Submitted by joeyd219 t3_11c1d09 in BuyItForLife

I always get holes in the tops of my shoes (a podiatrist told me I have tight tendons so my toes curl slightly upwards). I typically wear sneakers because my job is physical, but the mesh-like material on top clearly isn't holding up!

I have no idea what shoe brands have a reputation for actually lasting a long time. I saw a Reddit mention Ecco, that's the extent of my shoe knowledge. My fiance has a great pair of shoes handed down from her mom, so old that the brand name has rubbed off -- but they are still intact and comfortable! I'd really like to find that kind of shoe...


* Breathable (physical job = sweaty feet)

* Comfortable for 8 hour days standing and moving heavy items around

* Durable (I'm willing to pay $150 for shoes that'll last, tired of spending $60 twice a year)



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Junior_Ad2955 t1_ja191c7 wrote

I wear Psudos and they last pretty long. I work 12 hours shifts and am constantly up and down stairs of a 4 floor prison. They always have new designs to and are very breathable and durable


Muncie4 t1_ja1gruf wrote

Breathable is pretty much off the table as, like you stated, your issue is top wear and anything mess is gonna be a no.

Comfort is a not as that's personal. No one can tell you want is comfort like no one can tell you your favorite album, movie or pizza topping.

BIFL sneakers start and stop with Margom sole as they can be resoled by a cobbler. So put that into google and see what you like, but you will likely be paying more than your budget.

Alternate advice is to get 2 pair of identical shoes and alternate the wear. Same color or perhaps different but same type. One famously known long wearing shoe is the Adidas Samba.


ghighi_ftw t1_ja245sd wrote

In most case if you want shoes to work with, you end up with boots. A good pair will go over your budget, and they will probably not be breathable as you mean it, but people typically wear them for hours on end and never complain. Also a good pair will probably last a lot longer than just a year unless you work in the most demanding environment, in which case a tough pair of boots was a good idea to begin with anyway.

You can look at the channel Rose Anvil on YouTube. Most vids are random boots and shoes being reviewed which won’t help much if you don’t know what you want, but there are a few rankings as well which could give you ideas.


ktoap7 t1_ja1ivlk wrote

Get a pair of KEENs! I’ve had low back problems for the last 15 yrs and assumed I’d be following Dr orders of wearing “only well-fitting running shoes” for most weekly activities.

Had many issues with that then trial and error’d half dozen trail shoes thru work boots. Keens (especially their mid to high end boots) are the most comfortable footwear I’ve ever worn. And they will take years of abuse in my experience. Again, this was their mid to high end outdoor/trail shoes and work boots. The only boot is tell u is better are red wings. But most redwings are $300+ out the door.

*I will caveat this by saying I normally need a 3e or 4e width. If you have any extra width in your feet, KEENS are perfect.


Lastpunkofplattsburg t1_ja1sx68 wrote

I’ve had my yorks for 3 years. I think they’re called the franks. They’re really comfortable, I wore them as my every day shoe and now they’re my kitchen shoes. They do have a mesh top but another style might not.


enV2022 t1_ja1twlp wrote

Might be one of the rare instances I would go with boots since your toes are destroying lighter made material.


sundog5631 t1_ja2mote wrote

Serious recommendation: keen low top hiking boots. They’re not super heavy, have more breathability than most boots, durable, and I find them wildly comfortable.

They’re called the targhee ii and they’re like $90. I spent 4 summers with the same pair as a maintenance guy at a summer camp. Not gonna last 40 years, but you’ll definitely get well over 6 months


CamelHairy t1_ja38i2a wrote

Your podiatrist probably told you to forget the sneakers and go to a leather shoe.

I recommend San Antonio Shoe Company out of San Antonio Texas. Their not cheep, around $250. But I was a research technician with equal time in cement floors as I was on carpet. My pair is now well over 8 years and I cannot kill them. Only secret I found is to keep them in cedar Shoe trees when not in use (keeps them from curling upwards). My son an Electrical engineer also wears the same.

They can also be resoled.

I wear their Aiden Oxford line


frenchmoth t1_ja3bkyr wrote

I have been wearing columbia redmond III mid for years and am very happy with them


pan567 t1_ja3viop wrote

The breathable portion is where you are going to run into some issues. I have two pairs of Redwings I purchased in 2007 that I still wear frequently during the winter, and I purchased them because at the time I worked a physical job. Construction-wise, they are well-made and very durable--I moisturize the leather twice a year with Leather Honey, have used them with a shoedryer since the day I bought them, and they continue to still look great. But, they are not the most breathable shoe. You will not wear through the top of a pair of Redwings. When I was wearing them for 8-12 hour workdays, I would generally wear them with a thicker sock.

With any good pair of shoes, if your feet sweat, IMHO a shoe dryer is worth its weight in gold.


waggletons t1_ja51kq4 wrote

If you want durability, you want leather. Since you want cheap footwear, you're better off buying surplus military.

As long as you don't saturate the leather boots with wax conditioners, they'll breathe just fine. Wear decent wool socks also.


nudetayne678 t1_ja5qrqc wrote

Thorogood boots are the best. I have a pair I’ve worn almost every day for the last 7 years and they are still going strong


Diotima245 t1_ja5yo0h wrote

I had same issue basically you need to get shoes without they mesh on top. I know hiking sneaker shoes have a more durable top. I have a pair of Keens that look like sneakers but they’re meant more hiking or rubbing outdoors on trails. Much more durable.


WeekdayVampire t1_ja6h6m0 wrote

As others have said, a resolable leather boot will last many years, but they’re not cheap. The most affordable option that comes to mind is Jim Green. Their African Ranger has a wide sturdy toe box with a cap. It runs about $170 and it’s made with stitchdown construction that can be resoled. The resole might cost close to the original cost of the shoe, but the leather upper shouldn’t wear out for years. They’re made in South Africa, but I think their US distribution is through Amazon.