Water-resistant vs. Waterproof shoes: Which Should You Purchase?

Arcopedico L19

There are many considerations you should think about when you purchase waterproof or water-resistant footwear. The distinction, and which feature to pursue, can be confusing.  In addition to selecting a style that suits you best, you need to factor in elements such as climate and weather, activities in which you’ll engage, safety, and comfort. Whether you require hiking boots for a long trek, rain boots for strolling about in springtime, or running sneakers to train for an upcoming marathon, there are many options available to you. For starters, should you opt for water-resistant or waterproof shoes?

Water-Resistant vs. Waterproof

Manufacturers use a test called a “hydrostatic head test” to determine the water resistance of footwear. This procedure determines how many millimeters of water pressure the shoe’s materials can withstand before being permeated. The properties of water resistant shoes differ from those of waterproof shoes; do not automatically assume that you need a waterproof shoe. Sometimes water-resistant shoes are better for your application.

When to Choose Water-Resistant Shoes

For any activity that occurs in a humid or damp environment, a breathable, water-resistant shoe may be the better choice. Water-resistant footwear offers more versatility in terms of style and material, where typical textiles include leather, treated canvas, vinyl and nylon. Options like Merrell’s walking shoes are crafted to keep your feet cool and dry both inside and out, as cooling air passes through the shoe to prevent the buildup of perspiration.

The increased number of available fabrics and materials can make water-resistant footwear more fashion-oriented as well. For example, many of the Arcopedico boots feature metallic, snakeskin, and bright motifs while offering water-resistant properties.

You can also add water resistance to footwear by using a spray like Cadillac All Weather Shield Water Repellent. This is an easy to provide extra protection if you have a favorite pair of hiking or running shoes that you’d like to wear in wet weather. Suede shoes can also gain protection by the use of water repellent sprays.

When to Choose Waterproof Shoes

Waterproof shoes aren’t just clunky rain boots. You can find them in a wide variety of styles, from business casual to athletic. You can waterproof some styles at the expense of breathability. However, due to the use of synthetic materials, many brands at Footwear etc. have utilize the waterproof material, GORE-TEX ™. This lightweight, breathable material is highly effective at at keeping your feet dry.

The Women’s MBT Chakula GTX GORE-TEX® is a great example of an athletic shoe that allows for the evaporization of foot moisture, and it is light and versatile enough to be used for most any sport or activity. Conversely, the Ecco Sculptured GTX is a casual women’s slip-on that is ideal for activities like shopping and moderate walking. The great thing about these two models is that they contain ergonomic features that can help provide extra comfort and reduce the chance of injuries.

Check out the wide variety of waterproof and water resistant products at Footwearetc.com!




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