I Tried the Viral Blundstone Boots and They’re Worth Every Penny
I found the perfect all-around boot. This is why you need a pair of Blundstones.
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As a veteran shopping editor, I like to buy something once and have it forever. For example, I’ve worn the same coat for a decade and used the same laundry detergent for five years. My Blundstones are no exception—they’re the most reliable shoes I’ve ever owned.
For my fellow history nerds: Blundstone launched in 1870 in Tasmania and became the boot supplier for Australian troops during World Wars I and II. In 1969, Blundstone released the quintessential Chelsea boot, which has become my go-to footwear ever since I spotted one of my Colorado friends sport hers every season.
These boots trek with me, from the streets of Charleston, where I live, to the beaches of South Carolina to the trails of the North Georgia mountains. Blundstones are light, comfortable, ultra-supportive and durable. I wear them everywhere. They slip on and off easily and I never have to worry about scuffing them up. I’d argue that Blundstone makes the best all-around boot—and I’m going to make you a believer, too.
What are Blundstone boots?
In simple terms, Blundstone is an Australian workboot brand. Blundstone boots come in an array of styles and colors that can do anything and go everywhere.
Today, Blundstone sells two popular design series in the pull-on Chelsea boot style: the Original 500 and the Classic 550. Within these series, there are dress, active and thermal-focused variations, which vary more in materials appropriate for their functions than in outward appearance.
Boots in the Original 500 series feature thick leather lined with either cotton or synthetic cambrelle, making them lighter weight and more breathable than the Classic 550 series. The 550s have the same water-resistant outer leather as the 500s with a leather-lined interior for greater warmth and durability. The 550s also come with two sets of removable insoles to allow you to customize your fit and comfort, and the 500s come with a single standard insole, which you may remove and replace with orthotics or other insoles, if you prefer. Finally, the Classic 550s fit wider than the Original 500s, so if you need the extra space, you’ll want to upgrade.
The 585, a Classic 550 model in the signature Rustic Brown color, is Blundstone’s bestseller and the pair I live in.
Blundstone boot features
Blundstone 550s are crafted with supple leather that’s leather-lined—they’re lightweight and durable. The leather is water-resistant and weather-ready for any escapade I decide to embark upon. Soft and moldable, the leather provides a snug fit that feels good all day long.
The sole is designed with tough synthetic TPU material that’s both flexible and hardy, as well as tactile for traction on various terrains. The midsole is cushioned for maximum comfort with a shock-absorbing heel. The boots also come with an extra set of footbeds to customize the comfort and fit.
The Blundstone 550 has a 6-inch-high shaft, providing ample coverage to protect your feet and ankles during any outdoor activity without being heavy or burdensome. It’s easy to pull the boots on and off using the signature pull tabs, thanks to the elastic insets on either side of the shaft. Double stitching lines both the upper and outsole, so you can feel confident these are built to last.
Blundstones are perfect for everyday wear. These Chelsea-style boots function just as well in the great outdoors as at my desk job, and they look equally stylish, making any outfit look put-together. They go with overalls, leggings, denim shorts, boot-cut jeans or high-waisted pants. I even wore them with a maxi dress to a press event and received a few compliments!
Though not technically winter boots, I’ve worn mine through fall and winter and even in snowy conditions. The leather lining protects against cold temperatures and the water-resistant upper keeps feet dry. I’ve also found my Blundstones transition into the spring and even summer, as the leather is naturally breathable.
Sizing spans from a women’s 6/men’s 4 to a women’s 15/men’s 13, and all but a handful of styles are unisex. I’d recommend ordering half a size up if you plan on sporting Blundstones with thick socks, have wide feet or tend to be between sizes.
How we tested Blundstone boots
I took my Blundstones straight out of the box and proceeded on an 8-mile hike in Greenville, South Carolina. The break-in period, if you can even call it that, was a breeze and blister-free. At the end of my trek, my new Blundstones were covered in dirt, but it wiped right off with a damp rag—you’d never know I tromped through mountains.
Upon returning to Charleston, I had a plethora of errands to run. I strolled around King Street downtown for several hours, zipping from store to store. Then I scurried over to T.J. Maxx, Target and Homegoods—all told, a full six hours of shopping. All day, my feet were ache-free—I could’ve stayed on the move!
Another evening, I joined a few of my friends for a picnic on the beach. I threw on my overalls and Blundstones with a thick pair of socks to ward off the chilly night air. By the end of the evening, my Blundstones had been submerged in salt water and covered in sand. Not to fear, they wiped clean once more.
