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Grounded and brawny yet supple at the same time is a fitting description for suede hiking boots. A sense of classiness is waiting for those who would sport a pair of these supportive yet comfy hikers. Wearers can also expect a level of versatility from such boots, thanks to their well-rounded design which makes them great to wear whether on or off the trail.
Suede hiking boots and their pros and cons
Quality leather boots with a suede finish are quite the looker. This staple quality is enough to make newcomers and seasoned trail enthusiasts alike go out and buy them in a heartbeat. But in everything that involves shelling out a substantial amount of money, it would be a wise choice to know what you are about to get yourself into first before making that purchase.
The upsides of suede hiking boots
Because suede leather is naturally soft, boots with suede uppers are usually easy to break in. Indeed, the day-one comfort offered by most suede hiking boots is undeniably valuable, especially for hikes that leave you with little to no time to prepare beforehand.
Suede leather hiking boots, thanks to their nappy finish and easy-on-the-eyes aesthetics, are appropriate not only for trail adventures but also for casual engagements and activities. Is the regular hiking season over in your area? Go ahead and strut your fuzzy hikers at the local bar instead.
Apart from being a sight to behold, suede hiking boots are also decently sturdy and hardwearing. This quality is present especially in shoes engineered with thicker layers of leather.
The downsides of suede hiking boots
Behind the dapper looks of a pair of men’s or women’s suede hiking boots lies a seemingly ugly truth: they are a challenge to clean and maintain. They have a nasty habit of absorbing moisture and locking in the stain that comes with it. If your travels involve wetness most of the time, consider investing in hiking boots lined with a waterproof membrane.
Suede is an expensive kind of leather, so hikers made with this type of material are often costly. If spending an arm and a leg is not part of your game plan, there is no shame in going for bargain-priced hiking boots.
Pieces of footwear that belong to this category may not be for people who practice veganism. That said, you can try looking into some of the best animal-substance-free hiking boots already out in the market if you are vegan.
A few footwear brands that produce quality suede men's and women's hiking boots
When it comes to outdoor gear that your feet can wear, it is hard to ignore what trail-centric boots Danner offers. Their collection of hikers is nothing short of commendable in terms of workmanship, and their leather pieces are rather captivating. Indeed, their suede offerings are quite numerous, several of which come with Danner Dry—a proprietary technology that provides ventilation on the inside and weather protection on the outside. They are also known for making suede hiking boots with red laces, so if you are into such shoes, give Danner a shot.
A celebrated footwear-making company, Merrell has been manufacturing some of the finest hiking boots for decades. They put effort into making virtually every shoe supportive, comfortable and protective. Their suede pieces are a hybrid of sorts, having suede leather overlays on top of a base made of mesh fabric. Such a grounded yet modern type of construction is mostly seen in their mid-cut Moabs, most of which feature waterproofing courtesy of Gore-Tex and surface traction technology by Vibram.
A number of Columbia hiking products are built with suede leather. A majority of them are engineered with two of Columbia’s very own technologies: Techlite and Omni-Grip. Techlite ushers in terrain protection and stability, whereas Omni-Grip delivers footing security exclusively. When it comes to water protection, some of them are seam sealed, while others are lined with a waterproof membrane called Outdry.
General guidelines for keeping suede hiking boots in tip-top shape
Suede leather hikers can be tricky to clean and maintain. To prolong their lifespan, consider practicing the following steps:
Rid your pair of surface-level dirt using a soft-bristled brush (preferably a kind designed for suede use). Do this after every use.
For stubborn stains, use a suede leather eraser. A pencil eraser may suffice but go for a colorless one.
Try not to get your suede boots wet as best as you can. Aftermarket waterproofing sprays may be used to strengthen their defenses against moisture. If for some reason your suede hikers do get wet, use a microfiber towel to remove as much water from them as possible.