Find It: The Perfect Pair of Boots

From work boots that go straight from the box to the mud, to a custom made pair that are strictly for special occasions, there are nearly as many styles of boots out there as there are stars in a Texas night sky.
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From work boots that go straight from the box to the mud, to a custom made pair that are strictly for special occasions, there are nearly as many styles of boots out there as there are stars in a Texas night sky. With so many options to choose from, how can you be sure of the pair that’s right for you? Jennifer June, author of Cowboy Boots: The Art and Sole (, gives some advice on finding the perfect pair of cowboy boots to suit your style.

A night out or special event can often benefit from a dressier boot. This is a good time to try alligator, emu, ostrich, or less durable materials that can look more refined but aren’t as rugged as leather. A higher heel causes the foot to fit further forward, so you might try a half size larger when shopping for a dress boot.

For general walk-around cowboy boots, look for something a little less fussy. A simple all-leather boot goes with just about anything. Shorter boots provide less room for design and less protection, but are cooler in the summer and can be more comfortable. Look for a lower heel and a rounded toe.

If the classic look of vintage boots appeals to you, look for boots that were made in the 1960s and ’70s with subdued colors and a pointed toe. This is a timeless look that will blend well with today’s fashions. Try searching sites such as to turn up some rare finds, and remember that a tall boot allows more room for a fun design.

A working cowboy needs function more than style. A tall boot protects from brush, bramble, and broncs. A tough, durable leather ensures dependability and longevity while a lower heel (about 1 5/8 inch) can still easily grip the stirrup.


Set your boots down. Do they stand up straight or fl op to the floor? Lift it up and check the weight. Does it feel like a boot or a pair of sneakers? Most quality boots weigh about 4 pounds a pair.

Check the fit across the top of the boot. Since there aren’t any laces, the top of the boot should fit snug across the top of the foot. Try a variety of brands. Different brands fit differently, so if one store or brand doesn’t work, continue to shop around.

Know your materials. Exotic leathers usually don’t belong in the barn and rustic leather can clash with formal attire. Decide where you’re going to wear the boots most. The preferred style in most rural areas in Oklahoma and Texas is a round toe with a lower heel, while folks in urban areas such as San Antonio and Dallas currently prefer a pointed toe and a longer spur shelf to keep longer jeans from touching the ground.


Find It: The Perfect Pair of Boots

My motto when you find a boot with a good fit buy them. That is probably why I own 22 pair of great cowboy boots, and one pair of sandals to my name. No one pair of boots can be perfect. Good but not perfect.



White Boots

I havn't seen any mention White boots. They have been in Spokan Wa. for many, many years. I know most loggers are familiear with them for they make calk boots. I had them make me a pair of ropers back in 85. I still have them. I've had them re soled and heeld twice. I don't wear them much anymore since comming back to the flat country but when I was in the mountains and rideing in rough country they had a lot of abuse . When White Boot Co. makes you a pair of boots they file your measurments and so to re-order all ya have to do is call them

The Cowboy Poet

Love them Boots!

I love my cowboy boots, I wear em everywhere but its winter now so I have been sticking with my waterproof wolverine work boots. I got my first pair of Dan Post's four years ago but the guy at the store didn't fit me right, so I thought cowboy boots were just plain hell to wear until recently! I tried some Ariat heritage boots and they were excellent, but I was being cheap so I bought some Laredo's which were too narrow (due to the same store's advice!) and tried them for a few weeks but had to sell them on Ebay!!
I bought a pair of Ariat ropers and they are excellent and comfortable boots! I broke down and had to try some more Dan Post's because I love how they look. I felt bad since I lost 114 bucks on those damn laredo's and I got lucky and found some new Dan Post's on amazon for 68 bucks! What a deal, so I basically broke even with that savings and i made 40 on the Laredo's on ebay! Awesome! I have my eyes on the black Ariat heritage r toes next! I look forward to learning more about boots and buying more in the summer when this arctic crap clears!

"sing a song about the heartland, sing a song about my life" George strait

Boots are great for many

Boots are great for many occasions. There's boots that can be used at weddings or in the work place, as well as at rodeos or ropings. They really are the best shoes!

