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Recently I purchased two pairs of cheap faux leather thigh boots. Seems both of them have the same weak points:
-the arch is supported by a piece of metal, but the metal is much narrower than the sole, so it tends to twist under uneven load
-in the sole, there is a layer I'd like to call "weight carrier": it's stiff and located between the inner and outer sole; the metal arch support is fixed onto this layer. Well, on both of my boot pairs, this layer is made of some very dense carton (!) that disintegrates when wet.
These weak points render the boots completely useless after only 2 or 3 offroad (mud, gravel, water...) outings.
Now I'd like to invest more money into my hobby and buy real leather boots, perferably thigh-high and with a stiletto heel (yes, I know that a block heel or a flat boot would give more support and be more durable). I guess they would automatically be better than thigh boots for $25. Can someone share their experiences on durability of their boots, especially in muddy/wet conditions? The boots should be available in / shippable to the EU.
Thanks in advance!
Bad news is that these days good, durable leather boots do not come under 200EUR. The mid-range brands like Nine West used to make decent boots, but now the quality is lowered. I find brands like Stuart Weitzmann to be the entry-grade for good boots. Dune and Buffalo are however relatively durable for the price, just not full-leather.
That's why for abuse and destruction, I always buy used. Even mid-range boots from the 80s (90s boots are square-toed and ugly) were of far better quality, having full leather lining (best indicator of quality), solid stitched soles and good metal heel frame. Even the Italian made ones can be bought for around 50EUR.
Good luck on your hunt, a pair of Italian boots from 1988 can still take more abuse than a brand new pair of Chinese boots made in 2018.