Unlike more ‘gentlemanly’ hobbies like golf, tennis, and sailing, hiking isn’t a typical source of stylistic inspiration. However, with the advent of dad style, came several unlikely trends, including technical backpacks, fleece, insulated jackets, and hiking boots. Ruggedly stylish yet functional, the latter is a sartorial takeaway that works both on the trails and the streets.
How to wear hiking boots for men
Despite their name, hiking boots needn’t be relegated to the great outdoors. What separates stylish hiking boots from their technically driven counterparts is material; city slickers should opt for premium materials like leather and brushed suede in clean silhouettes over textiles like Gore-Tex and mesh in tactical silhouettes.
Whether you’re an office trekker or a weekend wanderer, we’ve got you covered on how to wear hiking boots for any occasion.
When the cold weather hits, hiking boots make the perfect footwear accompaniment to layered looks. Stay warm by teaming chinos or jeans with a chunky roll neck sweater and a gilet or chore jacket. Hiking boots in chestnut brown or black leather or tan suede finish off the look well.
For an outfit that’s well put together yet retains casual appeal, team leather or suede hiking boots with slim-cut jeans in a dark shade like black or indigo with knitwear and a structured coat, or opt for slim-cut neutral coloured trousers with a shirt or simple crewneck sweater and a blazer.
In laid-back offices where oxford or derby shoes feel a bit too strait-laced, hiking boots are a perfect footwear choice. Leather boots teamed with thick wool trousers or suiting separates and a collared shirt strike the ideal balance between business and casual. Just ensure you keep your boots in good nick with regular polishing to avoid coming across as scruffy.
To help keep you stylish on and off the trails, here is a list of the 8 best hiking boot brands in the world.
Founded in 1908 by Antonio Cappello, Italian label Fracap’s footwear has been produced by the same bloodline for over a century. Fracap boots are made with vegetable-tanned leather at the family’s factory in Puglia, Italy. Instantly recognisable by its iconic red laces, Fracap boots utilise traditional bootmaking techniques, while experimenting with contemporary elements.
Headquarters: Puglia, Italy Founder: Antonio Cappello Founded: 1908
One of the most widely respected shoe and bootmakers around the world and in the UK, British label Grenson was founded in Northampton by William Green in 1866. While the luxury footwear label specialises in more classic styles like oxford shoes, loafers, and derby boots, they also have a range of premium hiking boots in clean silhouettes, perfect for smart casual wear. In addition to their traditional leather offerings, Grenson also has a small selection of dedicated vegan footwear offerings.
Headquarters: Northampton, England Founder: William Green Founded: 1866
Luxury Italian fashion house Moncler excels in creating aesthetically pleasing technical gear well-suited for the great outdoors, making it a natural choice for hiking boots. Seamlessly merging fashion with tactical construction, Moncler’s hiking boots are at home on the mountains and down at the pub. Think premium materials, meticulous Italian construction, and references to Moncler’s signature tricolour branding.
Headquarters: Milan, Italy Founders: René Ramillon, André Vincent Founded: 1952 in Grenoble, France
Established in 1965 in Montebelluna, Italy, La Montelliana creates fine footwear using traditional shoemaking techniques. Made with hiking in mind, La Montelliana’s boots are designed to last, yet look just as appropriate on the city streets as they do on mountain ranges.
Since their inception in 1932, Danner shoes have been worn by the military, the police force, polar explorers, and outdoorsmen alike, gaining them a reputation as some of the finest footwear in the world. Founded in Portland, Oregon by American Charles Danner, Danner boots remain designed and made on US soil. Classic in their design, Danner boots are made with purpose in mind, however, they look pretty darn good too.
Headquarters: Portland, Oregon, America Founder: Charles Danner Founded: 1932
Founded and family-owned since 1992, Italian footwear label Diemme has been producing high-end footwear for the likes of Chanel, Bottega Venetta, and Maison Margiela. Each pair of boots is handcrafted, with Diemme utilising traditional shoemaking techniques to create unique, contemporary styles; think leopard prints, fur detailing, and coloured panels.
Headquarters: Onè di Fonte, Veneto, Italy Founders: Dennis and Maico Signor Founded: 1992
The eponymous label was founded in Saskatchewan, Canada in 1931 by Edward Viberg, who learnt the craft of shoemaking from a British immigrant. Viberg utilises traditional bootmaking methods, with Goodyear welt (allowing for resoling), Stitchdown, Naildown, Goodyearwelt, Cemented and Side Wall Stitched footwear. With leather and suede variations, Viberg boots have a clean silhouette with a distinctly masculine feel, making them ideal for casual wear.
Headquarters: Victoria, Canada Founder: Edward Viberg Founded: 1931
British designer Oliver Sweeney founded his eponymous label in 1989, after two decades of learning his craft from some of the best shoemakers in the business. Produced in an Italian factory, Oliver Sweeney boots combine traditional shoemaking with 21st century technology and innovation. Sweeney’s designs are traditional in nature, infusing details of yesteryear like vintage-effect leathers and calfskin linings.
Headquarters: Yorkshire, England Founder: Oliver Sweeney Founded: 1989
Some of the best hiking boots are made by Grenson, Viberg, Moncler, Fracap, and Danner.
What are good luxury hiking boot brands?
The best designer hiking boots are made by Moncler, Diemme, and La Montelliana.
How do you pull off the hiking boot style?
Hiking boots in clean silhouettes can be worn for casual, business casual, and smart casual outfits. Team them with slim-cut chinos or jeans, or opt for suiting separates or dress pants and structured outerwear for an office-appropriate look.