A Beginner's Guide to Cowboy Boots and Western Boots

Updated on November 21, 2019
Tim_511 profile image

Tim has a number of hobbies and interests and quality cowboy boots make that list.

Cowboy Boots: An American Tradition
Cowboy Boots: An American Tradition | Source

Why Do We Love Cowboy Boots?

Nothing symbolizes the Old West more than the cowboy! The image of a cowboy riding a horse, herding cattle, and going into town after a cattle drive is ubiquitous of the American West. We like him in books, movies, and television programs. Part of the mystique about the cowboy is the clothing and equipment that he wears. The cowboy hat, cowboy boots, chaps, and gun belt, among others, lend a colorful and fascinating atmosphere.

All of these accouterments were not only chosen to be colorful, but also had multiple practical uses. Of these, the most popular item now is cowboy boots or western boots. Cowboy boots had high slanted heels made to keep feet in the stirrups and high thick leather shaft to prevent brush and thorns from tearing the legs while they rode. Holes or straps helped in pulling the boots on in the morning and stitching on the shaft strengthened and decorated the boot.

A classic boot.
A classic boot. | Source

The Advantages of Cowboy Boots

Cowboy boots are popular now for several reasons. They are fashionable in some areas, although not accepted in others. In central Texas, pretty much every other person is wearing boots! Many people just like the look of them. They are quite sturdy if the right boots are chosen. Leather uppers wear well and are very long-lasting, while the soles and heels can be replaced if necessary.

The other reason cowboy boots are popular is their comfort. A well-fitted pair of boots is very comfortable. They take 2 or 3 days to break in properly, but once they are broken in to your foot, they feel great. Boots can get a bit hot in the middle of the summer, but I preferred to wear my boots over tennis shoes even in the hottest part of the year. For a 20 mile hike, there are better boots, but a good pair of western boots with synthetic soles will do a decent job even there!

Things to Consider Before Buying Cowboy Boots

There are a couple of decisions that need to be made before a pair of western boots are purchased:

  • The Sole: The type of sole and heel should be carefully considered before purchasing cowboy boots. Leather soles are great for horseback riding and will work for dancing. If much walking will be necessary or physical work done that does not involve riding, consider a good synthetic sole with tread. It will last much longer and be less slippery than leather.
  • The Height: The desired height of the boot should be determined. They come in the standard cowboy boot height, which is approximately knee height, and in the roper style, which is around 10” high. For most people, the roper will be the best choice.
  • Type of Leather: Different types of leather are available. Cowhide is the cheapest and the price will go up exponentially depending on the type of leather preferred. You can get goatskin, snakeskin, alligator, and a range of other skin types.

Boots are available in many different colors, styles, and stitchings, especially in women’s boots.

Cowboy and Western Boot Companies

There are quite a number of good companies that make cowboy boots. Justin is probably the best-known company. Other good companies that make boots include:

  • Ariat
  • Tony Lama
  • Lucchese
  • Dan Post
  • Double H
  • Twisted X

Some of these are very expensive; others make boots ranging from reasonable to expensive. No good boot is actually cheap, except for maybe the Justin Basics. The best companies for most people are probably going to be Justin and Ariat, for price considerations and quality.

Justin is one of the premier and best-known cowboy bootmakers. Their boots are excellent quality and, while not inexpensive, can be obtained at a lower price than many other brands. My boots were Justins and they served me very well. Ariat makes a lot of boots that are chosen by people who use their boots hard, in my experience.

More of the westerners I have known wear Ariat than any other brand. They also make excellent boots and are cheaper than many of the other brands. Brands like Lucchese are great, but too expensive for most people to practically purchase. Still, if you have the money, they are about the top of the line in western boots.

If you just want to try a pair for fun, check out the Justin Basics. They are inexpensive boots that can give you a good idea whether or not you will like cowboy boots. I love them, myself, and I think that you will, too.

Questions & Answers


      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • Stephanie Henkel profile image

        Stephanie Henkel 

        9 years ago from USA

        Very useful information.


      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, bellatory.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

      Show Details
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)