As a bartender, it can sometimes be overwhelming thinking about the number of times you’d have to move around and the long hours spent standing upright, looking smart, and ready to take people’s orders. All that standing and graceful movement requires the right kind of shoes to get the job done right. Only the most ergonomic, comfortable, slip-resistant shoes can make the cut. We’ll be breaking down the features to consider, and highlighting some of the best bartending shoes in the market, along with their pros and cons.
The Best Bartending Shoe
Air-cooled Memory foam insoles
Closure type bungee lacing
Breathable mesh uppers
Slip-resistant traction outsoles
Shoes are incredibly important when it comes to maintaining a certain level of safety. Some of the nastiest accidents and injuries that happen in the workplace are caused by wearing un-suitable work shoes. If you regularly work the bar or are planning to, then there’s probably an already established familiarity with the work environment. Prepping the ingredients, serving drinks, moving from bar to counter, cleaning up after hours; all these tasks are usually carried out on a slippery floor most of the time. To avoid unnecessary accidents, the Skechers Men’s Cessnock Food Service Shoe was designed with features that guarantee optimal safety on the job.
The Skechers brand isn’t a new name in the industry, and they are famous for their incredibly comfortable yet sporty and stylish footwear. They have worked their way to the top, crafting shoes that are known to provide great comfort, thanks to the memory foam technology. These Skechers are no different, designed ergonomically for easy wearability on the job without watering down the fun, stylish look; they guarantee all-day comfort, with a relaxing fit. As a bonus, the synthetic uppers work hand in hand with a breathable mesh that increases ventilation through the shoes’ form.
There’s also the bungee lacing, which is both convenient and time-saving; first, it takes away those extra minutes spent tightening, tying or tucking in the laces, then reduces the possibility of tripping on them for any reason. And thanks to the pull-tab, these fun, comfortable shoes can easily be slipped on and off, while offering an incredibly flexible form that accommodates the length and width of the feet. With all these outstanding features, the highlights of the shoes have to be the slip-resistant traction outsoles, that fare extremely well on greasy or watery floors, preventing messy accidents from happening.
Very comfortable and lightweight
Slip-resistant with adequate grip
Stain resistance breathable uppers
Bungee lacing system may be a bit loose
May not run true to size
May require extra insoles for more support
Rubber non-slip outsoles
Massaging gel wave system
When it comes to jobs that require working in kitchens, in a bar or serving tables, leather is the go-to material most people choose when buying shoes. There’s no question why; leather is durable, more water-resistant with a smooth form that’s less likely to cause discomfort. Dr. Scholl’s Men’s Harrington Work Shoe has to be one of the best leather shoe picks for bartenders. There’s no doubt about the comfort, safety, and incredible design these shoes have considering the brand that crafted these shoes. Dr. Scholl’s may not be the most popular shoe brand globally, but those who own a pair know that they guarantee excellent quality, unique designs, and ample support.
These pairs are not just well-designed and fancy, but in Dr. Scholl’s way, provide a comfortable feel to the feet, with adequate soles for the work environment. The great thing about these lace-up shoes is actually the prolonged comfort they promise to deliver. Brands that promise such benevolence must have something great going with their design, for Dr. Scholl’s Harrington shoe, it’s the ultra-soft massaging gel wave system. This is the soft and smooth cushioning that keeps customers loyal to the brand; there’s optimal convenience for the feet, as well as shock-absorbing properties that protect them from impact.
In an industry such as this one, where service has to be standard, professional, and efficient, work shoes that support the hustle are hard to find. With such comfortable insoles, the feet can enjoy the ease they deserve, no matter how often you have to move about. Another advantage of these sturdy leather shoes is the water-resistance benefit they provide; bartending does involve mixing and serving drinks, and these shoes ensure those liquids don’t seep into the shoes if anything spills. Let’s not forget the oil and slip-resistant rubber outsoles that work efficiently to provide balance and poise even in a wet work environment. The grip keeps the feet grounded and ready for several rounds on the busiest of nights.
Provides ample stability on oily, greasy and slippery floors
Comfortable cushioning with replaceable insoles
Shock-absorbent with extra grip
May not run true to size
Reported inconsistent quality
Width reportedly runs a bit wide
Oil-resistant, slip-resistant synthetic soles
Vented sock for breathability
Meets SATRA TM63 and TM144 standards
For a lot of people, style and elegance matter a lot, and depending on the stipulated dress regulations by various establishments, many bartenders choose to look more professional. For that classy, elegant yet simple look, Dr. Scholl’s Men’s Proudest Work Shoe is practically the best bet. It has a less sporty or athletic look, leaning more to a professional suit and tie look that would complete that dapper look you’re going for. They may seem like their good looks are all they have going, but these work shoes offer matching functionality on the job.
