Steel Toe Shoes
The use of steel-reinforced footwear is now widely used in industries which demand hard labor and exposure to physical risks. Mining and construction, to name a few, are among these industries. The reason why these type of shoes were considered most appropriate is because of the steel casings found at the tip of the shoes, safeguarding the wearer from having injuries caused by debris, or any hard material for that matter, that falls on his or her toes. Some of the best steel toe shoes manufacturers even opted in to using an improvement on this feature. The said improvement is the reinforcement of composite materials or plastics such as thermoplastic polyurethane, or PTU for short, which proven strong enough to mimic the protection the steel provides to the toes of the wearer and at the same time, provides additional ease of use because of its lighter weight. In addition to the protective casings, sole plates either made from rubber or steel, are simultaneously injected in the shoe-making process to also give all-side protection for the wearer. The wearer’s feet are not only protected from any harm from above, but also from below. Punctures from sharp objects and irritation from spilled chemicals are just a few examples of these kinds of hazards.
Ever since safety issues were raised, safety footwear (along with other safety measures) has been mandatory for work in most countries. Because of that, workers have to wear them every time they report to work, which averages to five to six times a week and eight to nine hours a day! Swelling and blisters were the consequences of frequent use of these kind of footwear so most people, if given a chance, would not wear them anymore. Like the safety issue, this issue was also raised and gave manufacturers an idea to improve their product. The plan was to create comfortable steel toe shoes to address these concerns, and the solution was simple. The inner linings of the shoes were so hard that it caused frictional irritation. To alleviate this, manufacturers added internal linings of soft materials like cotton to provide a cushion for the feet. Added concerns like durability and flexibility of the product were later addressed, and features like protection from electric shocks were also added.
All the materials used to better improve this product caused the retail prices to increase and because making money isn’t as easy as it used to be, some people prefer to purchase discount steel toe shoes, disregarding the fact that a good quality product is much more comfortable. Durability is also a factor that most expensive protective footwear has. With that in mind, why sacrifice comfort and safety with cheap footwear, when more expensive ones will save you money in the long run?