Which Work Boots Are Made In Australia? (And Their Popular Models)

Sometimes, it can be difficult to know what country work boots are made.

A lot of people like to buy boots that are made in their own country so that they can support local businesses and put money into their own economy.

Other people have a preference for boots made in other specific countries. This can be because they like the style of those particular boots, or a certain country specializes in certain aspects.

It could be that you’re originally from that country and you want a taste of home.

Whatever the reasons, we at BestForMyFeet.com like to cater for all, giving everyone in the world as much information as we can.

This article is going to concentrate on work boots made in Australia. We recently gave you an article about popular Australian work boot brands.

But it doesn’t necessarily mean that the boots from those companies are actually made in Australia. Although some are.

With that being said, here is the list of 7 Australian made work boots that we’ll cover:

  • Redback
  • Rossi
  • Mongrel
  • Steel Blue
  • Hard Yakka
  • Baxter
  • Wootten

Who’s working on this page

Jimmy Webb, author and researcher for bestformyfeet.com
Jimmy Webb
Victor Adrian
Researcher & Editor

Redback: UBBK Bobcat

The beauty of slip-on work boots is that they’re not big, chunky, and cumbersome. But they can still be tough enough to last.

This makes them versatile enough to wear for everyday use and out and about, as well as working at home or in the workplace.

The tough TPU (thermo-polyurethane) on these Redback UBBK boots make them useful for things like digging.

And although they’re not specified to be oil, grease, and slip resistant, certain reviews from mechanics show that they have lasted well in the garage environment.

Millions of air bubbles sit inside the midsole to assist with shock absorption and energy return. This also adds to the lightness and comfort of the boot.

This boot is a favorite amongst EMS workers since they need something comfortable and easy to get in and out of when an emergency comes along.

Key features

  • 7” shaft
  • Elasticated side ankle
  • Air cushion midsole
  • Torsion heel support
  • Tough TPU outsole
  • Slip resistant
  • Water resistant

Redback was founded in 1925 by the Coros family. Their boots are still 100% Australian made, at their Alexandria factory, carrying on five generations of the family’s tradition.

Having supplied boots for Australian troops in World War II, Redbacks are still a preferred boot for the Australian Defence Force to this day. That’s ground forces, Navy, and RAF.

Rossi Endura

More Details

The Endura line is Rossi’s most well-known style and their bread and butter. This particular Endura is one of their best sellers.

You can see why, what with all the features it has. It’s another easy access slip-on boot that can be worn doing both everyday tasks or for work.

The only trouble with slip-ons is that they’re prone to not give as much support as laced boots, because they can’t be tightened. Nevertheless, this boot holds its own in other areas.

Those long walks in the blistering Australian heat can be a nightmare for the soles, but these won’t get baked easily. This boot will withstand temperatures up to 300°C/572°F.

This makes it good for things like tarmacking, welding, or other hot works. Especially as it is also abrasion resistant.

The boot would also be great in occupations like industrial kitchens because of the slip resistance on those slippery tiled floors, and the oil, acid, and animal fat resistance.

Whatever the job, you’d be able to do the full shift without much discomfort, due to the lightness of the weight and the iconic comfort-assisting Endura sole, with its Air Cushion technology.

This boot is so popular it also comes in a women’s style and children’s sizes.

Key features:

  • Water-resistant elastic (Triple-stitched edges)
  • Slip resistant outsole
  • Lightweight
  • Heat-resistant sole. (Up to 300°C/572°F)
  • Abrasion resistant
  • Oil, acid, and animal fat resistant
  • Air cushioned midsoles
  • High comfort

Despite what you might think, the brand wasn’t founded by the famous motorcycle racer, Valentino Rossi, or any of his ancestors.

No, it’s one of those juggernaut companies that started off in someone’s shed.

That someone was craftsman Arthur Rossita, who started making leather sports boots in 1908, then went on to supply Australian troops in both World Wars and carry on a tradition spanning four generations.

Mongrel 461

ZipSider boots are what Mongrel are now best known for. They offer all the benefits of a side zip boot. 

Useful for:

  • Ease of taking them on and off if you struggle with a bad back but still need the support that laces give. 
  • Cold fingers in the winter. Saves fiddling with laces.
  • Quick fitting in emergencies for rapid response workers. Like fire crews, etc.
  • Getting them off easily without cutting laces if you have an injured foot. Good for soldiers.
  • People who need to take them off regularly throughout the day.

This ZipSider is one of Mongrel’s bestsellers. It’s built for toughness and durability.

