When it comes to riding motorcycles, your average footwear simply isn’t up to snuff, not boasting anywhere near enough slide or impact protection to instill much confidence. Fortunately, motorcycle gear companies have been making purpose-built motorcycle boots and riding shoes for decades, and in that time technology and safety standards have come a long way.
But with so many different types of riding, there comes just as many types of riding boots. So to simplify the situation, we’ve compiled this (updated) list of the ten best motorcycle boots and riding shoes currently on the market. Whether you’re looking for a stylish street-wear-inspired set of moto-kicks, a sleek pair of road-racing boots, or a rugged pair of motocross stompers, we’ve got all your bases covered.
Roland Sands Design Fresno Riding Shoe
A stylish yet protective pair of riding shoes inspired by modern skate-shoe silhouettes from the always-awesome Roland Sands Design. Offered in both perforated and non-perforated versions and in three different color options, these great looking kicks boast CE-certified armor (reinforced heel cup, shank, ankle, toe-box), plus toe-shift pads, waxed laces, and a Hipora waterproof membrane.
Moto Bailey ElBulli
Individually handmade in Texas using imported French leather, these elegant boots sport a classic gentlemen’s shoe design while concealing a Kevlar lining, heel guard, integrated PU ankle protection, and an attractive interior pattern lining. A toe-shift pad prevents wear and tear, and the four pairs of eyelets allow for a precise and snug fit. As far as bonafide riding shoes go, they don’t come much more dapper than this.
Dainese Dover GORE-TEX Riding Shoes
One of the newest pieces of footwear from the Italian moto-gear powerhouse that is Dainese, the Dover Riding Shoes offer robust protection in a sleek, street-wear-style package. With a full GORE-TEX membrane, leather and suede construction, CE-certified armor, toe-pads, and an overall design that takes inspiration from fashionable offerings like the Yeezy 750s, these Dainese riding shoes sort ample style off the bike and solid protection on it.
Touratech Destino Adventure Boots
A rugged, purpose-built adventure boot from one of the most esteemed brands in the off-road sector, the Destino ADV’s offer impact-resistant polyurethane toe and ankle protection, a removable steel toe cap, waxed full-grain leather, a trio of stainless steel locking mechanisms, and an antibacterial sole. They even have removable water-proof inner shoes for walking around off the bike, plus a stainless steel loop so they can be locked to a bike and left alone or outside while camping.
Daytona Arrow Sport GTX Boots
A great pair of short, sport-oriented commuter boots from a well-trusted brand. The Arrow Sport GTX’s zipper and strap setup make for a tight fit, while the low-cut ankle makes it easy to walk around off the bike. The GORE-TEX construction makes them an ideal candidate for those commuting on two-wheels rain or shine, too.
Sidi Rex Race Boots
Sidi’s top-of-the-line, professional-grade race boots, worn by MotoGP and WSBK riders like Alvaro Bautista, Michele Pirro, Bradley Smith, and Leon Camier. Brimming with protective elements including several replaceable metal sliders, the Sidi Rex boots feature a number of open/closable air-flow channels to maximize comfort, as well as ample adjustability to get the perfect fit every time.
Dainese Axial D1 Boots
The flagship boot of one of the world’s leading moto-gear outfits, the Axial D1 boots are arguably some of the finest race boots money can buy. Worn by today’s legendary riders like Valentino Rossi in premier class competition, these beautifully-designed boots are worn inside of a rider’s leathers, affording an improved range of movement compared to traditional boots. The titanium toe sliders look the business, too.
Aether Moto Boot
Made in Portugal from vegetable-tanned Italian leather and packing D30 armor and a Commando-style Blake-stitched Vibram sole, the Aether Moto Boot offers the looks of a traditional work boot while featuring the array of aforementioned protective. Like all Aether wares, the Moto Boots are made in small batches, allowing for a stellar fit and finish.
Alpinestars X Deus Tech 10 Boots
The pinnacle of motocross boot protection and technology from one of the most universally-renowned brands in the game, the Tech 10 boots are worn by a slew of world champion riders. With a bevy of unique protective features and a three buckle closure system, the Tech 10s offer the perfect balance of security and comfort. This particular special edition variant was born out of a collaboration with Deus Ex Machina and features the custom bike and lifestyle brand’s logos and colorway, making an already world-class boot that much cooler.
REV’IT! Expedition H20 Boots
This pair of Italian adventure riding boots offers unparalleled levels of protection including TPU shin-plate, “Dynamic support frame,” Hydratex Sphere direct lamination, a pivoting ankle, and reinforced toe and heel guards. Their Boa closure system ensures an accurate fit, and the plush soles and antibacterial lining makes these hardwearing boots ideal candidates for all-day use.
The 8 Best Leather Motorcycle Jackets
Though appropriate, purpose-built footwear is a great place to start when compiling your riding gear, being truly protected means rocking a full set of gear from head to toe. If unsure as to where to start, be sure to check out this handy guide for The best leather motorcycle jackets.