KEEN Utility Women’s Detroit Mid Steel Toe Work Boot Review

7.8 Total Score
Work boots which protect and provide comfort for your feet

These steel-toed work boots provide solid protection from work induced dangers and natural hazards, while maintaining a high level of comfort and support for your feet, even after having been worn for many hours

  • Waterproof yet breathable
  • Electrically safe (qualifies ANSI z41 PT99 standard)
  • Steel and aluminium composite toes are asymmetrical (give plenty of space and protection for toes)
  • Padding and hydrophobic/hydrophilic 2-zone comfort make it very comfortable to wear
  • Contoured heel lock (provides support to your arches)
  • Footbed wears out quite quickly
  • Replacement insoles may need to be purchased after 3 months of regular, intense use
  • The wide size option is often not actually wide enough
  • Your feet may become constricted if you are required to wear thick socks (because of weather conditions) so it is recommended to buy a half size larger than your actual size.
  • Is not certified to protect against toxic chemicals and is classed as ‘Light Duty’ so will not protect against everything.
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KEEN Utility Women's Detroit Mid Steel Toe Work Boot,Black Olive/Madder Brown,8 M US

Last update was in: May 8, 2021 1:58 pm

This light duty yet a robust pair of work boots not only provides your feet with protection through construction sites and factory work but they are also comfortable and stylish. So you can wear them in almost any outdoor circumstance knowing your feet will be protected and look stylish.

Containing various features and technologies, the work boots enable your feet to stay highly protected and they meet or exceed ASTM F2412-11 and F2413-11 I/75 C/75 EH standards, as stated by their official website. The work boots contain a sturdy, steel and aluminum composite toe giving protection, comfort, and plenty of space for your toes. Despite being described as ‘Light Duty’ these boots are still extremely effective at protecting your feet from the dangers of the outside world and factory work. They have excellent arch support and have been designed with a ‘

Despite being described as ‘Light Duty’ these boots are still extremely effective at protecting your feet from the dangers of the outside world and factory work. They have excellent arch support and have been designed with a ‘Hiking-Inspired Fit’ to allow for maximum comfort whilst working or adventuring.

However, if you are looking for the most robust work boots for highly dangerous situations such as very large, dangerous machinery or toxic chemicals, you will need to seek out something even more robust and with the necessary safety specifications.

Which Sector are these boots optimum for?

  •  Agriculture – These work boots have been designed with the idea of long-lasting comfort in mind so that you can wear these work boots for hours upon end without your feet becoming sore (after the initial break in period). They also have a ‘KEEN.DRY’ waterproof, breathable membrane and a steel and aluminum composite toe, making them highly suited to outdoor life on a farm, where you would be working with heavy objects and getting wet.
  • Factories / Construction sites – As well as the protective steel toe it has an oil and slip-resistant rubber sole and qualifies the ANSI z41 PT99 standards for electrical protection, making it suited for standard factory or construction work.
  • Catering – The strong toe provides protection from sharp falling objects and the breathable material releases the heat and perspiration from a hard day’s work (while keeping rain and humidity out), something which is especially likely to build up in a hot kitchen. In addition, the fact that they are waterproof keeps your feet safe from boiling water being poured on them.
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KEEN Utility Women's Detroit Mid Steel Toe Work Boot,Black Olive/Madder Brown,8 M US, KEEN

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Features and Protection Performance

These work boots are equipped with numerous features to keep your feet safe, dry and comfortable. They are made of leather but have been designed with the technology, ‘KEEN.DRY’ to provide a highly water resistant, breathable membrane that lets vapour out without letting water in.

They have oil and slip resistant rubber soles, combined with a Torsion stability ESS shank that keep you stable while at work. The lining is hydrophobic/hydrophilic 2-zone comfort technology and the work boots come with a removable metatomical dual density EVA footbed for ultimate arch support and comfort.

To assist with arch support and general work boots comfort, there is a contoured heel lock which helps provide arch support. The toe is made of an aluminium and steel composite and the left and right toes are asymmetrical to give maximum comfort as it moulds the feet more accurately and provides roomier toe boxes, preventing pinching when the foot is hyper-flexed. Inside the work boots itself, there is lots of padding to keep your foot comfortable while it is being worn for multiple consecutive hours.

