Skip to main content

Gear Up: See the Best Men’s Combat Boots for Fall/Winter ’22

You’ve seen dressed up versions of combat boots on the red carpet, worn by influencers, and your coworkers in the office. Once upon a time, the combat boot was most likely to be worn by punks and skinheads, but these shoes have undergone a major transformation in the last few decades, thanks in large part to the newfound popularity of Dr. Martens.

Today, there are even dressed-up versions of men’s combat boots that wouldn’t look out of place at the office (or a punk show). Pharrell Williams wore a pair of Doc Martens when he received his honorary doctorate from NYU in 2018. And with the start of fall, combat boots are everywhere.

Below, we’ve gathered the best combat boots for Fall/Winter ’22. While there are plenty of Doc Martens, of course, the best combat boots for men now come in a variety of styles and price points.


A Brief History of Combat Boots

While boots have always been part of a soldier’s uniform from time immemorial, it wasn’t until WWII, that combat boots became standard issue. That one model of footwear begat desert boots, paratrooper boots and so on.

After the war ended, many military styled clothing slowly became absorbed into everyday fashion. Bomber jackets, aviator jackets, aviator sunglasses, desert boots AKA Chukka boots, yep, even the combat boot found their way into people’s casual wear wardrobes.

Combat boots became popular with German housewives in the late 1940s; the comfortable sole, durable leather and ankle support meant that wearers could have boot that would last for years and support their feet. Those German housewives wore Dr. Martens. When they were manufactured in Great Britain, they first became the workingman’s boot. Then they were adopted by the Punk movement in the 1970s and readopted as the footwear of choice by Grunge musician in the 1990s. Now, hipsters, celebrities and anyone who likes durable footwear has a pair of combat boots.

Related Stories

The Combat Boot Profile


A combat boot (usually) sits on a thick rubber or crepe outsole. It is a lace-up shoe and the boot’s shaft ends a little over the ankle. Some combat boots have a six-inch shaft, that’s the upper part of the boot that goes from the ankle to edge, and some combat boots are taller than that. Traditionally made from hard, durable leather or canvas, you can find them in suede, nylon, cotton and any combination of those fabrics. This durable military-style men’s boot is designed to provide excellent traction and ankle support.

How To Wear a Men’s Combat Boot

The easiest way to style men’s combat boots is to wear them with dark blue or black jeans. Since many combat boots’ uppers look like oxfords, brogues or lace-ups, you can sneak them into offices that accept more casual attire. While the iconic Dr. Martens combat boot comes in a dark color like black or burgundy, you can now find men’s combat boots in a wide variety of colors and prints.

Wear dressier combat boots with cleanly tailored twill or cotton-blend trousers. On the weekend, they easily go with jeans and a button-down shirt or graphic t-shirt.

Keep reading to see our favorite men’s combat boots for sale right now.


1. Dr. Martens 1460 Smooth Leather Lace Up Boots


This is the classic Doc Martens men’s combat boot. When someone says, “Doc Martens,” this is the boot they’re talking about. Named after its debut date (April 1, 1960), this lace-up style’s been worn by everyone from The Sex Pistols to your next-door neighbor. It has eight eyes, yellow topstitching, and the famous air-wave, air-cushioned sole.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Zappos



2. Thursday Boot Co Titan Boots in Black Matte


We here at SPY are huge fans of Thursday Boots, and we’ve featured them prominently in our guide to the best men’s boots of 2022. One of the reasons why we’re so enamored with the brand, aside from the workmanship, fit and transparent sourcing/pricing, is that they literally have a style for every facet of your life. And for 2022, the brand just released The Titan, a striking combat boot that looks like elevated Dr. Martens.

