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Brahma Boots Review: A Trusted Brand for Comfort and Safety

Footwear has always been important. Good shoes support, protect, and also communicate something about who we are. There are certain times when having the right footwear becomes even more crucial than normal, and the job site is one of those places. For everyone looking for protective, comfortable, supportive boots you can buy without having to take out a second mortgage, we present this Brahma boots review.

The Brahma Work Boot

man wearing brahma boots on a job site using power tools on sheet metal
Image via Unsplash

If you’ve ever tried to research the Brahma work boot, you may have run into issues trying to understand who is behind these boots. They’re sold at major retailers across the US and Canada, but the actual manufacturer doesn’t have a website.

One of the first things we learned in this Brahma boots review was that the Brahma work boot company in Columbia, South America is not in any way affiliated with the boots you can buy at Walmart or online.

So who is Brahma? It’s an intriguing 21st century footwear mystery. For a while they were sold exclusively by Walmart, but now you can get them in a few different places. They are made in China, are renowned for being sturdy and yet inexpensive, and continue to be very popular with those of us who work hard physically for a living.

Product Specs

The boots we’re looking at for our Brahma boots review are the Raid Steel Toe, which is often billed as unisex, offering labels with both men’s boots and women’s sizes.

Size and Weight

These shoes weigh 2.5 pounds for the pair, making them remarkably lightweight for shoes of the type.

They are, like most such boots, a bit bulky to look at; but honestly, our Brahma boots reviewers thought these felt less so than most sturdy work boots. They aren’t so large that they impede movement or get in your way when you walk in tight places.

Materials and Construction

The upper is PU leather. The grommets are metal, but not a terribly strong metal, so if you’re constantly putting a strain on them by trying to slip your foot in and out, don’t expect them to hold.

The outer sole is both slip and oil resistant but specifically not “slip-proof.” Then again, no one actually claims their soles are completely proof against slipping in all situations.

The steel toe meets ASTM standards, and we were unable to hurt our toes banging them against objects in our Brahma boots review tests.

Comfort and Sizing

These seem to run pretty true to size and have a reasonably wide width. They definitely accommodated our slightly swollen feet at the end of a long day standing and walking.

The padded tongue feels nice, and the footbed is comfortable for most of the day. These aren’t the most comfortable shoe we’ve ever worn, but they are not uncomfortable.

How It Compares

How does Brahma compare? We considered a couple other possibilities for both men and women. Some companies, like Brahma, offer unisex boots meant to cover any working person as well as options for men and women.

Others sell their shoes specifically to one sex, in which case the men’s typically have wider toe boxes and the women’s make an attempt at looking stylish.

For our review, we considered one boot marketed to women, one marketed to men, and another unisex offering:

  • Safety Girl Steel Toe Work Boots
  • Caterpillar Second Shift Steel Toe Boots
  • SafeToe Unisex Steel Toe Boots

Brahma Raid Steel Toe

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Protection

These are great, protective boots.

Durability

Durability is Brahma’s biggest weakness, however, they can easily be replaced next season.

Comfort

You would expect these to be uncomfortable. We think they shine in this department. We also love how lightweight they are, so you don’t feel like you’re dragging rocks around by the end of the day.

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Warranty

There isn’t a warranty exactly with these. For service, you have to take them back where you bought them. In most cases, you’ll only get a refund if it’s clear there’s something wrong with the way they’re made and if you haven’t obviously been wearing them.

Safety Girl Steel Toe Work Boots

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Safety Girl boots are, obviously, marketed towards women. They have a narrower toe box than men’s work boots and make an attempt at styling with both shape and color: you can buy them in traditional construction tan but also in green or pink.

These boots tend to run a bit large to accommodate heavy socks for cold weather. If you work in warm areas, we recommend buying a half size down. These shoes are made with Nubuck leather, feature a steel toe, and have an oil and water resistant sole. They are ASTM compliant at up to 200 pounds of pressure.

Protection

These do a solid job of protecting your feet, but we wouldn’t recommend standing in a puddle of water with them, as the waterproofing only seems to go so far.

Durability

These are very durable and will handle a few months of hard wear before you start to see issues. Like the Brahma, these are made to affordable so you replace your pair when it wears out.

Comfort

These feel great when you first put them on, but they do have a break-in period. Expect some blisters while you get used to them.

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Warranty

Safety girl lets you return your shoes up to 30 days after you buy them, but only if they are unused and still in their packaging. If they are unused, you can still send them back up to 60 days later, but at that point only for an exchange.

Caterpillar Second Shift Steel Toe Boots

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These beloved work boots are definitely more expensive, but they have a good reputation for quality. Marketed as a men’s shoe, these are available in dark brown, black, or tan. They come in both regular and wide sizes.

These boots are 100% leather, have hex-shaped grommets that hold well, and also have a speed lacing shaft. We did like the nylon sockliner and lining for comfort and smell control. They are oil resistant and have an ASTM compliant steel toe.

Protection

These aren’t actually MORE protective than the other boots we reviewed. They do the job, however.

Durability

These boots were made to be roughed up, and it shows. You won’t be buying another pair for a couple years.

Comfort

These are very comfortable if you get the right size. You might have to play around to find the size that fits you, and these are less wide than other similar boots; so consider going up a half size right from the start.

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Warranty

CAT will accept your unworn boots up to 45 days after purchase for a refund or exchange. If there’s anything wrong with the boots when you get them, call CAT right away and they’ll work to make it right.

SafeToe Unisex Steel Toe Boots

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If you’re interested in a shoe that’s just a bit different, you might like these. They don’t look at all like traditional work boots, and there’s a reason for that. Without lacing and stitching, they are far more waterproof than most.

The SafeToe are made from 100% leather with a PU sole. The sides have a mesh designed to allow your foot to breathe a bit; but honestly, these do get hot in warm weather. We recommend these for people working in cold and wet a lot.

Protection

These are awesome. The steel toe is ASTM compliant, and you get a double PU cap over the toe for extra protection. They have a static shock discharge and a steel midsole plate to protect you from nails.

Durability

These are pretty tough and as durable as you’d expect.

Comfort

Overall, we liked this, though one of our Brahma boots reviewers wanted his gel sole insoles right away. The trick is sizing: they are wide, but they also run small. We recommend ordering a half to whole size up and working from there.

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Warranty

These have the best warranty we’ve seen on this kind of shoe. You can return them for up to 30 days, and they have a six-month quality guarantee.

Brahma Boots Review: Conclusion

Considering the Brahma boots in light of their competition, they are a good choice for people looking for tough boots on a smaller budget. Their strong point is being economical and comfort. They’re protective boots that won’t kill your feet, and not going to kill your wallet.

They’ll also be great for people who just need a workboot to use on occasion, or for people who would rather put their shoe money into things other types of footwear.