Explore Further in the Best Vegan Hiking Boots

Explore Further in the Best Vegan Hiking Boots

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Going vegan is an overall lifestyle change. You’re not just deciding to stop consuming meat and animal-derived foods, you’re also making a conscious choice to avoid animal-based products in all other parts of your life as well.

An example of this is the clothes and shoes that you wear. If you are a vegan outdoors enthusiast who goes on a number of adventures and hiking trips, you will also require hiking boots that don’t use any animal-based products.

Finding the best vegan hiking boots for your requirements can be a confusing task when you don’t understand the build of the shoe. In order to make this easier for you, I have put together a buyer’s guide and list of the most popular vegan hiking boots that you can buy online.

Things to Consider before Buying Vegan Hiking Boots

There are plenty of hiking shoes available on the market but zeroing in on one that is vegan can be a complicated process. There are a number of factors that need to be kept in mind when you are looking for the best vegan hiking boots that suit your needs and requirements.

Consider Your Usage

The right hiking boots for you will be the ones that meet all your requirements, keeping in mind the terrain they are going to be used on, the type of hikes you intend to undertake, whether the material allows the boots to breathe, and finally if you need waterproofing.

  • Terrain and Conditions: The first important factor to consider is the type of terrain that you are going to be traversing with the shoes on. Hiking boots for snowy regions are going to be different from hiking boots for rocky areas.
  • Length and Technicality of Hikes: The next question that you need to ask yourself is how long are the hikes going to be. If you intend to undertake long treks and hikes, you might need more sturdy shoes than the ones meant for shorter, less complicated hikes.
  • Breathability: During hikes, you are going to have the shoes on for long stretches of time. The best vegan hiking boots are going to be the ones that allow your feet to breathe so that there is no buildup of bacteria and odours.
  • Waterproofing: In many circumstances, you’ll want hiking boots that are waterproof so that they aren’t damaged in the rain, or you’ll remain dry-footed if you find yourself in an unexpected situation with a lot of water around.

Ensure the Product Is Vegan

The three primary components of a shoe are the materials that it is made of, the adhesive used to hold it together, and finally the dye that is used to give it colour. You’ll want to check that all of these are vegan.

The Materials

In order to be considered vegan, the hiking boots should not contain any traces of leather, wool, fur, suede or silk. Most vegan hiking boots will mention that they are vegan but if they don’t, check for indications that read “100% man-made” or “entirely synthetic”.

The Adhesive

In order to be considered vegan, the adhesive should be 100% synthetic and not sourced from animals. It is difficult to confirm this in some cases but if the company is known for its vegan products and cruelty-free approach to production, it should be good to go.

The Dyes

The last step in ensuring that your hiking boots are vegan is finding out what type of dye was used to give it the colour that it has. You need to keep an eye out for animal-based dyes, which are sometimes used in the process of production by certain companies. This isn’t as common as animal-based adhesives but it is recommended that you delve a little deeper to gain some type of assurance.

Is It an Ethical Product?

You might be inclined to think that you’re off the hook once you have ensured that the hiking boots that you are buying are vegan, but that isn’t the case. There are other factors that need to be considered for the product to be ethical. For example, under what conditions were the hiking boots manufactured? Where were they made? Did the people making them work in the decent conditions and get paid fairly? Where were the raw materials sourced from? Does the company have a cruelty-free policy? Are the materials sustainably sourced?

It is only when you get the answers to these questions, that you will be able to assess whether the hiking boots can be considered an ethical product or not.

The Best Vegan Hiking Boots

After getting a better understanding into what makes a good pair of vegan hiking boots, it is time to delve deeper into some of the most popular options. I understand that it can get quite confusing – thanks to the number of options available – so the shoes have been divided into the following categories depending on usage.

  • Casual Hiking
  • Serious Trekking
  • Waterproof
  • Lightweight
  • Low-Rise

For the Casual Hiker: Merrell Grassbow

Merrell Grassbow for Women

Merrell Grassbow for Women

Manufacturer: Merrell
Materials: Synthetic outer, manmade inner with mesh upper
Fit: As expected (80%)
Price Guide: ££

Buy on Amazon

If you enjoy an occasional hike but haven’t really reached that professional trekking level, the Merrell Grassbow is a great option for you. The Gore-tex technology employed by Merrell provides a degree of breathability, keeping your feet dry. The grip of these lace-up boots is quite impressive as well.

Merrell Grassbow for Men

Merrell Grassbow for Men

Manufacturer: Merrell
Materials:
Synthetic outer, manmade inner with mesh upper
Fit: As expected (74%)
Price Guide: ££

Buy On Amazon

The men’s variant of the Merrell Grassbow is an extremely attractive shoe with bright red accents. It has an upper part made of a mesh-like material that allows your feet to breathe with greater ease. Made of synthetic materials through the body, the shoe is in line with vegan ideologies.

Why You’ll Love Them

  • Suitable for people with relatively wider feet.
  • Decent grip on each outer sole so that you can be assured of a steady footing.
  • The upper part of the shoe allows for greater breathability.

Why You Might Not

  • Some people notice a drop in the waterproofing over time.

For Serious Trekkers: Arc’teryx Bora Mid GTX

Arc'teryx Bora Mid GTX for Women

Arc’teryx Bora Mid GTX for Women

Manufacturer: Arc’teryx
Materials: PU coated nylon textile upper, GORE-TEX liner, EVA midsole, Vibram compound sole
Fit: Overall snug fit
Price Guide: £££

Buy on Amazon

If you are an outdoors enthusiast who likes to embark on actual treks and not just shorter hikes, you need a shoe that is able to support you through it. The Arc’teryx Bora Mid GTX is one of the best options on the market for serious trekkers. The Vibram outsole allows for better grip and stability, without compromising on the comfort.

