Blundstone shoes review
Blundstone boots review
When it comes to winter boots, we see the same basic styles repeated over and over: tall profiles, thick shearling lining, miles of lace. The folks at Blundstone went the opposite direction, opting for a lower rise, slip-on entry and thinner, lighter-weight materials. With this combination, Blundstone promises “outstanding comfort and durability” without sacrificing warmth or style.
But has it paid off? Are the boots as great as the company claims? That’s what we wanted to find out, so we put this popular footwear to the test.
How we tested Blundstones
For this article, we tried out the Blundstone High Top Boots and the Blundstone Classic 550 Chelsea Boots models for over a year to find out if the boots are as comfortable and durable as promised. Here’s what we found.
What are Blundstones?
Blundstone is an Australian footwear company that’s been around in one form or another for over 150 years. In 1968, they introduced their 500 series of elastic-sided comfort boots, which quickly gained a cult following among Australians as the go-to bush boot. Before long, the shoe started popping up in chic boutiques across London and New York as workwear became a staple of counterculture style.
Although the shoes are no longer made in Australia (they’ve since outsourced their production to Vietnam, Thailand, India, China and Mexico), they’re still viewed by many as the quintessential Aussie shoe, and the company has gone to great lengths to reinforce that image. Nowadays, they’re a popular all-season boot for anyone looking to add some workwear charm to their wardrobe.
How do Blundstones fit?
If you’re used to a trim, sleek-fitting shoe, then by comparison, Blundstones will likely feel like you’re wearing a Kleenex box. The shoes are notoriously chunky, with a big, bulbous toe box that some have compared to that of a clown shoe.
Still, the exaggerated silhouette isn’t without its merits. For one, they’re incredibly comfortable, with ample room in the toe box. That means if you wear thick socks in the winter, or if you have bunions, you’ll still be able to slide into Blundstones with ease. The arches are a regular height, but if you find that they’re not cutting it, you can pair them with insoles for added support.
A critical thing to understand when ordering Blundstones is that according to the manufacturer, half sizes refer to the width, rather than the length of the shoe. So a size 8.5 will be wider than a size 8, but the length will be exactly the same.
Are Blundstones warm for winter?
Blundstones may not look like your typical winter boot, but we found that they perform exceptionally well in colder climates. On multiple occasions, we were able to wear thin socks on a 23-degree day and go for an hour-long walk without our feet getting cold. What’s more, the water-resistant leather makes them great for sloshing around in slush and rain.
Still, if you live in an exceptionally cold area and you’re looking for optimal warmth, the company also makes a slightly more expensive thermal version of the shoe, which comes with a removable sheepskin footbed.
Blundstone Classic 550 Style Boots review
From the minute we first put them on, the Blundstone classic 550s were the most comfortable shoe we owned. We loved that we could pull them on and off easily, and the fact that they’re warm but lightweight meant we could wear them year-round.
One great thing about this shoe is how versatile it is. We initially bought Blundstones because they’re comfortable and stylish, but they quickly became our go-to boot for long hikes and trips to the beach. They’re also versatile on a styling level — these shoes look just as good under slim-fit jeans as they do under wide military fatigues or corduroy slacks.
As for the durability, we’re convinced these boots were built to last. After wearing them just about every day for almost 5 years, they’re still in great shape. The high-quality nubuck leather isn’t quite as supple as it was when we first bought them, but the shoe still looks and feels incredible.
Blundstone High Top Boots review
The Blundstone High Top Chelsea boots are similar to the classic 550 style, but they have a higher, slimmer collar and an accent around the elastic sides. By all accounts, they are just as warm and comfortable as the 550s, but with a slightly more refined silhouette.
We opted for the #1630 model, which comes in a rustic black color with a kind of black/gray cloudiness that hasn’t shown any signs of wear or discoloration after months of trudging through snow sludge and road salt.
The durability was also on par with that of the classic model, and the leather was soft and thick without being too heavy. In the end, this shoe would be great for someone who’s interested in Blundstones but would like something just a bit more flashy than the 550s.
How much do Blundstones cost?
Generally, a pair of baseline Blundstone boots will cost at least $190. That price goes up when you add things like interior leather lining, sheepskin footbeds, and waterproof leather uppers. For this article, we reviewed the classic 550s ($209.95) and the high tops ($199.95).
Where to buy Blundstones
Blundstones have ballooned in popularity in recent years, and for good reason: They’re well-made, comfortable boots that are built to last. The leather uppers are really high quality for a sub-$250 boot, and the non-slip outsoles provide excellent traction in icy conditions. The shoes are also comfortable enough to wear around all day, which is part of the reason these shoes are so popular among service industry workers. Finally, the shoes are water-resistant and warm, meaning they’re just as useful in the winter months as they are in fall and spring.
For all their advantages, Blundstones still aren’t perfect boots. For one, they can take a while to break in, and until that happens, they can be difficult to take on and off. The sizing is also confusing — half sizes refer to width rather than length, and they’re marked with Aussie sizing, which is a full size bigger than standard US sizing. Sorting this out may take a few tries, which is why we recommend trying a pair on in person before you buy.
Are Blundstones worth it?
Blundstones are a great example of a form-meets-function shoe. As a work shoe, they’re comfortable and durable as can be, made with excellent materials that will wear and age beautifully. The shoes are also having something of a moment in the fashion world right now, and you wouldn’t look out of place wearing them in the trendier parts of Brooklyn. For around $200, you can hardly find a better, more versatile shoe.
We recommend this boot for those who are looking for a comfy yet stylish all-season shoe to round out their wardrobe.
Landon Groves is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.
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