Traditional work boots may not be your style. If you are looking for more of a casual steel toe shoe for work, you actually have quite a few options. I personally like the Caterpillar Brode casual safety shoes because they are still very durable, but they are also flexible, easy-to-wear, and have more of a sneaker-style design than other types of work shoes on the market today.
*This page contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. (info)
These are our choices for best casual steel toe work shoes:
- Caterpillar Men’s Brode Sneaker-Style Steel Toe Work Shoes (click here to view)
- Reebok Work Men’s Soyay Skate-Style Steel Toe Shoes (click here to view)
- Nautilus Mens Slip-on Style Low Top Steel Toe Shoes (click here to view)
- Caterpillar Men’s Woodward Athletic-Style Steel Toe Work Shoes (click here to view)
- Rockport Works Men’s Steel Toe Sailing Club Boat Work Shoes (click here to view)
- *Women’s* Caterpillar Women’s Brode Steel Toe Work Shoes (click here to view)
- *Women’s* Reebok Work Soyay Skate-Style Steel Toe Shoes (click here to view)
- *Women’s* Rockport Works Sailing Club Boat Work Shoes (click here to view)
- *Women’s* Merrell Windoc Moc Waterproof Steel Toe Work Shoes (click here to view)
One of the most important things to consider when buying casual, stylish steel toe shoes is you still want the shoe to be functional and safe for your work environment. For example, a loafer-style slip on work shoe won’t make sense for all jobs. Those types of shoes pass less control on to your foot.
The list above contains a wide range of casual steel toe work shoes, including sneaker-style, skate-style, running-style, boat-style, and slip-on style. Obviously, not all casual safety toe shoes are the same. You will need to verify that whatever shoe you choose matches the safety requirements needed for your job. Because we don’t know your requirements, we can’t make any guarantees about these shoes.
In this article let’s take a closer look at some of the casual steel toe work shoes on this list so you can find an option that fits your needs. Let’s also discuss a few things to consider when shopping for casual safety toe shoes. If you are looking for dress shoes, visit our article about the best dress safety toe shoes.
Best Casual Steel Toe Work Shoes
Caterpillar Brode Steel Toe Work Sneakers
Recently I tried 10 popular steel toe work shoes, including this Caterpillar Brode Steel Toe Shoe. I named this shoe my favorite “sneaker-style” shoe due to the casual style that it has.
This is the current price of this Caterpillar Brode casual steel toe shoe available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). This is a shoe that transitions easily off the clock and looks very natural paired with jeans.
This is not a lightweight, flimsy work shoe. Overall I found this to be heavier than most other low-top steel toe shoes. It has a durable build made with 100% leather on the upper.
My size 12 men’s shoe weighs 1.53 pounds per shoe. This shoe also has a rubber overlay over both the toe and the heel for extra abrasion resistance.
Overall, I found this shoe to be much more durable than other lightweight, low-top work shoes on the market today. It combines a casual vibe with a durable toughness needed on the job. But even though it is more durable than most other low top steel toe shoes, I found the flexibility to still be very good:
Ultimately, this is a casual steel toe shoe that will make you stand out a bit in a crowd full of people wearing heavy-duty work boots. This shoe blends very well with both jeans and shorts, and looks good even off the clock.
Click here to buy this Caterpillar Brode casual steel toe work shoe available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). In my experience, this shoe fits true to size. Wide sizing is available.
Caterpillar Men’s Woodward Steel Toe Work Shoes
I have tried 10 different steel toe work shoes, and these Caterpillar Woodward shoes weighed the least. My size 12 men’s shoe weighed just 1.09 pounds per shoe. To put this into perspective, I also recently tried 14 different composite toe shoes, and the average weight for those 14 composite toe shoes was 1.25 pounds per shoe, so these Caterpillar Woodward shoes come in significantly lighter than the average composite toe shoe despite being steel toe shoes.
In fact, if I were to rank the weight of this Caterpillar Woodward steel-toe shoe with the weights of those 14 lightweight composite toe work shoes I tried, this shoe would have ranked 6th most lightweight of the entire group. I’m saying all of this to say that these Caterpillar Woodward shoes would even be considered reasonably lightweight if they were compared to composite toe shoes.
