11 best vegan waterproof hiking boots

Based on reviews from 41 experts and 1,321 users. Learn how our rankings work or see our guide to vegan waterproof hiking boots. Updated Apr 2020.

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Looking for a tough waterproof hiking boot that’s vegan?

When shopping for vegan waterproof hiking boots, the most common concern that most people have is whether they’re actually getting a legit, 100% vegan product. It’s not easy to tell just by looking at product descriptions. It takes a lot of research and understanding a boot’s construction to know that you’re really getting a pair of vegan hiking shoes.

What makes a waterproof hiking boot vegan?

Best vegan waterproof hiking boots

Best vegan waterproof hiking boots - January 2020

Vegan hiking boots are those that contain no animal materials or byproducts. Everything - from the major parts like the outsole, midsole and upper and down to the tiniest details like the adhesives used, paint or laces, should have no trace of the said materials. 

Are vegan boots durable?

When it comes to outdoor gear, almost every hiker would agree that nothing beats a pair of leather hiking boots. Leather is not just durable. It’s also water-resistant and less prone to tearing. Leather fabrics, such as wool, suede, full-grain, and Nubuck are commonly used in making hiking boots because they have the qualities that are ideal for varying terrains and changing weather conditions.

This leads to another issue about vegan hiking boots. Are they durable?

The short answer is YES.

But if you need a little more convincing, keep reading.

What makes vegan boots durable?

Popular brands like Merrell, Adidas, Arc’teryx, Lowa, and Vivobarefoot offer high-quality vegan waterproof hiking boots that are made of synthetic uppers, EVA midsoles, and rubber outsoles. Among the most commonly used synthetic materials in place of leather are:

  • Ripstop - woven fabrics made of nylon that are resistant to tear, abrasion, and ripping. 
  • Polyester mesh - synthetic fibers that are precisely woven with narrow pores, creating a lightweight and moisture-wicking durable material.
  • Ballistic mesh - a type of nylon fabric designed for maximum durability and abrasion-resistance
  • Vegan suede - made from microfibre synthetic fabric bonded to a cotton backing.

Are vegan hiking boots waterproof?

Not all vegan hiking boots have a waterproof construction. Always check the product details before buying one. Waterproof vegan boots are equipped with a special membrane made from synthetic materials, such as GORE-tex or Polartec Neoshell, that keeps water or moisture from entering the insides of the boot. 

Vegan boots - best features to look for

Just because a hiking shoe is vegan doesn’t mean it doesn’t meet the standards of a traditional leather hiking boot. While leather hiking boots are undoubtedly the best choice, there are well-built boots that will make your outdoor adventures fun and easy.

Below are the top features that you should look for when shopping for a waterproof vegan hiking boot:

Grip and traction

Good boots should last anywhere from 800 to 1,600 miles. Look for a boot that has a good grip and traction. Note that winter hiking and day hiking both require different sole performance.

Cushion and comfort

EVA midsoles are currently the best cushioning option for vegan hiking boots.


If you need a boot for the winter, look for a robust hiker that has sufficient insulation. Vegan winter boots usually make use of synthetic wool or some specially designed liner like Primaloft insulation.

6 best vegan waterproof hiking boots

  1. Lowa Irox GTX Mid
  2. Adidas Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX
  3. Altra Tushar
  4. La Sportiva Trango TRK GTX
  5. Arc'teryx Bora Mid GTX
  6. Lowa Innox Pro GTX Mid
Paul Ronto

Paul loves adventure. Over the past 20 years, he has climbed, hiked, and ran all over the world. He’s summited peaks throughout the Americas, trekked through Africa, and tested his endurance in 24-hour trail races. He has worked in the outdoor industry as a whitewater and hunting guide, gear tester, copywriter, and outfitting specialist at places like The National Outdoor Leadership School, No Barriers USA, and Sierra Trading Post. He has been quoted in NYMag, NBCNews, and Business Insider to name a few.

This shoe has recently been added to RunRepeat. There are still not enough reviews for us to assign it a CoreScore.
A score from 1 to 100 that summarizes opinions from users and experts. The average CoreScore is 78. More...