Best Safety Trainers for 2023
If you work in security, there’s a better-than-good chance that you spend a lot of time on your feet. As protective as a lot of tactical safety footwear like Lowa or Magnum boots, it isn’t always the most comfortable thing to wear for long periods. The shoes on this list, then, are all designed to be protective, but also to be as lightweight and comfortable as a pair of trainers.
What's covered in this guide
Most Waterproof Safety Trainer
Zoe Ashley Lightweight Safety Shoes
These shoes look as lightweight and comfortable as any other pair of off-the-rack running shoes, but they also contain a lot of protective elements, such as a steel toe cap, excellent puncture proofing and a very durable outsole.
The design is nice as well. The shoes resemble trainers, but have no flashy decals, logos, patterns or colouring besides black, meaning that they can be worn with your uniform and will not look out of place. They can also be worn as trainers without looking incongruous.
These safety shoes fit the foot well and boast very good arch support. They also feel really light on the feet as they weigh much less than tactical or steel toe-capped boots.
One thing we noticed right away was that the shoes appear, at first glance, to be a bit slim. Accordingly, those with wider feet may be put off when ordering online, without the chance to physically try on the shoes. However, despite their slightly slender appearance, these shoes are very accommodating, even to larger feet.
On that note, we found the sizing to be somewhat off, with the shoes being a little bit bigger than we felt they ought to be. We would therefore suggest that buyers consider purchasing a size below their regular shoe size, in order to ensure a comfortable fit.
As nice as these shoes are, you may find them a bit of a struggle to take on or off, however. This is because the laces don’t open the foot aperture very wide, making it hard to quickly insert your foot. On the plus side, this means that the shoes fit very securely and that you won’t have to contend with laces coming undone at inopportune moments.
Air seems to circulate well throughout the shoes. The outer material, fashioned from a mesh-like fabric, feels light and breathable, which is an especially welcome feature during the summer months.
The downside here is that the shoes take in water far too easily (even dew on the grass is enough to soak your socks when wearing these), but the increased air circulation and light materials do mean that they dry fairly quickly. Nevertheless, these shoes are not in any way, shape, or form waterproof.
The polyurethane foam insole is exceptionally comfortable and easy to wear, being particularly well suited to being in use over long periods.
The rubber outsole is also highly resistant to slipping, which helps if you’re wearing the shoes on slick surfaces (such as around spilled oil or ice). This resistance to slippage is excellent for wet surfaces but doesn’t work very well at all for floors covered with materials like dust, sand, or sawdust.
The puncture proofing is good quality also. Fashioned from a high-density, anti-penetration, Kevlar-like fibre, this affords the midsole better-than-good protection from sharp objects, such as broken glass, blades, or shards of metal.
However, only the shoe’s midsole is protected in such an elaborate manner. The protection does not extend to some of the sole, nor the rest of the shoe. Both areas are no better protected than they would be by a regular pair of trainers, which means that it’s still very possible to have your feet cut by sharp objects while wearing these shoes. This is a genuine shame, as it means that some parts of your feet will be protected more by luck than design.
The steel toe caps are capable of withstanding 200 joules of impact, which is the European standard for steel toe caps. 200 joules would be the equivalent of a 20kg (44lbs) weight being dropped on your foot. 20kg would itself be the equivalent of around 4 litres of paint or 10 bags of sugar – definitely enough to break a toe without the proper protection. The shoe’s outer layers of rubber provide added protection even to this, which really makes your feet feel secure.
On the downside, these shoes fit rather more snugly than steel toe-capped boots, meaning that you can feel the steel on your toes if you happen to trip up or kick something. We feel that a thin layer of padding between the cap and the toes would have made a big difference here.
In summary, these shoes suffer most from being an awkward combination of light, comfortable running shoes and tough, protective steel-toed boots. They can’t be both, so accordingly, they fail to fully qualify as either. They aren’t protective or weatherproof enough to be worn as safety gear, but the inclusion of steel and protective materials stops them from being as easy-to-wear as the manufacturers clearly want them to be.
Nevertheless, this is still a good product. The shoes are comfortable and lightweight and can be worn over extended periods. Furthermore, they are breathable and soft, but they also resist sharp objects, slick floors and impacts from above. It’s frankly impressive that a shoe as comfortable as this could be so reliably hardwearing.
✅ When you pick them up you think there not that light but on your feet they actually are really light.
✅ Relatively comfortable as well, they fit well to the foot and have a nice arch support
Best Lightweight Safety Trainer
Ulogu Safety Trainers
These shoes look more conspicuously like running shoes than some other safety trainers we’ve seen. However, they retain an all-black ‘no frills’ design that should see them acceptable for wear at home or at work.