Stove Pipe Boots

What ever happend to the 'stove pipe boots ' that had the square tops and were calf high.? Some called them buckaroo boots also. But these tall tops on these boots served a purpose and they were designed to do such. Down on the border and anywhere else in snake country they have prevented many a cowboy from suffereing a snake bite. They also prevented your pant leg from rideing over the boot top while rubbing against saddle leather all day. The last pair I was able to obtain was down in Mexico in the 60s.

The Cowboy Poet

I have a pair of buckaroo

I have a pair of buckaroo boots I wore when riding down in Skull Valley, AZ. I tucked my pants into them, plus wore chaps. It protected my Levis.

My wife used to laugh at me, wearing $350 boots and $150 Chaps to protect a pair of $25 levis,,,,

Actually they were to protect me,,,,,

My Boots

I cannot live with out my boots, crazy as that might sound. It drives my mom and sister crazy. I have other shoes, but will not wear them because they are not as comfortable as my boots. I own about 9 pair and want more. I have certain uses for certain pairs of boots.

...Ain't found 'em yet

I don't own any shoes. I have no use for 'em. I'm pretty much stuck with Justin, Dan Post 'n the usual 'off the shelf' boots. For one thing... a pair of boots lasts me about 3 years or less before they're totally shot. This desert is rough on footwear. In my opinion... many of the 'old name' bootmakers have caved to makin' fancy clown shoes for the urbanite. Maybe that's where the money is... and that's their business model... but not my business. The 'west' ain't all like a Ft. Worth juke-joint.

I want a boot with a 'J' toe... undershot heel w/ a decent spur shelf (to hold the spur shank up... not my Wranglers), steel shank 'n a band across the instep for the leathers. I want 'em high enough that the stirrup straps don't eat into the back of my leg. It'd be nice if the fancy stitchin' on the shanks would really keep the shank from floppin' over... but that's sort of a lost cause.

When I find a pair of boots that have all these features... and are durable... I'll buy 'em. 'Ain't found 'em yet.

A round downrange cannot be recalled.

Favorite Boots

My favorite boots are a Custom pair of Don Roundy Boots. I can wear them all day and night. I love being able to pick my own leathers and to have your boot maker actually know you. I don't clean them just spray them with a hose and they will last a lifetime.

I thought it was going to be

I thought it was going to be some boring old post, but I'm glad I visited.

Thank you for sharing this

Thank you for sharing this valuable information. Right now I'm busy with my project and then I'm planning to go to Canada . That's why these days I'm too busy with my documents and can not afford to search for these same things. Keep sharing…

Thanks for sharing

I love horse riding so much, yes obviously, i am using so many quality boots for it. I have 2 pairs of Ariat Square, they are comfortable and easy to wear and ride. I have used before China Boots, they were comfortable too and cheap in price to me but now, i like to buy 1 pair of both "the vintage" and "the casual" boots. The design of boots are awesome. Thanks for sharing


heres a twist, I've always worn loggin boots. from grip in the muddy brush, waterproof for "swimmin", secure and quite comfortable. Only wished they were lighter. Ive long been a fan of chippewa boots. They were a division of justin, but things have changed a bit lately. It irks me how hard it is to get made in USA boots these days. My redwings dont measure up, white's are great but never had a pair myself. Just seen what they can go through. Those vibram lug soles are my pick for doin just about everything.

"I've always been crazy, but it keeps me from goin insane!"

boots boots and more boots

I agree with one reader on Ariat. Wow they felt like a pair of slippers and quite a difference when i went riding with them. Nice! I thought maybe i "could" buy some online but i really think it's better to go to a physical store and i ended up trying on maybe 5 or 6 pairs before i found my wonderful Ariat Fat Babies...even within Ariat i had to try on a few before i found the perfect pair. Worth it though!!! I really recommend that brand. When I do have more money, i'd like to get a fancy pair from Lucchese, not for riding though, more just walking around...oooh. ;)


Everyone laughed at my red

Everyone laughed at my red Justin lace up ropers. I was going through a pair about every 3 months. Changed to Dbl H lace ups and they didn't last any longer. Finally found a pair of Ariats. Holy about comfortable. I put them on and wear them all day and finally take them off at bed time. In the ring I wear my Boulets...not my most comfortable but certainally my best looking exotics against the horse.
I'm an Ariat kinda gal everyday.

