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Carhartt Womens Force Work Shoes – Detailed Review

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Rating : 8.3/10
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Performance Breakdown

9
9
10
7
9
5
9

Bottom Line

Constructed with outstanding durability and strong arch support, the Carhartt Women’s Force Nano Composite Toe Work Shoe has what it takes to keep you walking comfortably in tough work settings.

Pros

  • Composite safety toe cap
  • Ergonomically shaped, supportive footbed
  • Fast moisture wicking
  • Exceptionally durable and rugged construction

Cons

  • Laces easily get unknotted
  • Tip of the outsole feels slippery

Material

Leather and fabric

Type of Toe

Yes (composite toe)

Weight

2.249lb / 1.02kg / 35.98oz

Waterproof

No

Shaft Size

3 inches

Outsole

Rubber

Shoe type

Work Shoes

Manufacturer

Carhartt

Safety certifications

No

Price range

$120.14 to $199.00

Summary

The Carhartt Women’s Force Nano Composite Toe Work Shoe’s strength and durability was evident from the beginning, so I had no doubt that I’d be taking advantage of its functional benefits for a long time. It had a very rugged, robust construction that withstood being used extensively in challenging surroundings without easily being damaged. I loved the sole’s remarkably thick structure because it not only provided a height boost but also offered continuous support that helped me walk with enhanced stability.

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The FastDry lining wicked moisture away to ensure that I didn’t have to deal with sweaty foot problems even with all-day use. I had some problems with the laces coming undone often, however, as well as some slipping issues as the outsole’s tip seemed to lack strong traction. This article will give us a chance to take a closer look at the shoe’s features to determine which ones had the greatest impact on the footwear’s remarkable performance.

When you want extra protection but don’t want to sacrifice comfort, this work shoe provides a supportive base to keep you walking almost effortlessly all day.

Ideal For

  • Work settings that are prone to static electricity build-up
  • Harsh environments that need safety toe work shoes
  • People who are after a durable work shoe with a rugged design

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Performance Analysis

Comfort

The Carhartt Women’s Force Nano Composite Toe Work Shoe didn’t have any trouble providing me with a comfortable experience even if there were some aspects that need to be improved. It had an impressive footbed featuring an ergonomically designed structure using the proprietary Insite technology. This footbed offered outstanding arch support, preventing my arch from falling so I didn’t feel pain even when I stayed upright and walked for a long time. It followed my foot’s shape to deliver continuous support, promoting a more stable walking experience as it prevented uncontrollable foot movements while I walked on different ground conditions.

I successfully avoided foot fatigue because the footbed’s supportive design, along with the EVA midsole, helped disperse the impact of my steps across the shoe instead of concentrating it on only the heel area. This midsole also provided another layer of cushioning and support from below to ensure that I didn’t easily feel the unyielding floors I walked on. It delivered a mild bounce that acted as a propellant to my steps, enabling me to walk comfortably for much longer.

I especially liked how the sole delivered strong support and cushioning with its thick structure, giving me a welcome height boost without the odd floating feeling that I previously experienced when using thick-soled work shoes.

This sole’s thickness delivered enhanced support and allowed my foot to maintain its proper alignment even as it worked to stabilize my gait on different surfaces. The knit upper was just as flexible, instantly moving along with my steps but not digging painfully into my skin the way stiff uppers do.

It’s worth noting that I felt a slight pressure on my toes, particularly in the area directly below the safety toe cap.

It wasn’t that bothersome, though, and I managed to get used to it since it didn’t cause a great deal of discomfort.

However, the back of the shoe rubbed painfully against my heel when I tried to pull the laces tighter to stop them from unknotting quickly.

I believe both issues may be resolved by a longer breaking-in period, after which the components may become softer and more comfortable to use.

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Weight

The rugged construction gave the impression of extreme bulk, so I was happy to discover that the shoe didn’t feel too heavy at all – it was neither too bulky nor lightweight. Most of the weight came from the thick sole but this component was cushioned and supportive enough to ward off the discomfort.

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Traction

The rubber outsole delivered good traction that gripped different surfaces firmly. However, this level of traction didn’t extend to the very tip of the shoe, which I felt had considerably weaker traction compared to the rest of the outsole. I nearly slipped when I walked at a hurried pace on slick surfaces because the tip of the outsole didn’t have a strong grip on the ground. But I did appreciate the sole’s static-dissipative protection as it made walking in static electricity-prone areas much safer.

