If you’re a man and the only two pairs of shoes you own are a worn out pair of Nikes and a pair of dress shoes used exclusively for black-tie events, you’re in trouble. Footwear is a fashion must so you should probably start the expansion process now, right now. What should put on the top of your shopping list? That’s easy—men’s boots. A solid pair of men’s boots is a staple of any man’s wardrobe, an absolute must-have. From men’s cowboy boots to Chelsea boots to chukka boots, a good pair of boots is an American classic, whether you are herding cows in rural Texas or are headed out to dinner in Manhattan. If you need a little bit of help shopping, be sure to check out our guide.
Chelsea Boot: This riding boot essentially defined the 1960s, made popular by the Beatles. Sometimes also known as jodhpur boots or paddock boots, Chelsea boots are tight-fitting and ankle-high. Instead of laces, they boast an elastic panel known as goring, which makes putting them on and taking them off easy. The boots actually got their start during the Victorian Era, when they were used for horse riding. Once John Lennon was spotted in a pair, their popularity exploded, becoming a crucial aspect of the mod fashion scene. Even in you’re not a 1960s rock and roll icon you can still sport this look without any problem. Today they are a great option for a dress shoe, often sported by edgy Wall Street executives. Leather Chelsea boots are an excellent, sophisticated choice.
Chukka Boot: The chukka boot can best be described as a distant relative of the polo boot. The name actually comes from the game of polo, “chukka” is a period of play. These boots are typically ankle length, with two or three eyelets for lacing. Traditionally made from calfskin or suede, these boots gained popularity during the 1940s and 1950s as a sleeker alternative to rugged cowboy boots.
Hiking Boots: Hiking boots are all about functionality, with a rigid structure designed to provide support. The first hiking boot was developed in the 1870s and today they are a staple for any man with an affinity for the outdoors. Even if you’re not planning on scaling a mountain any time soon you can still sport this look around town. Hiking boots always pair nicely with a sleek, dark wash jean. Whether you are looking for rugged hiking boots or a sleeker options there are an abundance of options to meet your needs.
Cowboy Boot: Men’s cowboy boots: they’re nothing short of an American icon. Interestingly, men’s cowboy boots were actually derived from the vaquero boot, a type of boot commonly worn by conquistadors in the 16th century, though they take their name from the American cowboys of the western frontier. They have been worn by a vast array of American heroes, from to Johnny Cash. Rugged, classic, and charming, no man’s closet is complete without a quality pair of cowboy boots. If you’re not planning on mounting a horse and herding cattle in the near future you can probably still pull of the cowboy boots looks. They work incredibly well with a dark wash jean and a classic, oxford shirt. There are even a number of exotic leather cowboy boots available.
Motorcycle Boots: Shorter than men’s cowboy boots, motorcycle boots rapidly gained popularity during World War II. Typically made from heavy, thick leather these boots have sleek look and often feature a low heel. They’re edgy Actor Marlon Brando was known for his great affinity for motorcycle boots. For something extra edgy and unique try ostrich leather motorcycle boots.