While my favorite rides are for fun, a lot of my rides are commuting. Since I work in an office environment with a professional dress code, finding office friendly riding clothing like the full line of boots by Breaking Hearts and Burning Rubber gives me such incredible joy.
I’d been eyeing the BH&BR line of boots for a while on Instagram. All the boots have the same basic fit and footbed with aesthetic and top-of-boot differences. I was a little worried about the narrow toe, but I finally made the plunge to order a pair last May (and then I ordered another pair in September because I have poor impulse control). First things first – it takes a long time to get your boots. The Oregon model I ordered in May was delivered in October, and the New Mexico model I ordered in September got to me this last January. Don’t be discouraged – they are handmade after all – just expect 4-5 months of impatiently waiting for your new boots.
For my first pair (the Oregons), I got a size 37 ( I usually wear a 7.5 US). They ended up being a little big, but I put insoles in and they feel great with that little bit of plush along the sole. Plus I like having that extra wiggle room for my sensitive pinky toes. For my second pair (the New Mexicos), I mailed in a tracing of my foot and the gals at BH&BR made them the exact right size. They are more snug around my toes and as a result it is taking longer to break them in. If you’re not sure what size to get, I recommend sending in your own tracing and talking with them to see what makes the most sense for your foot.
After having the Oregons for almost 6 months, they have become my everyday boot. They are absolutely perfect for commuting to and from the office. They look professional with slacks, they have a nice lugged Vibram® sole for slippery parking garage floors, and they are oh-so-comfy after a pretty painless break-in process. It helps that they’re easy on the eyes too. They are a masterful blend of masculine-boot usefulness with some obviously feminine touches.
I walk on my lunch breaks and have a sit/stand desk, and so a typical day for my footwear is 10 miles by motorcycle, 4 hours standing, 4 hours sitting, and a 2 mile walk. Because of all my walking and standing, I burn through boots a little faster than average, and these are no different. I have to moisturize these a lot to keep the shifter toe from looking worn, and I have turned those thick lugs into a smooth ramp on the inner heel. Lucky for me, leather is durable and boots can be resoled.
I love them so much I use them for my weekend riding too – even though they are not ideal for my weekend riding style.
I am a fairly aggressive rider, and if I’m in a curve, I like to put my foot under the shifter to prepare for an upshift. Since all the BH&BR boots have those adorable pointy toes, they stick out a little further than the wear detectors on my pegs. As you may have guessed, I end up dragging that left toe on the pavement sometimes. It’s hard to fault the boots for that, since I should probably switch to riding in armored boots with a replaceable toe guard. And you can hardly tell that I’ve scraped them 10 or so times.
One beef I do have about the Oregons is the side zip instead of the stretchy panels of most of the other BH & BR boots. I have found that the right zipper falls down about ½-1” during the day. This could be from all the walking I do in them, it could be because that pair is a little bit too big for me, or it could be a design flaw.
For my second pair, I picked the New Mexico model because I love boots and I always wanted a snakeskin pair. These are a dyed and embossed leather, not a true snakeskin, but that’s better for me because (obviously) I require extreme durability.
From the moment I put this pair on – I have been obsessed. They are flashy enough for a woman who rides around with a giant butt in her sissy bar. I almost wish they were a little taller (like almost every other style BH&BR makes), but I love the way they look.
So my ultimate thoughts on these boots? I love the shit out of them. They are 100% worth the wait and the expense. I wish I had 4 more pairs so I wouldn’t wear them out as quickly – but they are on the expensive side, so I’ll have to make due with what I have.
If you have wide feet – these might be harder to wear for you since they do have a narrow profile, but average width and narrow width feet should have no problems.