Add Class To Outfit With These Chukka Boots

A pair of brown chukka boots side view taken in the morning with natural light

No perfect collection of men’s footwear is complete without a pair of the finest chukka boots for gentlemen. The chukka boot has long been a classic men’s footwear style, effortlessly straddling fancy and rustic. Therefore, people consider chukka boots among the best shoes for gentlemen, and many would agree that the class deserves that honor.

Chukka boots are a type of casual ankle footwear that acquired its name from the sport of polo. So it’s easy to appreciate what was among the most easy-wearing footwear styles, which was once only linked with off duty, upper class English people. The chukka (or desert) boot was first worn by British soldiers in Africa following World War II and is about as casual as all leather boots go. They crossed the Atlantic after that, becoming an everyday standard during the second part of the twentieth century and still adorning the feet of elegant men in the wintertime. Clarks created the originals, but premium versions simply improved on the design.

What Are Chukka Boots?

Chukka boots are ankle high leather boots. The eyelets are usually two or three pairs. The uppers of chukkas are two pieces of sheepskin or suede. The material and structure of chukka soles vary significantly.

Chukkas vs. Desert Boots

Chukkas, desert boots, and combat boots have a lot in common. However, there is a distinction between chukkas and desert boots. The sole of desert boots is crepe.

If you’re thinking about acquiring a pair of crepe soled shoes or boots, keep in mind that they will probably wear out sooner than shoes with firm rubber soles because crepe is a soft material. The uppers of desert boots are suede, except for the unique sole. On the other hand, uppers for chukka boots might be made of suede, calfskin, or other naturally derived materials. Desert boots and chukkas are also different in color. Desert boots are typically sand colored, whereas chukka boots are available in almost every shade.

Chukkas Vs. Chelsea Boots

Another form of ankle boot is the Chelsea boot. Chelsea, unlike chukkas, does not have laces. Instead, they include an elastic band around the ankle that makes putting them on and taking them off a breeze. The smooth shape of Chelsea boots, according to experts, makes them slightly more formal than chukka boots and one of the best shoes every professional man should buy.

History of the Chukka Boot

Chukka boots, or shoes similar to them, have a long history. During WWII, soldiers in northern Africa noted that the locals’ footwear was better suited to the desert conditions than their combat boots and thus “found” Chukka boots. It turns out that the local traders’ boots were inspired by native South African veldskoen (meaning “skin shoes” in Afrikaans). According to legend, the soldiers told cobblers in Cairo’s famous Khan el-Khalili bazaar to create shoes influenced by the residents’ footwear. The desert boot was thus built. 

The soldiers were thrilled to find that their newest desert boots performed admirably in Africa’s sandy dunes. Their light structure allowed the troops to move quickly. The crepe sole gave a much needed grip on the fine sands of the Sahara, while the open lace structure helped keep sand out. Recognizing the possibilities of this unusual boot type, Western civilians experimented with its design to adapt it to the attire of the urban man.

After being recreated and renewed, Chukka boots made their way out of traditional African societies and onto the red carpets of Hollywood in just a few short years. Chukka boots are still evolving today as businesses experiment with new styles, substances, and construction processes.

Indeed, narrowing down a list of the most incredible men’s chukka boots is challenging, but that’s what is done here. Each of these options is durable, classy, and ready for the coming season.

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03/06/2024 09:09 pm GMT

Dr. Martens Bonny Chukka Boot

The Bonny chukka boot is made of extra-durable polyester and comes in various functional colorways. Dr. Martens’ rebellious DNA is featured in the bonny 5 eye chukka boot, which has an entire canvas top. The insole and the base of the top are sewn and bonded together. The AirWair cushioned sole is featured on these chukka boots with the signature heel loop.

Dr. Martens are distinguished by using yellow thread to secure the bottom to the upper part of the boot. Oil, fat, and abrasion resistance are all features of the AirWair sole present in Dr. Martens’ bonny chukka boot. Additionally, 70 percent poly, 30 percent rubber lining, 100 percent textile sole, and 100 percent PVC make up the upper part of the bonny chukka boots.