Not only will your toes have protection from a steel toe cap, the leather on the toe is protected from a molded scuff cap. This helps with longevity.

I can’t count the amount of boots I got through as a groundworker that wore through at the toes. All this did was allow water and cold in.

This is a good all-round boot that is lightweight and comfortable enough for all day enjoyment, but designed well enough for tough demands. 

Key features:

  • Steel toe cap
  • Molded PU (Polyurethane) stuff cap
  • Electrical hazard resistant meeting ASTM standards
  • Slip, oil and fat resistant sole
  • great boots with side zipper
  • AirZone Comfort System
  • Temperature regulating lining
  • OrthOtec Air footbed with anatomical arch support

Mongrel is another family-run boot brand with a lot of heritage, dating back to 1930, when Stanley Cloros set up as a shoe repairer in Surrey Hills, Sydney.

Unlike other companies who set up factories abroad, Mongrel have kept their manufacturing solely on Australian soil, helping to keep Australian citizens in stable jobs.

Steel Blue Torquay Spin FX

Now, this boot is a little different. No side zip, no side elastic, no laces. This boot is fastened using a funky BOA Fit System.

This is made up of a turny dial at the top of the tongue, that when turned, torques a wire that consists of forty-nine strands of stainless steel braided together like a rope, then injected and wrapped with nylon.

It reminds me of some sneakers I had when I was a kid. Part of the Retro Runner Rehab line. The Puma Xc 6000 -Sneaker Freaker. What a name, huh?

All you do is turn the dial one way to tighten to your preference for a nice secure fit. To loosen, you pull the dial to release the wire. This system creates ease of fastening, as well as precise tension adjustment.

These composite toe work boots offer protection for your toes, with added scuff protection from a scuff guard, not only at the toe but also at the heel.

Other safety features include oil and slip resistance, and heat resistant soles up to 300°C/572°F

Also, this boot doesn’t set off metal detectors, so would be useful to wear working in places like airports, or even for travelers who like to wear work boots on flights.

Key features:

  • BOA Fit System
  • Nitrile outsole, resistant to temperatures up to 300°C/572°F
  • Toe and heel guards
  • Composite toe cap
  • Airport friendly
  • Slip and oil resistant
  • Water resistant
  • Anti-static
  • Antibacterial

For a relatively new company, Steel Blue is now a hugely popular brand worldwide. They claim to be Australia’s leading manufacturer of work boots.

Steel Blue is proud to use the finest materials, as well as the latest technology, such as their Trisole Comfort soling system, which is designed to cushion and cradle the whole foot, in order to support the legs, knees, and back.

This system is part of the reason that Steel Blue is endorsed by the Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA).

Hard Yakka O2

This is another boot that reminds me of my youth. The iconic Reebok Pumps that were all the rage when I was a kid. From the shape to the pump up feature.

Except the Reeboks had the basketball protruding on the tongue to pump. I was never lucky enough to get those sneakers.

The safety airbag on this boot is designed to provide impact protection and comfort, as well as for the individual to customize the air pressure for medial and lateral ankle support.

The composite toe cap offers toe protection and adds to the lightness of the boot. This lightness drives towards great comfort, which is assisted by a memory foam footbed.

The technology in this footbed is sensitive to pressure and molds around the foot.

Underneath this midsole is a tough oil and grease resistant outsole that is resistant to temperatures up to 300°C/572°F.

A cool-looking boot with a velcro overstrap as an extra touch.

Key features:

  • Composite toe cap
  • O2 collar airbag
  • TPU toe bump and heel stabilizer
  • Lightweight
  • Wide profile
  • Shock-absorbing outsole
  • Water resistant nubuck upper
  • Memory foam comfort technology footbed
  • Antistatic
  • Heat resistant (up to 300°C/572°F)

Hard Yakka. What a cool name. It was originally just Yakka, a name given by the founder. A man called David K Laidlow.

Yakka is an aboriginal word meaning work. David felt that this was an apt name, considering his vision for his boots. The name eventually evolved to Hard Yakka. 

They created some well-known Australian commercials, which helped them become a household name.

First, a railway commercial in the 1970s that featured the Hard Yakka chant. Then the 80s brought the equally famous Haulpac commercial. Lastly, the 90s gave us the unforgettable Shearing commercial.

Baxter Gaucho

Here we have a men’s western-style round-toe boot in a Tanned Distressed color.

This boot isn’t designed for really tough work that would take a toll on a boot. It’s more for ranch work, riding, and lighter duties.