My Boots

It is all about comfort. I have owned several pair of boots in my life. Probably the best ones I ever owned were a pair of Frye's. They probably were not the prettiest, but they were the most comfortable! I don't think I have owned a pair like those since. They were just like going bare foot. Perfectly comfortable!

PS ::

Mr. Beck's custom boots are made specifically FOR ranching and are customized. Meaning :: you choose the leather, soles, heel and toe style, stitching and tops .. take an imprint and measure each of your feet according to kit instructions and send it in! The boots are made to Fit YOUR feet and only yours!! My husband says they are the most comfortable boots he's ever worn (these are for the ladies too). You can visit their site to see more or catch him at an expo somewhere ...

Hmmmmmmmm, Nice

I visit this site daily to see if anything new has been added. work at home You have a nice work in your all site! It looks that you are highly expert blogger. Your post is an excellent example of why I keep coming back to read your excellent quality content that is forever updated.
That was exactly what I needed to read today.

Thank you

K so ..

I might be a little "rhinestone-y" .. *lol*, but just because I have a preference doesn't mean I don't get dirty!!! My poor gringos have seen it all from the dusty dirt roads of home to city streets .. hallways of the malls and art museums to the pasture and pen .. and yes, they've had horse sh*t on 'em!! They are tried and true and I love 'em!!! I'm not trying to be negative about your boot preference, so forgive me if I came off that way ... I think I've heard you can get them damp (fairly liberally) and dry them in the oven on low to soften the leather ... maybe oil will work w/ that too!?!??? There are people who will tell ya that if they're not comfy, then you aren't workin hard enough, but I disagree .. comfy boots are important from the get-go .. 'specially when you're in 'em all day!! If you haven't tried anderson beans, maybe slip into a pair .. see what you think!!!?!??!? I do hope you find something you like soon!! :)

it's all about comfort when

it's all about comfort when it comes to your boots. I don't need no stinkin ostrich or stingray boots. The girls like it more when they know you actually work and aren't some dang rhinestone cowboy. I'm sorry. But buying boots and a hat won't make you a cowboy.

I wear the same boots to church as I do at rodeos steppin in bull sh*t and workin on the farm. Doble H or Ariats are the most comfortable boots money can buy. Justins just never appealed to me. I have owned 2 pair, and both wore out way too fast. My ariats lasted 3 years, and woulda made it longer, but i had them in the bed of my truck (they had my spurs on them) and it rained. they got leather mold on them, and you can't clean that stuff off. well, you can, but it still won't smell good haha

I've never given Ariat a go...

but I've seen alot of 'em around, I still like Justin though, of all the boots I've ever owned, Justin has always been the best for me.

I have owned a few pairs of

I have owned a few pairs of Ariats (have on a pair as we speak) but I am definitely getting me a new pair of boots soon. Not sure what kind im getting yet but I know the look I want.

Philippians 4: 13

Forum Moderator - American Cowboy


I have two pairs of boots Tonys and Justins, and maybe I have to break them in a little more or do I? There both a little uncomfortable any suggestions??? I know you get what you paid for, and I paid a lot for them.

Since Tony Lama and Justin

Since Tony Lama and Justin are now the same co. these boots were probably made on the same last.

I posted this here somewhere before but if it a too snug situation. Heres a cure. get you some zip lock bags, put enough water in them to where they fit snugly in the boot. Then stick them in the freezer. The freezing water will epand and stretch them. It's best to oil them up good before hand.

I quit useing neets foot and all the other brands of leather oils years ago and use nothing but peanut oil on all my tack and boots

The Cowboy Poet

comfy boots

Have you tried steppin into the horse trough then using a boot stretcher? They often just need to get wet and stretched a bit. Horse sh-- works wonders in shaping them to your feet.

New Boots

Sounds like to me they need to just be broke in so the leather can be soften. And you might put some leather softer oil on them. Give them some time and they will fit your feet.

Romans 8:28


Thanks! I will wear the boots a little more to see if I can break them in. I will also get some leather softener just in case.

Thanks for writing back
Cowgirl at heart

When you say they are

When you say they are uncomfortable do you mean like they feel too small?

Philippians 4: 13

Forum Moderator - American Cowboy


No, not to small, they rub around the inside of my ankle, I have been trying to look for a thicker sock to wear, what do you recommend?