The only impediment we can see to wearing them in a professional context is the inclusion of a red stripe along the back of the sole and the manufacturer’s logos in white on the sides and tongue. It should be OK, but their acceptability really depends on how much of a stickler your clients/employers are.
These Ulogu safety trainers have a steel toe cap that conform to European standards by resisting a force of up to 200 Joules, or 20kg, approximately the weight of a 4-year-old child. The website even features a video of these shoes being run over by a car!
You might be forgiven for expecting the toe caps to feel kind of clunky and heavy, but they are actually very lightweight. In fact, wearing these shoes feels more like wearing a pair of slippers. You can certainly feel the toe cap, but it isn’t uncomfortable in the slightest.
The shoes also boast an anti-puncture midsole. The materials used (we’re reliably informed) are of the same type used for various military applications and are therefore non-metallic, which allows the shoe to offer a high standard of protection, while still feeling soft and lightweight. Thanks to this feature, the midsole is very difficult to puncture, meaning that you can step on sharp objects like broken glass, metal shards and discarded nails without fear of penetrating the shoe.
On the downside, this does mean that the sole is particularly thick. This won’t be a problem for everybody, but those expecting something closer to a running shoe may find this design choice difficult to contend with.
The sole is also very soft, which is great for comfort, but really won’t help to absorb a heavy impact, so we wouldn’t recommend these shoes for someone guarding, for example, a building site or industrial area.
The outer parts of the shoe are fashioned from a mesh-like material that allows air to circulate around the shoes. This breathability is good for several reasons, principally because it helps the trainers to feel light and not too heavy (as tactical boots can after prolonged usage).
However, this feature’s downside is that the shoes aren’t as waterproof as we might like. Nevertheless, they do OK, even withstanding the moisture from heavy snowfall.
The shoes are also ‘anti skid’, with a strong grip on the sole that is supposed to prevent slipping or falling on slick or wet surfaces. However, we found this to not really be the case. In fact, they don’t grip especially well on slippery surfaces and offer little help in the wet.
In the area of gripping, these shoes may offer little, if any, improvement over running shoes, but this is nevertheless a very good product. The design elements (which do look more trainer-like than some employers may be expecting) and the thick soles may be off-putting to some, but we still think this is a very decent pair of safety shoes – and very worth trying out if you’re in the market for a pair.a
✅ They are surprisingly light in weight at just 670g, it’s like wearing slippers
✅ They’re comfortable and whilst you can feel the safety cap its not uncomfortable at all.
✅ Made of advanced mesh, which not only ensures its light , but also softness of the shoes body
❌ No use in the wet very slidey on certain surfaces
❌ Not totally waterproof
Best Steel Toe Cap Trainer
D.Y.K.H.M.I.L.Y Air Cushion Safety Trainers
D.Y.K.H.M.I.L.Y (which stands for ‘Do You Know How Much I Love You’ in case you wondered) have put out a pair of safety trainers that wouldn’t look out of place on the shelf in JJB’s, but that are also highly protective. It’s a nice mixture of fashion and functionality that could see them selling very well indeed.
The design, despite being entirely black, does resemble more of a trainer than a shoe, however. This means that the shoes’ suitability for security work will depend both on your personal taste and the preferences of your employer. This could pose a problem for some security workers.
The steel toe cap conforms to European standards by being able to withstand 200 Joules’ worth of force. This makes it as solid as any other safety shoe we’ve looked at and should be enough to keep your toes safe from almost any impact.
As protective as these shoes are from above, keep in mind that the soles are very thin. For most security positions, this will probably be fine (for some, perhaps it will even be preferential).
However, these shoes are not recommended for those working on building sites, factory floors or anywhere that the ground is likely to be littered with loose nails, broken glass, or other sharp objects, as the soles feel like they would be very easy to pierce.
The shoes are reasonably comfortable and a big part of the comfort they offer is due to how lightweight they are. So, the sole may not offer much protection, but it is very light, meaning that these shoes can be worn for long periods of time without too much discomfort – definitely a plus in security work.
The sole itself is fashioned from a lightweight and wear-resistant PU material, but it also has an air cushion in the heel. This air cushioning not only serves to keep the shoes light, it also makes walking more comfortable and provides a degree of impact protection when moving about or exercising.
Despite this, these shoes are not the most comfortable we’ve seen. The shoes do feel a bit thin on the inside and a little bit of extra cushioning could really help in this regard. Accordingly, you may wish to purchase a pair of insoles if you want to add to the comfort level, but that’s a matter of personal preference.