To find a steel toe shoe that is this lightweight is really uncommon, and if you prioritize lightweight comfort, these will be your best option for a casual steel toe shoe. These Caterpillar Woodward shoes have a casual athletic style that really differentiates them in comparison to bulky work boots. I want to specifically mention how flexible they are:
These lightweight steel toe work shoes bend and respond like a running shoe (flexible safety shoes). Overall, yes, you can feel a little bit of a weight balance in the front, but it isn’t obnoxious. Again, these are perfect for those of you who just want something that is ultra-lightweight and won’t feel like a brick on your foot.
This is the current price of these Caterpillar Woodward lightweight casual steel toe shoes available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These shoes are very breathable and have anti-microbial treatment to the liner to help prevent odor.
Like most low-top athletic work shoes, these Caterpillar Woodward shoes are built for light-duty work. These types of shoes are made with textile uppers cemented or glued to foam midsoles, and therefore aren’t built for heavy-duty work. These Cat Woodward shoes do have a gusseted tongue which helps prevent debris from entering the foot, but overall I would recommend these for indoor use, or outdoor us on a smooth surface like concrete or packed dirt.
But if you are looking for a casual running-style steel toe shoe for work, these weigh less than any other shoe that I have tried, and feel just like an athletic shoe on my foot. These shoes will not feel like bricks on your feet and will be a nice option for those of you who spend long days standing on the job.
Click here to buy these Caterpillar Woodward lightweight casual steel toe work shoes available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). In my experience, these Cat Woodward shoes fit true to size.
Reebok Work Men’s Soyay Skate-Style Steel Toe Shoe
I really like Reebok work shoes. I think they offer a wide range of athletic and casual steel toe shoes that give you plenty of options to find something that fits your particular needs. This Reebok Soyay work shoe has a skate-style look to it.
Here’s what these Reebok Soyay casual steel toe work shoes looks like:
This is the current price of this Reebok Soyay casual steel toe shoe available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about this shoe:
- Design – These shoes are made using suede uppers to give a casual vibe to the shoe. There is a nylon mesh liner to help add some breathability to the shoe. The tongue and collar has padding for extra comfort around the ankle. The outsole is rubber and is slip-resistant. Yes, this is a steel toe shoe.
- Style – These casual steel toe shoes have a skater-style that makes them stand out from typical work boots. The toe is rounded and overall the shoe is wider than other types of low-top athletic-style work shoes. Wide sizing is available for this shoe. This shoe has a standard lace-up front.
Click here to buy this Reebok Soyay casual steel toe work shoe available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). The cushioning insert for this shoe is removable so you can swap them out when needed.
Nautilus Mens Slip-on Style Low Top Steel Toe Shoes
Looking for a casual steel toe shoe that is a slip-on style sort of like Vans? If so, these Nautilus shoes may be exactly what you are looking for. They have durable canvas uppers and are made with memory foam cushioning for extra support.
Here’s what this Nautilus slip on casual steel toe work shoe looks like:
This is the current price of this Nautilus casual steel toe shoe available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about this shoe:
- Design – These shoes are made using canvas uppers and rubber outsoles that are slip-resistant. They have EVA cushioned insoles that are removable so you can swap them once they wear out. Because these shoes have a minimalistic design, they are reasonably lightweight for a steel toe work shoe.
- Style – This shoe is designed much like classic Vans slip-on shoes and has a much more casual vibe than a work boot does. But please understand, these slip-on styles only make sense for certain jobs. Losing laces means you have less control passed from the shoe to your foot. These slip on shoes won’t make sense for rugged work, or for jobs that rely on responsiveness.
Click here to buy this Nautilus casual steel toe work shoe available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). The collar is padded on these shoes for extra comfort, and wide sizing is available.