Those intense times when you’re mixing those spirits with their fruity counterparts, or maybe moving back and forth, trying to get out as many drinks as possible for a large order, you need shoes that support the feet. These extra-fine, well crafted and tailored shoes memory foam and an anti-compression insole that keeps the feet from feeling all that pressure. While the hands, mind, and legs are working simultaneously, the feet are left in a haven where the cushioning stays suitably and comfortably up. It’s not like those shoes that regularly sink in, especially when pressure is applied, the sturdy yet ultra-soft foam padding reliably keeps the feet evenly rested, ensuring a less-stressful time at work.
The uppers of these shoes are made of leather, which is a great choice when trying to keep the moisture out. However, just like other leather shoes, once the moisture soaks in, it’s not the neatest feeling. To prevent that soggy and irritating feel of moisture in the shoes, there’s a Dri-Lex moisture-wicking lining that keeps the moisture out. As a bonus, the Aegis Microbe shield control alleviates foul smells even when the moisture or sweat has gotten into the leather. Ultimately, these are classy shoes great for working the bar; they are elegant, comfortable, and slip-resistant with enough breathability to guarantee all-day wear.
Made of real leather
Very comfortable and sturdy
May not run true to size
May take longer to break into
100% Mesh uppers
Non-skid rubber soles
Memory foam insoles
Some things can’t be avoided, that is why we strive to control the things that can. With the Skechers Women’s Ghenter Bronaugh Work Shoe, there’s a better chance of taking control of the work environment and preventing dangerous falls and injuries. The shoes are designed with rubber soles that have an adequate grip as well as traction. This makes it easier to work quickly and smartly, even on moist or slippery surfaces.
Bartending requires a lot of strength, tact, and intelligence, you don’t want to add fears or concerns to an already focused mind. Good bartending shoes allow users to focus on what’s more important, serving great drinks and combos to expecting customers. The smooth glides and strides achieved with a more solid grip on the floor allow the bartender to concentrate on the task ahead and less on the slippery floors. So it’s beyond mere style and functionality, and more about the efficiency shoes like these provide in the workplace.
Many are already accustomed to the excellent design Skechers delivers with their shoes, comfort, and fin design as well. This model lives up to those high expectations from customers, from the trend-savvy design to the extra-comfort and traction it delivers. The memory foam footbed adequately cushions the feet, providing ample support, and reducing the chances of ‘premature fatigue.’ Plus, the mesh uppers allow enough ventilation into the shoes’ form, offering adequate breathability, and consequently making those long shifts more bearable.
These uppers are also water and stain-resistant, which makes them relatively easier to maintain, and even more, keeps the feet dry and comfortable for longer. Prevent the inevitable with shoes that defy nature, and keep the feet stable on the ground, even on slippery surfaces.
Lightweight and comfortable
Breathable and easy to maintain
May require extra-gel inserts
Size reportedly runs a bit large
Full-length cushioned footbed
Padded collar and tongue
EH Safe tested ASTM F2892-11 for safety
For bartenders that aim to please customers, and whose mission is to satisfy drink cravings, a lot rides on accomplishing such feats. When you think of what the job entails; having knowledge of different recipes, memorizing customers’ specials and probably their names too, it’s a lot of work. When working in a bar, the right ensemble supports this worthy cause. Why is what you wear so important? The right clothes and footwear won’t just provide comfort; they equally amp up confidence when working.
Shoes like the Skechers Men’s Nampa Food Service Shoe don’t just promise a great fit and comfort; they provide that extra bounce of fresh energy to get the job done. Rocking an all-black ensemble, they would go with practically any outfit combination you choose. Plus, they have this sporty yet casual look that’s suitable for the work environment. The synthetic uppers are incredibly smooth, mimicking the actual texture of real leather. Then there’s a perfect stitching finish that adds extra refinement to these fun and stylish shoes. For additional support and durability, synthetic overlays are ingeniously incorporated at the toe, side, and heels.
That’s not just a smart inclusion for aesthetics, placing reinforcements on high-pressure points most likely to give way first ensures you don’t spend too much on new work shoes every two months. Beyond the durability these shoes provide, there’s also the shock-absorbing feature that keeps the feet from bearing any pressure from all that standing and working, especially on hard floors. The full-length removable memory foam ensures it provides ample cushioning to achieve such comfort and shock absorbency. At the same time, the slip-resistant rubber outsoles keep the feet well planted on the ground, even on the most slippery days.
Shock absorbent midsoles
Relaxed Fit® design for roomier comfort
Hard support may not be adequate on hard floors
May require some breaking in
Would probably need more foam inserts for added comfort
Leather uppers with laces
Soft jersey lining
Side perforations for breathability
Non-marking, slip-resistant outsoles
Shoes that are easy to slip on and off are everything; I need to rush to work or quickly pull them off after a long day, there’s no hassle to it. The ease such shoes with flexible, easily-expandable forms offer can’t be substituted. That’s the exact convenience the SafeTstep Women’s Slip-Resistant Andre Court Shoes provide. Well-designed with smooth synthetic leather uppers, these make a great pair of work shoes. The smart design places comfort, sophisticated design, breathability, and slip-resistance on the table.