I don't know whither I posted

I don't know whither I posted this on here before or not . But its a sure fire way to make them tight boots loosen up. Get you some zip lock sandwich bags and fill them with water just to the point you can crowd them down in the boot. put them in the freezer. The frozen water stretches the boot even. It helps to give them a good oiling first. I've swtched to peanut oil for all my saddles and gear.

The Cowboy Poet

From a boot girl! ;)

OH LORD!! Womens boots for comfort AND style = Old Gringo, Dan Post, Charlie 1 Horse, Frye and Andersen Bean!!! Now my husband would HIGHLY recommend a pair of Beck custom made boots! :) I believe it to be true with many things in life .. "You Get What You Pay For"!

acme snakskins

i have a pair of acme snakeskin boots my grandpad gave me that i were almost everywhere. love em and woud not trade em for nothing. the only thing my grandpa gave me.


i've been wearing justin boots all my life and had been happy with them, but happen to stumble on a pair of Ariat roughstock sq. toe boots and am now on my 2nd pair! i never knew what comfort was until I bought these! I give them a 10 and would recommend them to anyone! only thing i would change is the heighth they run about 11 inches or so and another 3 or 4 would be perfect for riding!

Best boots

I have been wearing REAL cowboy boots (2 1/2" heels) for 60 years, everything from custom Lucchese's to Justin, Nocona and on and on. Although none of these do I consider less than high quality, by far the best boot I have ever worn is a Stewart boot out of Tucson, Arizona. The quality of materials, construction, and comfort is second to none. These boots have been made by the same family since the 1930's and their customer service is the best there is. I recommend Stewart boots to anyone wanting a first rate boot thats to be worn daily. the phone number out there is 520-622-2706

Boots, Boots, I don't need no stinkin new boots...

This may not be what advertisers want to hear but of the 17 pair of boots I own, only 2 pair came from a retail store. That's right, 2 out of 17.

I buy from ebay and the thrift stores. I have done this for years and perhaps only twice have I had to resale on ebay boots that I did not like. I have probably on average spent less than thirty dollars each for anything from Dan Post to Lucchese. I have found the Justin and Tony Lama boots the most versatile.

Understand, I would never have acquired some many boots if I had not bought from ebay and thrift stores. The two I did buy from retail stores set me back almost as much as the other 15. Go figure.

Bargin boots.

WellI have found some great deals at the Salvation Army outlets. Down here in Az. there are a lot of snow birds every year and sadly to say some are old and they don't make it out so alot of their things are donated to the SA. I have bought about every brand of boots made Since Justin bought out Tony Lama I consider them the same boot. Years back I bought a pair of Fry boots. They were made in NY and were one of the best pair of bronc boots I ever owned. I've got a pair of White Packers I had made way back in 85. They have been sould and heeld a couple of times but are still in good shap. I couldn't wear my Tony Lama buckaroo boots out so I gave them to my grandson. I figure as long as it's comfortable and ya get good service out of it it's a good boot.

What ever happend to the old stove pipes?

The Cowboy Poet


I have gotten one pair of my boots from ebay as well. Paid 48 bucks instead of 140! The most I have paid for boots in a store though is 150. If I buy from stores around my area, I travel to the different stores and check prices before I buy.

Philippians 4: 13

Forum Moderator - American Cowboy

Loved selling boots!

In a past life I owned a Western Wear Store and carried Lucchese, Larry Mahan, Justin, Tony Lama, etc., etc., boots. Those were the good old days.

Have carried around my favorite boots for years, hoping to get to use them on a regular basis again. Still working on that! My most comfortable boots were, and are now, my leopard-print calf skin boots by Larry Mahan.

Enjoyed the on-line boot story, and am slowly getting to the 'hard copy' story. I will be linking to it on my website:

Susie Blackmon

Cowgirl Cravings:
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I have a pair of Double H Wide Square Work Roper Old Town with Red Tops (DH3556). They are a though boot and a good looken boot. And the best thing about these boots is they are MADE IN THE U.S.A.

Romans 8:28


I have a pair of Ariat Square and I love them! The most comfortable boot I have owned. I just bought a pair of Double H black boots for going out, They are a soft leather and feel really good on.

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