Available in a few different shades of leather, we’re partial to the black matte combat boots pictured below. These matte nubuck leather combat boots are waterproof and lined in glove leather. If you think that’s a luxurious touch, you’ll be happy to know that they have storm welt construction, so they’ll last and look great for years. They antimicrobial shock-absorbing insoles that protect your feet, and cut down on odor. They’re constructed with both steel shanks and rubber lug outsoles.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Thursday Boot Co


3. Bruno Marc Combat Oxford Boot


Bruno Marc’s footwear is one of Amazon’s top selling brands. Which means that hundreds of guys really like their shoes and boots. They make looking good on a budget an easy task. Their combat boot has a rounded toe and looks slightly like a mix of combat and work boot. It has a side zipper for easy on and off. Lined in plush faux fur with a cushioned insole, they’re great for long walks in the cold. The upper is waterproof too.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Amazon


4. Red Wing Iron Ranger


Red Wing’s been churning out workboots for well over a hundred years. Guys who have bought them back in the early 1970s, are still wearing those pairs today. The only thing they’ve done is resole them. So, when you’re looking for a combat boot that could possibly be handed down to future generations, you look at Red Wing. The biggest issue you’ll ever find when it comes to the Iron Ranger is that it sells out constantly. This leather lace-up has a cap toe, if worn with khakis or light wool pants, they’ll look like a dress shoe. These boots were created with premium leather and have a vibram lug sole. Try them on the weekend with dark jeans, a sweater and a chore jacket.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Madewell


5. Kodiak Dundonald Arctic Waterproof Boot


Winter is coming. And it’s coming soon. When the weather is dicey, and your feet feel icy…you get the picture. Kodiak’s waterproof combat styled boot is cold-rated to -22 degrees. Not only will your feet not freeze when you’re de-icing your car’s windshield, the full grain leather’s been treated to resist salt stains from sidewalks and streets. It has seam sealed waterproof construction and is lined in Thinsulate. There’s also a removable Ortholite footbed and the lining wicks away moisture. Don’t worry about lacing up the boot when your hands are cold, as there’s a side zipper. This is a steal, as many minus-degrees cold-rated boots are triple the price.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Kodiak




6. Thursday Boots The Explorer 


As mentioned earlier, we here at SPY are very impressed with Thursday Boots. Their ethical sourcing has made a big impact on the communities were they work. Not to mention their designs are the perfect mix of classic and modern. Take The Explorer, it’s a cool mashup of a hiking boot, a work boot and a combat boot. Easy to wear on or off the trails, it’s made from leather that’s made to last, and has storm-welt construction that’ll keep the boots on your feet for years. Did we mention that they’re lined in glove leather, and have shock-absorbing comfort insoles? They’ve got it all, and they’re handcrafted too.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Thursday Boots

7. Steve Madden Guard Boot


Need a sharp looking boot for a night out? Steve Madden serves up a patent leather combat boot that would look pretty awesome with a dark pair of cords or velvet jeans.These boots rest on a a lug sole. They have a rounded toe with stitching across it. While you can lace them up, you can also use the side zipper.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of DSW



8. Florsheim Lookout Boot


The burnished leather of this handsome looking combat boot holds a secret. It’s waterproof. Whether you’re wearing it to the office, on a weekend hike or a day meandering around town, this boot can stand up to almost anything. It’s designed with a comfortech footbed that cradles your feet.  It has an insulated lining and a TPU traction outsole. It comes in black and dark brown too.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of DSW


9. Reserved Footwear New York Galvan Boot


The mix of leather, suede and canvas creates a subtle eye catching look. The boot is trimmed in leather and the canvas body is highlighted with suede. It has a round toe and sits on a rubber outsole.  The shaft measure four inches and has a pull tab at the back. It’s sporty and casual looking. They could be worn to the office with black or navy khakis. And for kicking back on your off hours, pair them with rolled cuff jeans.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Macy's


10. Palladium Pampa Hi Boots


Combat boots most commonly found on the market tend to be made out of leather, but there’s a subset of brands we love making incredibly cool combat boots out of canvas. Palladium has been a streetwear favorite for years — before they made boots, Palladium made airplane tires, so you know the material and craftsmanship are as durable as can be. The result is a sturdy sole and a sturdy canvas upper, and the Pampa style was most notably worn by the French Foreign Legion. That’s quite a legacy for a pair of combat boots, and the fact that these feel as light as high-top canvas sneakers — and as tough as traditional boots — is a major plus.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Palladium