Comfort is in mind with this boot, due to the distressed leather upper that’s designed to mold to the foot, as well as the cork rubber sole.

This boot will need a waterproof agent applied before wearing. Because of the material, it will also need care and maintenance. Regular cleaning and brushing should help to make it last.

Key features:

Baxter is the oldest family-run business in Australia; founded in 1850. Their handcrafting tradition is now in its fifth generation.

They stayed true to their routes, staying on home soil, which provided the community with stable work.

Wooten Gordon Boot

Something special is in the mix. Some class, ruggedness, snazziness. But guess what. A hefty price tag. These are one of the most expensive work boots out there.

At $1025 Australian dollars, I’m guessing this is a designer style Australian work boot. It certainly looks the part. But would it last in the dirtiest, most hazardous locations. I’m not so sure.

Don’t get me wrong. They’re claimed to be ‘tough as nails’ and able to withstand wet conditions, due to the stormwelt construction and rubber mudguards at the toe and heel.

These guards are also useful to prevent scuffing and abrasion.

The thick cowhide upper should be supple but durable. It molds to your foot after breaking in properly. We don’t know how long that break-in period is.

I suppose one reason for the price is that it’s made to order, so that each boot can be customized to your own feet. 

You get lots of choices of color, rubber sole options, and edge finishes, as shown below.

Color options:

  • Cognac
  • Cognac Roughout
  • Chestnut
  • Tan
  • Black

Rubber sole options: (All in Topy Rug)

  • 6mm Natural
  • 6mm Brown
  • 6mm Black
  • 9mm Natural
  • 9mm Caramel
  • 9mm Brown
  • 9mm Black

Edge finish:

  • Raw Wax
  • Brown Wax
  • Black Wax

This gives a lot of scope, but is a nightmare for the indecisive people.

Although this is classed as a work boot, I have to ask myself if I’d want to put the through the mill after spending that much hard earned money.

Key features:

  • Derby style
  • Fully lined
  • Stormwelt construction
  • Rubber mudguards
  • Bovine upper (cowhide)
  • Leather midsole
  • Stacked leather heel
  • Rubber toe piece
  • Customization
  • Made to order

Wootten is made up of correlation, tradition, innovation, bespoke craftsmanship, and intimate customer care.

One of the chief shoemakers, Jess Cameron-Wootten, as a boy studied his father’s master craft skills. He then continued the same trade as an adult.

Then, along came Peter Cordwell, another shoemaker who, unlike others, continued the trade through crippling tariff cuts of the 1980s.

He saw a market for high-quality shoes, so formed with a Maz Pizzey, Custom Fit Australia. They made shoes for sports people and nurses, attracting some famous faces.

Eager to continue his father’s trade, Jess Cameron then joined the clan and was mentored by Peter.

They became influenced by the ‘Slow Movement’, which was a cultural phenomenon, encompassing food, design, travel, and fashion.

They chose to embody the style and fashion aspects of this era for their bespoke boots, focusing on each customer’s individual style.

Peter then handed the reins over to Jess, then Custom Fit became Wootten in 2012.

The final word

I hope we’ve satisfied your search for Australian made work boots. There were so many to choose from.

The boots given might not necessarily be the best out there. I don’t want to do injustice to others. It’s just that the article has to end somewhere. The list would be forever

And by the way, if you think there’s another brand we should include in this list, please feel free to reach out!

If you’re from Australia and are looking to indulge, then fill your boots (literally). If you’re from anywhere else in the world, you now have a taster of what those Down Under make.

Why not give some a try?

Anyway, I’m off to enjoy the cold November of England while thinking of my brother, who lives in sunny Oz.

Peace out.

Team Members Working On This Page

Jimmy Webb – Writer And Researcher

Hey, Jimmy here. I’m one of the researchers and writers here at BestForMyFeet.com.  I’ve been wearing work boots all my life working as a forklift driver, landscaper, groundworker, and now as a tower crane operator so I know a few things about footwear and footcare in general. I’m also working on my first novel. So writing IS my passion. When I’m not writing I love to spend time with my wife, two children, and furball.

Victor Adrian – Editor And Webmaster

Construction Professional, driver, crane operator, cleaner, head chef … these are just some of the jobs I did in the past. Working in all these different environments taught me that having good footwear to protect your feet from different dangers at work IS PARAMOUNT for any worker! On this website, I aim to share all my knowledge and personal experience in dealing with different footwear and foot care issues, and hopefully, you can get something out of it. Enjoy!

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