Steve Madden Men’s Harken Chukka Boot

The Harken chukka boot by Steve Madden is the best affordable option if you’re on a hunt for budget friendly leather boots. Since its inception in 1990, Steve Madden has maintained a look that is an effortless combination of relaxed and sharp, continually producing creative, trendsetting shoes. Imagine it all, from suede loafers and leather Derbies to sporty sneakers and chukka boots, all inspired by rock and roll and city origins. Steve Madden’s men’s lace up shoes are a simple way to shift from work to the weekend, whether you’re dressing casual or formal.

The Harken chukka boot comes in two colors: Black and Cognac. They are made from 100% leather and feature a man made sole. This chukka boot is characterized by blind eyelet lacing, a somewhat distressed finish, and a textile inside. The Harken chukka boot’s shaft measures roughly 3.5″ from arch to toe.

Cole Haan Men’s Grand Atlantic Chukka Boot

Cole Haan’s Grand Atlantic Chukka Boots are water-resistant leather and feature grand foam technology for added comfort. It has a fully padded sock inner. The rubber pods in the heel and toe provide traction. In addition, it has a full EVA outsole with the ultimate cushioning technology. It is available in various colorways such as Black, Earthen, Lumber, Wren Brown, Black Waterproof with Black sole, Wren Brown with Oat colored sole, and Brown waterproof with Oat colored sole.

Rockport Men’s Classic Break Chukka Boot

Since 1971, when Rockport became the first manufacturer to incorporate sports technology into the design of dress shoes, Rockport has been fueling your busy days. Today, they continue to push the envelope to provide you with the best possible blend of comfort and elegance. Rockport Classic Break Chukka boots are built to last and function. 

The classic break chukka boots are made from 100% leather. The rubber sole features nonslip material for providing a better grip, especially in the winter season. The heel is roughly 4.5 inches long, and the shaft is around 4.5 inches long. These chukka boots are available in Brown, Dark Brown Leather, and Dark Bitter Chocolate suede.

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03/07/2024 05:23 pm GMT

Clarks Bushacre 3 Chukka Boot

Clarks has been creating high-quality men’s dress shoes in various styles for over a century. Clarks offers a wide choice of high-quality components, giving customers the alternatives they want in the quality they need. Clarks Bushacre 3 Chukka Boot is made in the USA and features a rubber sole that provides durability and grip.

The “Chassis” design provides enhanced flexibility, support, and comfort. The upper has cushioning for additional comfort. The shaft is roughly 10.6″ from arch to heel, and the boot opening is approximately 10.6″ around. The Bushacre 3 chukka boots are available in leather and suede.

Vostey Motorcycle Casual Chukka Boot

Vostey’s Motorcycle Casual chukka boot comes in a gorgeous leather and suede finish and is another affordable and primary alternative. If you’re having trouble deciding on a hue, this boot is a good choice. These American-made boots are versatile and comfy, plus they’re a steal and available in 7 different options.

The upper is textured and made of high quality materials. It’s beautiful and waterproof, with a retro style polishing toe. The shoelaces have been waxed and polished, and they look lovely. They feel comfortable and not too tight on the feet. The boot cannot break easily because it is reinforced with delicate stitches. The rubber outsole has a rough and bumpy texture and is soft and flexible. The skin-friendly soft fabric around the shoe mouth protects your ankles, keeps them comfortable, and absorbs shock, making it easier to deal with outdoor mountain activities, cycling, snow, and other scenarios.

Clarks Bushacre 2 Chukka Boot

Clarks, a well-known menswear brand, offers another version of the chukka boot. The Bushacre 2 Chukka Boot is the most adaptable on the list, with 12 possible variations. So there’s no surprise that there’s something for everyone, with prices ranging from $40 to $170.

A full grain leather sock liner provides soft comfort to the feet in these boots. The chukka boot silhouette features lace up front with two eyelets and cushioned insole for added comfort. These boots’ finish or shine exhibits scratch like marks. Suede is used for the upper, and leather is used for the lining. The shaft is approximately ankle high from the arch, the platform is 0.75 inches, and the boot opening is about 10 inches round. 

To guarantee that consumers receive the correct size, measure your foot according to Clarks: Place your heel on a straight edge and place your foot on a flat surface. Next, take the length in millimeters from the tip of your longest toe to your heel with a ruler placed beside your foot. It’s important to remember that the longest toe isn’t always your big toe.

Tips For Buying Chukka Boots

Before purchasing any chukka boots, keep the following tips in mind.