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Fit and Sizing

This shoe had a snug fit from the thickly cushioned sole but didn’t feel exceptionally tight. There were times when I felt the safety toe cap dipping a bit into my toes, but it wasn’t particularly uncomfortable. I initially liked the shoelaces because they felt thick and had a nice stretch when I tugged on them. However, I quickly discovered that they came undone quite often, even when I just went for a leisurely walk. I tried to compensate by pulling the laces tighter – but this only resulted in discomfort as the back of the shoe became uncomfortably tight and started rubbing painfully against my heel.

I need to mention the pull loop at the back that was supposed to make the shoe-wearing easier and more comfortable but instead ended up becoming the source of my frustration. Pulling on the shoe was quite difficult even when I used the pull loop, which often went into the shoe and rubbed against my skin until I had to fish it out with my fingertip.

 

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Waterproofing

There are no waterproof components throughout this shoe, so it’s not the most suitable option for use outdoors in inclement weather or in work settings that are frequently exposed to wet elements. The knit sections on the upper will easily allow liquid substances in, causing uncomfortable foot wetness.

 

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Breathability

I liked how the knit upper allowed plenty of air to come into the shoe. This helped keep the interior cool, with the excess heat encouraged to evaporate before it can build up to an uncomfortable level. The inner lining is enhanced with the exclusive FastDry Technology that quickly wicked away moisture to make sure that my foot did not sweat excessively even when I used the shoe for hours in humid or hot surroundings.

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Quality and Durability

The Carhartt Women’s Force Nano Composite Toe Work Shoe had an extremely rugged look that perfectly matched tough work settings.

I appreciated its robust structure that didn’t have trouble taking on demanding activities and surroundings, giving me the assurance that I can depend on the shoe’s superb durability to provide lasting benefits.

The narrow, streamlined profile paired nicely with uniforms but just as easily worked well with jeans, allowing me to maximize the shoe in more relaxed settings long after the day’s work is done. The heel, sides, and toe areas are reinforced by leather panels that offered strong abrasion resistance, protecting these zones from considerable damage in case of contact with abrasive objects.

The nano composite toe protected my foot against high impact and compression, so I was able to walk more safely in hazardous surroundings. I welcomed the composite material’s minimized weight because it didn’t feel as heavy as steel toes. I still felt the toe cap pressing into my toes from time to time, but this wasn’t particularly uncomfortable. The static-dissipative protection conducted electric charge into the ground, protecting me from electric shock so I was able to walk more safely in work areas that were prone to static electricity build-up.

I welcomed the bouncy feeling of the EVA midsole because it acted as a propellant for my foot’s movements, allowing me to sustain my energy and keep walking for longer. This component acted as a strong shock absorber that worked by soaking up and then dispersing the force of my steps to stop foot fatigue. The footbed that was constructed using Insite technology delivered outstanding arch support, protecting my foot from fallen arch pain even after hours of walking and standing on unyielding surfaces. I enjoyed the almost customized feeling that the footbed delivered as it was designed to follow my foot’s natural shape for continuous comfort and support.

The knit material on the upper allowed the air to flow unhampered into the shoe so the interior felt cool for much longer. It helped the excess heat to dissipate quickly, preventing it from building up to stop overheating. I especially liked the quick-drying lining that wicked moisture away from my skin, ensuring that I wouldn’t need to experience the discomfort that can come with sweaty feet.

The rubber outsole’s middle and back portions had a good grip on different surfaces, but it didn’t extend to the tip. I felt that the tip of the outsole had weak traction because this portion felt considerably less grippy compared to the other areas. I almost slipped when I walked quickly over wet and unstable ground conditions because the tip of the sole didn’t bite into the surfaces strongly enough. I also had some issues with the laces – they often came undone even if I knotted them tightly. Pulling them tighter, however, resulted in more problems as the back of the shoe started rubbing painfully against my heel. The pull loop that was supposed to make shoe-wearing more convenient instead became a problematic component because it folded in when I slid my foot in and had to be pulled out using my finger.

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Other Versions

The Carhartt Women’s Force Nano Composite Toe Work Shoe is available in black. It comes in a version with electrical hazard protection but without the static-dissipative sole.

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The Challengers

Reebok Work Women’s Soyay RB191 Safety Shoe

The Reebok Work Women’s Soyay RB191 Safety Shoe comes with a classic skater sneaker silhouette that seamlessly matches different workwear with its streamlined design. Its casual profile also goes well with more laidback outfits so you can easily maximize this shoe for work and leisure purposes. The steel toe enhancement keeps the foot safe from grave crushing injuries in case heavy items, such as tools and pieces of equipment, are accidentally dropped onto the shoe from elevated spaces in the workplace. The midsole soaked up the shock coming from continuously walking on unyielding floors, protecting the foot from fatigue for pain-free walking. The electrical hazard protection offers a non-primary level of safety against being electrocuted if there’s accidental exposure to live currents in dry conditions. The attachment between the sole and upper doesn’t look very strong, though, so this might be a durability concern in the long run.