No matter how bad the day goes, you know, ice melting, drinks slightly spilling from the dispensers and the likes, the synthetic leather uppers viably protect the feet from discomfort. For even more comfort, the foam footbed welcomes the feet to a soft yet firm midsole platform that conveniently prevents pressure from hurting or bruising the feet. There’s a soft jersey lining on the sides that equally ensure the feet are well pampered and protected from the inevitable pressures from the work environment.
These comfort insoles were incorporated to ensure the feet could energetically work through the day with minimal aches or pains as an aftermath of all that hard work. Plus, these are great shoes for women who have been stuck wearing unsuitable unisex shoes to work every day. These are more ergonomically tailored to fit a woman’s legs, considering the anatomy of the feet. Everyone appreciates shoes that are comfortable, stylish, breathable, and easy to wear. The SafeTstep Women’s court shoes fulfill those criteria and more, making them excellent bartending shoes for the job.
Sturdy and comfortable
May run a little wide
Toe box may be a bit tight and un-expandable
Arch support is reportedly not sufficient
Bartending Shoe Buying Guide
A bartenders' job starts way before opening hours and ends quite sometime after closing hours, especially if we are considering the die-hard customers who want to see the bar close before they leave. There's no second-guessing the importance of choosing the right pair of shoes for such a professional and demanding job. The wrong shoes can prove to be either very hazardous or downright uncomfortable. If adequate comfort is to be achieved, along with other essential factors, the right shoes with all the ample features need to be considered.
We've taken the time to outline some of the essential features to consider when picking out suitable shoes for bartending. It's time to stop thinking that what matters the most is your skill and apt efficiency, getting the right bartending shoe matters as much.
Features to Look For In Bartending Shoes
Grabbing a pair of shoes that look nice and suitable for those double shifts and all-nighters just won't cut it. Only shoes with certain qualities will prevent unnecessary slips while providing a rugged yet pressure-resistant base that keeps you in top form. We'll be exploring the most vital features to consider when buying a pair of bartending shoes.
Comfort - Most people think about style before they think about the comfort shoes can provide. However, for a job like bartending, comfort is paramount; it's the primary factor that ensures the feet stand a chance during service hours and won't feel sore and achy after shifts. Fashionable shoes may look great when working, but if we are honest, no-one is really looking at your feet. So it's an important choice to make when choosing comfort over style. The good thing is, some brands won't make you compromise much, as they deliver on both style, great form as well as an ergonomically suitable design that provides ample comfort and support.
So how do you know if a pair of shoes will be comfortable? Think of areas of the feet that require more comfort; the heel, soles, toes, and the sides of the feet as well. All these parts have to be well cushioned, and adequate cushioning is usually determined by the amount of padding present in the shoes. So look out for shoes that mention they have extra-padding, memory foam, or EVA-cushioning. EVA is extra durable and more resistant to extreme temperatures, hot or cold. There's also breathability to consider, especially since the job requires long hours and moving around a lot. Shoes with an extra-breathable form will let enough air in and ensure the feet remain well-ventilated throughout.
Nonslip - With comfort checked off the list, the next primary factor to consider is safety. If you think about it, bartending requires a high level of professionalism. People want to believe their bartender is capable, skilled, probably sexy as well but full of poise. These are qualities only slip-resistant shoes can help you with. There's also the fact that no bartender would like to find himself/herself flat-backed on the floor when shuffling through orders. It's a bar; the floors may not be the driest in the history of workplaces.
Shoes that mention slip-resistance as one of the features should be considered over the ones that don't. An added trick is to check shoes that have safety certificates like CE or OB. The Sketchers Men's Cessnock Food Service Shoe is a great choice when seeking out slip-resistant shoes. They don’t only provide a non-slip base, but equally keeps water from infiltrating its form.
Support - Substantial support stands right by comfort’s side and is a big part of what constitutes convenience when it comes to bartending shoes. Getting the right amount of support from the uppers, the arch, and the outsole will save you from a 'hellish' experience when working the counter. The arch ensures that the feet are ergonomically lying on the footbed, with the weight evenly distributed along its form. With the bodyweight well distributed, the feet are less prone to aches, strain, and other uncomfortable health concerns. Before buying a pair of seemingly adequate bartender shoes, check if arch support is listed on their product features. Another tip is to bend the shoes once they get to you. If they bend easily, they may not have the best support suitable for the job.
Waterproof - Working with ice; that’s part of the job description where bartending is concerned. Even on the best nights, drinks may spill, ice would melt, practically anything could happen to increase the moisture on the floor. Shoes that keep that water out is what any bartender needs, no one wants to walk around with squishy, sloppy feet while on the job.
Style - Okay, so now we are looking at comfortable, safe shoes that have the right support and probably even water-resistant features. This doesn't mean style should be thrown out of the window. People are most likely to work their best when they look and feel at their best. As much as you may want comfortable shoes, they are sharp-looking shoes like the Dr. Scholl's Men's Proudest Work Shoe. It has ample support, suitable cushioning, and an attractive leather-make that keeps the water out, and keeps that shirt and tie look sharp and extremely professional.