Other Casual Steel Toe Shoes to Consider
- Rockport Works Men’s Steel Toe Sailing Club Boat Work Shoes – Rockport is well known for making business casual type work shoes, and they do make safety toe shoes also. These Rockport steel toe shoes are designed like boat deck shoes. These will definitely stand out in contrast to traditional work boots. They are made with leather uppers and slip-resistant outsoles. Click here to view these Rockport casual steel toe work shoes available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
- *Women’s* Caterpillar Women’s Brode Steel Toe Work Shoes – Caterpillar does make these popular Brode sneaker-style steel toe shoes in a women’s version. Just like the men’s version, these shoes are made with durable leather uppers and have rubber overlays over both the toe and the heel for extra abrasion resistance. These shoes pair easily with both jeans and shorts and look natural off the clock. Click here to view these Caterpillar women’s casual steel toe shoes at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
- *Women’s* Rockport Works Sailing Club Boat Work Shoes – Rockport also makes deck-style steel toe shoes for women. These shoes are made with leather uppers and feature slip-resistant outsoles. These types of stylish steel toe shoes will make you stand out from those wearing more traditional work boots. Click here to view these Rockport women’s casual steel toe work shoes available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
4 Things to Consider When Buying Casual Steel Toe Shoes
If you want a casual steel toe shoe that has an athletic design, much like a running shoe, you have a lot of options. Unfortunately, no, Nike does not currently make steel toe shoes, but I really like Reebok athletic-style work shoes.
For example, here are my Reebok All Terrain steel toe shoes I wear:
These shoes are lightweight and they feel on my foot much like a running shoe. They have that ultra-flexible design that is common to a running shoe:
If you are interested in athletic style casual steel toe work shoes, then I would suggest visiting our article about the best lightweight steel toe safety shoes where we discuss several different running-style work shoes.
Memory Foam Breakdown
I personal like steel toe shoes with memory foam insoles. I think memory foam insoles provide the most under-foot comfort. But one thing you do have to consider is these types of insoles will eventually flatten out and lose their responsiveness.
This can be a problem because your shoe may feel very comfortable for the first few months after purchase, then begin to lose that under-foot comfort as the memory foam insole wears out. What can be done about this?
Some insoles are removable and replaceable, so that may be an option depending on what shoe you choose. Also, this is one reason I like the Skechers Cankton shoes – I feel like their memory foam insoles are thicker than the memory foam insoles in other shoes. If you want to read more, visit my article about the best memory foam steel toe work shoes.
Hiking Style Steel Toe Shoes
One types of work shoe we did not address on this list is a hiking style steel toe work shoe. Some consider these types of shoes to have a casual design, while others do not. If you might be interested in hiking-style steel toe shoes, I would recommend you to consider Keen shoes.
These Keen shoes are very durable, but also are non-bulky and don’t look like traditional work boots. They may be a nice option for those of you who prefer a more casual steel toe shoe. To read more, visit our article about Keen Work Shoes.
Steel Toe Alternatives
Do you absolutely need a steel toe work shoe? Ultimately, the safety requirements of your job will dictate whether or not they are absolutely necessary. If your job allows you to wear a composite toe shoe, switching from steel toe to composite toe is another way to find extra comfort.
Composite toe shoes usually weigh less than steel toe. And there are casual style options, including these Rockport casual comp toe shoes that I own:
If you might be interested in a composite safety toe, you can read more by visiting our article about the best composite toe work shoes.
For many jobs, it is important that your casual steel toe shoes have extra abrasion resistance on the toe and heel to not only provide a little extra protection to your foot, but also to help the material of the shoe hold up over time. That is a problem with some types of casual steel toe work shoes is they don’t have a lot of abrasion resistance.
That is one reason I like the Caterpillar Brode shoes. They have a rubber overlay on the toe and heel to give the shoe some protection against scuffs and bands. Here is a look at the toe on my shoe:
One issue with wearing casual, stylish steel toe shoes is these shoes are almost always built with flat outsoles that don’t have a raised, square heel. Although flat outsoles can be more comfortable, for some jobs the raised heel can provide extra slip resistance, and can be very important for those of you who climb ladders all day.
If you work in construction and climb ladders and need that raised heel, it might be best to stick with a work boot that has the type of squared-heel that you need.
Durability of Stylish Steel Toe Shoes
Yes, casual steel toe work shoes may be appealing because they don’t look as clumsy and bulky as traditional work boots, but those work boots have a bulkier design because they are built to handle rough work environments. Just make sure that it makes sense for your job to use a casual safety toe shoe.
These types of casual steel toe shoes are best used for light-duty work on smooth terrain or concrete. In my opinion, the Caterpillar Brode shoes on our list at the top of the page offer the most durability out of any casual steel toe shoe that I have tried. But even those shoes are best used for light-duty work.