Danner Women’s Run Time Composite Toe Shoe

The Danner Women’s Run Time Composite Toe Shoe features a sporty profile that can easily be mistaken for running shoes, especially with the way the safety toe cap is concealed within the athletic profile. The composite toe cap acts as a safety barrier against dangerous compression and impact, keeping the foot safe from crushing injuries while working in hazardous surroundings. It doesn’t feel as bulky as a steel toe cap and doesn’t contribute a lot to the overall weight so the shoe easily maintains its minimized weight structure. The OrthoLite footbed provided supportive cushioning without extreme bulk, ensuring that the foot is cradled by welcoming softness while maintaining enough space inside the shoe to allow for natural mobility. The Plyolite midsole took in the shock of continuous walking, spreading it throughout the shoe to prevent foot fatigue from setting in. The outsole had a remarkably strong grip on surfaces, preventing slipping on tricky ground conditions. It’s worth noting that this isn’t a waterproof shoe, making it unsuitable for wet conditions.

Rockport Women’s Trustride Safety Toe Shoe’s

The Rockport Women’s Trustride Safety Toe Shoe’s slip-on design offers the convenience of lace-free wearing, with a side zipper to make it even easier to slip on with minimal effort. The steel toe component shields the foot from being crushed by compression and impact threats, delivering maximum safety in work environments where there are risks of heavy items accidentally falling from high areas. The insole has shock-absorbing qualities that stop foot fatigue, especially when you’ve been walking for prolonged periods. The electrical hazard safe design offers a secondary level of security against electric shock if you accidentally touch electrically charged items while in dry settings. The rubber outsole powerfully gripped different surfaces, promoting safer walking as it helps maintain your stability in tricky surface conditions. However, the shoe has some fit issues as some areas feel extremely tight while others feel too loose.

Timberland PRO Women’s Reaxion Composite Toe

The Timberland PRO Women’s Reaxion Composite Toe Work Shoe showcases an athletic silhouette that seems better suited to sports activities, but, in reality, is packed with features that suit challenging work conditions. The composite toe cap guards the foot against heavy objects that can come crashing down from elevated areas, making it possible for you to avoid serious foot injuries in hazardous surroundings. The Anti-Fatigue technology works by absorbing shock and dissipating it to protect the foot from becoming fatigued. The moisture-wicking lining is enhanced with antimicrobial treatment for superior odor control while also promoting comfortable breathability inside the shoe. The outsole offers excellent traction as well as heat resistance on surface temperatures that can reach up to a maximum of 300 degrees Celsius. However, it tends to make squeaking noises on smooth wooden floors.

Skechers Work Women’s Synergy – Sandlot Alloy Toe

The Skechers Work Women’s Synergy – Sandlot Alloy Toe Work Shoe has an exceptionally durable design that can withstand heavy use in difficult work settings, providing you with the assurance of long-term benefits without premature damage. Its sporty profile features eye-catching touches of color that break the monotony of the black upper, making this shoe a wonderful choice for perking up your outfit’s style. The alloy toe offers superior protection against compression and impact threats without excess weight. The memory foam insole delivers an almost personalized level of comfort as it conforms to the foot’s shape while alleviating pressure points for blister prevention. The shock-absorbing midsole stops foot fatigue on its tracks while maintaining a flexible structure, allowing you to continue walking comfortably without rigid materials getting in the way of your agility. This sole is quite difficult to clean, though, so getting rid of dirt may be a challenging task.

Conclusion & Verdict

The Carhartt Women’s Force Nano Composite Toe Work Shoe’s rugged construction is durable enough to last for a long time even with heavy use in demanding work environments. I enjoyed walking with the extremely thick sole supporting and cushioning my steps while also providing a welcome height boost. The composite toe cap and ESD sole made it much safer for me to walk and do my required tasks in hazardous conditions. I had some difficulties with the laces, though, as they tended to come undone even with non-vigorous walking. The tip of the sole also lacked strong traction, increasing the risk of slipping on tricky surfaces.

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Emma Ray

Emma is a senior editor at workwear.org where her role mainly involves testing and writing about women’s safety work wear. Emma has 12 years of experience with leading work wear stores in Houston and San Antonio alike, where she helped hundreds of customers to choose the right work wear for their profession.