fully leather lined moisture wicking sock liner
For beautifully crafted boots that will keep you on the horse, and keep you comfortable off the horse, you can go buy a pair of the best-selling branded riding boots on Amazon. This pair of Hispar riding boots for men even has a moisture wicking inner layer to keep your feet dry and stink-free. They're in the mid-$200 range, but worth the cost for professional riders.
TuffRider is a more affordable best seller on Amazon. For around $50 you can get a quality-made pair of zipper paddocks. They're a synthetic option for people who don't want real leather (for whatever your reason).
This list is really just a small glimpse at the brands out there that make equestrian boots and gear. Some of these companies focus on equestrian gear only, some on shoes only, but all of them allow you to have quality shoes for working with your horses.
Caring for Your Equestrian Boots
No matter which boots you get, you need to take care of them if you want them to keep doing their job. Instead of constantly replacing your boots, do the following things to help keep them looking and working the way they should.
It can be smart to wipe your boots down after every wearing. Don't even put them away until you do this. You can do it with a leather cleaner. You need to also make sure that you wipe them down with a conditioner every once in a while – it keeps them from cracking and breaking.
During the winter months, waterproofing your boots can not only help keep your feet dry, but they can also ensure that your boots don’t start cracking from water damage.
Boots don't stay shiny on their own. If you want your equestrian boots to be shiny, you need to polish them on a regular basis (basically any time they start to look dull).
On wet days, you may want to use overshoes to cover your boots. Protecting them from the “wet” elements can help make them last longer.
When your boots get wet, it can start to damage them if you don't dry them quickly. Invest in a boot tree to hang them on, so they have a better chance of drying. Keep them in a room that is warmer, but not directly by the heat source.
Make sure you find a safe place to store your boots when you're not using them. Keep them out of direct sunlight when in storage (the heat can break down materials). Keep them on a boot rack to help them stay dry and shaped properly. Never put them away wet or muddy.
Wearing Your Equestrian Boots
If you're a rider, you need equestrian boots, even if you're not a professional. Riding boots assist in keeping you on your horse and feeling comfortable. However, equestrian boots also look great, so they make an excellent fashion statement.