Arc'teryx Bora Mid GTX for Men

Arc’teryx Bora Mid GTX for Men

Manufacturer: Arc’teryx
Materials: PU coated nylon textile upper, GORE-TEX liner, EVA midsole, Vibram compound sole
Fit: Overall snug fit
Price Guide: £££

Buy on Amazon

These hiking boots are undoubtedly expensive but their superior quality and wearability makes it a good investment for people who are serious about trekking. They offer a unique combination of comfort, agility, support and stability, which makes them an ideal pair of boots for extreme conditions.

Why You’ll Love Them

  • Excellent grip that can help you during proper treks and longer hikes.
  • The Gore-Tex lining of the shoes keeps them waterproof.
  • They provide great support to your ankles during treks.
  • They offer superior comfort with the help of a separate internal lining.

Why You Might Not

  • These hiking boots are quite expensive – most expensive ones on this list – so they may not be ideal for everyone.

Waterproof: XPETI Thermador

XPETI Thermador for Women

XPETI Thermador for Women

Manufacturer: XPETI
Materials: Waterproof mesh upper, Thinsulate insulation, EVA midsole, rubber toe cap and sole
Fit: As expected (78%)
Price Guide: £

Buy on Amazon

A unique combination of functionality and aesthetics, this is a really good looking shoe that uses multiple waterproofing methods to ensure that no water reaches your feet, keeping them dry and warm. The rubber outsole provides an impressive grip even for longer hikes. There is also ankle support to prevent any injuries that you may sustain on uneven terrain.

XPETI Thermador for Men

XPETI Thermador for Men

Manufacturer: XPETI
Materials: Waterproof mesh upper, Thinsulate insulation, EVA midsole, rubber toe cap and sole
Fit: As expected (85%)
Price Guide: £

Buy on Amazon

The most affordable option for men’s hiking boots is the XPETI Thermador. It has a great waterproofing construct, with a waterproof mesh upper, hydroshield membrane and a moisture-wicking mesh lining that keeps your feet dry under all circumstances. In addition to the sturdy rubber sole, the boots also have rubber toe cap protection and enhanced ankle support.

Why You’ll Love Them

  • An affordable option that works well in providing stability.
  • The waterproofing is impressive, making this the best option if you are going to be around water.

Why You Might Not

  • You might need to size up a little, as some wearers report the hiking boots are a little smaller than expected.
  • The laces can come loose with great ease so you might need to upgrade them.

Lightweight: Lowa Innox GTX

Lowa Innox GTX for Women

Lowa Innox GTX for Women

Manufacturer: Lowa
Materials: Synthetic outer, manmade inner, gum rubber sole
Fit: As expected
Price Guide: ££

Buy on Amazon

If you aren’t planning on undertaking many strenuous treks and want a lightweight option that doesn’t weigh you down on hikes, the Lowa Innox GTX is a great choice. A very comfortable pair of boots, the Innox can take you through multiple moderate hikes without worrying about the quality. It offers good support around the ankles and above average stability when it comes to difficult terrains.

Lowa Innox GTX for Men

Lowa Innox GTX for Men

Manufacturer: Lowa
Materials: Synthetic outer, manmade inner, gum rubber sole
Fit: As expected
Price Guide: ££

Buy on Amazon

A good pair of hiking boots doesn’t necessarily have to be bulky or heavy and the best example of this is the Lowa Innox GTX. They are extremely lightweight – compared to others in the same category – without compromising on the grip and traction that allows for these shoes to be used on a wide range of terrains.

Why You’ll Love Them

  • These hiking boots are very light and don’t weigh you down during hikes.
  • Easy to move around in, they will keep you agile on any technical terrain.
  • They have an above-average grip to prevent slippage.
  • Available in a range of colours.

Why You Might Not

  • Their lightweight comes at the expense of some durability, so they may not last as long as other boots depending on your usage.

Low-Rise: Mammut T Aenergy GTX

Mammut T Aenergy GTX for Women

Mammut T Aenergy GTX for Women

Manufacturer: Mammut
Materials: Fabric outer, manmade inner, EVA sole
Fit: As expected
Price Guide: ££

Buy on Amazon

Not everyone is comfortable wearing high-rise hiking boots when they are out adventuring. The ideal pick for these people is the Mammut T Aenergy GTX in the low-rise variant, that allows for greater ankle mobility. The shoe provides great stability and comfort at a relatively reasonable price point.

Mammut T Aenergy GTX for Men

Mammut T Aenergy GTX for Men

Manufacturer: Mammut
Materials: Fabric outer, manmade inner, EVA sole
Fit: As expected
Price Guide: ££

Buy on Amazon

Light yet sturdy, the T Aenergy GTX for men is breathable and comfortable. While it does not provide the same level of ankle support as other models in the list, it does allow for greater range of movement.

Why You’ll Love Them

  • Lightweight so you won’t feel dragged down by weighty boots.
  • Very breathable to keep you comfortable during warmer hikes.
  • Low-rise to keep you agile and nimble over technical terrain.

Why You Might Not

  • The grip is a little lacking, when compared with other models in the list.

If you like the style of the Mammut T Aenergy GTX, but would prefer a high-rise model you’re in luck! Get the women’s Mammut T Aenergy GTX high rise here, and the men’s Mammut T Aenergy GTX high rise here.

Get Outdoors In the Best Vegan Hiking Boots

Whether you are a serious trekker, a casual hiker, or anything in between our guide of the best vegan hiking boots has you covered. So grab a pair, get outdoors, and enjoy the beautiful environment and its precious inhabitants that your lifestyle is working tirelessly to protect.

What do you think? Did I leave any great boots off of the list? Let me know in the comments below! And if you’re looking for more great vegan footwear, check out my buyer’s guide and review of the best vegan winter boots.

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