Law enforcement officers face special challenges with regard to finding footwear which meets proper specifications, is comfortable, and is affordable within their uniform allowance. In this post, we’ll take a look at three of the best duty boots for police work which fit the bill.
The criteria we used to narrow down the choices are as follows. The boot had to have a polishable leather toe (required by most departments, including NYPD), it had to be water-resistant, and it had to have a slip-resistant sole. We examined fit, price, and features to find the best tactical footwear for law enforcement.
Best New Police Duty Boot: ALTAI MFT100-ZS 6” Black Waterproof Boots
ALTAI is a relatively new company, though they’ve got enough of a track record and such a solid product that they need to be taken seriously. Their MFT100-ZS is a 6” waterproof boot with a side zipper, though they also offer an 8” model as well as both sizes without a side zip if desired. With a polishable leather toe, this boot is NYPD approved.
As all ALTAI boots come with a Vibram sole, they’re slip resistant and have enough cushioning to fit more like a sneaker, though with the support of a high quality boot. ALTAI footwear has no break-in period whatsoever. They fit perfectly out of the box.
Instead of using Gore-Tex, ALTAI uses its own proprietary SuperFabric technology, which allows for more breathability a boasts of being waterproof rather than just water resistant. Having worn the 8” model in heavy rain and snow, my experience is that the ALTAI claim of being waterproof is justified. My feet were as dry after my walk through the rain and snow as they were prior.
After hours of walking through a variety of urban terrains, my feet still felt fresh and comfortable and weren’t in need of a rest. I can only imagine that ALTAI boots would hold up quite well over the course of a long shift.
These boots never seem to wear out. I’ve yet to see any signs of wear in my ALTAI boots and I’ve heard of one particular officer who’s been happily wearing the same ALTAI boots for the past five years!
We expect to see great things from ALTAI footwear moving forward. The lack of wide sizing is a disappointment, but the boots run generous in the width, so it may not be much of an issue. Also, we’re told that wide sizing is in the works for ALTAI version 2.0.
The ALTAI MFT100-ZS is a strong recommend as a tactical boot for police duty work.
is a strong recommend as a tactical boot for police duty work.
Best Budget Police Duty Boots: Propper Tactical Duty Boot 6”
Propper is better known for their BDU’s and the garments they manufacture for the US military, but their tactical boots offer some excellent options as well. The Propper Tactical Duty Boot 6” also qualifies as an NYPD approved duty boot due to its polishable leather toe, but at a $74.99 retail price it comes with a number of features only found in more expensive models.
Like the ALTAI MFT100-ZS, the Propper Tactical Duty Boot has a side zipper. Its YKK side zipper with zipper guard are solid and function effortlessly. Propper doesn’t promise a waterproof boot or even water resistance, but the boot does hold up quite well against the elements. The breathable moisture wicking mesh lining is quite comfortable and keeps the feet feeling refreshed during a long shift.
It’s a bit unclear what the sole is made from, but the soles on the Propper seem to hold up quite well. For $74.99, it’s hard to argue about durability. At this price, by the time the soles would wear out most officers would be eligible for their next footwear allowance anyway. The boot does fit more like a sneaker than a boot, which seems to be the trend nowadays, so expect the maneuverability of a track shoe with the support of a tactical boot.
Best Police Duty Boots That Fits Like A Sneaker: Under Armour UA Stellar Tactical Boots
Under Armour is well known in the sports world for their moisture wicking apparel and for their tennis shoes, so it’s no surprise that the Under Armour UA Stellar Tactical Boots should be a favorite duty boot for law enforcement officers, especially those on patrol who are on their feet most of the day. At $84.99, these duty boots fit comfortably within most uniform allowance budgets, and they surely won’t disappoint.
The Under Armour UA Stellar Tactical Boots feature a polishable leather toe, thus making them NYPD approved boots, and the 900D nylon uppers stave off moisture effortlessly. The anti-microbial sockliner reduces rubbing and slippage and the molded midsole with reinforced shank offer exceptional underfoot protection and support.
Best Police Duty Boots Summary
While we love the newcomer to the scene (ALTAI), and Propper offers many excellent features, we find that the Under Armour UA Stellar Tactical Boots offer the best all around value as a police duty boot. This duty boot has all the required features, offers exceptional comfort and durability, and at $84.99 it offers a great value. It’s as close to wearing a pair of sneakers to work as you’ll ever get, yet this incredibly comfortable duty boot will offer that great fit along with a ton of support and water resistance.
For the best police duty boot, our choice is the Under Armour UA Stellar Tactical Boots.