Whether you're going for a specific look or just want some rugged, protective footwear, it's hard to go past the classic combat boots. They come in a range of styles, designed for specific uses or all round versatility.

Army surplus

You can't find a truer combat boot than a military surplus boot. Designed for protracted walking over rough terrain, these tend to be a great choice when it comes to longevity and protection against the elements. Typically lace-up, and made with leather uppers with stiff soles.

Desert boots

Also heavily used by military organisations throughout the years, desert boots – also known as chukka boots – are typically shorter in the ankle than other combat boots. They're usually made from suede, with open lacings and crepe rubber soles. Colour wise, they're typically a light sandy brown, although you can also find them in darker browns and blacks. These boots are better suited to hot, dry conditions, as they allow your feet to cool down and breathe.

Work boots

Add in some toe reinforcement, and combat boots tend to be ideal for use as work boots in a lot of industries. They're sturdy, provide a lot of ankle support, and give a lot of protection to the feet as well. Because they're designed for a lot of walking, you can usually be on your feet most of the day in them without suffering from overly sore feet.


Combat boots are traditionally made from leather, but these days there are a lot of different materials to choose from. Nylon, Gore-Tex, canvas, and microfibre can all be used. Synthetic materials don't tend to be very breathable, but can hold up better to wear and tear than natural materials. Gore-Tex is a trademarked synthetic fabric that combines the best of both worlds; it allows air circulation but is also waterproof, making it great for footwear like combat boots where you might encounter a range of weather conditions.