The outer layers of the shoe have been fashioned from a knitted mesh fabric, which really allows the material to breathe, helping to keep your feet nice and cool, especially in the summer. The shoes won’t be particularly weatherproof, however.
Overall, this is a nice pair of safety shoes. However, they aren’t especially comfortable, and the sole is very thin, making them vulnerable from below. In addition, the design job might see them considered unacceptable for wearing at work. These negative traits are offset by just how lightweight the shoes are, which can be a real plus in some occupations.
✅ They are very light weight also look the part
✅ They have some cushioning in the heel so will absorb shocks
✅ Wearing them all day and wouldn’t even notice they are steel cap
❌ Not as comfortable as your regular trainers but they do have the Steal cap at the front which will protect your toes
❌ Sole of the trainer is a little on the thin side a nail could pierce through easier than other traditional steel toe boots
Most Comfortable Safety Trainer
DRECAGE Puncture-Proof, Shock Absorbing Safety Trainers
These safety shoes feature a smart, but basic design that makes them tough to visually distinguish from any other pair of trainers. They are mostly black, with a splash of white and silver to break the monotony. Such generic design choices can certainly be a plus when it comes to safety shoes, as you are free to wear them in a variety of situations.
If your employers are OK with trainers being worn at work (and the fact that these ones are not entirely black), it’s hard to see anybody taking issue with these shoes based on how they look.
The steel toecaps conform to EU standards, meaning that they can withstand 200 Joules’ worth of impact, as well as 1500 Newtons of compression. The soles are also reliably non-slip, which is another plus point. There are also metal inserts in the heels, for added protection.
We suggest purchasing a larger size than you usually take, however, because otherwise the toe cap can get a bit tight around the foot.
Another comfort issue occurs at the back of the shoe, which doesn’t grip well to the wearer’s heel, making it constantly feel as if the shoe is about to slip off.
Toe caps and heels notwithstanding, the rest of the shoe isn’t particularly hardwearing, so we wouldn’t suggest these shoes to somebody guarding a building site, but they might be well-suited for warehouse or retail work.
The outer parts of the shoe are made from a knitted mesh fabric that renders these shoes very breathable, even in hot weather. They can keep feet fresh and odourless, even after being worn over long periods of strenuous activity.
This light, neoprene-like material is highly adaptive as well, so it fits comfortably around the foot. As a result, the laces are mainly for tightening the shoe, rather than attaching it to the foot, so this may take some getting used to if you mainly wear boots at work.
The outer layers of the shoes are not very strong and can split easily, even after moderate use. The insoles also wear away very easily. We therefore don’t recommend wearing these shoes over extended periods.
The midsole features a Kevlar inlay, which adds an extra layer of protection against sharp objects on the ground. This does not cover the entire soul, but it’s still a nice feature.
The soles also feature air cushioning, with an air unit beneath the heel that absorbs much of the shock from walking or running, something that can reduce fatigue over the long term and is especially useful for wearers who spend a lot of time on their feet.
All things considered; this is a pair of shoes that work a lot better on paper than they do in practice. All the features are there, the Kevlar insoles, the extra steel in the heels, etc. However, these shoes simply don’t do well when worn over extended periods of time, something the average security worker will probably need to do with them.
✅Most stylish looking Safety Trainer
✅ Neoprene-like material is highly adaptive, the laces are mainly for tightening the shoe than attaching it to the foot.
✅ Air unit beneath the heel that absorbs much of the shock from walking or running.
❌ Toe caps and heels notwithstanding, the rest of the shoe isn’t particularly hardwearing.
❌ Mid sole doesn’t cover the whole of the bottom of the shoe.
Best Anti-Puncture Safety Trainer
Zoe Ashley Steel Toe Cap Safety Trainers
These shoes have a nice, basic look to them. They aren’t too formal, and they aren’t too fun. Design wise, they sit somewhere in between the two. As a result, we feel that they would probably be appropriate for work or casual wear, which makes them well suited for a security worker.
The steel toecap is nice and spacious, offering plenty of room for your toes. Most trainers are a bit tight at the front, but these shoes feature quite a bit of space. This will be particularly welcome to those with wider feet.
The toe protection conforms to EU standards, being able to withstand 200 Joules’ worth of impact and thus protecting your toes from most dropped or falling objects.
The mesh fabric is very light and airy, which really allows the skin to breathe and air to circulate well around the shoes.