Leather Type

Chukka boots are available in a range of leather kinds, including the following:

Top Grain Leather: This is made from the cow’s hide’s most robust and most durable layer. This leather has been polished to remove any blemishes on the surface.

Full Grain Leather: This leather comes from a more comprehensive cross section of the animal. It does, however, necessitate a lengthy break in period. With time, this leather will develop a lovely patina.

Calfskin Leather: This leather comes from silky fin grain quality young cattle. Like top or full grain leather, this sort of leather is long lasting. Calfskin is frequently found in designer labels.

Genuine Leather: Genuine leather is one of the lowest quality leathers available. It’s made from scraps of cowhide that have been combined with a binding agent. According to the journal Materials for Interior Environments, the actual percentage of leather in genuine leather might range between 10% and 90% (source). As a result, this leather type should only be considered if you want to wear a boot for a single season.

Suede: This is a soft, smooth material made from the lower portion of a cow’s hide sanded. Suede has lower durability and requires different care than typical leather.


Waterproofing the chukka boots may be a concern depending on the top material and kind of sole. However, suppose you live in a location that snows or rains frequently, then waterproof boots can be helpful. Always look for chukka boots with a waterproofing quality when the temperature drops without sacrificing your style.


When purchasing a new pair of chukkas, especially those that cost multiple hundred bucks, you want to ensure that the shoe will last for years. Therefore, you’ll want to observe if they use a Goodyear welt or a Blake stitch. While some fashion conscious guys may debate the merits of one stitch over another, the critical thing to remember is that the boot is renewable. It extends the life of the boot significantly.


A Crepe rubber sole is seen on many chukka boots. This gripping outsole can give you a comfortable and attractive step. Furthermore, weather specific chukka boots may have a textured sole for better traction that are ideal for snow.


Nisolo, Red Wing Heritage, and Allen Edmonds, for example, have more experience with leather craftsmanship and use materials from prominent tanneries. These manufacturers’ chukka boots are considered reliable and trustworthy choices.


The majority of the chukka boots we tested were half a size larger than the regular shoe size. As a result, you may need to reduce your size. Always check the product description and user feedback to achieve the best fit.

How To Wear Chukka Boots?

Chukka boots are traditionally uncoated suede calfskin on a thin sole, but they now come in various fabrics and colors. Whatever design you choose, it’s a boot that fits well in current wardrobes and can be worn to both the office and the bars. Of course, they’re one of the most fantastic boots for jeans, but you can also channel the style’s upper class roots.

They’re mostly known as a stylish casual crossover, but the leather makes a difference. A light suede might have a completely different feel than a black suede that has been highly polished. The chukka boots look best with a slim trouser leg, either pinched on the shoe or, more commonly nowadays, an inch or so over the boot. Chukkas go well with both jeans and chinos, and the more formal ones can help dress down a suit for a more casual look.

Do you want to dress them up and look relaxed? Avoid contrasted colored soles and stick to darker shades. An essential pair of flat fronted trousers, a flash of a sock, and a button up or polo shirt look great with black suede desert boots. You can choose some selvage denim or a pair of Dockers Alpha for a more casual look. A crew neck sweatshirt is also suitable.

Chukka boots aren’t just for weekend evenings night out. These classic shoes are also ideal for business or casual outfits. Simply choose a pair in a dark color and combine them with professional and stylish clothing to achieve the look. For example, to wear chukka boots to work, pair them with pants or chinos, a white cotton shirt, and a cashmere sweater or coat.

Final Thoughts

The chukka boots certainly add the class to the outfit. Chukka boots are now worn for everything from running errands to going out on the town to spending the day in the corporate world. They were initially worn by British army regiments to play polo and have become fashionable as casual clothing.

Like other casual boot types, Chukkas are ideal for sightseeing and roaming around town. However, they are not suitable for more vigorous activities such as trekking. If you want a highly comfortable chukka, make sure the fit is correct and choose a rubber sole over a leather sole. It will provide more cushioning throughout the day and prevent foot pain. Before purchasing chukka boots, know your shoe width and size. Like any other shoe, they should fit snugly but comfortably through the foot. On the other hand, the style’s design indicates that the ankle will sit looser than in Chelsea or lace up boots. So, if you don’t own a pair of these classy boots, now is the perfect time to invest.

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