The world of rain boots isn’t a friendly place for big legs and thick thighs. I’m not trying to be dramatic here but it’s pretty darn hard to find anything waterproof that can handle calves bigger than 14 inches.
But if you know where to look, I can promise you that there are options out there.
That’s why I did the research (and testing) to find the best waterproof rain and work boots for big dudes. I’ll tell you exactly what I looked for and how I made this list but if you just want to skip ahead and see my recommendations you can check them out here:
- Best Overall: NAT’S 1540 Durable Rain Boots With 22” Opening
- Best With A Gusset: Muck Boot 20.1″ Wide Calf Rain Boot
- Best On A Budget: Northikee Rubber and Neoprene Rain Boots With 18″ Boot Opening
- Best Steel Toe Wide Calf Rain Boot: Servus Comfort Technology PVC Steel Toe Waterproof Boots With 18.5″ Calf Opening
Now let’s get started with everything you need to know about finding the perfect wide calf rain boot.
We’re Talking About More Than Just Rain Boots
First, let’s make sure we’re on the same page when it comes to terminology.
We’re going to refer to these boots as waterproof work boots, rain boots, or just plain boots. But they’re built to handle a heck of a lot more than just rain or mud. We’re looking at boots that are designed to keep your feet dry whether you’re fishing on the river bank, mucking stalls, farming, or doing just about anything else that’s dirty and wet.
So don’t be confused by the terminology and know that the boots we’re looking at are built for hard work and heavy rain.
What Men Should Look For In A Wide Calf Rain or Work Boot
Before we get into the individual reviews, let’s make sure we know what we’re looking for when it comes to finding the perfect wide calf boot.
Make Sure The Calf Is Wide Enough
Yeah, I know this seems pretty obvious but a lot of guys still skip this part. You may already know that you have thick calves and need wider boots but how wide (exactly) do you actually need?
You gotta measure those puppies to know for sure. It’s dead simple and here’s how you do it:
Beyond skipping the measurement stage, there’s still one critical mistake that guys make and that’s forgetting to account for your jeans, socks, or anything else that you’re going to be tucking into your boot. This usually adds around an inch or two and that can make the difference between a comfortable waterproof boot and one that doesn’t fit.
Lastly, you’ll want to consider whether or not you need a gusset or a buckle. While these two features are a little different, they’re both designed to expand or contract the opening of your boots. The benefit of increasing the boot opening is obvious (especially for those wide calves) but keeping your boots closed and tight against your clothing can have several benefits as well- mainly keeping you warm and keeping precipitation out of your boots.
Not every guy will need a gusset or buckle, but make sure you think about it before you pick your pair of rainboots.
Make Sure Your Waterproof Boot Is Wide Enough
I know, another one that seems like a no-brainer but it’s actually difficult to find waterproof boots that offer both a wider calf opening and room for a wider foot. Our best overall pick does exactly that and you can check them out on Amazon here.
Of course, not all big guys have wide feet so this might not be a big deal for everyone however it’s still something you need to keep in mind.
Take Arch Support Into Your Own Hands
Rain boots aren’t known for their orthopedics or arch support and while there are options out there that can help it’s best to plan on adding your own support if you’re going to be wearing them for long hours.
Big guys need extra support anyways and I know that carrying my weight around on low-quality insoles is a recipe for knee pain. Whether we’re talking about your classic work shoes, running shoes, or rain boots the proper insoles can change a big man’s life.
Still, if you’re just picking up some rain boots to walk the dog or take care of some chores for an hour or so you’ll probably be fine. But if you’re planning on wearing your boots for any longer duration it’s a good idea to check out some insoles that work for bigger guys.
How Important Is Style?
For some big guys, the only thing that matters is function.
Do the waterproof boots keep your feet clean, dry, and comfortable while fitting your big calves? Then that’s enough and style is secondary.
I definitely fall into this category (at least most of the time) but I still don’t want to look like a slob.
So while we will be talking about style, most waterproof boots for men just come in your basic black, dark green, and sometimes camo. So consider how much you care about style but don’t expect to make a fashion statement with your waterproof rain boots.