Over the past eight months, I’ve traversed many different terrains, occasions and climates in my Blundstones. To my delight, I have nothing negative to say about the durability or comfort of my favorite pair of boots.
- Sturdy, water-resistant leather construction lasts for years
- Comfortable, supportive and lightweight
- Shock-absorbent synthetic sole offers traction on most surfaces
- Flexible range of motion
- Versatile for a variety of occasions
- Lined for insulation against cold temperatures
- Breathable for hotter climates
- Sizing can be tricky
- Hard to differentiate features between styles
Are Blundstone boots waterproof?
The leather used to craft Blundstone 500 and 550 series’ boots is water-resistant. When exposed to the elements, such as rain, snow or wet grass, the boots shouldn’t soak through, but they’re not designed to be used to, say, wade through puddles like rain boots. That said, I’ve worn my Blundstone 585s in an array of weather conditions, and my feet remained comfortably dry.
However, you can apply waterproofing spray regularly to enhance moisture resistance. If you require a true waterproof boot, Blundstone’s thermal series offers several styles.
How to take care of your Blundstone boots
While Blundstones are built to last, taking proper care of them is essential to extending their life.
First, remove any dirt with a soft bristle brush or a damp cloth. Let boots air-dry overnight away from direct sunlight and heaters. Apply leather polish, spray or cream to maintain the boots’ leather over time. If this is a product you’ve never used on your Blundstones, begin by testing it on an inconspicuous area of the boot to ensure it doesn’t alter the leather color or appearance. Use a polishing cloth or brush to apply on the boot in circular motions. Wipe away the remaining product and let dry.
How to style Blundstone boots
The bottom line: Blundstones go with everything. This versatile work boot is just as fashionable as it is functional. Men and women have been sporting the Chelsea boot silhouette since the Victorian era through the revival in 1960s London to today.
Women often wear Blundstones with jeans, with the cuffs rolled up or tucked in to show off the boot. Casual, flowy, loose-fitting skirts and dresses pair nicely with Blundstone boots, too.
Where are Blundstone boots made?
Blundstone is privately owned in Tasmania and headquartered in the capital city of Hobart. The company is intentional with where its materials are sourced and employs strict quality standards. Its aim is to promote healthy labor conditions with inspectors onsite at each of the company’s manufacturing locations in Vietnam, India, China, Mexico and Thailand.
What other reviewers had to say
After perusing the 296 reviews for the 585 on Blundstone’s site, I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed by this durable boot. It averages a 4.71-star rating.
Reviewer Laurel F. spent six months in her Blundstones and trekked around 500 miles: “The best all-around boots I’ve ever owned! I bought these boots about six months ago, and since then I’ve worn them practically every day—no exaggeration. I backpacked for 10 weeks in Europe and walked an average of 40 miles per week, all in these boots, in near-constant rain, and never had to worry about wet or sore feet. It took about two weeks to break them in, and they’re only getting better with age. I’ve done all kinds of projects in them, including grinding down and releveling a concrete slab, trimming trees and various woodworking projects, and they still look nice enough to go out to dinner after. These boots are the best investment you can make for a nice-looking, all-season, one-shoe-does-it-all work boot.”
Another reviewer, Morgan H., held off on investing in Blundstones because of the high price tag but has been in love ever since she bit the bullet. “I literally wear them daily. So comfy. So cute. I’ve worn them in all weather types. They are seriously my favorite pair of shoes and I wish I bought them sooner. Worth every. single. penny.”
At first, buyer Mark T. was skeptical when purchasing Blundstones as a gift for his wife, but he was instantly swayed. “After reading reviews and asking some questions, I came to believe that these boots were tough and fashionable. My thoughts were confirmed when they arrived. They are super boots and my wife wears them for any occasion. Great purchase. Terrific value. Timeless style.”
Overall, Blundstone boots are sure to be a wardrobe staple for years to come. The classic Chelsea boot is always in style! They’re the kind of shoe you never want to take off, and each pair of Blundstones only gets better with age.
The 585 offers top-notch comfort and protection attributes. The leather upper is lightweight and tough, while the synthetic sole offers cushioning and a firm grip on most surfaces. Blundstones are great for daily wear as well as outdoor adventures with water-resistant construction and a protective 6-inch tall shaft.
You’ll want to invest in a pair of Blundstones for a dependable and fashionable boot. At $220 a pair, they’re not cheap, but they offer value in their long-term durability and timeless style.
Where to buy Blundstone boots