According to a statement from Army Sgt. Major Raymond Chandler, soldiers in the military cannot wear zippered boots. However, for non-military personnel, such as security and police officers, these boots may provide a quicker tactical advantage than their lace-up counterparts do.
The Best Benefits of Zippered Boots
Zippered boots offer a host of benefits that go beyond their lace-up counterparts. In fact, some boots have both laces and zippers, allowing for comfort and easy on and off. Some of the pros of zippers in tactical boots include:
- Zippers make taking your boots off (and putting them on) quick. This provides a real advantage in emergencies.
- Because they are easy to take off, you can easily avoid tracking dirt into your home or place of business.
- You can repeat the same fit each time you put your boots on. Lacing your boots may cause your shoes to be tight one day or loose the next, requiring constant adjustments.
The Cons of Zippered Boots
There are two main things to look out for when you purchase tactical boots with zippers:
- Poorly designed and constructed zippers may fail. YYZ zippers have a great reputation, so look for this brand when possible.
- The zipper may not offer water protection.
How to Use Zippered Boots for the Best Fit
Now that you understand why zippered boots are more desirable than lace-up tactical boots, it is important to learn how to break in your boots properly. The first time you wear them, disregard the zippers, and simply lace them up as you normally would. This way, you can customize the fit to your unique foot shape. As you wear them in this manner, they will conform to your foot over time. With just a few days’ wear, you should notice that your combat boots feel more comfortable – neither too tight nor too loose. At this point, you can start using the zipper rather than the laces.
Waterproofing and Protecting Your Zippered Boots
Waterproof boots are very important to many people, particularly for hiking or in other outdoor environments where it is important to keep your feet dry. A zippered boot does provide another entry point for water, but it is possible to purchase boots with gussets sewn behind the zippers, which offer up plenty of protection. However, make sure you know the differences between waterproof and water resistant, and make sure you purchase a waterproof boot if you need one. Check our best waterproof boots list or comprehensive work boots page to find one!
As long as your uniform requirements do not forbid zippered boots, they provide a huge advantage over other types of boots. Most military branches do not allow for zippers, but many police and security positions do. Ask your human resources department or your direct supervisor whether you can wear zippered boots on the job. Otherwise, if they are just for hobbies, zippers provide a better advantage.