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8 Best Black Combat Boots – Comprehensive Review 2020

Best Black Combat Boots image

Footwear is something we are concerned about every day. Whether we should use loafers or sneakers, its something everyone has thought of. But what if there was a better option? That option is a pair of black combat shoes.

Black army shoes are a great fashion statement that's made its way out of military complexes and into your day to day life. Not only is it great to look at, but it's also a very useful pair of footwear. If you are not sure on what to wear or how to wear your black boots, just pick a white shirt to make a perfect outfit for your style.

Whether you're going to work on a Monday or taking a trek through a rocky mountain pass, you can expect your army shoes to see you through.

Our 8 Top Picks of Black Combat Boots Reviewed

In everything, there will always be the top and bottom of the pile. The same goes for your choices when it comes to the best black tactical shoes. We've put together the eight best black military shoes in the market to help you decide which pair will fit you and your needs.

Maelstrom - Shock Absorbent

Maelstrom Men's Tactical Work shoes are a great pair of shoes if you're looking for the best shock absorbent shoe. They come with a unique dynamic three sole systems exclusive to Maelstrom.

This system is made up of a removable cushion insole, an EVA midsole which makes it incredibly lightweight and flexible, and a rubber outsole. 

The dynamic three sole system helps to absorb massive impact and shock that would break other black military shoes. It also has a shock-absorbing cushion that is removable so that you can replace it with a brand new one should the need arise. 

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An added benefit in purchasing a pair of Maelstrom shoes is that they donate $1 per pair bought to a non-profit organization called the Boot Campaign. This organization helps veterans and military families nationwide by creating a bridge between military and civilian life. 



  • Unique Sole System

  • Flexible

  • Lightweight

  • Donates to a Charity

  • Not Waterproof

Under Armour - Minimalist Design

Under Armour Military Tactical shoe is your go-to tactical boot if you want something that will last a while but still being simple enough to wear on your daily commute. Its minimalist design is one of it's greatest advantages over other bulkier pairs of tactical boots on our list.

It's a pair of boots that can quickly dry themselves after being soaked in the rain. The shoes treated minimalist design is the reason for this. It also comes with an anti-odor technology courtesy of the Ortholite® sock liner. This makes sure that odor-causing fungi and microbes don't get the chance to take root in your favorite pair of black army combat shoes. 

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Durability and protection is something that you're not missing out on either as these boots have a molded EVA midsole with a reinforced TPU shank that gives you excellent protection for a shoe with such a minimalist design.


  • Minimalist Design

  • Quick-Drying

  • Anti-Odor Technology

  • Safety Protection


  • Not Too Durable

Danner - Lightweight

Danner Men's Duty Shoesis the lightest pair of shoes you'll ever purchase. Despite its lightweight profile, it doesn't compromise on the quality of materials used, nor does it compromise on durability. 

It meets US Air Force AFI 36-2903 standards, and it is also one of the shoes allowed for military airmen to use as part of their uniform.

Outside the military, these shoes offer exceptional comfort and maneuverability.

The Danner Duty Shoes are designed to give unmatched forefoot and heel capture. This improves its stability in heavy use situations like trekking or marathon running. It also has a tremendous anatomical shape that makes it comfortable to use.

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It has additional space at the toes to let your foot naturally react to high-intensity situations like carrying a heavier load or when you are quickly turning corners.


  • Lightweight

  • Comfortable

  • Durable

  • Stable


  • Thin Soles

5.11 - Multi-Purpose

5.11's Military Coyote Shoes are the best all-black leather combat shoes if your goal is having a pair to fill in every role. Whether you're going to be hiking, working at construction, or only going to the park, 5.11's military coyote shoes have you covered. 

It uses 100% authentic leather that not only makes sure that you're not getting some cheap faux leather found in low-end shoes.

It ensures its durability in tough situations and prolonged use thanks to the authentic leather used in its construction. You're likely to be using the same pair for years to come if you choose 5.11's tactical boots.

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These shoes passed the US military standards that makes it ideal for all users. It doesn't matter if you're a soldier having some r&r after your tour, or a beginning hunter being taught by your father how to hunt deer.


  • Authentic Leather

  • Durable

  • Passed Military Standards

  • Ideal for All Users



Rothco Military Jungle Shoes are similar to 5.11's shoes when it comes to the wide range of activities you can do with them. Where it differs is the material. 

