Hotfooting it: Best summer motorcycle boots

A good pair of summer motorcycle boots will make sure your feet don’t roast in hot weather without sacrificing protection.

We all love riding motorcycles in summer; long days, bright sunshine and (hopefully) no need for cumbersome all-weather, year-round clothing. This might keep us warm in winter but in summer, thick clothing can ruin the feel for the bike and as a result, the overall experience and of course, gently cook you as you ride. And that includes boots.

Footwear designed to keep you warm and dry in the winter could mean your feet quickly get hot and sweaty, even with breathable membranes. What you need are lightweight or vented boots to help you stay cool while connected to the bike.

There will generally be a choice between vented sporty-style boots with high legs, lots of bracing and protection, short versions of traditional boots or the ‘urban’ trainer-style.

The more significant sports-style boots will generally offer greater protection and feel for the bike’s controls but at the expense of flexibility and off-the-bike walking ability.

A lot will depend on what riding you are planning; a blast across country or a trackday and you’ll want the protection to go with your leathers but on a gentle ride-out for a bacon buttie with your mates on a weekend morning, a pair of shorter boots may be just fine.

Like all other motorcycle clothing, boots are CE rated, against two standards; one from 2015 and one from 2017. The latter includes four areas and each is scored with a 1 or a 2 – 2 being the higher rating.

The first of the four indicates the height of the boot; 1 is short, 2 is tall but after that, it’s all about the protection, so when you are considering boots, look for as many 2s as you can find.

These ankle-length boots from legendary manufacturer Frank Thomas look and feel like shortened full-length sports boots. They have front and rear accordion panels to allow the foot to flex while the upper is made from perforated leather to allow cooling air in. They feature reinforced heel and toe boxes as well as ankle padding on the outside with a strengthened shank in the sole to prevent twisting.

Construction Leather and textile
Type Short sport boot
Armour heels, ankles, toe-box and a shank
CE Rating Unknown
  • Gear change pad
  • Replaceable toe sliders
  • Accordion stretch panels at ankle
  • YKK Zip and hook and loop fastened closure

Tested by Justin Hayzelden for eight months

Price: £188.71 (was £199.99)
'The overall construction feels strong, and the laces and Velcro closure keeps them closely fitted to the foot, so I’m confident that the Jupiter 5 would offer significant protection if it came to it. As a short boot solution, the TCX Jupiter 5 Gore-Tex ticks a lot of boxes. Whilst protection may not be top drawer in every category, they are supremely comfortable and, laces aside, should last a long time. If you’re looking for a touring boot that gives the versatility for exploring on foot, or a commuter that you can wear all day long, the Jupiter 5 is a sound option. '

Read Justin's full review here


  • Comfortable
  • Durable
  • Weatherproof
  • Breathable


  • Laces can be a bit of a pain
  • Comfort
  • Looks
  • Quality
  • Protection
  • Value
Construction Leather and Textile
Type Urban Touring
CE Rating 1-1-2-1 WR
Armour External PU on ankle and malleolus, internal toe reinforcement
  • Gore-Tex membrane
  • Laces and Velcro closure
  • Grountrax sole

Tested by Saffron Wilson for 10 months and 6,639 miles

After 6000 miles together, it’s safe to say I grew quite fond of these boots. They became my go-to footwear during the summer and are comfortable both on and off the bike. I was really impressed how waterproof they were, as they survived proper downpours without breaking a sweat, and aside from some wear on the sole and the sticker peeling off, they have been extremely durable too.
With CE Level 1 protection, including impact protection at the ankles, they feel like a pair of trainers with the added peace of mind of motorcycle protection including reinforced heels and toes, and D30 protectors.

But even though they are equipped for use both on and off the bike, equipped with grippy soles, Airmesh material and removable insole, they haven’t compromised on style. The shoes scream retro skater vibes making them stand out from the crowd, and appealing to those of us who wore something similar in our teen years.

Read Saffron's full review here


  • Comfy as can be


  • Don't let water get in the top!
  • Comfort
  • Looks
  • Quality
  • Protection
  • Value
  • Overall
Construction High-tenacity polyester
Type Urban/casual sneaker
CE Rating 1-1-1-1
Armour Heel and ankle support, D3O ankle protector
  • Waterproof and breathable membrane
  • Anti-slip rubber coating
  • Reflective inserts
  • Gear shifter abrasion resistant material
  • Removable insole
  • 2 pairs of laces included

Tried and tested by Joseph Wright

Price: £249.99 (was £299.99)
"Initially, the boots feel stiff for walking and gear changes, but they soon break-in as the double flex system allows vertical ankle movement while also ensuring there is no horizontal movement. Although the boots are primarily designed for sporty riding and not walking, the mechanism provides decent comfort on and off the motorcycle.

After eight months of regular use, the boots still look good. They're built with high-quality microfibre and synthetic leather, offering durability and a lightweight feel. The soles have worn evenly, although replaceable footbeds would be a nice addition. The interchangeable polyurethane/magnesium sliders on the toe and heel have endured multiple trackdays without needing replacement. The only issue is the material used in the double flex system, which can produce a noticeable squeak."