Best Wide Calf Rain and Work Boots For Big Guys
Now that we know what we’re looking for, let’s get into our favorite options starting with the best overall.
Best Overall: NAT’S 1540 Durable Rain Boots With 22” Opening
- Fits calves up to 22 inches
- Measures 15 inches from the bottom of the heel to the top of the boot
- Available up to size 14 with wide options but just a heads up that these run larger
- Super durable all around option that can handle just about anything you throw at it
When most people think of rain boots or waterproof work boots they think of rubber.
And rubber is a really good option but the folks at Nat’s are doing things a little different by using EVA to build these boots instead of traditional rubber. EVA is a synthetic material that’s very similar to rubber but it’s lighter, more flexible, and more durable. Of course, it’s also completely waterproof too.
While a typical rubber rain boot will usually weigh around 1 to 1.5 pounds, thanks to the use of EVA, these boots come in at 0.6 pounds each. That might not seem like a huge deal but if you’re wearing your boots regularly or for long periods of time (like all day) then you’ll definitely notice and appreciate the difference.
The EVA also helps when it comes to resistance to all kinds of material including things like oil which typically degrades rubber.
Of course, it doesn’t matter how lightweight or durable they are if they don’t fit but that’s generally not going to be a problem with a 22-inch boot opening. That will work for a lot of bigger guys and will often still leave room to tuck your pants, socks, or any other layers.
You also have plenty of size options with sizes up to 14 and a wide shoe opening for big feet. However, it’s important to note that these waterproof boots do run a bit large so unless you’re going to be wearing thick socks or other gear with these it’s probably best to size down. Sizing down won’t change the 22 inch boot opening so there’s nothing to worry about there.
Overall, these waterproof work boots are a great all-around option that covers everything we want to see in a quality pair. To top it all off, these boots are also relatively easy on the budget, at least when you consider what you’re getting in.
The only potential downside is that these boots lack a gusset or buckle to cinch them closed. For the majority of work, that’s not going to be a problem and you probably don’t need to cinch your boot closed to muck stalls. But for some guys, the lack of a gusset could be a deal-breaker so check out our next pick if that sounds like you.
The last thing worth mentioning is that you’re stuck with only one color option. I know a lot of guys couldn’t care less and if your boots are covered in mud then it probably doesn’t matter what color they are but it’s still worth pointing out.
If you’re looking for a good all around option, these are worth checking out. You can take a closer look at these boots, read more reviews and see the latest price on Amazon by clicking here.
Best With A Gusset: Muck Boot 20.1″ Wide Calf Rain Boot
- 20.1 inch boot opening for big calves
- Measures 15.9 inches tall
- Gusset allows for easy closure to keep cold and rain out
- Combination of neoprene, mesh, and rubber for a waterproof, lightweight, and breathable design.
With a brand name like Muck Boot, it’s pretty clear that these waterproof boots are built for dirty work. These are made with a mostly rubber exterior, as you’d expect, but the folks at Muck Boot have also added a neoprene and mesh liner. Neoprene is extremely comfortable and it’s the same stuff that wetsuits, life jackets, and a long list of other products are made from.
With neoprene in the liner, these boots have some added flexibility and the addition of mesh helps wick moisture and keep your feet comfortable. That’s a big step up from a lot of other super plain rain boots that can heat up or chafe your feet.
But what really helps these boots stand out is the addition of a gusset which is placed mostly behind the boot and a little to the side. The gusset allows you to cinch the boot closed to keep your feet warmer or just more protected. If your calves aren’t quite big enough for this 20.1 inch boot opening, the gusset can also help these fit a little tighter on your calves.
These boots also feature a reinforced toe box and a reinforced heel. This falls into the “nice to have” category more than anything else and while the extra reinforcement of the toe box can definitely help protect your toes from minor bumps, it’s not the same as a steel toe.
It’s also worth bringing up the toe box because it seems that at some point this product was mislabeled on Amazon as having a steel toe- which it does not have. So even though some of the product questions will describe this as a steel toe waterproof boot, it isn’t. Don’t get confused.