To add additional protection, the work boots are described as having ‘KEEN Patented Toe Protection’ where the work boots and outsoles wrap up and over the toes for maximum protection. To give the maximum safety, the work boots contain reflective webbing.


 Material Features

  •  Oil and slip resistant rubber sole
  • Breathable and waterproof membrane
  • Hydrophobic/hydrophilic 2-zone comfort technology lining
  • Removable metatomical dual density footbed
  • Dual density compression moulded EVA midsole
  • Contoured Heel Lock
  • Padding

Safety Features

  •  Oil and slip resistant rubber sole
  • Torsion stability ESS Shank
  • Reflective webbing
  • Steel and aluminium composite toe (with ‘KEEN Patented Toe Protection’)
  • ANSI z41 PT99 standards for electrical protection
  • ASTM F2412-11 and F2413-11 I/75 C/75 EH standards


 The shaft measures approximately 5.25” from arch and weighs 1lb 8oz (depending on the size or work boots purchased, this may fluctuate slightly). It is recommended to buy a half size larger than your actual foot size so that you are able to wear thick heavy socks if needed to keep your feet extra warm. It is made on a women’s last for better comfort and fit.

 Cost and Quality

 Although they are quite expensive, with a cost of $150 on Amazon, they receive largely positive reviews from many reliable sites. The price is fairly reasonable considering the range of features encompassed in the work boots, meaning that can be used for a variety of tasks, be it factory work, hiking or simply walking your dog in the winter. The leather for the outside is very long lasting and durable although there is some complaint that the inner lining is not as durable and has to be replaced after a while. Overall however, the work boots is very high quality and so is not too expensive as a result.

Insider Tips

Tips 1

The work boots themselves are such good quality that even after a year of walking 4-5 miles each work day they are still in good condition. The laces are strong and reliable and the grip keeps you steady even through slippery substances like oil. Furthermore, they manage to keep your feet warm and yet allow your feet to breathe so that they do not become overly heated.

Tips 2

Contradicting opinions state that after a short time of wearing them, the boots are starting to come apart at the side and are pulling loose from the rubber insole.

Tips  3

It is important to note that these are specifically labelled as work boots and not hiking boots and so, as a result, are a bit stiffer than hiking boots as they are designed to deal with and protect your feet from dangers of the workplace. That being said, they have been designed with a ‘Hiking inspired fit’ so they are noticeably more comfortable than your traditional work boot.

Tips 4

Although the standard size shoe, apparently fits the description, the wide version is not nearly wide enough in the toe section, meaning that your toes can get quite cramped and it can cause pains after wearing for a while.

Tips 5

These shoes provide both comfort and style. They are not big and clunky but blend in as standard outdoor activity shoes, meaning they can be worn for a variety of events and jobs without looking at all out of place.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

 Are these work boots slip-on? Do I have to tie them?

You do need to tie them up but they are very easy to slip on and off. For maximum support, tie the laces tightly.

Can I use them to go hiking?

The steel toe adds unnecessary weight for hiking which can be a problem and they don’t have a strong heel break. That being said, they should work fine for day hikes and light backpacking if not hardcore backpacking.

Do you need to spray anything on to protect them like a typical leather boot?

No. Nothing is needed to be sprayed onto them for protection as their outer coating is very strong. The manufacturers recommend caring for them with leather cleaner and conditioner to keep them in good condition.


 The link to the work boots manufacturer website is here if you would like to see images and read other reviews;

 These work boots provide reliable and strong protection, suited to many kinds of the profession and outdoor activities, although it must be noted that the internal footbed is prone to wear out faster than the exterior work boots and so insoles may have to be purchased after three months if used extensively and for hardcore tasks. These work boots deliver a range of features to the consumer, allowing your feet to stay dry, your arches to be supported and your toes being protected, while still having freedom to move, due to the asymmetrical safety toe, allowing maximum movement and comfort for your toes. The comfort is also enhanced by the thick padding of the work boots and the hydrophobic/hydrophilic 2-zone comfort technology lining. These work boots qualify for numerous safety standards (mentioned above) and the specifics of those can be found here; At not too high a price, these work boots can be used with the confidence of protection and even look remarkably stylish too.

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