11. Dr. Martens Combs II Canvas and Suede Boot


To many, Dr. Martens or “Docs” are the alpha and omega of combat boots. We’ve discussed how they’re an iconic boot above, and their designs have been copied by many brands over the years. For summer, they’re lightening up their classic combat boot in tonal black suede and canvas. It has everything you expect from a pair of Docs, including a cushioned footbed and their classic airwave sole.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Urban Outfitters

12. Dr. Martens Vegan Felix 101 Boots 


Instead of eight eyes, this men’s combat boot has six and sits a bit lower than Doc Martens’ classic 1460 style boot. The Felix is made with vegan leather for guys who want to enjoy the best men’s combat boots without animal products. These boots still have most of the brand’s hallmarks: yellow topstitching, the back loop and the brand’s air-cushioned sole.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Dr. Martens


13. Vostey Combat Boots


For those of us who like to switch off styles and matching footwear daily, Vostey’s combat boot fits in nicely in your boot repertoire and is also kind to your wallet. This combat boot has style for days and can easily go from weekends in jeans to chinos when you hit the office or have a need to feel a bit more dressed up when you walk over to your WFH desk. They have a padded collar, and you can either lace or zip them up. They rest on a flexible, rubber sole. They’ve been reviewed over 1,300 times in Amazon, and wearers rave about the fit, style and how they found a combat boot that not only looks good but can easily be worn for miles and miles of walking. And they come in nine (9!) different colors too.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Amazon

14. Harley Davidson Brentmore Combat Boot


If you’ve never tried Harley Davidson Footwear, well, you’re in for a treat. They’re as sturdy and as indestructibe as their motorcycles. And like their motorcycles, they never lose their looks. Lined in leather, this round toed, combat boot sits on a Vibram slip resistant rugged outsole. The brand’s name is embossed on the tongue’s top. It can be either laced or zipped up.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of DSW




15. Nike SFB Field 2 8″ GORE-TEXBoots


Techwear is a newer trend that combines activewear, streetwear with a Goth and sci-fi bent. We wrote up a quick primer on what it is, and how to wear it. Nike, known for their incomparable sneakers, has released a few tech combat boots and the SFB Field is the most badass-looking one of the group. This is a waterproof performance boot that’s made of leather and GORE-TEX. It’s built for heavy-duty hiking and clambering around rocky areas due to the way the sole has been engineered. This performance combat boot has a variety of patterns on the outer sole that ensures everything from improving stability while climbing to a sawtooth pattern around the arch that gives extra grip when rope climbing. If Parkour is your middle name, if you adventure around the world, and have never met an off-road obstacle you didn’t like, this is your combat boot.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Nike

16. Crown Vintage Conely Boot


The vintage-style boot can definitely be worn to work and out at the pub too. The leather is softy aged looking. It’s got a comfortable round toe, fabric cuff and the tongue is lined in faux fur. Like many of the other combat boots in this roundup, it can be either zipped or lacd up.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of DSW



17. Dr. Martens 101 Yellow Stitch Smooth Leather Ankle Boots


About two or three years ago, white boots exploded into the footwear scene. First primarily worn by women, men and kiddos started following suit. What was thought to be a quick fad, has turned into a long-term trend. Much like white sneakers, white boots need that extra bit of care to keep them gleaming. The 101 is a shortened version of the brand’s iconic boot and has six eyes instead of eight. Made with smooth leather, these lace-up combat boots have a cushioned insole and sits on the brands’ famous airwave outsole. And yes, they also come in black.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Dr. Martens

18. Ariat Rebar Wedge Six-Inch Waterproof Work Boot


You’re probably familiar with Ariat’s riding boots; they make both western and English riding boots. But did you know they have an entore catalog of sturdy outdoors and work boots too. This California-based company keeps redefining what a boot looks like and how it can adapt to your lifestyle. If you are on your feet all day, if you work outside, or want a boot that’s equal parts looks and stability, this combat boot is your friend. Waterproof, this leather boot has an oil and slip resistant outsole, Goodyear welt construction and a stabilizing shank for support.

Lazy loaded image
Courtesy of Ariat



Keep Rainy Day Blues Away With These 11 Men’s Rain Boots