Even without a steel toe, this boot is a great option for just about any kind of wet, dirty, or messy outdoor work and the gusset will be a critical addition for some guys. The biggest downside is that while the 20″ opening is great for big calves, it’s not going to be enough for every guy out there.
But if this waterproof rain boot sounds like a good fit, you can check out more reviews, see your two color options and take a look at today’s price on Amazon by clicking here.
Best On A Budget: Northikee Rubber and Neoprene Rain Boots With 18″ Boot Opening
- Fits calves up to 18 inches with extra stretch thanks to a neoprene top
- Measure 13.8
Quality waterproof work boots aren’t cheap…at least if you want to actually keep your feet dry. But when you need a larger calf opening on top of it all, things start to get really tricky.
So while there are waterproof boots that are available at rock bottom prices, they usually have calf openings around 14 to 15 inches- or even less in some cases.
That’s where this pair of rain boots from Northikee comes into the picture. They aren’t the cheapest boots on the market but they are easy on the budget, especially when you consider what you’re getting.
One of the biggest differences between this boot and others is the blend of nylon and neoprene on the top that not only keeps it waterproof but also keeps it snug if your calves are large. Because of the flexible material, you could also squeeze into these boots even if your calves are a little larger than the 18-inch circumference. But even if you’re already within the size range, the extra flexibility allows you easily tuck your jeans, pants, or socks into the boot for extra warmth.
While insoles are very much an issue of personal preference, these boots also come with a solid pair of insoles that offer decent arch support. If you’re a bigger guy and you haven’t already thought about arch support then you’re missing out and proper support can make a big difference.
Even though the calf opening size is on the lower end for the boots on this list, not only does the stretchy top help but this boot is also a little shorter than others on this list with a height of 13.8 inches. That still provides plenty of coverage but if you’re on the taller side or just have longer legs, you may find that these sit below the thickest part of your calf which makes these even better for bigger calves.
If these sound like a good fit, you read more about the moisture-wicking liner, see more reviews, and check today’s price on Amazon by clicking here.
Best Steel Toe Wide Calf Rain Boot: Servus Comfort Technology PVC Steel Toe Waterproof Boots With 18.5″ Calf Opening
- Boot opening measures roughly 18.5 inches wide
- Height is 14 inches measured from the outside and 12.5 inches measured from the inside
- Steel toe as required by many workplace regulations at a very budget-friendly price
- More than 1,000 five star reviews
Some guys need a waterproof rain boot with a steel toe for work and others just prefer it. But it’s also common for steel toe rain boots to cost a fortune which is why I’ve included this budget-friendly steel toe option from the folks at Servus Comfort.
Because it’s made of PVC instead of traditional rubber or EVA, you shouldn’t expect these boots to be borderline bombproof like other options on this list. However, they’re more than durable enough for most work and they’re also one of the most budget-friendly options with a steel toe thanks to the more affordable PVC material.
Of course, we’re talking about big dudes and big calves here so you can also expect a 18.5 inch boot opening that can handle thick calves. I know, that’s not huge but it is a big step up from most boot openings.
Overall, these boots are simple but highly functional. At this price point, you’re not going to find anything fancy like a neoprene liner or highly supportive insoles but that doesn’t mean the boot isn’t quality and there are more than 1,000 five stars (with many from other big guys) backing up this waterproof boot.
So if you need a wide calf steel toe boat without breaking the bank this is worth checking out. You can take a closer look at the design, read more reviews and see the latest price on Amazon by clicking here.
It’s not easy for any guy to find the right pair of rain boots. But as is often the case, finding the right fit is harder if you need big and tall sizes and guys with bigger calves will have a much harder time finding a boot that works. Of course, women don’t have it any easier, and finding extra wide calf rain boots is just as difficult for ladies.
Not only do you need your calf to fit but you also need any of a wide range of features like a steel toe, extra insulation, or anything else.
I’ve been there and done that. But hopefully, this article saved you the struggle of buying boots that don’t fit along with a whole heck of a lot of time.
What do you think? Did you find your new favorite waterproof work boots?