Rothco's army combat shoes are made of a combination of nylon and canvas. Despite being less durable than authentic leather, these materials are the perfect answer for a wider range of activities when compared to the other shoes on our list. 

Besides the breathable and flexible material, you can expect a wide range of other built-in conveniences in Rothco's Military Jungle Boots.

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It comes with built-in steel shanks in between the insole and outsole that provide support to your heels and calves during long treks. Alongside the steel shanks easing the long treks, you've also got dual vent holes that keep your feet cool and dry. This does make it harder for you to use it in environments with deeper water, though, as water can leak in through the vent holes.


  • Breathable

  • Flexible

  • Supportive

  • Ventilated


  • Not Ideal for Narrow Feet

Smith & Wesson - Budget-friendly

Smith & Wesson Men's Breach 2.0 Tactical Size Zip shoes are the most budget-friendly option among our top eight and for a good reason. 

It might seem more expensive than Rothco's shoes, but that's just because of the material used. Smith & Wesson's black military shoes are cheaper than other leather-based options by as much as $60 while still giving you the great quality that's standard with all Smith & Wesson shoes. 

Smith & Wesson Zip Boots image

The best part is that not all of the money from your purchase goes to the company either. Each purchase with Direct Premium Buys lets them donate to Operation First Response, a non-profit organization that helps wounded soldiers.

Smith & Wesson uses a tough combination of both leather and nylon that mixes in great aspects of both. The durability and longevity of leather mixed with the flexibility of nylon make for one of the best black tactical boots you're going to get.


  • Donates to Charity

  • Durable

  • Affordable


  • Big Sizing

Rocky - Dual-performance

Rocky Men's Ry008 Military and Tactical shoes is a well-balanced shoe that you can wear to deal with most if not all situations your feet are going to be in.

Whether you're going to need to tread through a puddle of water or thick mud, Rocky's tactical shoes will get through without a problem. 

One of it's best features is its dual performance material upper that doesn't care whether it's raining or shining. It also comes with a polishable toe section that lets you give it a shine that other shoes don't have. Another edge that Rocky shoes have is its high-speed lace.

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Laces might be the least of your concerns when choosing a shoe for males, but it matters heavily in the long run. You can't keep a shoe on your foot without any, and having it break could mean you would have to buy a replacement. These shoes have very durable laces while implementing NATO hooks that make it faster and easier to tie your shoe in a flash.


  • Dual Performance

  • Great Polish

  • High-speed Lace


  • 1 Day Break-in

Bates - Slip-resistant

Bates Men's Safety Enforcer is a great shoe for trekking through uneven and slippery terrain. These boots have very good traction to keep you from slipping, even on an iced asphalt road. It's even passed the satra wtm144 test, which rigorously tests a shoe for its slipperiness. 

Not only is it slip-proof, but it also comes with a steel toe that makes sure that you don't stub your toes on anything that you walk into. It is also cold-proof, which makes sleet and snow a non-issue when using these boots, unlike other boots on our list that start to feel chilly in below zero situations.

Bates Safety Enforcer image

Combine that with a lightweight cement constructed frame, and you've got a very solid boot that you can use anywhere.


  • Steel-toe Protection

  • Cold-proof

  • Lightweight


  • Not too Comfortable

What to Consider in Choosing a Good Black Combat Boot

Now that you have an idea of which boots we picked for our top 8 black combat boots for men, we'll be sharing the criteria we used to pick them. There are several things to consider when picking the right shoe for you, and it can get overwhelming. However, all you need to do is remember the following things.

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Quality Materials

The first thing to take into account is making sure that your boot is made of quality materials. The worst way to find out is to check the manufacturer's website to see what they use for that specific boot. This is because they'll be doing their best to sugar coat their boot. Instead, look at the reviews. Most of the time, they are unbiased opinions from people who have already purchased it in the past. 


Durability is something that every shoe should have. Especially since black military combat shoes are mostly used in harsh environments like forests and swamps. Some are even used in military operations, as in the case of Danner and 5.11. 

The materials used play a big part in the shoe's durability. Leather, canvas, and nylon should be something you see in your boot. Avoid anything made up of Faux Leather as it will degrade much faster than the other tactical shoe material options you have.