  • Good feel through the pegs
  • Fine tuned fit
  • Ankle flex system


  • Squeaky when walking
  • Quality
  • Value
Armour Heel, Ankle, Shin, Toe Sliders
Type Road and race
Construction Durable and lightweight microfibre
  • Padded rear flex area for comfort
  • Abrasion resistant microfibre heat guard
  • Fasten Fit Control interior lacing system with padded tongue
  • Soft touch breathable mesh lining with double density foam
  • Double Flex Control System helps prevent ankle twisting
  • Polyurethane shin plate
  • Abrasion resistant replaceable polyurethane toe and heel sliders
  • Micro-adjustable aluminium buckle with PU toothed band shin plate fastening
  • Replaceable anatomic extra light and breathable footbed

Tried and tested by Jim Blackstock

Price: £142.49 (was £189.99)

If you get past the basic passes in the CE rating, these are pretty good boots. They actually feel protective on – they are chunky and rigid where they need to be, but are comfortable and work really well on the bike as well as off it. The waterproof membrane is very handy and the fact it is also breathable means that your feet don’t get sweaty. If you’re happy with the slightly weird name, they are a good option.

Read Jim's full review here


  • Waterproof and breathable
  • Comfortable on and off the bike
  • Good feel and reassurance


  • Basic CE passes
Construction Mesh fabric
CE Rating 1-1-1-1
Armour Heel and Ankle
  • Breathable mesh lining
  • Midsole with Zplate shank
  • Reinforcements on malleolus, toe and heel
  • Ortholite footbed with long term cushioning
  • Quick lacing closure
  • Wear resistant rubber Groundtrax® outsole

Tried and tested by Jim Blackstock

Price: £256.49 (£was £269.99)

 love these boots. They are sporty enough for almost any road use but are superbly comfortable and very reassuring, with the armour and protection. They go under most of the jeans I normally wear in summer and easily go under textiles while leathers also fit inside easily. They have kept my feet warm and dry for two years on a variety of bikes and have plenty of life left in them yet.

Read Jim's full review here


  • Top quality brand
  • More affordable price
  • Good blend of features


  • Less high tech than some
Armour Ankle, Toe Sliders, Shin
CE Rating 2-2-2-2
Type Road and race
Construction Microfibre upper and Drystar membrane
  • TPU lateral ankle brace support between calf, shin and ankle for impact shock protection
  • TPU injected shin guard, calf protector, heel counter, shift pad, ankle brace and toe sliders
  • Double density ankle protector on the medial side
  • Replaceable toe slider with easy screw fixings
  • Instep and Achilles accordion flex zone
  • Internal toe box protection
  • Removable anatomic footbed with EVA and Lycra

Tried and tested by Joseph Wright for six months and 3,500 miles

These were my first pair of specialised riding footwear and I have to say they fitted my criteria perfectly. The reinforced padded leather in the upper construction and heel, together with the reinforced soles, feels very safe and secure when on the road, and the perforated material to the sides allowed for cool and comfortable summer riding. Changing though the gears is super satisfying in these kicks with a slender but firm edge which offers precision when changing up though gears. Off the bike this hi-top shoe works with all my riding jeans and didn’t look out of place at casual or professional events.


  • Comfortable on and off the bike
  • Quality
  • Value
Construction Perforated leather
CE Rating 1-1-1-1
Type Casual / Urban
Armour Heel
  • Targeted perforated areas
  • Reinforced sole and heel for durability
  • Durable nylon ace closure system
  • Padded suede ankle top and tongue for extreme comfort

Tried and tested

"Substantial shin plate and prominent ankle bracing give these a very racy look. Feel quite stiff in construction though – it can be difficult to reach your left foot forwards enough to get under the gear pedal. That bracing had a habit of digging into ankles on both sides too. Waterproofing is provided by RST’s own SinAqua membrane, which stayed totally dry in the spray test, thought did let water through when the boots were submerged. Fit is good, through it takes a couple of goes to get the main zip done up and the Velcro closed properly."

Armour Ankle, Shin, Toe Sliders, Heel
CE Rating 2-2-2-1
Construction Microfibre and waterproof and breathable membrane
  • Strong TPU shin and heel protection
  • Hinged ankle prevents overextension
  • Calf expansion panel for added flexibility
  • Hard-wearing gear shift protection pad
  • Anti-slip multi-density sole for added grip
  • Replaceable hard-wearing toe slider

These short boots are formed in perforated leather for airflow to the feet with an air mesh lining to maximise the cooling effect. There is TPU protection to the ankle and reinforced heel and toe cups while the sole is impact-absorbing and has a dual-flex insert. There is padding on the tongue and around the ankle and they achieve the higher of the two safety ratings in all areas, the 1 indicates they are a short design. Impressive.

Construction Full-grain leather upper
Armour Ankle
Type Casual / Urban
CE Rating 1-2-2-2
  • Air mesh lining
  • Forma double density rubber sole with shock-absorbing heel insert
  • TPU moulded ankle protection
  • Reinforced heel and toe areas
  • Ankle TPU moulded plastic protections
  • PP Mid Dual Flex with anti-shock felt midsole
  • Antibacterial replaceable footbed

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