It does not repel water at all, but the manufacturers couldn’t have a fabric this lightweight and breathable that also repels water, so obviously they had to choose between waterproofing and breathability.
The material used to make the shoes is rather thin, however. This, coupled with the thickness of the toecaps, has led to some wearers comically describing them as feeling like wearing ‘oversized socks with a spud in the end’. The toecaps aren’t especially heavy, but a certain thickness is necessary for them to provide the proper protection, and this contrasts with the thin, airy material used in the construction of the outer shoe.
Sadly, this material is not very durable and begins to wear away after only short periods of use. The internal lining around the toe cap degrades easily as well. This can cause the wearer’s toes to rub painfully against the steel.
The midsole, however, fares a bit better, being fashioned from an anti-penetration, high-density fibre. We wouldn’t necessarily recommend these shoes to a person working on a floor filled with sharp objects (more because of the weak outer materials than the soles), but it’s still nice to have that extra protection. It isn’t great, but it’s better than nothing.
The insole, however, is reasonably well made. Fashioned from strong, but soft polyurethane, it fits the foot well, providing decent arch support, even as it cushions the feet and absorbs impacts made by walking or running.
The soles feature a ‘non-slip’ design that also works well. This is good for wearers who may need to walk over slippery surfaces such as oil or stock room spillages. It doesn’t work nearly as well on sandy or dusty surfaces, however.
It is rather hard to get your foot through the aperture, meaning that these shoes can be quite a challenge to get on and off. They’re OK once you get them on but pulling them off can weaken the material further.
All things considered; these shoes aren’t anything special. They are lightweight and reasonably comfortable, being wider than the usual fare and nicely cushioned. However, the materials used to make the outer layers of the shoe are weak, easily wearing away and ripping. This is not a shoe that will withstand long periods of use and therefore isn’t one we can recommend, sadly.
✅ Pleasantly surprised by the slightly wider sizing at the front which you VERY rarely get in trainers.
✅ When you pick them up you think there not that light but on your feet they actually are really light.
✅ Steel toe caps are good and work as promised.
❌ Material is not very durable and begins to wear away after only short periods of use
❌ They do not offer full protection as a leather boot but for comfort they are brilliant.
Best Safety Trainers for the Security Industry
Useful Information on Safety Trainers
What are the benefits of safety trainers?
The main benefit of safety footwear is that they provide protection for your feet while still being comfortable to wear. This means that you can stay on your feet for long periods of time without feeling uncomfortable or fatigued.
What features should you look for in safety trainers?
When choosing the best safety trainers, it is important to consider the features that are most important to you. For example, if you will be spending a lot of time walking or running, you will want a pair of shoes with good cushioning and support. Alternatively, if you need to be able to move quickly and agilely, you will want a pair of shoes that are lightweight and have good traction. Whatever your needs, there is a pair of trainers that will suit you.
What are the different types of safety trainers?
There are a few different types of safety footwear available on the market, each designed for a specific purpose. For example, there are running shoes that have been designed with safety in mind, as well as more traditional safety boots. Additionally, there are also slip-resistant shoes that are ideal for those working in slippery or wet conditions.
Steel toe caps
Most safety trainers will have a steel toe cap, which are designed to protect your feet from falling or rolling objects. The steel toe cap should cover the entire front of the shoe in order to provide maximum protection. Additionally, the toe cap should be made from tough and durable material in order to withstand repeated impact.
Impact Resistance of 200J
One of the most important features of the best safety trainers is that they are able to resist impact forces of up to 200J. This means that they will provide protection from falling or rolling objects, as well as from being stepped on. The shoes should also have good cushioning in order to absorb the shock of impact and protect your feet and ankles from injuries.
Another important feature to look for in lightweight safety trainers is slip-resistant outsoles. This is especially important if you will be working in slippery or wet conditions. The slip-resistant outsole will provide good traction and prevent you from slipping and falling.
Lightweight and Comfortable
Finally, the best safety trainers should be lightweight and comfortable to wear. This means that you can stay on your feet for long periods of time without feeling uncomfortable or fatigued. Additionally, trainers can help prevent injuries by providing support and stability to your feet and ankles.
Another important feature of the best safety trainers is that they have anti-puncture soles. This means that the soles of the shoes are designed to resist punctures from sharp objects. This is an important feature for those working in construction or other occupations where there is a risk of stepping on sharp objects.
No matter what your occupation, if you spend a lot of time on your feet, it is important to choose a pair of shoes that will protect you from potential injuries. Safety footwear is a great option for those who need both protection and comfort. With so many different types and styles available, there is sure to be a pair of the best safety trainers that is perfect for you