Water is the worst enemy of any type of footwear. Water can cause irreversible damage to your black army combat boots. It's even worse if you have to wear the shoes for a prolonged period as you can contract an infection if your shoes ever get soaked. 

Most shoes on our list pass the waterproof test besides Rothco thanks to its dual vent holes. However, Rothco does make up for it with its versatility.


The next thing you should be aware of when it comes to picking the right boots is the size. Does your boot fit your foot? Picking the right size makes sure that you're comfortable while doing what you need to do. 

Too loose and your boot could slide right off and too tight could make it too uncomfortable for you to wear for long periods. So it's best to find the best fitting boot size before you purchase a new pair. 


Whenever you pick a new tactical shoe, you're going to need to prioritize comfort above everything else. Who cares if the shoe is the best brand around when you feel terrible walking around in it? 

Comfort is a priority that shouldn't be ignored, and you should be ready to reduce your choices to get the best comfort off of your shoe of choice. 

A good sign of comfortable black combat shoes is checking for steel toes and breathable materials. This is where Rothco dominates its competition as you aren't going to get a better shoe suited to comfort than a Rothco boot.

Parts of an Army Combat Boot that You Must Know

Regardless of the brand of boot you choose, they all come with the same basic parts. Where they differ is the quality and techniques used to make them. Some shoes will have different parts, but the ones we'll be talking about are standard in all boots. These parts are the insole, outsole, upper, and shaft.


The insole is the part of your black army boots where your foot will be resting on. You can expect that this part is where a large portion of a manufacturer's attention will shift, too, as it affects the comfort levels of your military combat boots. 

Some are removable and provide you a great way to replace it in case the old insole is damaged or worn. Maelstrom offers this option to you in case you need it.


The outsole is the part of your shoe that's in contact with the ground. You're likely to want an outsole that is slip-resistant to make sure you're firmly planted on the ground. This means most shoes will opt for a rubber outsole as rubber provides great traction.

The grooves on the shoes also matter as these provide extra friction. Bates black male combat shoes have the best reputation for being able to withstand slippery terrain, and this is because of its excellent outsole. 


The upper is anything that isn't below the outsole. Materials matter heavily when it comes to making the best black tactical shoes. Durability is very dependant on the upper as the connecting material that binds the upper and lower parts of the shoe are found here. 

Most of a boot's cost will also be found here as the upper is comprised of 80% of your shoe. Smith & Wesson has the best value by a landslide when it comes to the cost to durability ratio. This is because it costs almost $60 less than other shoes while still using authentic leather.


The shaft is the area above the ankle area of your shoe. This area's durability is dictated by the material used in the upper. Also, the method used to seal the shoe on your foot. You'll find either a zipper along the side or laces on the front. Sometimes even both. 

Boots that use a zipper tend to be waterproof as it creates a watertight seal. It can be difficult to replace, though. Steel toe black army shoes that use laces might not be as watertight as those that use zippers, but they're cheaper to maintain. This is because laces replaced easily.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are military boots good for everyday wearing?

Yes, most boots are great for everyday use as long as you maintain them. Certain shoes are better suited, however, as some military shoes are bulky. 

Under Armour has the best black tactical boots that you can use for everyday wearing. They have a great minimalist design while still giving you the feel and durability of full-fledged tactical shoes.

Are these brands good for running?

Yes, all the brands we've chosen are excellent at providing you with everything you need for running and more. If you're planning on running in the rain without slipping, we recommend Bates army boots as their boots provide unmatched traction, regardless of the running surface. 

What military boot is best for hot weather?

Hot weather can be an issue for many army boots, but if we were to take our pick of a good for hot weather, it would be Rothco. This is because Rothco's black male army boots that we mentioned earlier have dual vent holes. This lowers it's waterproofing in exchange for giving it a better method of keeping your feet dry and cool in hot weather. 


So these are the eight picks that we have when it comes to the best military boots out there. Do remember, however, that each person's needs are unique.

The boots we mentioned might not fit your needs perfectly, but they sure do one hell of a job fitting the role they were designed for.

But if you're still not sure of which specific army boot to purchase, feel free to go to each manufacturer's website to look for that one boot you'll be using for years to come.

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