When most people think Caterpillar shoes, they think big black boots. Some Caterpillar products however completely buck this trend. Case in point, the Men’s Brode.
Instead of Caterpillar boots, they look like Converse sneakers. Unlike Converse products however, these come with both a safety toe and a non slip sole.
The low cut means that they were obviously designed for those who work indoors. But are they fit for that purpose? Unfortunately, the answer is no.
I’ll start with the positive. There’s no break in period. For steel toe shoes, they are incredibly light. And the upper material is both soft and comfortable against the ankle.
Unfortunately as the day wore on, problems began to emerge. The sole has almost no impact protection and this means that after a few hours on my feet, my heels began to hurt.
The biggest problem however isn’t the sole but the steel toe. While it isn’t immediately apparent, after a couple hours, I couldn’t help but notice it constantly scratching against the top of my big toe.
For occasional wear, perhaps these shoes are ok. But for every day work wear, they’re simply not comfortable enough.
The Men’s Brode are advertised as having two safety features, a steel toe and a non slip sole. The steel toe, while uncomfortable, will indeed protect your toes. The non slip sole however appears to be a figment of Caterpillars imagination.
Any contact with liquid, of any kind, even just water, makes these shoes potentially more dangerous than walking around barefoot. Despite not wearing these shoes long, I nearly slipped twice.
Because of the aforementioned discomfort, I didn’t wear these shoes long enough to judge their durability. Like most Caterpillar products however, they do appear to be well made. A quick glance at customer reviews also appears to support this theory.
As you can probably tell just from looking at them, the Men’s Brode are not designed for working in wet conditions. Anything more than a very small puddle will lead to very wet feet.
The Men’s Brode is available in a choice of five different colours. Each one is stylish and yet more than formal enough to be worn in a work setting. The black suede version is particularly low key, on which, even the Caterpillar logo is barely visible.
Reviews for the Men’s Brode are mixed. At the time of writing, they’ve been reviewed 150 times for an average rating of 4.1 stars out of 5. While this may seem like a decent enough score, the negative reviews are particularly scathing. I was pleased to discover that I’m not only person to discover the decidedly slippery non slip sole.
In conclusion, I can’t really recommend these shoes. The comfort issue is perhaps debateable. Many people do seem to like them. The non slip sole problem, however, isn’t up for debate. It simply doesn’t exist. And for a pair of shoes designed to be used in the workplace, that’s kind of a deal breaker.
If you want a light pair of Caterpillar safety shoes, I therefore recommend the Caterpillar Streamline instead. They’re comfortable and are far less likely to cause a work place accident when wet.